It’s hot pepper season right this second. Try these homemade hot sauce recipes!
As a not-super-skilled gardener, I have to tell you that hot peppers are among my favorite things to grow. They don’t need a lot of tending, and they seem to naturally repel pests. I pity the insect that takes a bite from one of my habanero or cowhorn pepper plants. As long as you remember to water hot peppers regularly, they tend to thrive. At least here in Atlanta.
Related Reading: 5 Ways to Preserve the Summer Harvest
The hot sauce recipes below are a few of my favorites to make with the peppers from my garden. If you make your own hot sauces, I’d love to hear about them in the comments!
If you’re never made your own hot sauce before, you might be shocked at how easy it is. To make traditional hot sauce, you boil your peppers in vinegar along with garlic and spices, then puree and sweeten to cut the heat. There is one boiled hot sauce recipe on this list, but the first two hot sauce recipes on this list require no boiling at all.
1. No-Cook Hot Sauce
This recipe uses my green cowhorn peppers, but you can substitute any medium-heat hot pepper you like. The recipe below is a variation on my raw hot sauce recipe, and it’s simple and delicious. The best part, though, is that unlike cooked hot sauces, you don’t have to boil anything. That means your house won’t smell like vinegar for the rest of the day after you make it.
- 1/2 cup green cowhorn peppers, stems removed (You can substitute jalapenos or banana peppers.)
- 4-5 cloves garlic
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1-2 tablespoons good apricot preserves (more jam = milder hot sauce)
1. Toss everything into your blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Taste and add more jam, if need be. Even the same variety of pepper can vary in heat quite a bit, depending on growing conditions. The hotter the pepper, the more jam you’ll add to offset the heat.
2. Store in the refrigerator. Since this hot sauce recipe contains no emulsifiers, you’ll need to give it a good shake before using it.
2. Raw Shallot and Serrano Hot Sauce
This is a no-cook hot sauce recipe that I made a lot last summer when we had a couple of serrano plants. This sauce has a moderate spice and a lovely oniony, garlicy edge from the shallots.
Raw Serrano and Shallot Hot Sauce
- 1/3 cup Serrano peppers, stemmed and cut into big pieces
- 1 medium shallot
- 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
- apple cider vinegar
1. Put all of the ingredients into your blender, adding the vinegar last. You want the vinegar to cover the veggies about 2/3 of the way.
2. Blend until there are no chunks left, use a funnel to transfer into a bottle with a pour top – I used an old salad dressing bottle, as you can probably tell in the photo at the top – and put a label with a date on it. Your hot sauce should last 3-4 weeks in the fridge.
3. Roasted Pepper Hot Sauce
This is the least pretty of the sauces on this list, but don’t judge a hot sauce by its looks. Roasting your hot peppers gives this sauce a nice smoky flavor. Your house will definitely smell like vinegar the day that you make this sauce, so maybe save this recipe for a day that you don’t have company coming over.
- 2 cups assorted hot peppers, seeded and sliced into 1″ pieces
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- white vinegar
- 4 cloves of garlic, sliced
- 1/4 cup maple syrup (or more, to taste)
1. Preheat the oven to 400, and while that heats up get those peppers prepped. Toss them with the olive oil in a shallow baking pan and roast, stirring every 15-20 minutes, until the peppers start to blacken.
2. Remove the peppers from the oven, transfer to a pan with the garlic, and add enough vinegar to cover. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.
3. Let the mixture cool, then transfer it in batches into your blender or food processor with the maple syrup. Blend until smooth, transfer to a glass bottle or mason jar, and store in the fridge.