What can I use instead of Sriracha sauce?

Sriracha sauce is a type of hot sauce that many people use as either a garnish or to add to their cooking to spice up their dishes. In this brief article, we will answer the question “ what can I use instead of sriracha sauce” and we cover what sriracha is and what are its uses, and most importantly, its substitutes. 

What can I use instead of Sriracha sauce?

If you have ever found yourself trying to squeeze out the very last drops of liquid from your empty bottle of sriracha, or find that you cannot find sriracha in your local store or even online, this guide will tell you exactly what alternatives to consider to satisfy your thirst for flavourful spice. 

There are many substitutes to sriracha sauce with varying amounts of spice and different flavour profiles. These include: 

What is sriracha sauce and its uses?

Sriracha sauce is a type of hot sauce made from red chili peppers, distilled vinegar, salt, garlic and sugar. It originated from Southeast Asia, specifically Thailand, but is currently used by people all over the world. 

Sriracha has a unique flavour profile; with a kick of heat, and a hint of tanginess that is a perfect balance for most palates. It is notably thicker than most other hot sauces and hence can also be used as a condiment. Each brand has its own unique twist to this type of hot sauce and can easily be found in grocery stores everywhere.

 It can be used in a variety of ways in many cuisines, especially asian. In asian cuisine, Sriracha sauce is used in pho, stir-fry, curry, soups and stews, as well as marinades for meat and grilled vegetables. Sriracha is also used as a topping for to add a delicious and spicy kick of flavour to dishes like eggs, or even on sushi and pizza. It can even be used as an effective replacement for hot sauce.  

What are the substitutes for sriracha sauce?

Below we will explore the specifics of the alternatives to sriracha sauce in a bit more detail. 

1.  Sambal Oelek

Sambal Oelek is the closest alternative to sriracha suce. This is a blend of chilli paste, vinegar, and salt, almost like an Asian version of basic hot sauce. This can be used to spruce up your meals and is commonly utilised in Asian cuisine. The main distinction between sambal and sriracha sauce is that sambal oelek lacks that garlic flavour that is present in sriracha. 

Another difference is that sambal uses less vinegar and no sugar, allowing the chilies to have more of a kick. Ingredients like shrimp paste and garlic powder can be used to customise the flavour. It is also relatively easy to make at home so is definitely an option to consider. 

2. Tabasco and other hot sauces.

Although varying in amounts of vinegar and spice, tabasco and other hot sauces available in grocery stores are a fairly effective option as they too come with a kick of spice that can help brighten up your dish. Most are used as condiments or garnish but can also be used in cooking, although not popularly used this way.

Lousiana hot sauce, an umbrella term for most sauces, can be replaced for sriracha for most spice lovers, but it is important to note that each hot sauce has its unique flavour profile.

3.  Peri Peri sauce

Particularly for the replacement of sriracha sauce in cooking, this Portuguese alternative is eays to find in stores and can be used in the place of sriracha sauce in marinades, stir fries, soups, etc. Although less in vinegar content, peri peri sauce can definitely satisfy your spice cravings when sriracha is missing from your pantry. 

In addition to garlic, vinegar and chili paste, peri peri sauce also combines the dynamic flabours of lemon, pepper, onion and bay leaf. It slightly thicker than most other hot sauces. There are a variety of hot sauces available, and you can choose them depending on how spicy or tangy they are.

4. Chili garlic sauce

A very popular condiment in asian cooking, specifically thai and japanese, chili garlic sauce – as you can probably tell from the name – is made from primarily chili and garlic. It is a lot brighter in comparison to sriracha and has less tangy notes. This versatile sauce can be used in various ways; from stir fries to toppings in salads and in marinades.

5. Gochujang

Widely used in Korean cuisine, Gochujang is a fermented chilli paste made from glutinous rice, fermented soybean powder, barley malt powder, chilli powder, and salt. This is served in a thick paste. Gochujang has a unique balance of sweet and spice and is hence used by a lot of people to add to their meals for a kick of flavour. It is mostly used in rice and noodle dishes. 

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This guide has thus outlined the various ways in which sriracha sauce can be substituted while keeping in mind their differences and variance in spice and tang. These alternatives can be replaced for all the uses of sriracha.