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Best Sriracha Sauce Substitute (13 Options)

Sriracha sauce has always been a popular choice for those who want to enjoy a spicy kick in their food. It’s often used to add heat to dishes such as stir-fry, eggs, or sushi. Though there are cooks who have either run out, never used any, or want to dive deeper into the world of Asian sauces. This is where my search for the best substitutes for sriracha sauce comes in.

There are various options available for those seeking an alternative to sriracha sauce. Some are mild, while others are hotter. But for those who enjoy experimenting with different flavors, trying out these different alternatives for sriracha sauce can be an invigorating experience.

A bottle of sriracha sauce and Kikkoman soy sauce.

🤷 What is Sriracha Sauce?

Sriracha sauce is a popular chili sauce that originated in Thailand and is made from chili peppers, garlic, vinegar, sugar, and salt. These ingredients make for a spicy, tangy, and slightly sweet taste, perfect for blending into dishes or swirling in to make a spicy mayo.

The most famous brand of Sriracha sauce is Huy Fong Foods’ Sriracha sauce, which is made from sun-ripened red jalapeño chili peppers. The sauce is mixed with garlic, sugar, salt, and vinegar before being left to ferment for several days. This fermentation process gives the sauce its unique flavor and heat.

🧑‍🍳 How to Make Sriracha Sauce

To make Sriracha sauce, blend red jalapeños, garlic, salt, light brown sugar, and distilled white vinegar until smooth. Simmer the mixture in a saucepan, cool, and strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Return the liquid to the saucepan, add honey, and simmer. Once cooled, transfer the Sriracha sauce to a jar and refrigerate. You can adjust the sweetness and spiciness to how you like it.

A table of Thai food with sriracha sauced wings in the middle.

💡 Best Substitutes for Sriracha Sauce

Homemade Hot Sauce

Let’s start off with making your own delicious homemade sauce. By doing so, you can tailor the flavor and spiciness to your liking, and the best part is that it’s a straightforward process that requires minimal ingredients.

To make your own hot sauce, you’ll need:

  • 1 cup of chopped peppers (such as jalapeno, habanero, or serrano)
  • 1/2 cup of chopped onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup of white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  1. In a saucepan, combine the chopped peppers, onion, and garlic. Cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
  2. Add the white vinegar, sugar, and salt to the saucepan. Stir to combine.
  3. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  4. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the mixture cool for a few minutes.
  5. Transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
  6. Strain the hot sauce through a fine-mesh sieve to remove any solids.
  7. Pour the hot sauce into a jar or bottle and store it in the refrigerator. 

Sambal Oelek

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 3/4 tablespoon of sambal oelek

Sambal oelek is a chili paste that’s composed of fresh red chili peppers, vinegar, and salt. Although it has a quite similar level of heat to sriracha, it differs in the flavor profile. It’s less sweet, has a stronger chili taste, and is widely available. It also has a thinner consistency that may seem like a drawback, but it’s actually a perfect choice for adding to marinades, dressings, and sauces. If you can’t find any, you can use sambal oelek substitutes instead.

Fly by Jing Zhong Sauce

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of Fly by Jing Zhong sauce

Fly by Jing Zhong sauce is quite the versatile and delicious condiment it’s all cracked out to be. It can easily replace a number of other hot sauces with its tasty blend of Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, and spices. Even the heat level can be adjusted to suit your preferences. The versatility of Zhong sauce is one of its greatest strengths. It can be used in lots of ways, such as a marinade for meats, a sauce for noodles, a dip for vegetables, or as a topping substitute for pizza sauce.

Sweet Chili Sauce

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of sweet chili sauce

Sweet chili sauce can be a great alternative to sriracha sauce, especially if you prefer sweeter flavors. This sauce has a similar consistency and flavor to sriracha. It’s made from chili peppers, vinegar, and sugar and is a tad less spicy. The sauce can be used as a spicy sauce for chicken, dip for roasted meats, or a topping for stir-fries and noodle dishes. If you can’t find any or have run out, you can use sweet chili sauce substitutes for a similar flavor experience.

A bowl of homemade sweet chili sauce with its ingredients around it.

Peri Peri Sauce

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of peri-peri sauce

Peri Peri sauce is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a spicy and tangy alternative to Sriracha sauce. This sauce is made from African bird’s eye chili peppers, lemon juice, garlic, and vinegar, which gives it a distinct and flavorful taste.

This sauce can be used in various dishes, including marinades, dressings, dips, and even as a condiment for burgers, sandwiches, and wraps. It has a comparable heat level to sriracha sauce but with a slightly different flavor profile that can enhance the taste of your dishes and add depth and complexity.


