October Can Jam | Homemade Sriracha


Well, of course I couldn’t leave well enough alone and go for only ONE chile pepper can jam contribution. That’s just too low maintenance.

And as B will tell you, I am ANYTHING but low maintenance.


You may remember our household obsession with sriracha sauce? Oh you don’t? At our house, I use it on shrimp, and on brisket, and even on lentils. We LOVE us some sriracha. I’m pretty much ready to get that rooster tattooed on my rear end, I love sriracha so much. It’s like, a heavenly god-send for your potato hash and your burritos, except it arrives in the form of a fire-red, death-by-chile-pepper, sell-your-soul-to-the-Devil-for-a-glass-of-milk package.

I somehow got it in my head that I wanted to make a homemade sriracha. It’s not that I don’t like buying the commercial stuff (see declarations of love above), but I guess I just wanted to see if I could do it myself. And honestly, if I can make a homegrown version of the sauce using locally-grown peppers, well, I’ll have a little more bounce in my step tomorrow. This is just the chile-sauce version of the argument for capitalistic domesticity that we talked about the other day.



Once I finally found my inspiration in this recipe from Food52, I found a comparable chiles-only sauce for “Singapore Chili Sauce” in the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving. My theory was, if I keep the proportions of vinegar and chile peppers as called for in the Ball recipe, but strip out the extra ingredients that Ball used in their recipe and keep the prep method similar to Food52’s recipe… then I would be in business with an acceptable sriracha substitute.

When comparing to the Official Sriracha currently residing in my fridge, I think the flavors are extremely similar (although my version is definitely more vinegar-y, as to be expected since I had to up the vinegar to keep the chile peppers safe to can.) I think the commercial version might be a tad sweeter, or maybe it’s just that my version is hotter? I mean, I ate it straight from the bottle (I’ll take I’M FREAKING HARDCORE FOR 100, ALEX) instead of eating it on something. So maybe if I try it over fried potatoes then I’ll be able to tell the difference a little bit easier. The biggest difference is the texture – mine is a lot more thin, due to the higher amounts of vinegar, than the commercial version. I have hope that it will set up a little more firmly in the fridge, though.



Also, I canned this in super-tiny jelly jars, because this fresh recipe won’t stay good for as long as the commercial version. So make sure you can yours using jar amounts that you’ll use in a month or so. Don’t forget that you can use whichever combination of chile peppers you want – so if you’re not so into hot sauce, use 80% bell peppers and a few Fresno chiles for heat. If you like surface-of-the-sun levels of spicy, then use all Fresno chiles or a similar hot chile.

Whatever you do, make sure you pick up an extra quart of milk when you’re shopping for peppers!



Homemade Sriracha

Adapted from the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving and Food52
Yields 10 4-oz jars


Feel free to use whichever chiles you want. Refer to the Theory of Chile-tivity – the bigger the chiles used, the less spicy the sauce will be.


1 pound various chile peppers (your preference depending on heat desired), coursely chopped
8 garlic cloves, smashed
2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 cups white distilled vinegar
4 tablespoons sugar

The night before you plan to can the sriracha, add the peppers, garlic, and salt to a large bowl. Cover with the vinegar. Let stand overnight or at least 8 hours.

The next day, prepare canner, jars, and lids. Add the entire mixture to a medium saucepan. Add the sugar to the saucepan. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 5 minutes. Blend in a food processor or blender until mixture is smooth.

Pour into jars, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace. Process for 10 minutes at a rolling boil (adjusting for altitude), turn off heat, and let stand in canner for an additional 5 minutes. Remove and let cool before storing.



The Black Keys / Remember When (Side B)



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32 thoughts on “October Can Jam | Homemade Sriracha

  1. Yay! I too, am a big fan of the rooster, and I too, saw the food52 recipe (with the temptingly gorgeous photos), but I’ve been too lazy to adapt it to a canning-safe recipe. Thanks for doing all the work!! Now if I can only stop all this data analysis stuff and hie myself to the farmer’s market….

  2. As I am a pepper novice, here is a stupid question: so, if I use green peppers it’s going to be green, right? Will it taste any good? I think I have poblanos and fish chilis (whatever that is; someone gave them to me.) Great post!

    • Julia, you may be a pepper novice, but you’re an everything-else-expert! Yes, I would imagine the sauce would be green. I think, depending on the amount of green bell peppers that you used, it would taste fine. I personally don’t like green bell peppers all that much (I prefer red bells), but I like the idea of doing this with poblanos.

      What is a fish chile? Will you twitpic it to me? I’m curious!

      If you try out a small batch then will you let me know how it goes? I’m very interested! Glad you liked the post =)

  3. Dearest oh dearest Carter,
    Can you tell me which combination of peppers YOU used? I would like to replicate same said recipe for my own culinary consumable. Also, I think this will be my Christmas gift to the known universe this year, well, probably just my friends and family, but you get my drift.

    Much hugs and rainbows.

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  5. If I only have milder peppers can I add some red pepper flakes to add some heat? I’m new to canning so I’m not sure what can be added safely. Thanks for all the wonderful recipes!

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  7. So good!
    You inspired me to preserve a little bounty from our farmer’s market (although I’m going to be honest, I know mine’s not as spicy as yours…I threw in one regular sweet red pepper to balance out the heat for my sissy mouth). I also didn’t have enough white vinegar so I used some apple cider vinegar for half of the amount. Not sure if that affects stability so the extra jars are going into the freezer. Regardless, Chris and I have eaten through half a jar tonight while waiting for our dinner to finish cooking…it’s amazing with slices of cheddar. Amazing. As in, my mouth’s on fire but I can’t stop myself.
    thanks for the inspiration!

    • Lexieeeeeeeeee! I love that you did some preserving of your own! My heart is bursting with pride!

      I’m glad you switched out the peppers, all peppers are low-acidity vegetables so it doesn’t matter if you switch out one pepper for another. I also did some research about switching white vinegar for ACV, and according to http://www.versatilevinegar.com, all of the commercially-sold vinegar in the US has to be at least 4% acidity. So as long as you’re not using vinegar that’s LESS acidic than white distilled vinegar, you should be fine. The key is keeping the acidity level the same or higher than the original recipe. I’m curious to know how good it would be with the apple cider vinegar instead of white! I’m sure it’s amazing, but you’ll have to let me know =)

      • Good to know–they are both 5% so I think we’re safe :) I have been canning a fair amount over the last year but I’m so afraid of killing myself or Chris that I freeze everything, no matter how precise I’ve been. Unfortunately that doesn’t leave much room in the freezer for anything else!
        I actually put the vinegars together, so I did about 1 1/4 c of white and the same of the apple cider. It didn’t turn out vinegary at all either–just seemed a perfect balance of flavors :)
        Next Sunday is the last farmer’s market in our neighborhood, so I’m going to stock up and make another batch or two after the halloween festivities.
        And may I just say that your blog is the best food blog I read in the friend category (ie someone who works a real day job and just started picking this up recently)…it’s just right as far as I’m concerned!

  8. I made this today using mostly red jalapeno peppers from our garden. It came out GREAT – just the right amount of heat to be spicy yet still let the pepper flavor come through. Outstanding and so easy. Will make this again and again! YAY! Thank you so much for posting this.


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  14. Just wanted to let you know how wonderful your recipe is! I made the sirachi last week and it is amazing. I think even better than the “rooster”! I used mixed peppers from the end of my gardens growing season ( bananas, cayenne, Italian round hots, and Thai) and they all blended together fantastically. Thank you!!!!

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