back to top

The Definitive Ranking Of Supermarket Hot Sauces

Because variety is the spice of life.

Posted on

15. Cholula Chili Lime

Why, Cholula? Why do you mock us so? You took something great and made it awful. Cholula Chili Lime is the Adam Sandler of hot sauces. Not spicy with no real lime taste, it's just sad and now I'm sad, too.

14. Goya Salsa Picante

Flickr: jeepersmedia / Via Creative Commons

Not the hottest salsa you'll ever try, Goya Salsa Picante is still pretty decent in a pinch. With more of a vinegar-based flavor, it reminds you of Tabasco, but y'know, without being as awesome.

13. Valentina Salsa Picante

Flickr: lwy / Via Creative Commons

Like Goya, this isn't the spiciest hot sauce in the world, but it does have great flavor. Sprinkled on fruit like watermelon or mangoes, the hot sauce stands out since it has a pretty good vinegar to salt ratio. Still, nothing to write home about.

12. Louisiana Supreme


Whoa, Nelly! Anything that comes in jug form can't be that bad, right? Well, it can't be that good, either. Don't get me wrong, I would drench the shit out of my fried chicken in this, it just wouldn't be my first option, is all.


11. Texas Pete

Flickr: pheezy / Via Creative Commons

Giddy up, partner! This here's the rootinest, tootinest... eh, actually, it's not that rooty or tooty. Like it's vinegar-based brethren, Texas Pete is an on-saler, meaning the only time you buy it is when it's on sale.

10. Tabasco Chipotle Sauce

Flickr: smaedli / Via Creative Commons

OHMYGAWD CHIPOTLAYS MY LYFE! OK, not really. There is definitely a nice smokiness that makes this hot sauce stand out from the pack. Unfortunately, that's about all it has going for it.

8. Louisiana Hot Sauce

Flickr: xenization / Via Creative Commons

The "perfect hot sauce" may be a bit of a stretch, but Louisiana Hot Sauce is still a legit condiment. Yeah, it may lack some heat, but put enough on and it'll get the party started. And by 'party' I mean 'burning butt' the next day.


7. Crystal

Flickr: smoorenburg / Via Creative Commons

In high school, my friend's dad made coctel de camarón — or, shrimp cocktail — and loaded it with Crystal. He let me try and my tastebuds danced like the Rockettes on blue meth. Unfortunately, I've chased that taste for years and never once was able to relive it. So, sorry, Crystal, but you're just better in my memory.

6. Frank's Red Hot

Flickr: rusty_clark / Via Creative Commons

Any sauce involved in the creation of the buffalo wing is aces in my book. Tangy, with a good amount of heat, Frank's Red Hot is great not only on wings but on other stuff as well, like... OK, it's best on wings and fried chicken, but still.

5. El Yucateco Chili Habanero

Flickr: dbrekke / Via Creative Commons

If you've never tried El Yucateco, well, then, I don't know what you've been doing with your life. This hot sauce definitely has a kick, so you don't need to douse your food with it in the same way you do with some of the other sauces on this list. Not for the faint of heart, yet neither for the truly hardcore, this sauce is a good choice when you need some oomph in your mouth.

4. Tapatío

Flickr: roebot / Via Creative Commons

There are classics for a reason, and Tapatío is a shining, sombrero-wearing example of that. This sauce goes well with everything like the little black dress of the spicy world that it is. Never overpowering and always satisfying, Tapatío is on the Mt. Rushmore of hot sauces.


3. Cholula

Flickr: jeepersmedia / Via Creative Commons

The wooden top beckons me from afar, tempting me with it's hot sauce-y goodness. Like Tapatío, Cholula is a staple. The right amount of heat and not too watery, it charms the tongue in every bite. Also, am I the only one who totally ships the Cholula lady and the Tapatío guy?

2. Huy Fong Sriracha

Flickr: jeepersmedia / Via Creative Commons

Like kale, Sriracha seems to have appeared out of nowhere a few years ago and has taken the world by storm, and with good reason. And for many, there is only one brand that matters: Huy Fong, the one with the rooster. I have to admit, it took me a while to make the leap, and now I always have a bottle on hand. Great on pizza, eggs — basically anything you can eat — the garlicky, tangy goodness is almost perfect. Almost.

1. Tabasco

Flickr: patchattack / Via Creative Commons

The Coca-Cola of hot sauces. Often imitated and never duplicated, this is the Louisiana hot sauce all other Louisiana hot sauces aspire to be. Peppery, vinegary, full of punch, it is and will forever be No. 1. I love you Tabasco. Will you marry me?