Fermented Hot Sauce

To make this hot sauce, you need a quart size Mason jar, a food processor or highpowered blender, and rubber gloves for handling the peppers. Be prepared to start at least a month in advance of gifting, but remember this is the kind of thing you can easily start at the height of summer pepper season, and ferment through to the holidays. Get creative with your pepper selection (and your range of heat) to keep the finished sauce flavorful as well as spicy.
By / Photography By Ashley Warlick | November 01, 2014


Pack peppers and garlic into jar, as tightly as possible.

Heat water and dissolve salt. Pour this brine over the peppers, using just enough to be sure they’re all covered. (You might need to weight the peppers down with the bottom of a smaller jar to keep them submerged.)

Cover your jar with a paper towel and a rubber band, and tuck it away to ferment for at least 2 weeks and up to 8.

When you’re ready, drain peppers and reserve brine. Process peppers and garlic in a food processor until finely chopped, about 2 minutes. Press this mixture through a fine metal strainer into a clean bowl. Add brine a tablespoon at a time until you get the consistency you want— more brine for a Louisiana style hot sauce, less for Sriracha style.

*Gifting tip: Look for small glass bottles online or recycle your own. We like these gifted in plain brown wrappers, tied at the neck with a bow.

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  • 3-4 cups, packed, whole hot peppers, stems and green caps removed
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
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