a bunch of slices of watermelon

Hot sauce & watermelon: enjoy this sweet/spicy combo three ways

When you think hot sauce, your mind probably jumps to spicy wings, stuffed burritos, and scintillating sriracha.

But surprisingly, hot sauce is also often paired with fruit. Many hot sauces use fruit as an ingredient to round out the spicy with a touch of sweetness, and in some parts of the world, people put hot sauce on fruit, including and especially watermelon, to enjoy a sweet and savory treat.

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Sandía Loca: a spicy watermelon party food

Sandía loca is a popular celebratory dish from Mexico involving sweet, juicy watermelon, spicy Chamoy, and over-the-top decorations. For this dish, a seedless watermelon is cut in half and hollowed out. The hollow rind is then filled with sliced watermelon, jicama, and cucumber peanuts, and lots of spicy candies and tamarind candies.

It’s then topped with spicy Chamoy sauce, chili powder (tajin), and lime juice.

Often the decorations are elaborate including fruit that is carved and cut into stars and flowers, fruit skewers, and Tarugos, a straw-shaped tamarind candy, to give it impressive height.

Casual spicy watermelon fruit cups with Chamoy hot sauce

If you want something a little lower-key, you can simply make a spicy watermelon fruit cup. Add bite-sized cubes of watermelon to a cup, drizzle with as much Chamoy as your heart desires, and sprinkle it with tajin. This is a common Mexican street food that you will find in Mexico (duh), and in Mexican markets and neighborhoods across the US.

You can also add other fruits like mango and pineapple to your spicy fruit cups!

Watermelon used as an ingredient in hot sauce

It’s easy to find tons of different watermelon hot sauce recipes across the web, but there are surprisingly few commercially available hot sauces you can buy in stores. Coastal Sauce Company has a spicy watermelon finishing glaze that’s great as a marinade or finishing sauce, but isn’t the strongest overall hot sauce for casual use.

Is watermelon and hot sauce actually good?

This is a question that only you can answer for yourself. Many people around the world enjoy watermelon and chamoy, or homemade watermelon hot sauces. If you enjoy other types of fruit an chamoy, like mango or pineapple, you’ll probably love the combo! If you don’t typically love the spicy-sweet-savory combo, you may want to skip out on watermelon and hot sauce.

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