Introduction: Some Like It Hot Sauce

Picture of Some Like It Hot Sauce

for the remix contest i chose to remix an instructable on how to make hot sauce by lemonie, an author that i can totally recommend, for reasons like the cheese buttons , an instructable on how to eat catfood and many, many more awesome and funny projects.

i used his instructable as a basis for my hot sauce, but added some spices and lime, since that fits so well with the fruity taste of the habanero chillies.

caution: this sauce is very hot, a few drops will be enough for most persons!

Step 1: Ingredients

Picture of Ingredients

for 200 ml of hot sauce you will need:

6 habanero chillies
4 limes
3 big cloves of garlic
100-150 ml of vinegar
salt & brown sugar
some coriander, allspice and cloves and a pinch of cinnamon

and you need:

a blender, a pan, a sieve, a measuring cup, something to zest the limes and a bottle that holds 200 ml, it's best to use an old, cleaned condiment bottle that has a little that lets only some drops at a time come out of the bottle since the sauce is going to be very hot. i used an old fish-sauce bottle.

Step 2: Preparations

Picture of Preparations

since habenero chillies are incredibly hot i recommend that you use some kind of gloves. i didn't have any at home so i stuck my hand in a freezer bag - it worked like a charm.
when i had my first encounter with habaneros back in the day while backpacking through mexico i didn't know just how hot those chillis where that i just bought, the end result was an inedible meal because of too hot and my fingers burnt for what felt like a week!

cut the chillies in half and remove the seeds - the sauce will still be hot enough afterwards, belive me.

peel the garlic.

wash the limes and zest two of them. then squeeze all of them and put the juice into the measuring cup. add vinegar so that it makes 200 ml in total.

Step 3: Blend & Cook

Picture of Blend & Cook

put the vinegar and lime mixture, the garlic, the lime zest and the chillies into the blender and blend until smooth.

transfer to the pan, add the spices and sugar and salt. i uses 3 teaspoons each, but you could also use more or less.

put the pan on medium heat and cook the sauce for about 10 minutes.

Step 4: Strain, Reheat & Bottle

Picture of Strain, Reheat & Bottle

strain your sauce through a fine mesh sieve into the measuring cup. if the obtained sauce is less then 200 ml, add some more vinegar. at this point it is good to tase the sauce and add a bit more sugar or salt if necessary.

reheat the sauce and then put it in the bottle, using a funnel or a measuring cup.

when you clean the used equipment, be carefull, because even small amounts of chilli will burn a lot, especially if you get it on your hands an then touch your eyes or so.

Step 5: Enjoy!

Picture of Enjoy!

if you feel like it make a nice label for your sauce and enjoy (with moderation).

the sauce will be very hot, so if you like a milder sauce, you could use a different kind of chilli, since habaneros are really towards the upper end of the scoville scale. or you could use less chilli and add half a regular bell pepper instead.

about storing the sauce: you could put it in teh fridge, but i think that won't be necessary since it is so hot that it will defeat all possible bacteria. my experience with chilli stuff in general is that even if you use raw ingredients it will stay good outside the fridge for a long while whitout going bad.

i hope you liked my instructable, and since it feels like i've got pro memberships to last a lifetime, as a little special, i'm giving away a free three months pro membership to the first three people to comment on this instructable!


Fastaco226 (author)2014-10-11

Well crap I just put in 3 teaspoons of each spice

sursula (author)Fastaco2262014-10-15

yeah, well, i hope it will still taste good!

spark master (author)2014-09-30

too late for a pro membership :=( but it looks like it's worth doing. I r beez confuzzled though, did you want us to use 3 tspns of each spice and sugar and salt? 3 teaspoons is a tablespoon, so again I quizz thee of the Hot Pepper Wrangler Clan, a tablespoon of each spice, as well as sugar and salt?

This is not a critique btw just being sure. This stuff looks far more evil then it appears in the monitor!!!


sursula (author)spark master2014-09-30

i used three teaspoons each of salt & sugar and much less from the spices, about as much as you can see in the photo: 3 allspice berries, a few cloves and have a teaspoon of coriander. but you could totally change that amount up to your taste.

JSiladke (author)2014-09-29

When making hot sauce, is it best to use fresh peppers or could I use the dried cayenne peppers I've got? Also, were the cloves and corriander ground in or removed when strained?

spark master (author)JSiladke2014-09-30

In making hot sauce (i have made quite a bit) dry or fresh as long as the dry is not "old" will be hot enough to set fire to your face!

sursula (author)JSiladke2014-09-29

if you use dried peppers you should soak them in hot water first, but then it should work. maybe you have to add some of the soaking water to make the sauce the right consistency.
and i didn't grind the spices, i just put them in whole and removed them while straining.

