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18 March 2016

A recipe for all-purpose homemade chili sauce that is both sweet and savory, made with plenty of chili peppers, tomato, pineapple juice and tons of seasonings.

Allow me a moment to extol the virtues of homemade chili sauce. YOU. ARE. AWESOME. CHILI. SAUCE! OK, done. Sort of. The thing about a good chili sauce is that it works for so many meals. It all depends on the ingredients you put into it. That is why I call this recipe an “all-purpose” sauce, because realistically, it can go into any type of dish. OK, obviously within reason. You’re not going to dump this over a bowl of tapioca pudding, but hey, to each their own.

With a chili sauce like this, it can be used as a straight sauce or as a starter for something else. It’s a good idea to make a large batch of it so you can have it on hand throughout the next week or 2, tossing it into recipes as needed, or saving a TON of time during the week because now you don’t have to make a sauce! Seriously, I am going to bake a 3-pound pork tenderloin later this week and it will be great. Talk about simple. And I’ll still have a lot left.

Sweet and Savory Chili Sauce Recipe

If you’d like, you can use this as any typical hot sauce. Just bottle it up and shake it onto anything you prefer. Or save it in containers in proper portion sizes and go to town. Consider it as a pasta sauce alternative, a soup or stew starter, a quick topping for baked salmon, pour over grilled chicken, even a quick marinade base for fish, chicken, or pork.

I have made versions of this sauce with fresh peppers, frozen chili peppers, and also with peppers I had lightly pickled to preserve them in salt and vinegar, and the results are all similar. As an all-purpose sauce, it brings a LOT to the table. Feel free to vary up the seasonings to your  personal preference. The secret about sauce, truly, is “taste, adjust, taste, adjust!”.

Patty’s Perspective: It’s very convenient to have these types of sauces on hand during our super busy weeks. Mike is right, it helps us get a quick but delicious dinner on the table in a snap, and helps with quick late-night snacks.


5 from 1 vote
Sweet and Savory Chili Sauce Recipe
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
35 mins
Total Time
45 mins
A recipe for all-purpose homemade chili sauce that is both sweet and savory, made with plenty of chili peppers, tomato, pineapple juice and tons of seasonings.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8
Calories: 72 kcal
Author: Mike Hultquist
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium sized carrot peeled and diced
  • 1 medium sweet onion peeled and diced
  • 1 stalk celery diced
  • 2 cups pureed sweet chili peppers – NOTE: I used 2 cups of peppers that were preserved in vinegar and it worked out GREAT. If you have fresh peppers puree them up with a bit of vinegar to ease the process. If you have preserved peppers, just puree them up until you have 2 cups worth.
  • ½ cup red wine vinegar use a bit less if processing the peppers above with vinegar
  • 1 cup water or chicken broth
  • 6 ounces tomato puree
  • 6 ounces pineapple juice
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano.
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1 tablespoon mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon ginger powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Salt to taste
Cooking Directions
  1. Heat a very large pan or pot to medium heat and add olive oil with carrot, onion and celery. Cook about 5-6 minutes, stirring a bit, to soften them up.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and stir.
  3. Bring to a quick boil, then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 30 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a food processor and process until you have a nice pureed sauce, or try a stick blender.
  5. Transfer to bottles or jars for keeping. Use this as a sauce, a hot sauce, a sauce base, etc.
Recipe Notes

Makes about 5 cups.

Nutrition Facts
Sweet and Savory Chili Sauce Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 72 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 2g 3%
Sodium 23mg 1%
Potassium 334mg 10%
Total Carbohydrates 12g 4%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 7g
Protein 1g 2%
Vitamin A 35.4%
Vitamin C 72.6%
Calcium 4.1%
Iron 9.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


  1. How long does the chili pepper sauce last in the fridge

    REPLY: Carol, this will easily last a month. If you’d like it tolast longer, increase the vinegar or acid content. — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness.

  2. This sauce is awesome Professor of all things Chilies! I substituted roasted tomatillos for the tomato puree and it came out great. I added a little honey at the end to smooth out the red wine vinegar taste as well. and….just because I cannot help myself, I added a couple of roasted Serrano chilies to the recipe… Great suggestion! Please keep them coming.

  3. Does the chili sauce have to be refrigerated ??

    REPLY: Fred, yes, I keepmine in the fridge just to be safe. — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness

  4. A few questions…. What kind of peppers are “sweet” chili peppers? Would this sauce be like an Asian Sweet Chili Sauce? Do you ever home can your sauce? If so, would this need water bath or pressure canned.. how long? Thanks so much!

    REPLY: You can find mild/sweet peppers in the grocers aisle typically, just labeled as “sweet”. There are MANY types to choose from. Yes, I have home canned and have info in the Preserving section. Take a peek! Thanks! — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness

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