If the sweet heat of Sriracha really captured your attention, it’s no surprise you’re interested in knowing the type or variety of chili used to make the sauce.
So what chili is used in sriracha?
In this article, we will discuss the different peppers that can be used to make Sriracha, and we will reveal the pepper that is most commonly used.
What Chili Is In Sriracha?
The fiery essence that’s the hallmark of Sriracha sauce can be attributed to its star player – the chili pepper.
Yet, it’s fascinating to note that not every bottle of Sriracha sauce is created equal.
Different brands may opt for varying types of chilies, leading to subtle shifts in flavor and heat.
One of the most popular chilies that is often used in Sriracha sauce is the red jalapeño pepper.
This variety is celebrated for its middle-of-the-road heat level and its robust flavor.
What’s the secret behind the red jalapeño’s character?
It’s basically a green jalapeño that has spent more time ripening on the plant, undergoing a color transformation from green to red.
This extended ripening allows it to develop more capsaicin which is the compound responsible for the spicy kick.
Red jalapeños are a common sight in American-made Sriracha sauces, with the renowned Huy Fong brand being a prime example.
On the other hand, if you venture into the realm of authentic Thai Sriracha, you might be greeted by the slightly more intense red Thai chili peppers.
These are heralded for their fiery punch and bright fruity undertones that infuse the sauce with a distinctively exotic zing.
But the world of Sriracha isn’t confined to just these two types.
There’s another, less prevalent but still noteworthy chili variant in play – the red Fresno chili pepper.
Bearing similarities to the jalapeño, this pepper adds its own flair by presenting a fruitier taste alongside a heightened spice index.
What Kind Of Spice Is Sriracha?
I hate to be the one to tell you this, but Sriracha isn’t exactly what you’d call a spice in the traditional sense.
Rather, Sriracha is simply a hot chili sauce, often regarded as a must-have condiment, that packs a delicious punch of spiciness into many dishes.
The magic begins with a blend of chili peppers, carefully selected and ground into a flavorful paste.
But that’s not all.
This vibrant red paste is then mixed with a variety of other ingredients, each playing a crucial role in creating the sauce’s distinctive taste:
- Vinegar: Adds a tangy kick that brightens the flavor.
- Garlic: Lends a savory note, deepening the complexity.
- Sugar: Balances the heat with a hint of sweetness.
- Salt: Amplifies all the other flavors, tying them together into a harmonious blend.
The result is a unique taste sensation that’s more than just hot.
Sriracha’s blend of heat, tangy undertones and subtle sweetness swings on the palate, offering a fiery yet balanced experience that can elevate a wide array of dishes.
Is Sriracha A Type Of Chilli?
It’s a common misconception to directly associate sriracha with chili, as though sriracha is a type of chili itself.
However, the reality is more nuanced.
Sriracha is not a mere chili but a complex and flavorful hot sauce or chili sauce.
It’s crafted from a blend of ingredients that marry the fiery intensity of chili peppers with the zesty tang of vinegar.
This combination is further rounded off by the aromatic inclusion of garlic and the balancing act of sugar and salt.
Now, let’s delve into the chili peppers themselves, the stars of this sauce.
These fascinating fruits , like we mentioned above, are derived from plants of the Capsicum genus, hailing from the nightshade family.
Within this genus, there exists an incredibly diverse group of peppers, encompassing well-known varieties such as jalapenos, habaneros, cayennes, serranos, and Thai chilies.
You’ll also find the infamously searing ghost peppers and scotch bonnet peppers among this lineup.
These various peppers are anything but monolithic.
They differ vastly in aspects like size, shape, color, and flavor profiles.
What makes them particularly intriguing is the vast range in heat levels.
Some might tantalize your taste buds with a gentle warmth, while others can set your mouth ablaze.
When it comes to the specific kind of chili pepper used in Sriracha sauce, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer.
Different brands and unique recipes call for various types of chili.
However, a prevalent favorite often seen in the making of Sriracha (as we have mentioned above) is the red jalapeño pepper.
This pepper brings a warmth that is considered mild to medium-hot, ranking anywhere from 2,500 to 8,000 SHU (Scoville Heat Units) on the Scoville scale.
This choice contributes to the pleasing heat that many enjoy in Sriracha sauce, making it a beloved addition to many dishes without overpowering the palate.