This recipe for hot sauce is my husband Derek’s favourite. There are so many ways to add spice to life – travel, new experiences, theatre, music and art – why not start in the kitchen? Adding a little spice to life is always fun, and so is making delicious condiments yourself. Hot sauces have become quite popular, with a wide variety of options available on the market including curated subscription boxes.  I love making things home made wherever possible, and this recipe makes that possible.

Hot sauce is such a versatile way to jazz up a dish. There have even been hot sauce lattes – which seems kind of crazy, but to each their own! With the Super Bowl coming, it’s a way to make chicken wings even more exciting, or to dress up a burger or mouth-watering ribs. Appetizers are instantly more fun and flavourful. Add your signature flavour to all sorts of dishes – you are limited by only your imagination. Imagine how many recipes you could integrate hot sauce into. You can make breakfast not only the most important, but also the most exciting meal of the day by adding it to your weekday eggs.

This recipe is my husband Derek's favourite Red Hot Sauce - perfect for a DIY Valentine's gift or to jazz up your Super Bowl appetizers.

A bottled home made hot sauce makes a great DIY Valentine’s Day gift – something hot for the person who you find hot! You can make a custom label for the jar with your home printer and personalize it for your partner and give them something made with love from your own kitchen. Such a thoughtful gift that adds excitement to any meal, slip it into a gift bag with a heartfelt homemade greeting card and you’re golden. Stash some extra jars in the pantry to use year-round. Enjoy adding heat to your life with Derek’s Red Hot Sauce – let us know how it goes!

Derek’s Red Hot Sauce


  • 2 T. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 c. diced onion
  • 2 medium chile peppers, such as poblano, New Mexico or Anaheim, diced
  • 2-4 habanero peppers, or other small hot chile peppers, stemmed, halved and seeded
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. diced tomatoes
  • 1 c. distilled white vinegar
  • 2 t. salt
  • 1-3 t. sugar


  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, chile peppers, habaneros to taste and garlic and cook, stirring, until the onion is soft and beginning to brown, 3 to 4 minutes.
  2. Reduce heat to medium. Add tomatoes, vinegar, salt and sugar to taste. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to break down, about 5 minutes.
  3. Carefully transfer the tomato mixture to a food processor or blender. Puree until smooth. (Use caution when pureeing hot ingredients.) Set a fine-mesh sieve over a medium bowl; pour the pureed mixture through the sieve, pushing on the solids with a wooden spoon to extract all the liquid. (Discard solids.) Let the sauce cool to room temperature, about 11⁄2 hours.
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