How to make the hot sauce less hot? (7 Ways how)

In this article, we will answer the question “How to make the hot sauce less hot?”, and how to dilute hot sauce?

How to make the hot sauce less hot?

Add oil or dairy 

The active ingredient of the hot sauce that contributes to its heat is capsaicin. It can be counteracted with rapeseed, olive, or coconut oil. Start by adding only a teaspoon at a time. Choose a neutral flavor oil or one with a mild flavor that goes well with your dish.

Dairy products can also help cool down the what of the hot sauce because of their fat-loving casein protein. It helps disperse the spicy particles by binding with them. 

Dairy products like Butter, ghee, cow’s milk, creme fraiche, plain yogurt, shredded cheese (especially a soft fresh cheese), and sour cream can be used for this purpose.

Add a sweetener 

Sugars help neutralize the hotness by absorbing the oils. You can add honey, sweet ketchup or regular sugar. Start by adding only a teaspoon at once. Do not go overboard with sugar or else the sauce will end up tasting too sweet. Taste-check the sauce after each addition of sugar.

Double up and thin it out

If you have enough time and space, you can add more of the base ingredients in the pot to increase its quantity. 

This includes adding more sauce, vegetables, stock, or meat. If you do not have more of the main ingredients, add mirepoix or additional ingredients like broth, canned beans, potatoes, tomatoes, corn, avocados, coconut milk, and cooked rice. 

Carrots, celery, and onions, winter squash, and grated potatoes are all good additions to lighten the heat.

If the sauce becomes too runny on dilution, boil it to evaporate some of the water until desired consistency is achieved. This step will concentrate flavors so do not go overboard with this.

Add sour flavors(acid)

Capsaicin is an alkaline oil and its spiciness can be countered by adding acid. The acid in the form of lemon, lime, wine, vinegar, or even pineapple can help make the hot sauce mild. 

You can also add fresh tomatoes and pineapple to no more than ¼ cup. Let it blend in the sauce by cooking at low heat for 15-20 minutes.

Add nut butter

Nut butter like peanut, almond, cashe, and sesame(tahini) contain oil that can help neutralize the heat when added to hot sauce. This hack goes perfectly with Dishes such as Pad Thai, spicy summer rolls, and stir-fries. Add only a spoonful at a time.

Non-additive methods 

Prevention is the key. Always start by adding spices in small amounts and keep checking the sauce for balanced flavor. Sauces like hot sauce or tomato sauce are simmered on low heat and concentrate flavors during the process. Therefore, extra care is needed to monitor the flavor.

Serve with bland or starchy foods

Starchy foods like rice, pasta, couscous, potatoes or quinoa, or bread nullify the spiciness.

Other FAQs about Sauces which you may be interested in.

How long is tomato sauce good for?

Does Worchester sauce expire?

How good is pasta sauce after opening?

How to dilute hot sauce?

What is the base of your hot sauce?

Most of the sauces including the hot sauce are vinegar-based. On the other hand, others like Secret Aardvark consist of a tomato base. To dilute the sauce, add more of these base ingredients. 

However, never add tomatoes to tabasco sauce, instead, add acid in the form of cider vinegar, white vinegar, salt, or limes as per taste. Similarly, for Secret Aardvark, add more tomatoes and carrots. For Asian-style hot sauces, tapioca or cornstarch are good options to neutralize the heat.

Where is the heat coming from?

Black pepper/pepeprcorns 

The active compound of black pepper that is responsible for most of its heat is piperine. It is an alkaloid and water won’t help reduce its spiciness. Instead, cook with beer, wine, or a stronger spirit like Vodka. Besides, broth, due to the fat, can also help counter its heat.

Hot pepeprs/capsaicin 

Capsaicin is popular for its heat which cannot be nullified with water as effectively as milk or other fats like butter, olive oil, or broth. The heat of capsaicin can also be canceled by simmering the sauce on low flame. 

In this case, consistency is important. It will also concentrate on the overall flavors. When simmering extremely hot sauce, let the steam vent out, or else you will end up with itchy eyes due to the steam.


This compound is present in garlic and onions and causes the eyes to tear up. It does not contribute to the spiciness but it stings. Allicin can be neutralized with some alcohol or a fatty ingredient.

Check the best things to put hot sauce on.


In this article, we answered the question “How to make the hot sauce less hot?”, and how to dilute hot sauce?


Hello, I'm Sana Ameer. I'm a student of Food Science and Technology at UVAS. I like to bake and I aspire to become a Food blogger.