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6 October 2017

Learn how to make classic Sriracha hot sauce at home with this recipe, either with fresh or fermented chili peppers. It’s so easy and tastes better than anything from the grocer. I love homemade Sriracha hot sauce.

It’s sriracha time, my friends, so get your taste buds ready. I don’t think there is a whole lot I can tell you about sriracha sauce that you haven’t already heard. Sriracha has seriously taken the nation by storm in the last 5 years or so, overflowing from grocery store shelves and finding its way into a myriad of mass-made products, from potato chips to beer. It’s everywhere, isn’t it?

It’s so ubiquitous now here in the states, it’s practically become synonymous with the term “hot sauce”. This is not a bad thing! I should provide a bit of history, though.

Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce Recipe

The Origins of Sriracha

Famous “Sriracha” sauce is named after the town of “Sri Racha” in Thailand where it originated, but this is not what we consume here in the United States. The stuff you get from the store is produced in California with red jalapeno peppers and has deviated quite a bit from the original Thai recipe.

The sauce we get here is thick, like ketchup, where the original has a thinner consistency. This recipe will produce a Sriracha sauce closer to what was originally intended, though you can easily thicken it up with more peppers and less vinegar, or adjusting your cooking times.

What Types of Peppers Are Used for Making Sriracha Sauce?

Here in the United States, red jalapeno peppers are used to make sriracha sauce, though Fresno chili peppers make a fine substitute. You can also use red Thai chili peppers to make your own sriracha hot sauce. Realistically, you can use this recipe and techniques to make a sriracha-style hot sauce from any type of chili pepper, though your results and tastes will vary from pepper to pepper.

Of course the heat level of your sriracha sauce can vary based on your pepper choice, but some peppers have thicker walls and are therefore meatier, and will produce a fuller sauce. I suggest going with red jalapeno peppers first, then experimenting from there.

For this particular batch, I used a combination of different hot red peppers grown in my garden, including red jalapeno peppers, and the results were out of this world. So delicious!

Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce Recipe

How to Make Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce

You can make your own sriracha sauce at home with either fresh or fermented peppers, though I suggest fermenting. I have made this both ways and prefer the fermented version. Fermenting the peppers breaks down the carbohydrates and converts them to acid, which mellows the peppers considerably, affecting the overall flavor. I suggest trying the recipe both ways, with and without fermenting, and see for yourself which version of sriracha you prefer.

I’ve include recipes below to make sriracha both ways.

For your reference, you may find this link useful: How to Make Fermented Pepper Mash.

Homemade Sriracha Vs. Store Bought Sriracha Sauce

Yes, there is an obvious difference between the sriracha you get from the store vs. your homemade version. The homemade sriracha has a thinner consistency and isn’t quite as sweet, though you can adjust sweetness easily by adding more or less sugar.

You can also adjust the thickness of your final sriracha sauce by adjusting the amount of peppers used in the recipe, by adjusting the amount of vinegar used, and also by adjusting your cooking time. Simmer the sauce longer to thicken it up if you’d like.

The choice is yours. Would I say homemade sriracha is BETTER than what you get in the store? Personally, I like my own homemade version better, but I wouldn’t throw away my bottle of Huy Fong’s rooster sauce! I mean, major KUDOS to David Tran for giving us a sauce that made Americans realize there is more to condiments than ketchup and mustard.

Bring on the sriracha, please!

What is a Substitute for Sriracha Sauce?

If you run out of sriracha sauce and need a good substitute, you can use a good Garlic-Chili Sauce, or consider using Gochujang, Sambal Oelek, or making your own fresh chili paste.

Harissa could work in a pinch, but you can always use a Louisiana Style Hot Sauce in place of the sriracha, depending on the recipe.

Frequently Asked Questions for Making Homemade Sriracha

Here are answers to some of the most common questions I get on other sauces:

How long will this sauce keep?

It should keep a few months easily in the fridge, or even longer. It’s all about the acidity. To be technical, target level ph for shelf stable foods is below 4.6 ph, but should probably be lower for home cooks, around 4.0 or so, to account for errors. If you’re concerned, add more vinegar to lower the ph. Sauces made with fermented chili peppers will last even longer.

