Jalapeño-Serrano Hot Sauce Recipe

Vinegar pulls flavor and heat from green peppers in this scorching hot sauce.


Although I wasn't over my hot sauce kick, I was over red peppers this week so I changed things up by going green, turning to the more common green serranos and jalapeños as heat sources.

Looking to be more traditional—by American standards at least—I used a process that's more of a pepper-vinegar infusion to create this thin, drizzly sauce that packs immense heat along with great flavor.

Puree together the peppers, garlic, salt and vinegar, then let it stand for three days and finally strain it to arrive at the final sauce. The jalapenos provided a great fruity flavor, while the serranos upped the heat factor.

So enamored with my creation, I used almost the entire batch trying to turn it into a really killer wing sauce. Unfortunately that pursuit did not turn out as well as I had hoped, but the sauce still reigned supreme as a condiment for empanadas, eggs, and just about anything else you'd want a hot sauce for.

Recipe Facts



Active: 10 mins
Total: 72 hrs
Makes: 2 cups

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  • 15 medium jalapenos, roughly chopped
  • 5 serrano chiles, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 cups distilled white vinegar


  1. Place jalapenos, serrano chiles, garlic, and salt in the workbowl of a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. With the motor running, slowly add in vinegar through the feed tube. Process until smooth.

  2. Transfer chile mixture in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil for 1 minute, remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Pour mixture in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid and let stand in a cool, dark place for 3 days.

  3. Pour sauce through a fine mesh strainer into a medium bowl, pressing on solids to extract as much liquid as possible. Pour into a clean glass jar, discarding drained solids, and store for up to 6 months in the refrigerator.


Special equipment

Food processor