The Homemade Pantry's Hot Sauce


The following recipe is from the June 13 edition of our weekly recipe newsletter. To receive this newsletter in your inbox, sign up here!

This Hot Sauce adapted from The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila takes a blend of chiles (dealer's choice), chars 'em up, and blends them with two sour elements—white vinegar and lime juice—and a touch of sugar for a sauce with a nice balance of heat, pucker, and sweet. But of course, your sauce is ultimately contingent on the chiles you pick, so give 'em a little taste before you take the hot sauce plunge.

What Worked: Store bought is great, but customizing your own personal blend of chiles for hot sauce is even better—brag-worthy even.

What Didn't: Chiles are trial by fire in a very real way, so be prepared for all sorts of heat, or lack thereof. Oh, and that part about wearing gloves should be taken very seriously.

Suggested Tweaks: This recipe is really just a template. Feel free to play around with not only the chiles but the sugar and acid components as well.

Reprinted with permission from The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila. Copyright © 2012. Published by Clarkson Potter. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.

Recipe Facts

Active: 15 mins
Total: 30 mins
Makes: 1 1/2 cups

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  • 1 pound mixed hot chiles
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice (from 1/2 lime)
  • 2 tablespoons honey


  1. Preheat your broiler (on a medium setting, if it has one), and set a rack 10 inches from the top of the oven. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment.

  2. Lay the chiles on the sheet and puncture each with a fork. Broil until the chiles are black and bubbling, 5 to 10 minutes depending on the heat of your broiler. Flip the chiles with tongs and broil until the other side is black and bubbly.

  3. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and put all the chiles in a medium bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let sit for 15 minutes, then the chiles will be ready to come right out of their skins.

  4. Put on your gloves. Slide each chile out of its skin, then remove the stem and as many seeds as you can.

  5. Transfer the chiles into a food processor or blender and add the vinegar, salt, lime juice, and honey. Blend until smooth, about 1 minute.

    Store covered in the fridge for 6 months.