How to Make Hot Sauce with Dried Peppers
How to Make Hot Sauce with Dried Peppers
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Learn how to make hot sauce from dried peppers by easily rehydrating them. You can make just about any sauce or hot sauce recipe with this method. Very easy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups lightly crushed and seeded dried chili peppers
  • 2 cups water or enough to cover the peppers - FOR METHOD ONE
  • 1 cup vinegar or as desired, FOR METHOD TWO
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • *Other ingredients as desired. See notes.

For Method One

  1. Lightly toast the dried chili peppers in a hot pan for a minute or 2 per side, until they become slightly pliable and loosen the oils in the skins. This step is optional and develops more flavor.
  2. Remove from heat and add enough very hot water to cover the peppers. Let them steep for 15 to 20 minutes to soften.
  3. Strain the peppers but keep the steeping water.
  4. Add the rehydrated peppers to a food processor or blender along with 1 cup of the steeping water (or use fresh water) vinegar (use anywhere from 2 tablespoons to 1 cup), garlic powder, salt, and other optional ingredients. Process until smooth.
  5. Taste and adjust with salt and vinegar. Strain if desired.
  6. Pour into bottles and enjoy, or simmer then in a pot for 10-20 minutes to develop the flavors even more, then cool and bottle. Store in the refrigerator.

For Method Two

  1. Lightly toast the dried chili peppers in a hot pan for a minute or 2 per side, until they become slightly pliable and loosen the oils in the skins. This step is optional and develops more flavor.
  2. Add water and vinegar, garlic powder, salt and other optional ingredients. Use less vinegar or water for thicker hot sauce. Simmer the peppers for 15 to 20 minutes to soften.
  3. Add the mixture to a food processor or blender along with vinegar (use anywhere from 2 tablespoons to 1 cup), garlic powder, salt, and other optional ingredients. Process until smooth.
  4. Taste and adjust with salt and vinegar. Strain if desired.
  5. Pour into bottles and enjoy, or simmer then in a pot for another 10 minutes to develop the flavors even more, then cool and bottle. Store in the refrigerator.

The Difference Between the Two Methods: The first method rehydrates the dried peppers with water only, allowing you to add other ingredients later as desired. The second method simmers the dried pods and other ingredients together in vinegar and water, then simply processes it all to make the final sauce. Both methods work great.

NOTES: 

  • Water & Vinegar. I use 1 cup of each along with 2 cups lightly crushed dried pepper pods. This results in a thin sauce, like Tabasco or Crystal. If you'd like a thicker sauce, use less water and/or vinegar. Also, reduce the amount of vinegar for less tang. You can also use other liquids. 
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  • Vinegar Options. Use your favorite vinegar. However, you'll receive best results with a high quality vinegar.
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  • pH. If you'd like your hot sauce to keep longer, shoot for a pH of 3.5 or lower. If your pH is higher, adjust with more vinegar or add citrus, then retest it.
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  • Other Ingredients. You can add in all sorts of other flavor building ingredients, like onion, garlic, other peppers. vegetables, herbs and spices, fruits, juices, alcohol, and so much more.

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