What is Sriracha Sauce?
Sriracha is a thick, acidic, sweet, and garlicky chili pepper sauce. Although it’s spicy, it has a far richer and more complex flavor than conventional hot sauces like Tabasco, which mostly taste of heat and vinegar. In comparison to watery American-style hot sauces, which are often created by puréeing peppers with vinegar and then filtering off the solids, it is far thicker, having a consistency more like ketchup or tomato sauce.
What ingredients are in Sriracha? Although the list of components in sriracha can differ depending on the brand or recipe. Chilis, sugar, salt, garlic, distilled vinegar, potassium sorbate, sodium bisulfite, and xanthan gum are the components of Sriracha.
Taste of Sriracha
Even though its primary ingredient is red jalapeño peppers, when compared with other hot sauces, sriracha isn’t all that spicy. According to the Scoville scale (a unit of measure for the level of heat in chilis), sriracha measures only about 2,200 Scoville Heat Units (SHU); straight red jalapeño peppers, meanwhile, range between 2,500 and 8,000 SHU.
Though it is undoubtedly spicy, sriracha is not as hot as Tabasco sauce, which measures 2,500 SHU, or Choulula hot sauce, which clocks in at 3,600 SHU. However, sriracha is hotter than most popular cayenne pepper hot sauces like Crystal (800 SHU), Texas Pete (450 SHU) and Frank’s Red Hot (450 SHU).
How to Use It
What culinary uses does Sriracha have? Just about everything! If you’re just being introduced to it as a condiment, picture a hot ketchup made with chili peppers. Try combining it with some mayonnaise to tone down the spice and using it as a sandwich spread or dipping sauce for fast food fries. Sriracha is an Asian condiment, but it plays nicely with umami-rich food from all over the world.
Little amounts can be added as an ingredient to soups, stews, and sauces to offer subtle notes of garlic and chilis without having to worry about adding too much heat. With Vietnamese pho, it’s a must-have! Moreover, Sriracha is a fantastic addition to marinades for meat, fish, tofu, and vegetables. Sriracha may also be used in sweets; give peanut brittle a try!
What else can be used in place of sriracha? Knowing how sriracha differs from spicy sauce may help you identify a suitable replacement in the future. Any alternative to sriracha should have a similar thickness and flavor that goes beyond just heat and vinegar. Asian condiments with a chili-pepper base, such as Chinese chili crisp, Korean gochujang, Japanese chili-garlic sauce, and Indonesian sambal olek, can serve as effective alternatives for Sriracha.
How to Store
Sriracha does not require refrigeration because it is so rich in natural and added preservatives. Both vinegar and the chemical that gives chili peppers their heat, capsaicin, are natural preservatives that are inhospitable to bacteria and other unsavory creatures. Sriracha is totally safe to consume as long as it is kept in a cold, dry environment.
Try some in our Spicy Tuna Bowl or our Vegetarian Pho Dinner Rice Bowl.