Bowtie41 (author)2014-09-30

You can leave the seeds in.They have no capsaisin.It's mainly in the white web area where the seeds are attatched.Per Wiki: "Capsaicin is present in large quantities in the placental tissue (which holds the seeds), the internal membranes and, to a lesser extent, the other fleshy parts of the fruits of plants in the genus Capsicum. The seeds themselves do not produce any capsaicin, although the highest concentration of capsaicin can be found in the white pith of the inner wall, where the seeds are attached.

Also see :

infantemary (author)2014-09-28

Another wonderful Instructable!!! This should hold well outside the fridge due to the vinegar. I make a tomato and japaleno salsa and never have a problem.

sursula (author)infantemary2014-09-28

sometimes i make raw hot sauce with tomato and dried chilli and even that doesn't go bad, even with no cooking and no vinegar. i think really the capsaicin does kill a lot of germs...

infantemary (author)sursula2014-09-29

Im sure you are right. Thanks again for the wonderful ideas!!!

lbrewer42 (author)2014-09-28

This looks really good. But I find cooking peppers makes them lose some of their potency. Also, a lot of habanero sauces, even commercial ones, get a rubber flavor after awhile. Does yours?

sursula (author)lbrewer422014-09-28

at least for me the sauce still has enough potency even after cooking. if the sauce is too hot, then you can use really only tiny amounts and then all the other flavours that are so much less potent then the capsaicin don't stand a chance.

i didn't have the rubbery taste problem yet, but with some comercially bought sauce i once had i had the feeling that the older it got the less hot it became.

lbrewer42 (author)sursula2014-09-29

Thanks for this reply. I have always just dried my habaneros b/c I was afraid of the rubbery flavor eventually taking over. Seeing as I have a bush full and ready to be harvested, I might try your recipe! Thanks for posting it.

BTW - I also find that if something is too hot that table salt will give a LOT more relief than bread or milk. I brought my kids up using this. It works very well.

mountainmasha (author)2014-09-28

I always love adding lime to whatever I'm eating in addition to the hot sauce. This way I get both. Will definitely be trying this recipe.

sleeepy2 (author)2014-09-28

This looks great. To get the capsaicin of your fingers, wash your hands with soap, water, and stainless steel (a spoon will work). This also works with oniony or garlicky fingers!

olm911 (author)2014-09-28

I think instead of the sugar I am going to try canned pineapple. Looks like a good recipi. Nice and simple.

sursula (author)olm9112014-09-28

good idea with the pineapple, i think it will fit very well with the sauce!

olm911 (author)sursula2014-09-28

Just finished up a batch with the pineapple. I think it will go perfect with ham or even on top of some collard greens. Thanks for the Instructable.

Suzanne in Orting (author)2014-09-28

Recently saw on one of my favorite cookin' shows that bleach will denature the capsicum. Trust the show, but I haven't tried it for myself though.

Suzanne in Orting, WA

ac-dc (author)2014-09-28

Be sure to warn people that if you use a wooden cutting board it will be near-permanently infused with pepper oil and make anything cut on it later, hot tasting to people with sensitive palates. It is better to use a high density plastic cutting board in order to be able to more thoroughly soak the board in strong detergent and scour away pepper oil when finished with preparation, OR devote a cutting board to cutting peppers and nothing else.

sursula (author)ac-dc2014-09-28

thank you for all your information! if you are such an experienced hot saucier, maybe you could also make an instructable to share what you know with the rest of us! i would be very interested.

ac-dc (author)sursula2014-09-28

I hang out in hot pepper growing forums where making sauce including recipes are regularly discussed topics so it seems sort of redundant to me to divert people away from a large source of information to a limited one.

In my opinion the web is best left with each site doing what it does best instead of the info being scattered around. However, I already gave a couple of main deviations in my prep, to first halve and roast or smoke the pods, then blender with other ingredients (no zest though, it also adds some bitterness), then simmer, then test pH level to ensure a low enough pH (acidic) for good storage life.

On that note, the lime reduces pH as does the vinegar, or another option to change the taste the least amount if that is preferred is to use ascorbic acid instead. The recommended pH for longer term storage - even in a refrigerator let alone at room temperature, is 4.0 or lower. If you prefer less acidic (sour) then it needs to be canned and used within a week or two while refrigerated, or kept frozen for even higher pH sauces. It will keep in the freezer a very long time, several years but who wants to wait that long to eat it?!

Anyway, after simmering down for an hour or more, I put it through a foley food mill, then after a few pots of sauce the portion the food mill separated out is also simmered with a little more water to get the last of the goodness out.and put through the mill again.

