The World's 10 Spiciest Hot Sauces
What is the world's spiciest hot sauce and how spicy is it? We count down the top 10.
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10) Buffalo Wild Wings Blazin’ Sauce: 200,000-350,000 Scoville Units
Surprisingly, one of the world’s spiciest hot sauces can be found at a Buffalo Wild Wings near you, or on their online store. When Roberts asked a representative how spicy this sauce was, they replied, "The Scoville units for the Blazin' sauce range from 200,000 to 350,000 depending on the peppers and the season, but it is always hot!"
Credit: Buffalo Wild Wings
9) Mad Dog 357: 357,000 Scoville Units
This super-hot sauce is a fiery concoction of chile extract, fresh habanero peppers, cayenne, garlic, and onion and clocks in at a face-melting 357,000 Scoville units. It can be purchased from Hot Sauce World for $8.98 a bottle, but you might want to read the comments section before making the investment; this sauce takes its toll.
Credit: flickr/ kieran krud
8) CaJohns Frostbite White: 500,000 Scoville Units
CaJohns is famous for making some of the spiciest hot sauces in existence, and this one, which also happens to be the world’s first white hot sauce, is right up there with them. It’s so hot that it supposedly "sparkles and shimmers" when you shake it, according to Roberts. CaJohns suggests using it to spice up cocktails, but even one drop might be enough to give your margarita a heck of a kick. It can be purchased for $9 per bottle.
Credit: CaJohns Flavor & Fire
7) Melinda’s Red Savina: 577,000 Scoville Units
The red savina pepper is twice as hot as a habanero and 65 times hotter than a jalapeño. Melinda’s blends the fiendish pepper with habaneros, fresh carrots, onions, lime juice, vinegar, garlic, and salt to create an elixir that’s been lab-tested and certified to clock in at 577,000 Scoville units. If you can handle the heat, this sauce actually sounds quite delicious. A 5-ounce bottle can be purchased for $5.14.
Credit: flickr/ zorbs
6) Dave’s Gourmet Ghost Pepper Jolokia Sauce: 650,000 Scoville Units
This new product from the company that started it all takes the Naga Jolokia pepper, also known as the infamous ghost pepper, blends it with pure hot pepper extract, salt, and garlic, and unleashed unto the world one of the hottest sauces known to man, clocking in at a whopping 650,000 Scoville units. We’d recommend watching the video of it being eaten before making your purchase.
Credit: Dave's Gourmet
5) Blair’s 2 A.M. Reserve: 650,000-900,000 Scoville Units
According to legend, this sauce originated when the company’s founder worked in a bar and was eager to close up shop when 2 a.m. rolled around. So he fried up some wings and doused them in this sauce, and told the patrons that they could stick around for longer if they could eat four of them. Needless to say, it worked every time. A 3-ounce bottle can be purchased for $29.95, but a disclaimer needs to be signed first!
Credit: flickr/ Mugley
4) Henry Family Farm Ghost Chile of India: 850,000–1 Million Scoville Units
The Henry Family Farm has been growing chiles for 30 years in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley, and this, a blend of straight ghost chiles with just a little salt and vinegar, is their spiciest offering. Because it’s such a gourmet product, a 5-ounce bottle sells for $24, and because there are no extracts involved you can really taste the chiles. Once you can get past the heat. Chef David Rosengarten is a big fan of this sauce, and is selling it, along with two other varieties, on his website.
Credit: Henry Family Farm
3) Blair’s 3 AM Reserve: 1.5 Million-2 Million Scoville Units
If the 2 AM Reserve isn’t hot enough for you, you could always kick it up one more notch with their 3 AM reserve. It’s 20 percent hotter than the original, and a drop of this stuff on your tongue will most likely alter your entire outlook on the universe (it's about as spicy as law enforcement-grade pepper spray). For the truly brave (crazy?), a 3-ounce bottle sells for $49.95. It comes in funky bottle, signed by Blair himself.
Credit: Blair's Sauces and Snacks
2) Pepper Palace Hottest Sauce in the Universe - 2nd Dimension: 3.5 Million Scoville Units
There’s a good chance that the folks at Pepper Palace weren’t exaggerating when they called this concoction the universe’s hottest. Forty pounds of ghost chiles go into every batch, and according to the company the stuff contains a ludicrous 3.5 million Scoville units, making it 700 times spicier than Tabasco. We’re getting into some crazy territory here, and if you’re insane enough to try it, you can purchase it through their website for $14.95.
Credit: Facebook/ Brandon's Hot Peppers
1) Pure Capsaicin: 16 Million Scoville Units
Ladies and gentlemen, we have reached the top of Mount Everest. What we have here isn’t a sauce, or a food really, but tiny crystals composed of pure, uncut capsaicin. At its most powerful, the chemical packs a walloping 16 million Scoville units. The strength of this stuff borders on what the human mind can even comprehend. You can purchase some if so inclined, but honestly we’re not too sure what you’d do with it. Just to give you an idea of its power, the crystals come sealed in a vial, which is then sealed in a waterproof carrying case. On the side? A pair of gloves, a face mask, and forceps. To activate it, dilute it with some alcohol and heat it up. But we wouldn’t advise it, because it’s the absolute spiciest substance on Earth.
