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Homemade Hot Sauce Recipe | The Recipe Critic


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If hot sauce is something you use a lot in your kitchen, you have to try this homemade version! Tweak it to your liking then use it to upgrade all of your favorite dishes!

It’s no secret that I’m a big fan of making my own sauces from scratch. Here are a few more recipes I think you’ll love: Nashville hot sauce, sriracha sauce, and sweet chili sauce! All are great for adding some heat and extra flavor to your favorite meals.

Homemade hot sauce in a glass jar.

Why Make Homemade Hot Sauce?

It’s delicious, easy to mix up, and free of additives and preservatives! Plus you can adjust the flavor to personal preference. I know everyone has their favorite brand of hot sauce that they stick to, but trying this homemade version is a must!

Now, let’s get into the flavor of this hot sauce. The main ingredient is dried chile de arbol which is 15,000-50,000 on the Scoville scale. For reference, they’re hotter than jalapenos (5,000-8,000) but not as hot as habanero peppers (100,000+ on the Scoville scale.) I would say this homemade hot sauce is moderately spicy when made as written. You can always adjust that, though!

Ingredient List

This is everything that I used to make hot sauce that has the perfect texture and a well-rounded, moderately spicy flavor! Exact measurements are in the recipe card below.

  • Dried Chile de Arbol: The fiery heart of this sauce! These small red peppers pack a medium to moderate heat with a nutty and slightly earthy flavor.  Wear gloves when handling them!
  • Boiling Water: Softens the dried peppers, releasing their flavor and heat.
  • Chopped Onion: For savory flavor.
  • Garlic Cloves: Complement the onion and also add a little kick.
  • Tomato Sauce: A touch of sweetness and tanginess to balance the chilies.
  • Brown Sugar: Tames the heat a bit and brings a touch of sweetness.
  • Cumin: A warm, earthy spice that pairs beautifully with the other flavors.
  • Chili Powder: So the hot sauce has a little more smokiness and heat.
  • White Wine Vinegar: Adds a sharp tang that cuts through the richness and balances the sweetness.
  • Kosher Salt: Brings out all the yummy flavors!

Let’s Make Hot Sauce!

Before you begin, a couple important things to keep in mind. Wear gloves when handling peppers, and be extra mindful not to touch your face or eye area! Okay, now let’s get into making some tasty homemade hot sauce.

  1. Rehydrate Your Peppers: Remove the stems from the dried peppers and add them to a medium bowl. Pour 2 cups of boiling water over the peppers and let them steep for a few minutes until they have been rehydrated.
  2. Blend: Add the peppers and water to a blender or food processor and blend until the peppers are fully pureed.
  3. Season: Add the onion, garlic, tomato sauce, brown sugar, cumin, chili powder, vinegar, and salt to the blender and blend until pureed.
  4. Simmer: Pour the mixture into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Once it is boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
  5. Strain and Store: Remove from the heat and strain the mixture through cheesecloth before adding it to a sterilized bottle for storing.

Adjust the Flavor

The beauty of making hot sauce from scratch is that you can customize it just the way you like it. If you taste test your sauce and the flavor isn’t quite there, here are ways to adjust it!

  • It’s Too Hot: If you went a little too heavy handed on those peppers, balance things out by adding extra brown sugar.
  • Sweeteners: Instead of using brown sugar, try honey, agave syrup, or maple syrup to switch up the flavor profile!
  • It’s Not Hot Enough: Add more peppers and include the seeds! The seeds pack a lot of heat. You can also mix in different types of peppers. Try Thai hot peppers or habaneros!

Hot sauce in a white bowl.

Storing Leftover Hot Sauce

Good news! As long as you keep your hot sauce in the fridge in an airtight, sterilized jar or bottle, it will stay good for 6 months!

Homemade hot sauce in glass jar, being mixed with a wooden spoon.

More Homemade Sauces I Think You’ll Love

Homemade sauces are so delicious and I love making them from scratch. They are so easy and delicious! Here are a few more favorites that you should try!

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  • Note: REMEMBER TO WEAR GLOVES WHILE HANDLING PEPPERS!

  • Remove the stems from the dried peppers and add them to a medium bowl. Pour 2 cups of boiling water over the peppers and let them steep for a few minutes until they have been rehydrated.

  • Add the peppers and water to a blender or food processor and blend until the peppers are fully pureed.

  • Add the onion, garlic, tomato sauce, brown sugar, cumin, chili powder, vinegar, and salt to the blender and blend until pureed.

  • Pour the mixture into a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Once it is boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.

  • Remove from the heat and strain the mixture through cheesecloth before adding it to a sterilized bottle for storing.

Calories: 205kcalCarbohydrates: 43gProtein: 5gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0.4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.3gSodium: 425mgPotassium: 909mgFiber: 11gSugar: 28gVitamin A: 8375IUVitamin C: 19mgCalcium: 85mgIron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.





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