As far as ingredients, the sky is the limit. Personally I like to make super hot sauce with only base ingredients like salt, acid, peppers and a tiny bit of garlic, then with this base sauce I can add other ingredients later to make smaller batches of sauce targeted to a specific meal such as marinade for meat, BBW sauce, soup enhancer, chili dog sauce, greens sauce,etc... the list is too long, I put hot sauce on almost anything except cake, lol.

Another variation is to pick the peppers when they reach full size but still green so your sauce has a more earthy taste but no added sweetness.

I have written enough already, as mentioned previously it is best to go where people who make sauce hang out and soak in a lot of info then decide which methods work best for you. I should add that it is best to grow your own peppers instead of buying them so if you experiment with a new sauce recipe and don't like it, you can just give it away to someone and make another batch. There's no point in eating sauce just to get rid of it if it's not what you were hoping for.

ax89 (author)2014-09-28

I ate half a ghost pepper on Friday - that was hot! I was going to look for a recipe of how to convert the rest into a sauce and this instructable popped into my mailbox - how lucky! I will be trying this. Thanks.

hlanelee (author)2014-09-28

Here is a link to Mother Earth News where someone wrote an article on the approximate method used by Tabasco to make hot sauce:

dr_peru (author)2014-09-26

Sursula gave me some of this hot sauce to try it. Besides from its really nice fruity aroma, it is definitly very hot! On a scale from one (ground pepper) to 10 (hickups and pain), I would rate this as an 8, so if you make this yourself, use it carefully :)

ac-dc (author)dr_peru2014-09-28

8 out of 10? Hardly. When I make sauce I use peppers 50% hotter than habaneros and put 400 to 500 in 2 liters of sauce. That is not a typo, 500 peppers. Mostly what the instructable makes is garlic lime sauce.

In order to reduce it down with 500 peppers it must cook for over an hour then the flesh is still put through a food mill to turn it into the consistency of ketchup paste before the vinegar is added. Further, the peppers must also be roasted before put in the blender to keep the blender from choking on that many pepper pods or else a lot more liquid would have to be added and take an extra additional hour to simmer away.

Roasting the peppers also adds a desirable taste in that it reaches a higher temperature than boiling can, so that is able to caramelize some of the sugars in the peppers. For even more flavor, smoke them instead of roasting, over your favorite wet hardwood but that takes hours to do right while roasting is only a dozen minutes in the oven.

azharbass (author)ac-dc2014-09-28

You could also use one of those high power Vita-mix/Blendtec thingies coz they will probably dispose bodies and stuff if you use it properly! ;D If you don't want to roast it you could also add some liquid smoke to add smokeyness.

(JK, don't dispose body parts in blenders, it will void the warranty)

((Besides, you shouldn't be disposing bodies at all))

BikerJim (author)2014-09-28

It looks easy and delicious. Have you tried it leaving in the seeds and the white membrane for a little more heat?

ac-dc (author)BikerJim2014-09-28

The membrane, more commonly called the placenta, is indeed the hottest part of the pepper, but the seeds add no heat and are generally undesirable. If you leave them in then they can add bitterness to the sauce as well as being something negative in your mouth and when they come out your other end, especially if you eat a LOT of sauce like I do.

If your blender blade is dull enough that the seeds stay whole then they are easy to strain out later but if your blender blades are sharp enough to cut up the seeds then I recommend removing the seeds first and instead using more peppers if you want more heat.

The method I use is a blender with dull blades, leaving the placenta and seeds in the sauce, then once it is done simmering the outer skin and seeds are removed from the rest in a Foley Food Mill. You can get a food mill at various places like and it's also good for mashing many types of vegetables for meal preparation.

It not only removes the skin and seeds but also turns remaining flesh into a very fine paste body to the sauce, providing the mill you choose has small enough holes in the bottom. The holes in mine are about 1/2 the diameter of BB-gun ammo.

invisibl3 (author)2014-09-25

Definitely will try this one, thank you

sursula (author)invisibl32014-09-25

and you'll get the third pro membership! i sent you a message!

verence (author)2014-09-25

Great Instructable. Bookmarked - and I will try it for sure.

sursula (author)verence2014-09-25

cool, maybe you can give me feedback if you did, and as promised, you also get a 3 month pro membership!

godsized (author)2014-09-25

I can't wait to try to make this hot sauce this weekend

DiskoDirumah (author)2014-09-25

Greeting from Indonesia, Awesomeee , i love chili so much that i was eager to read until the last line =)

sursula (author)DiskoDirumah2014-09-25

thanks for the nice comment and as promised, i'll send you a message with a code for three monthe por membership!

Looks delicious and I appreciate the reference to one of my favorite movies! Also, that how to eat cat food Instructable is hilarious! I can't believe I haven't seen it before!

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