From saucing up a BLT to adding extra heat to a bowl of chili, we all love hot sauce. And it’s easy to make your own! With a long list of ingredients, equipment, and bottling components, making your own hot sauce can seem like a big undertaking. Luckily there are easy DIY-friendly kits that you can buy with everything you need all in one. They make the perfect gift to any spicy food lover and a great gift for yourself!
These hot sauce-making kits make it easy to get your fix and customize a unique hot sauce to your personal heat and flavor preferences.
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What’s in a hot sauce making kit?
Hot sauce making kits should have almost everything you need to make your first batch of hot sauce, from ingredients to bottles to gloves and more.
Here are a few of the most common items you can expect to see in your hot sauce making kit. Be sure to check the exact description of any product you buy so that you know exactly what you’re getting, and any additional ingredients you may need.
Included in most hot sauce making kits:
- Dried chili peppers and/or chili powder
- Spices and seasonings (things like curry powder, garlic, cumin, and/or paprika)
- Woozy bottles or glass jars
May not be included in some kits:
- Other nonperishable ingredients like canned tomatoes (required for some recipes)
- Customizable labels
- pH test strips
Not included in any hot sauce making kit:
- Pots, pans, and other kitchen equipment
- Any fresh, perishable ingredients
Best DIY hot sauce making kits on Amazon
Amazon is one of the most affordable and convenient ways to shop online for almost anything — DIY hot sauce kits are no exception! Amazon has a wide variety of hot sauce making kits, so we’ve narrowed it down to our top 3 favorites, which are the most comprehensive and highest quality at the best price.
1. Grow and Make hot sauce kit
Our number one pick is Grow and Make’s Deluxe kit. Grow and Make is one of the most popular and reputable DIY craft kit companies out there, and their hot sauce kit is a testament to their quality.
The Grow and Make kit has everything you need to make your own hot sauce, and offers 6 different recipes to try and choose from. The kit makes it easy to choose a recipe that fits your preference for heat level, and simplifies the process so that it is approachable for anyone, no matter your cooking experience level.
2. DIY Gift Kits deluxe hot sauce making kit
DIY Gift Kits sells by far the most popular hot sauce making kit on Amazon. We love that you can choose your spiciness level by getting the standard kit, which has one ghost pepper and a spice blend packet, the deluxe kit, which has 5 ghost peppers and 2 spice packets, or the Carolina reaper kit.
This kit is one of the most popular for gifting during the holidays. It has very easy to follow instructions, and the recipes consistently turn out well and make delicious hot sauces. A lot of people experience this as a “gateway” kit — they use it to make hot sauce for the very first time, and then find themselves buying more supplies and experimenting more as they gain confidence.
3. Thoughtfully Gourmet DIY hot sauce set
This kit truly reflects the brand name: thoughtful. Instead of standard woozy bottles, it comes with fun, reusable skull-shaped jars. It’s also the most budget-friendly of our picks, regularly retailing at $39.99.
This kit comes with enough ingredients to make 2 batches of hot sauce, with a variety of spices and peppers. It includes guajillo, chipotle, and cayenne peppers, which are on the milder end when it comes to hot sauce, so you may want to up the ante by separately purchasing hotter peppers. We love the skull-shaped jars, which make it a special and memorable gift!
Tips for making your own hot sauce
Hot sauce making kits come with their own instructions on how to make and use them, so we recommend following along closely with the instructions that you receive. However, you may want to experiment to make your hot sauce truly unique, so here are a few tips to help you along the way:
Making hot sauce shelf stable
There are a few important things to consider if you want your hot sauce to be shelf-stable. The safest way to ensure your hot sauce is shelf-stable is to follow an exact tried and tested recipe from a reputable source, like Ball or your local university food preservation extension.
To ensure that clostridium botulinum is unable to grow in your hot sauce, the pH needs to be 4.6 or lower (SD State). You may also need to boil, water bath can, or pressure can your hot sauce depending on the exact recipe that you are following, and always sterilize your jars or bottles prior to bottling.
How to make hot sauce hotter
If the hot sauce recipe that comes with your hot sauce making kit isn’t quite spicy enough, there are a few modifications you can make. You can simply add more of the chili peppers that your recipe calls for, but this can alter the pH of your hot sauce, potentially affecting the shelf life. If you add more or less of any ingredient from your recipe, be sure to test the pH before bottling to make sure that it is safely acidic, or plan on storing it in the refrigerator and consuming it within a few weeks.
Finding a hotter chili pepper is usually a safer way to go about increasing the heat because it doesn’t mess with the acidity balance. Most hot sauce making kits use dried peppers, often cayenne or chipotle, so you can swap that out for something hotter, like dried habaneros (100,000-350,000 SHU) or Carolina reapers (up to 1.5m SHU).
How to make and sell hot sauce
Many people make hot sauce in their homes and sell it around their local community. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the cottage food laws in your state, which dictate the rules and regulations for homemade food products.
If you are making hot sauce from home, you can have a website to advertise your products, but unless you have a certified kitchen and business licensing you are not allowed to sell your sauces online through a website or Etsy.
Co-packing is another easy option for selling your own hot sauce recipe. With co-packing, you partner with a manufacturer that makes and bottles your recipe in their facility for a fee. That way you can be sure that it is properly shelf-stable and made in hygienic conditions. If you have your hot sauce co-packed you can sell it online, at your local farmer’s market, or in your community.