Habanero Hot Sauce

4.84 from 6 votes

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Are you looking for a habanero hot sauce recipe that will make your eyes water in the very best way? If so, this recipe is for you! This fiery pepper sauce can be used as a topping on eggs, tacos or just about anything else that could benefit from a spicy kick. It’s a deliciously easy way to spice up your life!

habanero sauce.jpg

Have you ever made your own hot sauce? I made this habanero hot sauce the first time to go with the tamales, but now it’s my go to favorite hot sauce when I’m in the mood for spicy food. It’s a great way to jazz up a frozen burrito, pairs nicely with eggs, and is awesome in butternut squash hash as well. It’s a really nice condiment to keep around!

I was looking for a way to use up some of my bumper crop of homegrown habaneros when Rick Bayless tweeted a recipe for habanero hot sauce. I immediately knew I had to try it.

I have to warn you – this sauce has awesome flavor, but it is HOT. A few drops are all you need to get a nice, spicy flavor without killing your taste buds. A little bit goes a long way and I’ve found that for me, about 4 drops is enough to flavor one plate to the point of being spicy without being overkill. More than that and you might feel like your mouth is on fire.

I was actually thinking of calling this “fire sauce” but that sounds too much like Taco Bell and ruins it. This is way better than anything you’d ever get at Taco Bell. And “death sauce” sounded too extreme. I don’t want to scare you all away from this delicious sauce!

I was actually a little scared of this before I tried my first taste. I made the mistake of taking a big, deep smell while the hot mixture was still in my food processor. BAD IDEA. I immediately started coughing and sneezing from the heat. DO NOT do that. Once it cool down the flavors mellow but you’ll still want to be cautious until you learn how much you can handle.

This should keep for at least 6 months in the refrigerator. It does separate a little when it sits though, so you’ll want to give it a good shake before using it.

Fresh habanero peppers.

Ingredients needed to make habanero hot sauce

This habanero hot sauce is so easy to make with super simple ingredients!

  • Habanero peppers. Habanero peppers are some of the hottest peppers around (right behind ghost peppers), and they give this sauce maximum heat level.
  • Garlic cloves. Roasted garlic tones down the heat a little bit and gives this homemade sauce some depth of flavor.
  • Fresh lime juice. Lime juice adds hint of sweetness and a bit of tang.
  • Water. Water thins the sauce out and helps mellow it down.
  • Salt. A small amount of salt opens up the sauce’s flavor and brings everything together.

How to make habanero hot sauce

To make this spicy hot sauce, start by charring habanero chiles and garlic under the broiler. This softens the vegetables and gives the hot sauce a nice smoky flavor that you’re going to love!

Next, transfer everything to a blender and blend until it’s smooth. That’s all there is to it!

The hot sauce can be stored in mason jars or plastic condiment bottles.

Pro Tip: Be careful when working with raw hot peppers like habaneros. The oil residues can stay on your skin for a long time and can burn if you accidentally touch your eyes or any other sensitive areas. I recommend wearing latex gloves and washing your hands thoroughly with soap immediately after handling the peppers. Using tongs instead of your hands also isn’t a terrible idea!

Roasted habaneros pepper and garlic.

Should I remove the seeds from the peppers?

I left the seeds in my peppers for a super fiery hot sauce, but some people find them bitter. You can remove them for a slightly milder (but still very hot) sauce.

What if I want more of a medium heat level?

You can tone down the heat by adding two red bell peppers or some fresh pineapple to the mix. Roast them along with the peppers and garlic or the best flavor.

More homemade condiment recipes you’ll love:

Habanero Hot Sauce 1

Habanero Hot Sauce

An easy habanero hot sauce recipe made with simple ingredients. This sauce is HOT and not for the faint of heart.
4.84 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: ghost pepper sauce, habanero hot sauce, habanero sauce, hot sauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 56
Calories: 1kcal
Author: Lauren Keating


  • 8 whole habanero chile peppers
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled
  • ½ lime juiced
  • cup water
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Preheat the broiler. Place hot peppers and garlic on a baking sheet or a piece of tinfoil. Broil for about 5 minutes, or until the peppers begin to char.
  • Transfer peppers, garlic, and all remaining ingredients to a food processor or blender. Process until smooth. Allow to cool completely at room temperature before use.


I left the pepper seeds in my sauce. For a milder – but still very spicy – version, you can remove and discard the pepper seeds before roasting.
Nutrition Facts
Habanero Hot Sauce
Amount Per Serving (0.25 teaspoon)
Calories 1 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 21mg1%
Potassium 6mg0%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 14IU0%
Vitamin C 2mg2%
Calcium 1mg0%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
By on October 13th, 2009

About Lauren

Hi, I'm Lauren! I'm a certified plant-based cook and enthusiastic omnivore who loves looking for creative ways to make weeknight meals more nutritious. I'm the author of Heathy Eating One Pot Cookbook and Healthy Meal Prep Slow Cooker Cookbook. I also blog at The Busy Foodie.

More posts by this author.

12 thoughts on “Habanero Hot Sauce”

  1. Is the habanero hot sauce just as hot without the seeds? I saw where the seeds can make the sauce bitter.

  2. I just want to make sure I did it correct, when I made it it made only maybe a 1/4 cup or less, is this correct?

    • I added more water to make it come out of a squeeze bottle more easily as well as a couple of tablespoons of white distilled vinegar to make it more shelf stable. Both these combined will add volume to you sauce. Only add water to the point of getting the consistency you want.

  3. Kelly- I did know you’re going! Can’t wait to meet you!
    Chili- I thought of you when I posted this – glad you like it! I didn’t taste any bitterness from the seeds in mine, but I also don’t use very much. Might be something to keep in mind for next time though. Thanks!
    Reeni- I’ve been adding it to pretty much everything lately! It’s wonderful.

  4. What a tasty condiment to have on hand. I can think of lots of things to add this to!

  5. You know I like this. I find that habaneros are the easiest hot pepper to cook with because the heat level is fairly predictable and controlable. The level of piquant tends to fluctuate more in other peppers depending on when you use them in the life cycle from harvest to decay.

    I also like to discard the seeds not because of the extra heat they add but because they can impart just a hint of bitterness.

    Have a good time at the festival!

  6. YES! I ♥ habanero and all things spicy. This sounds delicious. Yet another awesome and creative recipe from you. Thanks so much!

  7. I’ve bookmarked your recipe and will search for habaneros at the green market this weekend. I plan to make a bottle of this for my son-in-law and schlep it to him when we visit at Thanksgiving. Congratulations regarding the Foodbuzz Festival. I just read the list of activities and it sounds wonderful.


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