Homemade Cayenne Pepper Sauce
This spring, while my wife was at the garden center picking up some plants and flowers for our garden, I saw a cayenne pepper plant. I thought to myself it would be fun to grow a bunch of peppers and make some spicy Homemade Cayenne Pepper Sauce.
My little pepper plant did really well. But I have to admit I had to go to the farmers’ market late in the summer and pick up a few more peppers. I needed about 12 oz. and I came up a little short with my homegrown peppers.
Some of our green cayenne peppers made it also into our Homemade Canned Tomato Salsa that we made again this year.
We use hot sauces like Frank’s and Tabasco in our house all the time. And as I feel that homemade is generally better than store-bought I thought I need to come up with a recipe and make my own homemade hot sauce.
How do you preserve homemade hot sauce?
Canning hot sauce is pretty straight forward. It is very similar to canning other things from your garden. There are a couple of things to keep in mind when canning; sterilize your jars, wipe the rims so that the lid seats well, and process the jars for the correct amount of time.
We do a lot of canning in our house from tomatoes to carrots. This year we even canned our homemade Pomodoro sauce!
Canning is a hobby that we love and something that we can enjoy all year long. Here are a few of our favorite recipes that you can try too!!
OTHER CANNING RECIPES
Look at how lovely these fresh peppers are that we saw at the farmers market. Who could pass those up!! The color alone catches your eye!!
How hot are cayenne peppers you ask? According to the Scoville Scale, they are 30,000 to 50,000 heat units, tucked in between a Thai pepper and Tabasco pepper.
How to make hot sauce from fresh cayenne peppers
To start you need to put the peppers in white vinegar with some garlic, onion, lime juice, salt, paprika, and oil and bring to a boil. The heat of your sauce will depend upon the peppers you have.
Also, it will depend on how much of the seeds and ribs you leave in your peppers when you cook them.
You will need to boil it until everything is soft and tender. Then you need to blend the solids with a little bit of the liquid until smooth.
Put the remaining liquid through a fine-mesh strainer. Then add as much of the liquid as you like to the blended mixture to get to the consistency you like.
Fresh Cayenne Pepper Sauce Recipes
There are a lot of fresh cayenne pepper sauce recipes out there. If you follow them exactly you will generally have success with your canned hot sauce. But as with all cooking, there is one thing that you must do constantly while you cook, taste as you go!
So now is the time to taste your creation and adjust the flavors accordingly. You need to make sure you have the right amount of heat for your taste.
As each batch of cayenne peppers is a little different you may have to tweak your sauce just a little. I have some notes at the end of the recipe to help you get your hot sauce just the way you want it!
Firstly, you will need to thoroughly wash your canning jars. We always run ours through the dishwasher. You then need to sterilize everything in boiling water for 5 minutes, jars, lids and rims.
Fill the jars with the cayenne hot sauce to approximately ½ an inch from the top. Continue by wiping the rims with a paper towel making sure they are clean so the lids will seat properly. Then, screw the rims on fingertip tight only.
Process the jars and the canning process is complete! Check out the recipe for full details.
If canning at an altitude you can use this handy guide I borrowed from Noshing With The Noland to help!! We processed our cayenne hot sauce for 25 minutes. Here in Calgary, we are over 3,000 feet above sea level, at sea level you would process for 20 minutes.
Homemade cayenne pepper sauce Recipe
- 12 oz fresh cayenne peppers
- 6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 small onion coarsely chopped
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 2 TBSP fresh squeezed lime juice
- 3 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp canola oil
Wash your jars and lids (I run them through the dishwasher)
Bring water to a boil in a canning pot and place your jars and rims in to sterilize for at least 5 minutes. You can take them out of the boiling water and put them on a baking sheet in a 200 F degree oven to hold until you are ready to fill them. I usually toss the lids in the boiling water for 30 seconds before placing them on the jars as you don’t want the rubber to be in the boiling water for too long and soften too much.
Cut off the stems of your peppers. You can leave all the seeds and rims in your peppers if you like your sauces spicy hot. If not, you can remove some of the seeds for a less spicy taste. To remove some seeds simply roll the pepper on the counter a couple of times. Some of the seeds will shake out into the garbage. Don’t worry if you remove too many seeds and your sauce isn’t as hot as you would like it to be, or it is too hot. You can adjust the level of heat before canning.
Time to Cook
Place all the ingredients in a stainless steel sauté pan and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the peppers have softened.
Remove from the heat and using a slotted spoon, place all the solids from the pot into the blender. Add just enough of the vinegar liquid to allow you to blend.
Blend well so that the mixture is very smooth.
Using a fine strainer, strain the remaining vinegar into Pyrex measuring cup.
Pour the blended pepper mixture back into the sauté pan and slowly stir in the reserved vinegar until you get the desired consistency.
Whisk well and then taste. Now is the time to adjust your sauce to taste; see the notes below for the different ways to adjust your sauce.
When you are happy with the taste it’s time to start canning. Pour the sauce into your sterilized jars leaving about ½ inch space from the top.
Time to Taste
Place the lid on and then screw the rim on just finger tight.
Place the jars in the canning pot of boiling water and proof for 20 minutes (at sea level). Note: DO NOT place the jars directly on the bottom of the pot of boiling water, they will crack. You must use a canning pot with a wire rack inside.
Once proofed remove the jars and place them on a tea towel on your counter to cool. You should hear a popping sound as the jars cool and seal. If a jar does not pop refrigerate and use within 3 days.
Your sealed jars should be stored in a cool dry place and will keep for 12-18 months.
Make sure you refrigerate any unused portions after opening your jars.
For Taste Adjustments:
Don’t be afraid to add a little more salt if you think it needs it.
If your sauce tastes bitter it might be because your peppers were picked a little too early or were too old. Not to worry, you can add some maple syrup or brown sugar to get rid of the bitterness. Start with a ½ TBSP at a time. Make sure you simmer your sauce for a few minutes so as to make sure the sugar is dissolved.
If you find that it is not quite as hot and spicy as you would like you can add some cayenne pepper powder to your sauce. Start with a ½ tsp at a time. Again make sure you simmer and stir your sauce for a few minutes to make sure that the cayenne powder blended well.
If you find that your sauce is too hot for your tastes you can add some white sugar a 1/2 TBSP at a time. This will help to remove a little of the heat. As mentioned make sure you simmer your sauce so that the sugar dissolves completely.
Serving Size:1 TBSP
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 33 Total Fat: 2g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 1g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 178mg Carbohydrates: 5g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 1g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 1g