The best ph meters that I recommend are from Thermoworks. Get yourself a ph meter from Thermoworks today. I am a happy affiliate.

Where’d you get that sauce bottle?

I find them locally sometimes, but I also order through Amazon. Here is a link to some bottles I like (affiliate link, my friends!): Swing Top Glass Bottles, 8.5 Ounce – Set of 4. If youlike the smaller bottles that most hot sauce makers use, here’s another link: Hot Sauce Bottles, 5 Oz – 24 Pack.

Can I process this hot sauce for longer storage? Absolutely. Just be sure to use proper canning/jarring safety procedures.

What should I do with hot sauce?

Aside from drizzling it over anything you please, here’s a post I did about How to Cook with Hot Sauce. As if you need even MORE reasons to eat hot sauce. LOL. I hope you find it helpful!

Check out more Hot Sauce Recipes or learn more about How to Make Hot Sauce.

Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce Recipe

Patty’s Perspective

Wow, this really does taste different from what we get in the store. It is definitely similar, close in flavor, but I like this version so much more.

Check out Some of My Other Popular Hot Sauce Recipes:

Check out more Hot Sauce Recipes.

Try Some of these Recipes that Use Sriracha

If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS. Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.

Print Recipe
5 from 10 votes

Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce with Fermented Peppers – Recipe

Learn how to make classic Sriracha hot sauce at home with this recipe, with fermented chili peppers. It’s so easy and tastes better than anything from the grocer. I love homemade Sriracha hot sauce.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Fermenting Time7 d
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Thai
Keyword: hot sauce, spicy
Servings: 2 cups
Calories: 289kcal


  • 2 pounds mixed red chili peppers red jalapenos are preferred, though Fresnos or red Thai peppers are great
  • 1 quart unchlorinated water
  • 3 tablespoons sea salt
  • 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 cup rice wine vinegar


  • First, ferment the chili peppers. Process your fresh peppers in a food processor. If you don’t have a processor, use a mortar and pestle or simply finely chop them. Pack them into a jar, leaving at least 1 inch of head space. The peppers may rise a bit when fermenting.
  • Next, mix 1 quart unchlorinated water with 3 tablespoons sea salt. Pour just enough brine over the peppers to cover them, pressing them down a bit as you go. It is important to keep the peppers covered with brine to avoid spoilage. Check this daily.
  • Screw on the lid and set the jar away from direct sunlight to ferment for at least 1 week. Ideal temperatures are between 55-75 degrees F. The most active fermentation period is between 1-2 weeks, so be sure to monitor it during this time. “Burp” the jars often by unscrewing the lid a bit to let out some of the accumulating gases. Or, use an airlock or membrane for easier fermenting. See our page, “How to Make Fermented Pepper Mash”, for further instruction.
  • After 1-2 weeks, the fermenting activity will diminish and the brine will turn cloudy and taste acidic.
  • Pour the fermented peppers, including brine, into a pot along with the garlic, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vinegar. Bring to a quick boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes to reduce a bit and let the flavors meld.
  • Cool slightly then add to a food processor and process until smooth.
  • Strain the mixture to remove the solids. Pour into hot sauce bottles and enjoy.


Prep and Cooking times do not include the 1-2 weeks of fermentation time, so keep that in mind.
Makes about 2 cups of sauce or so. For storage: Vinegar affects acidity levels. Homemade sauces should be kept at 4.0 ph or below to keep longer term. If your hot sauce is not acidic enough, add more vinegar to bring the ph down. Keep in the fridge for freshness and longer keeping. You can also bottle your sauces with proper procedures.
Heat Level: Medium.


Calories: 289kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 9g | Sodium: 10505mg | Potassium: 1590mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 5350IU | Vitamin C: 1101.9mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 5.7mg




Homemade Sriracha Hot Sauce - Recipe



  1. Candelaria

    Hello. Thank you, not only for the recipe, but for all the extra info, I can totally see and connect to your love for good food. I found your page just before my SirRacha bottle is finished. I will try to find the best possible peppers, let them ferment and try it out, then will get back to you, another great quarentine project. Greetings from Chefchaouen, Morocco.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Hello, and thank you! I’m glad you found me. Please let me know how your recipe turns out. I hope you enjoy the sauce. This is one of my favorites.

