Substitutes For Chili Sauce

Chili Sauce Alternatives

There’s no better way to add a bit of kick to any meal for people who love spicy food than with a good chili sauce. You can use this versatile ingredient to add a bit of heat to any dish, and you can also incorporate it while cooking to make the food even hotter.

Unfortunately, sometimes, you run out of some of your favorite sauces. Fortunately, you can use various substitutes to replace your favorite sauce, such as sriracha. You can also utilize other famous reserves such as regular hot sauce, garlic paste, and ketchup.

Regular Hot Sauce

The easiest way to choose a good hot sauce is to buy it from the store. However, there are many other options for selecting an excellent hot sauce. You can also choose from various heat levels and styles.

Various types of hot sauces are milder in heat. However, some are very hot and have very high levels of spiciness. Before you buy, it’s essential to check the ingredients and the stories of spiciness in the sauce.

Hot Tomato Sauce
Hot Tomato Sauce

Spicy Tomato Sauce

You can make a similar sauce by opening a tomato can and adding whatever you like. However, instead of ketchup, add chili powder or fresh chili. The goal is to make the sauce absorb more heat.

Some chefs use this technique to create unique and more spicy pasta sauces. It also allows them to adjust the level of spiciness in their sauce without buying ready-made chili sauce.

You can also purchase a variety of spicy tomato sauce variants, such as those made by Prego and Bertolli. These are for making pizza or pasta dishes. While the former will have a more tomatoey flavor, the latter can be added garlic to tame the taste.

Spicy Ketchup

If you’re craving a paste-like sauce that’s not overly sweet, consider using regular ketchup instead. Although it can substitute for the traditional chili sauce, you can also add some fresh chilis. It will help improve the taste of the ketchup.

If you have powder or chili flakes, add them to a cup of ketchup and mix well. You can also modify the amount of chili powder or chili to taste. Some people like to heat the ketchup and add a bit of hot chili to make it even spicier.

Sriracha Sauce

The roots of the famous sauce known as sriracha originated in Thailand. It was invented by Thanom Chakkapak in the 1930s. Since its popularity has spread worldwide, it has also gotten the recognition it deserves.

Sriracha Sauce Is A Good Substitute for Hot Chili Sauce
Sriracha Sauce Is A Good Substitute for Hot Chili Sauce

This sauce originates from fermented red jalapeno peppers, garlic, sugar, and vinegar. You can also assemble it at home using the ingredients you already have. If you prefer convenience, try Flying Goose’s Sriracha sauce.

Although it’s trendy in Asian food, it can be spicy for first-timers. To avoid getting it too hot, try a small amount.

Harissa Sauce

It is a spicy paste made from the chili peppers of Tunisia. You can use it in various Southeast Asian, African, and Middle Eastern cuisines.

Harissa is an excellent addition to any recipe that requires a quick and easy addition during the cooking process. It can be enjoyed as a dipping sauce or in marinades. Compared to chili sauce, it is more intense.

Sweet Chili Sauce

A sweet chili sauce is a commonly used substitute for traditional chili sauce. It comes with various spices such as red chilies, sugar, and garlic.

Although sweet chili sauce is commonly available in supermarkets, making your version is not as hard as it sounds. Just observe these simple steps, and you’ll be able to produce a batch of sweet chili sauce.

Depending on the recipe you choose, the number of ingredients will vary. You can also adjust the amount to your taste and comfort levels.

Chili Garlic or Flakes

This simple substitution of garlic flakes is a great way to add color and flavor to your favorite red chilis. You can also use any fresh or unused red chilis in the fridge. This paste can be made at home using a mortar and pestle.

If you intend to produce a batch of chilis, start by roasting or drying them first. Then, add plenty of garlic and chili powder and mix well. When the mixture begins to come together, add a bit of water to make a paste-like consistency. You can also operate a food processor or blender to make it.

Store it in a clean jar for a week. You can add various spices and olive oil to enhance its flavor. Many people prefer to use garlic powder instead of salt and pepper to highlight its spicy taste. 

It is an excellent addition to any rice bowl or chicken wing sauce.

Black Bean Sauce

Black bean sauce originates from various ingredients such as chili, water, and soybean oil. It has a deep and earthy taste. It is a versatile ingredient that you can use in Sichuan dishes. You can also use it as an alternative to the traditional chili sauce.


If you’re a fan of Korean food, you probably know about gochujang. This paste is incredibly spicy and comes from fermented soybeans and red peppers.

This fantastic ingredient is present in meat marinades, such as chicken or pork. You can also use it with wine and sake.

Chili Powder or Flakes

You can easily find various spices in the market, such as chili powder and chili flakes. These are always in a bag or a jar. Whether you choose the powdered or the flaked version, the type of chili used in the packet will affect how it tastes.

Before you buy a product, check its label to see if it has a high level of spiciness. Some of the milder variants you should consider are the anaheim, banana, and poblano. If you’re dreaming of a more intense flavor, go for the jalapeno, ghost pepper, or Korean chili peppers.

You can also make chili flakes by roasting or dry-drying your favorite chili peppers. Then, blend it with a food processor and store it in an airtight container. This recipe is straightforward to follow and can last for a year.

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