Sriracha, the versatile chili sauce, have become a staple condiment in many households and restaurant kitchens worldwide.
Its balance of spiciness and tangy sweetness makes it perfect for adding flavor to virtually any dish.
But when diving into the world of Sriracha, you may notice bottles with two different cap colors – red and green (there’s also yellow too).
This article will explore the key differences between red cap and green cap Sriracha, explaining their contents, taste profiles, heat levels, costs, uses and possibilities of substituting one for another.
What Is it And What Does It Contain: Sriracha Red Cap vs Green Cap
Often referred to as ‘rooster sauce’ thanks to its iconic label, Sriracha with a green cap is the original recipe created by Huy Fong Foods Inc. This popular chili hot sauce is made from a paste of chili peppers, distilled vinegar, garlic, sugar and salt. It has a rich red color and offers an enticing blend of spice, sweetness and tangy flavors.
Red cap Sriracha, on the other hand, also known as super hot chili sauce, is produced by the Flying Goose Brand. The main difference lies in the ingredients list. The Red cap Sriracha contains up to 70% chili content which gives it its super hot characteristic. Besides chillies, it also contains sugar, salt, water and acidity regulator E260. Being vegan and gluten-free sets it apart from many other hot sauces on the market.
What Does It Taste Like: Sriracha Red Cap vs Green Cap
The green cap Sriracha from Huy Fong has a balanced flavor profile. It offers a moderate level of heat that doesn’t overpower its other flavors. Its taste begins with an initial hint of sweetness followed by garlic and finishes with a satisfying chili heat. The consistency is smooth and the sauce carries a deep red hue.
On the other hand, the red cap Sriracha from Flying Goose has a more intense heat thanks to its high chili content. The immediate flavor is that of fresh, fiery chilies backed up by subtle sweetness and acidity. The texture is slightly pastier due to the high concentration of chilies, and it boasts a vibrant red color.
While both sauces deliver that characteristic Sriracha tangy-spicy-sweet trinity, the red cap version leans more towards the spicier side compared to its green cap counterpart.
How Hot Is It: Sriracha Red Cap vs Green Cap
The heat level of Sriracha sauce can be subjective as it depends on individual tolerance to spiciness. However, we can still make a relative comparison between the two versions.
The green cap Sriracha from Huy Fong is considered to have a moderate heat level. It provides a warm, consistent kick of spice that lingers but doesn’t overwhelm the palate. This balanced heat level is one of the reasons why it’s so widely embraced by many as an everyday, go-to hot sauce.
Conversely, the red cap Sriracha from Flying Goose is notably hotter due to its high chili concentration. The intense heat hits you immediately and lasts longer. If you’re an enthusiast of extra spicy food or love a good burn, this version would definitely cater more to your liking.
How Much Does It Cost: Sriracha Red Cap vs Green Cap
The price of Sriracha sauce can vary depending on the retailer, location, and bottle size. Generally speaking though, both red and green cap varieties are quite affordable.
The original green cap Sriracha from Huy Fong is usually found in most supermarkets and online retailers. A standard 17 oz. bottle typically costs between $3 – $5.
The Flying Goose red cap Sriracha tends to be a bit pricier due to its higher chili concentration and gluten-free, vegan attributes. A standard 17 oz. bottle usually comes in at around $6 – $8.
What Is It Used For: Sriracha Red Cap vs Green Cap
Sriracha, no matter the cap color, can be used in a myriad of ways to enhance the flavor of your dishes.
Green cap Sriracha from Huy Fong is versatile and can accompany almost any dish. It’s perfect for adding a kick to your soups, burgers, noodles, and pizzas. It is also commonly used as a dipping sauce for spring rolls or as a marinade for meats, offering a delightful balance of heat without being too overpowering.
Red cap Sriracha from Flying Goose is particularly favored by those who crave an extra punch of heat. Its robust flavor makes it ideal for spicing up stir-fry dishes, scrambled eggs, tacos or mixing into barbecue sauces. But beware – its high chili content makes it significantly spicier than standard Sriracha sauces.
In essence, both varieties of Sriracha offer wide culinary applications. The choice simply depends on how fiery you want your food to be.
Can I Substitute Green Cap Sriracha For Red Cap Sriracha? (And Vice Versa)
The short answer is yes, green cap Sriracha and red cap Sriracha can be used interchangeably in most recipes. However, it’s important to consider the heat levels and subtle flavor differences between the two.
If you’re substituting red cap for green cap Sriracha, remember that the red-capped variety is significantly hotter. Therefore, you might want to use less of it to avoid overpowering your dish with too much heat.
On the other hand, if you are using green cap in place of red cap Sriracha, you might need to use more sauce to achieve a similar heat level. Also, remember that the green-capped variety has a slightly sweeter and tangier taste due to its lower chili concentration.