  2. 5 stars
    You can also place Saran Wrap on the surface of your chili mash while it’s fermenting you keep them submerged. Just make sure you press the wrap directly on the surface and try to push out as many air bubbles as possible.

  3. 5 stars
    I spent several years in Thailand not too far from Sri Ratcha. It has always annoyed me a bit that the Sri Ratcha sauce so famous here is not the real deal (but good none the less). So I was pleased to see that someone knows this.

    In case anyone is interested, I have bottle of the Panich brand sauce here. There are at least two brands exported and this is the less popular (and IMO less good) of the two. The ingredients list: “Spur” chili at 45%, water 21.6%, sugar 17%, garlic 10%, salt 5%, acidity regulator (acetic acid, aka vinegar) 1.4%. I have no idea what “spur” chili is, and there is no Thai on the label, but I will guess that it is the large ones called chee faa (reach for the sky). Red Jalapeño seems like a decent approximation. I am going to be in Sri Ratcha in a couple of weeks, I should try and get a tour of one of the factories between seafood feasts.

  4. I have a question, as the recipe is a bit confusing in one regard. Are you making a mash ferment or fermenting the peppers whole? With the mention of brine, I’m assuming whole, but you also recommend your “how to make pepper mash” page as well. If you are making a mash, it is understandable that Leah’s ferment went bad, as getting a liquid to sit above a mash isn’t an easy task.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      A lot of people have a tough time keeping the peppers beneath the brine. Glass weights are useful, or baggies filled with water, even grape leaves. You can rough chop the peppers to help keep them down. You can ferment whole peppers, but should poke holes in them. You just won’t fill as many in the jars because of the size. You can fit more chopped peppers.

  5. 5 stars
    I enjoy reading about peppers, but even jalapenos give me pain, how do you guys do it? I read that hot ones will destroy the sensitivity of your taste buds.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Hi, Mooselips. No, peppers don’t destroy taste buds, but you do build up a tolerance to spicy food. The more you eat, the more you need to get the “burn”, and for many people, it becomes a little addictive. If you step away from it for a while, your tolerance drops. I used to eat WAY hotter food, but since I’ve dialed back a bit more and consider myself more of an 8.5 out of 10, which is still pretty darned high to most people. I just love it.

  6. I’m at the phase where I’m fermenting the peppers but when I mix the peppers with the brine they aren’t staying underneath the brine because the brine and the peppers are mixed together. Am I doing something wrong? Will the fermenting work if the peppers are mixed with the Brine and are on top of the fluid?

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Leah, the peppers really need to be below the brine liquid, or you run the risk of infection. Try filling a baggie with water and stuffing it into the top of the jar to keep everything down below the brine. See if that works for you.

    2. The bag trick did not work. There is mold growing. I should toss the whole batch right?

      1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

        Leah, if it’s definitely mold, unfortunately it’s best to toss it. You don’t want to mess with mold.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Yes you can, Michelle. Just thaw them out first. Let me know how it turns out for you.

  7. 5 stars
    This is great! I didn’t have that many peppers, so I scaled the recipe by tasting.

    It’s really good, just the right heat. I wish I could get it to taste like the Rooster.
    I tasted them side-by-side and mine needed more garlic. But there’s something else with Rooster I can’t put my finger on. I would LOVE to recreate that sauce.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Thanks, Mitch. This is more like the original sriracha sauce. The rooster sauce is thicker and sweeter. If you’d like to get closer to that, I would use more peppers and not strain the whole thing, just process it until it is smooth and thick. Also, try adding honey or sugar to see if you can get closer to that flavor. Let me know how it goes.

  8. Hi Mike, I love your site- just found it recently but am trying and enjoying things almost daily. A quick question- I don’t see the sriracha recipe for NON fermented peppers even though you say you’ve included both- am I missing it somehow? Thanks, bye for now,

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Bill, to make an unfermented version, start with adding the fresh peppers and other ingredients first to a food processor. Process until smooth. You can strain out some of the pulp if you’d like for a smoother sauce. Then, simmer the sauce about 10 minutes to cook through. Here is a recipe to follow for Superhot Sriracha, but just use the red jalapenos or Fresnos for a milder, more common version. Enjoy! Let me know how it turns out for you.