Credit: flickr/ Suviko
Now check out how to make your own hot sauce and some of our favorite recipes with hot sauce!
Homemade Hot Sauce
This homemade hot sauce makes good use of fresh tomatoes, onions and peppers.
Get the Recipe: Homemade Hot Sauce
Mustardy Habanero Hot Sauce
Homemade hot sauce tastes more vibrant than store-bought and it takes hardly any time to make. Yellow mustard and just a touch of allspice give this sauce a distinctive, complex flavor. Habanero chiles are already quite fiery but to make the sauce truly incendiary, add some of the seeds.
Get the Recipe: Mustardy Habanero Hot Sauce
Spicy 'Home Fries' Mac and Cheese
In this mac and cheese recipe made with your favorite hot sauce, home-fried potatoes get their just due by acting as the crowning glory on the creamy, cheesy pasta underneath.
Get the Recipe: Spicy 'Home Fries' Mac and Cheese
East Asian-Style Wings
This Asian-inspired recipe is sweet and spicy!
Get the Recipe: East Asian-Style Wings
Jump-Start Your Day Breakfast Burritos
These Jump-Start Your Day Breakfast Burritos are a hearty and nutritious meal to jump-start your day and set you on the right path for healthy eating all day long. Hot sauce is optional but we say, go for it!
Get the Recipe: Jump-Start Your Day Breakfast Burritos
Blueberry glaze makes the edges on these ribs nice and sticky, while a drop of hot sauce adds a nice kick.
Get the Recipe: Blueberry-Glazed Ribs
Spicy Barbecued Oysters
If you’re intimidated by shucking oysters—this recipe for barbecued oysters is for you. When you grill them, steam builds up inside the shells until they pop open. Then you slather a little garlicky red barbecue sauce on each oyster, put them back on the grill to get hot and bubbly, and you’re done.
Get the Recipe: Spicy Barbecued Oysters
Hot sauce — those two words alone can get some folks' mouths watering, while they make others cringe. Some never leave home without a bottle of the stuff somewhere on their person; others fear even brief exposure to a pickled jalapeño on their nachos.
So what is it about spicy food that causes such divisiveness? Like all foods, some love it and some hate it. And even among the ranks of spicy food lovers, some can only tolerate a dash or two of Tabasco while others head over to their local wing joint weekly for their XXXX-Mindkiller Special.
For those of you in the latter group, like these guys, this list is for you. We tracked down the absolute spiciest hot sauces out there, ranked them according to Scoville units (the way spiciness is measured), and provided you with ways to order them directly to your door. But be careful: these sauces are spicy (Scoville Units are measured through a complicated dilution process; for example, a pepper whose extract needs to be diluted 10,000 times before capsaicin is undetectible will have a rating of 10,000 Scoville Units.)
For a bit of perspective, let's take a look at the hot sauce standard-bearer: Tabasco. The original version of the popular hot sauce contains at most about 5,000 Scoville units, about as many as you'd find in your average jalapeño. On the other end of the spectrum, Guinness World Records proclaims that the world's hottest chile pepper is the Trinidad Scorpion "Butch T," which clocks in at a whopping 1,463,700 Scoville units, nearly 300 times hotter than a jalapeño.
For the chile lovers out there, however, there's no such thing as too spicy, and hot sauce producers keep finding more and more ways to pack as much capsaicin, the active ingredient in hot sauce, into their products. Just to give you an idea as to how spicy hot sauces have gotten recently, the original super-spicy hot sauce, Dave's Insanity Sauce, which came onto the scene about 20 years ago and sparked a hot sauce boom, clocks in at about 180,000 Scoville units — it didn't even scratch the surface of our top 10 list!
So why do hot sauces keep getting hotter and hotter? To answer that question, we went to Scott Roberts, a St. Louis-based blogger and self-proclaimed "chile-head," who's been on a quest to track down the world's hottest sauces for about 10 years.
"The extreme chile-heads are clamoring for more and more and more heat," he told us. "Throughout the 2000s there was a 'hot sauce race,' when everybody was trying to make the hottest product. They started to use chile extracts to boost the heat, and the advent of super-hot chile peppers has allowed the sauce makers to make their sauces hotter and hotter. It brings real notoriety if you make one of the hottest sauces on Earth, and even more if you can eat it!"
So fasten your seatbelt, folks. This is going to be a spicy ride. And if you think you know of a hotter sauce than those listed, let us know in the comments.
Get ready and set to see what top 10 sauces pack the most punch! Check out our slideshow above!