Get ready to turn up the heat in your kitchen with our homemade habanero hot sauce! This DIY habanero hot sauce recipe is a game-changer with spicy habaneros balanced with carrots and garlic. It is incredibly easy to make and packs a punch, leaving your taste buds tingling and craving more.
Why this works
- Garden bounty - this habanero hot sauce gives you the opportunity to use up all those peppers you grew in your garden over the summer.
- Tasty - you'll want to always make more and more of this amazing sauce on hand, like my garlic butter compound.
- Easy to make - with only a handful of ingredients from your pantry, this hot pepper sauce recipe is quick and easy, like my pickled red onions.
Ingredients you will need
Here is a quick snapshot of the ingredients you'll need for this recipe. Scroll to the recipe card, where you will find the exact measurements.
- Habaneros- the habaneros should be bright orange and free of blemishes. Scotch bonnets are a typical substitution as they are similar in heat and flavor.
- Carrots - can use pre-sliced or snacking sticks.
- Onions - I recommend using Spanish or Vidalia onions for this habanero sauce recipe.
- Vinegar - it is best to stick to white vinegar, but you can also substitute it with lime juice. It's best to stay away from vinegar like apple cider vinegar as this may alter the taste of the sauce.
- Sugar - I used white granulated sugar but you can use artificial sweeteners, or brown sugar as well.
How to make this
Step 1: Prepping the vegetables for the habanero sauce
To smoke the habanero peppers and garlic for extra flavor, preheat the smoker to 225 degrees. Smoke the peppers for 1-2 hours.
If you would like to prep in the oven, then preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove stems from the habanero, and peel garlic cloves.
Place the habanero peppers onto a baking sheet. Smash the garlic cloves with the flat side of a chef's knife and put on the baking sheet. You can skip smashing the garlic, but I find it releases the flavor and roasts better.
Drizzle with olive oil and bake for 15 minutes.
Slice the carrots, and dice the onions. Preheat a medium saute pan on medium heat. Add a small amount of olive oil to the pan. Add in the carrots and onions. Cook until softened and the onions are translucent. Set aside to cool.
Step 2: Prepare the sauce in the food processor
Add the cooked habanero peppers, garlic cloves, carrots, and onions in a large food processor with the multi-purpose or "S" blade attachment. Pulse until chopped finely.
Pour in the white vinegar, and squeeze in the lime juice. Add in the salt. Pulse the food processor until smooth. Drizzle in the water until the hot sauce reaches your desired consistency.
Add the sugar until it tastes good to your liking. Remember you can always add more but can't take it out once you add it. So add slowly so the sauce is not too sweet.
Taste the sauce to see if it is to your liking. You can adjust the vinegar and salt to your liking.
Step 3: Strain and finish the sauce
Using a fine mesh strainer, strain the sauce to remove any remaining pulp and seeds. Pour he homemade habanero hot sauce into bottles using a funnel and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
If you want a spicier habanero hot sauce, then add in more habanero peppers. If you want it to be less spicy, do half jalapeno and half habanero peppers.
If you are sensitive to pepper fumes, cook the peppers and garlic over indirect heat in a grill preheated to 400 degrees for the same time.
Wear eye and hand protection when cooking with hot peppers. If you get habanero pepper on your hands, then wash twice in the hottest water you can stand with Dawn dish soap or another soap that has a grease-cutting additive.
Habaneros have a smoky, spicy, and fruity flavor. They are floral and crunchy, pairing well with sweeter dishes.
According to the Scoville scale, Habanero peppers are categorized as extra hot at a whopping 100,000 to 300,000 units.
Green habaneros, although not yet ripe, can still be eaten. They are not as hot and have more earthy notes. They can be used in sauces, salsas, and marinades.
Storage & Reheating
Store the homemade habanero hot sauce in the refrigerator for up to three months in bottles or a mason jar. Avoid storing in plastic containers for long periods of time.
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Homemade Habanero Hot Sauce
- ½ pound Habanero peppers
- 6 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 1 onion diced
- 1 cup carrots sliced
- 1 cup white vinegar
- ½ lime
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup water
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- To smoke the habanero peppers and garlic for extra flavor, preheat the smoker to 225 degrees. Smoke the peppers for 1-2 hours.
- To prep in the oven then, preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Remove stems from habaneros and place them on a baking sheet. Smash garlic cloves, and put on baking sheet.
- Drizzle with half of the olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Preheat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining olive oil. Add the carrots and onions to the pan and cook until softened. Set aside to cool.
- Combine the cooked habaneros, garlic cloves, carrots, and onions in a large food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
- Add in the vinegar, lime juice, and salt. Blend until smooth.
- Add the water until the sauce reaches the desired consistency.
- Add the sugar a little at a time.
- Taste test and adjust with sugar, salt, and vinegar to what you think is necessary.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to three months in glass jars or bottles.