      1. Hi Mike, thanks. I screwed up because I only had a handful of thai chilis and I added garlic sugar and vinegar then processed and THEN simmered it ….got the directions reversed. Anyway the result is an extremely hot concoction that looks a lot like your garlic chili sauce. I will add a pin head’s worth to anything that needs heat, and try again later.
        Are red jalapenos just more mature green ones? I’m in a smallish city in Canada and all I can get are the green ones. Thanks again!

        1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

          Bill, sorry to hear. You can always reprocess the batch and mix it with another milder batch to balance it out. Yes, the red jalapenos are more mature.

  9. Andre Madern

    I fermented the chillis no problem, but the sauce and the vinegar separated after I bottled it and its water thin.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Andre, you will often notice some separation. I believe you may have strained out too much of the pepper content. Let me know.

  10. I made this recipe recently with fermented home grown super chilies. After staining the solids, the sauce was as thin as water. Great flavour and heat, but how can I thicken this into more of a sauce?

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      David, you can always add some of the strained pulp back into the sauce to give it more body, or try straining the whole mix with a sieve that isn’t quite so fine. You can also save the pulp to use in other recipes. I particularly like to dehydrate it and use it as seasonings. See my post on How to Dehydrate Chili Peppers and Make Chili Powders. There’s plenty of life left in the pulp! I hope this helps!

  11. The vinegar really destroyed this batch. I’m going to try it again without vinegar. So long as you ferment peppers, is the vinegar really needed? It really tasted awful

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Josh, you don’t need the vinegar, but check your final acidity if you want to keep it longer. It should be 4.0 or below, 3.5 ideally. I’ve made this many times and love it with the vinegar.

  12. Maureen Mann

    5 stars
    I’m wondering if I can make Sriracha with reconstituted chipotles in it?

    I was thinking about 85-90% fresh peppers and the rest the reconstituted chipotles.

    I would also use the water from reconstituting as part of the brine water.

    My biggest question is will the chipotles effect the fermentation process?

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Maureen, you can ferment dried pods. I would totally try this. Let me know how it turns out for you.

  13. Every time I try this the peppers float to the top leaving an inch or so of brine at the bottom. How can i make sure they stay covered? The last time i had some mould on one of two jars, i dont think it was the white yeast film, and as i don’t do any other fermenting I cant help be nervous.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Paul, I use a small glass weight to keep the peppers pressed down in the jars. It works the best for me. Some people use a large cabbage leaf. You don’t think the mold was kham yeast? Kham yeast is common and can just be wiped away from the top. I would scoop away the mold and inspect the ferment with all of your senses. Does the ferment smell bad or off? Does the brine taste very bad? It should be acidic and a touch bitter. Do you see actual rot? These are things to look for.

  14. Roger Bowin

    Can the bottles be processed in a hot water bath to extend shelf life? Preservatives?

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Roger, absolutely. You don’t need preservatives. Check the ph of the finished hot sauce. It is ideal at 4.0 and below, which is acidic enough to preserve it. I keep mine in the refrigerator for extended life. Enjoy!

  15. tommy Lacroix

    5 stars
    i’m living in Vietnam and every grannie at my local fresh food market has home made sriracha for sale. i go there a lot and like to sample the offerings of a different vendor each time. now every time i go there they are pretty aggressive flogging me those old used water bottles full of orange sauce. i think i may have started a trade war!

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      That’s interesting! They must realize Americans go a bit crazy for their sriracha. I wish I could try some of those from Vietnam!

  16. Dru Morgan

    5 stars
    Does the boil at the end mess with the “pro-biotics” you got in the fermentation? Can you skip the boil if you ferment?

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Dru, you don’t have to cook fermented peppers. They can be eaten as they are, just like other fermented foods. The cooking melds everything, but not necessary for consumption. Let me know how it goes.

      1. Dru J Morgan

        Fermenting another batch of this stuff (I try every time I see the red jalapeños or Fresno chilis in season) – and I might boil half of it, certainly to reduce/thicken at the very least, and just bottle the other half – and COMPARE 🙂

    2. It seems like the final cooking stage would destroy any probiotic benefits. Water boils at 212F and simmers at 190 F. Probiotics are destroyed at 115 F. I would skip the cooking stage. Just my 0.02

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