1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of gochujang

Gochujang is a unique substitute for sriracha that you need to try. This Korean sauce is made of fermented soybeans, rice, and chili peppers and has a slightly sweet and spicy flavor that’s perfect for use in marinades, dressings, and dipping sauces. However, it does have a different flavor profile than sriracha sauce, as it has a sweeter and more complex flavor. You can use gochujang substitutes instead if you prefer an exact flavor match.

Louisiana-Style Hot Sauce

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1/4 tablespoon of Louisiana-style hot sauce

Louisiana-style hot sauce is another great option to consider. The cayenne peppers, vinegar, and salt give this sauce a more tangy and spicy flavor profile than sriracha. It also has a similar consistency and can be used in the same ways. The fact that Louisiana-style hot sauce is available in most grocery shops is one of the main reasons to use it. It’s even more reasonably priced than sriracha, making it a cost-effective choice.


1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1/4 tablespoon of cayenne peppers paste form

Cayenne pepper is a natural and affordable alternative to sriracha sauce, with a considerably higher level of heat and a slightly different flavor profile. However, since it’s much spicier, use it sparingly and gradually increase the quantity. Simply sprinkle it onto your food or mix it with olive oil to create a paste. The main advantages of using this alternative are its affordability and availability in most grocery stores. If you can’t find any, you can use cayenne pepper alternatives instead.

A bunch of cayenne peppers on a white backdrop.


1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of Tapatio

Tapatio hot sauce is an excellent substitute if you’re looking to add a spicy punch to your food. This hot sauce is made from red peppers, salt, and vinegar, which gives it a unique flavor that distinguishes it from other hot sauces. This hot sauce is available in most grocery stores and is relatively affordable. This means you won’t have to spend an arm and a leg to try it out.

Chili Garlic Sauce

1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of chili garlic sauce

Chili garlic sauce is a great substitute that boasts a distinct and equally delicious flavor. The sauce is made from a blend of chili peppers, garlic, vinegar, and spices, which gives it a tangy and slightly sweet taste that complements numerous dishes. Knowing how to thicken sauce will give it the best thick and chunky texture you need. But if you’re out of it, you can swap it for some alternatives to chili garlic sauce.

A opened jar of chili garlic sauce.


1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1/2 tablespoon of harissa sauce

Harissa is a North African hot sauce made from roasted red peppers, garlic, chili peppers, and spices. It has a similar consistency and uses as sriracha but is more affordable and often more available. The smoky and earthy flavor can bring an even better level of flavor to your dishes. The sauce is much spicier than sriracha, so use it in small amounts. You can also use harissa substitutes for a more toned-down or exact flavor.

Ketchup and Hot Sauce

1 teaspoon of sriracha sauce = 1 tablespoon of ketchup + 1 teaspoon of hot sauce

When you’re in need of a quick and easy substitute for sriracha sauce, combining ketchup and hot sauce can be just the trick. This mixture can offer a similar sweet and spicy flavor profile that sriracha is known for. Ketchup and tomato sauce don’t have the same flavor or consistency, so stick with the ketchup. To create this substitute, mix equal parts of ketchup and hot sauce in a bowl. You can also add a small amount of honey or sugar to the mixture if you prefer a sweeter taste. 

A closeup shot of a spoon of ketchup.
closeup detail of ketchup (tomatoes sauce)


1 tablespoon of sriracha sauce = 1/4 tablespoon of tabasco

Tabasco sauce is a slightly hotter sauce made from tabasco peppers, vinegar, and salt, which gives it a similar consistency and a spicy kick. It’s best to use Tabasco sauce as a condiment rather than a cooking sauce since it’s thinner. But it’s still perfect for adding heat to soups, stews, and chili, as well as for drizzling on top of eggs, pizza, and sandwiches.

🧐 FAQs

Where can I Buy Sriracha Sauce

Sriracha sauce can be purchased at various retail outlets and grocery stores, both online and offline. Major supermarkets, specialty food stores, and Asian grocery stores often carry different brands of Sriracha.

Why is there a sriracha sauce shortage?

The shortage is primarily due to the delay in the production of Huy Fong Foods, the company that produces Sriracha sauce. The shortage has led to a surge in demand for Sriracha sauce alternatives.

What can I use as a healthy alternative to Sriracha?

One option is to make your own hot sauce using fresh ingredients like chili peppers, garlic, and vinegar. This will allow you to control the amount of sodium and sugar in the sauce. Another option is to use a hot sauce that is made from natural ingredients like Tabasco Sauce or Cholula Hot Sauce.

Are there any non-spicy substitutes for Sriracha in recipes?

One option is to use tomato paste, which has a similar flavor profile to Sriracha but without the heat. Another option is to use sweet chili sauce, which is made from chili peppers and sugar. This sauce has a sweet and tangy flavor that can be used in place of Sriracha in recipes that call for it.

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