Rajas in Mexican cooking generally refers to strips of green chile. Here, onions, chiles and bell peppers are grilled or broiled to make a colorful side dish combining sweet and spicy flavors. The Crema version is richer and quite different, but equally delicious.



  • 3 large onions
  • 1 pound whole mild fresh chiles (such as poblano or Anaheim)*
  • 1 medium red bell pepper or 1 pint mini sweet bell peppers
  • Olive or vegetable oil

* May substitute 4 (4 ounce) cans whole green chiles for the fresh chiles. Cut chiles into strips, add to grilled or broiled onions and bell peppers and heat through.


To Grill

  1. Place whole chiles and bell peppers on rack over medium coals. Grill for 10 to 15 minutes, until blistered and charred on all sides. Turn as needed. Place chiles and bell peppers in a bowl and cover for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, put onion slices on grill, brush with oil and grill for 10 to 15 minutes, or until charred on both sides. Peel off and discard as much skin as possible from chiles and bell peppers. Cut out cores and discard seeds. Cut into 1/2-inch wide strips. Separate roasted onion slices into rings and combine with chile and bell pepper strips.

To Broil

  1. Cut onions crosswise into 1/2 inch thick slices.
  2. Arrange onion slices by single layer in shallow pan and brush with about 3 tablespoons oil. Broil 15 to 20 minutes or until tender and charred, turning once. Transfer to saucepan. Place chiles and bell peppers in the same shallow pan. Broil 15 to 20 minutes, turning only once or until blistered and charred on both sides. Skin, core and seed chiles and bell peppers and cut into strips. Add to onions, heat through and serve with meat or chicken.
  3. Serve with grilled meats or chicken.

Rajas con Crema: Add 1/2 cup Half-and-Half and 1/2 cup grated feta to the warmed onion-chile combination in saucepan. Heat slowly, mixing until everything is coated and creamy.

Recipe and photo used with permission from: National Onion Association