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Stop and Cure Pepper Burn Easily

Stop and Cure Pepper Burn Easily

Your lips and mouth are still burning after eating spicy food? We explore a list of common ingredients which will help you in neutralizing pepper burn in the mouth because water doesn't help! These ingredients found in the kitchen will neutralize pepper fast.

Imagine this. You’re eating a delicious plate of Thai basil chicken or drinking from a bowl of flavourful tom yum soup. You take your first sip, and then you feel it. A tingling in your tongue, and as the soup washes down your throat, you feel the stinging pain in your throat.

That, my friend, is one type of chilli burn. The other is when you touch chilli peppers, and you feel the stinging on your skin.

Why is chilli hot?

Chilli can add spice and flavor to our food and our lives, however, chilli burn is something you have to watch out for when you’re eating any kinds of spices from different cuisines. Chilli peppers release capsaicin, which has oil-like qualities and since oil repels water, drinking water is not a good solution for you.

Water doesn't help chilli burn

Water seems like a good choice when you’re experiencing chilli burn in your mouth or on your fingertips, however, it actually worsens the burn and may even make you feel worse.

What are the solutions to help overcome this (especially if you want to venture into spices)?

Dairy products neutralizes the heat

Your best option is obviously milk. If you watch those crazy spice eating challenges, you would see that they have a glass of milk around them. Milk actually relieves the burn faster than anything else because it is slightly acidic, which helps break down oils. It is definitely useful when you’re eating something spicy or handling chilli peppers. However, if you don’t have any milk (for some reason) in your house or wherever you’re eating, here are some other solutions you can try.

Literally any other dairy products. Ice cream, cheese, yogurt or sour cream. Yogurt is proven to be the most effective one in coating your tongue like a fire blanket.


Drink acidic liquids

As mentioned above, anything acidic can help break down oils. You can squeeze some lime or lemon on your hands and it can help get rid of the pain. They may not be as delicious to drink though, so drink at your own risk!

sour lemon

Sweets to reduce the heat

A teaspoon of sugar can easily ease your pain. Let it sit in your mouth for a moment before either swallowing or spitting it out. A spoonful of honey is a good alternative!


Good ol' rice

A few spoonfuls of rice actually help neutralise the capsaicin heat. That’s why, we always pair our dishes with rice. Other starchy foods like bread, potatoes and tortillas help as well! Dipping your hands into raw rice also helps reduce the burn on your fingertips.

Nasi Lemak

Just stay away from chilli peppers

Be like me. I can handle spice, but I just don’t like the feeling of the mouth burning and lips swelling. In Singapore, we have the McSpicy burger and I can’t even handle that. For Sichuan mala dishes, I generally just order no spice or avoid that altogether.

No access to everything above...

If you are really out of options, and water is your only choice, try gargling a few times with warm water and spitting it out. There are some other alternatives such as drinking alcohol but this might not be a good solution for everyone. Vaseline is also a good option if you feel the burn on your hands.

Hope these tips help you in your spice-eating adventure!

Published: September 10, 2019

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