18 Of The Best London Hot Sauces
If you can’t handle the heat, stay out of the kitchen. That’s how the saying goes, right? Well, what if you can’t handle the heat that comes out of a Tabasco bottle? If that rings true for you then you might be best staying out of this list, MOB. You see, this is a guide to some of the very best hot sauces on the market and, while we’ve made sure to include a few milder options for the sake of variety, the majority of these condiments place a real emphasis on the “hot” part of hot sauce. Savvy?
Not only will these sauces all help you get a sweat on and release some brilliant, bonkers endorphins in your brain but they’re also all made in London, too. Yes, these hot sauces are all born and bred Londoners – proper chimney sweep, Oyster Card, Pret A Manger on every street corner kind of condiments. Whether it’s a small-batch sauce that tastes like a pineapple and the sun had a fermented liquid lovechild or a Thai-inspired sauce with a sophisticated citrus kick, there’s plenty of hot sauces made in the country’s capital which you should be looking out for.
These are 18 of the best hot sauces made in London. Choose wisely, MOB. And do be careful.
Slow Richie’s – Original Hot Sauce
Slow Richie’s is a burger restaurant and condiments business run out of Peckham by brothers Richie and Alex Calver. Slow Richie’s hot sauce is straight fire and a bright red blueprint of what a hot sauce should be. You won’t find any gimmicks here; Slow Richie's Original Hot Sauce is a simple concoction of Scotch bonnet chillies, tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, molasses, salt, and paprika. That’s it. Just don’t go you go bunging those ingredients in your blender and expecting the same results. The Calver brothers know what they’re doing. You, my friend, do not.
Baj’s Blazin Hot Sauce – Dad's Original
Baj’s Blazin’ Hot Sauce is a fiery handmade condiment company that’s going to add some real spice to your cooking, MOB. Although the small-batch artisan sauces are currently made in Greenwich by talented sisters Jugpreet and Jot Sandhu, the original recipe was actually created by the pair’s Dad over 25 years ago. That O.G. sauce, a tribute to the Sandhu sisters’ father, is known as ‘Dad’s Original’ – a sinus-clearing whack of heat that doesn’t have that sharp vinegar aftertaste you might find from other inferior commercial products. It’s rich, wonderful, and goes great with everything from chaat masala to cheese on toast.
Kold Sauce – Green Pepper Sauce
Kold’s fermented sauces are the real deal. This bright Grinch-like sauce is made from a medley of green cayenne peppers, green habaneros, and green finger chillies along with a range of herbs and spices. Expect a bright and almost spiky spice up-front and a deeper, more gherkin-y funk on the back-end. This isn’t one for the faint of heart, though, MOB. Overdo it and you’ll be more teary-eyed than you were after watching the first ten minutes of Pixar's Up. Take care and treat Kold Sauce with the respect it deserves.
The Rib Man – Holy F*ck Sauce
Mark Gevaux (aka The Ribman) is a London legend. His rib meat rolls which, pre-pandemic you’d typically find amassing a glorious crowd at Brick Lane market, have ruined the white T-shirts of countless Londoners and tourists alike. The Ribman’s signature sauce is, as you’d expect from its name, really fucking hot. Like, almost painfully so. This isn’t a hot sauce for someone who considers their upper threshold of spice to be sriracha. No, siree. The Holy F*ck sauce might seem sweet at first but the deadly combo of Scotch bonnet peppers and naga jolokia chilis (aka the ghost pepper) doesn’t disappoint. By which I mean it’ll feel as if you’ve just put a lighter on your tongue. In a really, really good way.
En Root – Raja Bonnet Sauce
Red Scotch bonnet chillies, Kesar mango pulp, and Gujarati spices are what bounce off one another to make this fiery yet fruity hot sauce from En Root a lip-tingling sensation. The addition of ginger, lime, and turmeric gives this SW4-based sauce a supposed immune-boosting functionality and – you know what? – I’ll be damned if you don’t feel somewhat cleansed after having a heaped spoonful. This is the hot sauce to go for when you want to bring some life into bland, boiled vegetables.
Lazy Scientist’s Sauces – Brixton Hot Sauce
Lazy Scientist’s Sauces specialise small-batch West African-styled sauces that will absolutely light up a slice of pizza or bring an intense depth of heat and flavour to a humble pasta sauce. The only limit is your imagination, really. The ‘Brixton Hot Sauce’ shows off the subtle, sweet nuance of roasted Scotch bonnets by coddling those peppers in aromatics like garlic, parsley, and basil. It’s a hot sauce with genuine texture and a great entry-point into the rest of Lazy Scientist’s fiery range of sauces.
Shots Fired – 'Original Reaper' Hot Sauce
Shots Fired is a small independent hot sauce company that was started in Stoke Newington by photographer Jake Turney. The branding is en pointe and SF’s ‘Original Reaper’ hot sauce doesn’t mess about. The terrifying-sounding Carolina Reaper may be the main ingredient in this potent concoction but don’t let that fool you into thinking it's a novelty product that’s too hot to handle. Used wisely, this addictive hot sauce delivers a rounded flavour that lets the Reaper’s more delicate notes filter through onto your palate. Once you get a grip of how much to use, this hot sauce will become a welcome addition to your condiment arsenal.
The Woolf’s Kitchen – Hot + Sour Sauce
Simultaneously fresh, sweet, and spicy with a citrus-garlic kick to the finish, this Hot + Sour sauce from The Woolf’s Kitchen is a super versatile condiment. Dominique Woolf created the hot sauce after being inspired by her own Thai heritage and travels around the world and you can taste that breadth of influence in every drop. Drizzle it on some crispy squid for a guaranteed good time.
Mei Mei – Chilli Sauce
This chilli sauce from Elizabeth Haigh’s Borough Market-based Singaporean kopitiam Mei Mei is so good that it might just inspire you to dump sriracha for good. Or, at the very least, it’ll have you cheating on sriracha on a pretty regular basis. Made with fresh red chillies, garlic and ginger, this zingy chilli sauce is capable of brightening up any meal and goes especially well with eggs. Your new hot sauce bit-on-the-side is just a click away.
Eaten Alive – Smoked Sriracha
Eaten Alive specialise in fermentation but it’s the fact that they smoke all the red peppers, chillis, and onions that go into this tangy sriracha sauce (before they then ferment and blend them) that makes this such a winning product. Chilli miso adds an additional umami element that sands off any sharp edges and makes this one of the best hot sauces that London has to offer.
Shedletsky’s – Kimchi Hot Sauce
If you’re into your hot sauce then I’d say it’s also a safe bet that you’re also into kimchi, right? Good. Because Shedletsky’s are an east London-based business that classifies themselves as kimchi makers, meat smokers, and "more". This kimchi hot sauce falls under that “more” category and I’m pretty sure that “more” is what you’ll be muttering under your breath every time you dash this onto your dinner. Cabbage, daikon, carrot, and spring onion are all zhuzhed up with the likes of gochugaru, anchovy, gochujang, and tamari to make this rich and spicy sauce. You can tell there’s been time and effort put into this artisan product and, well, it’s liquid kimchi, MOB. Get on it.
Peckham Smoker – Farey’s Smoker Hot Sauce
Peckham Smoker makes their punchy fermented hot sauce in (surprise, surprise) Peckham. Known as Farey’s Smoker Hot Sauce, this fermented, aged and oak-smoked hot pepper sauce is a real blast of hot baritone heat. Its smoky flavour makes it the perfect thing to glug in a Bloody Mary or dot on a plump oyster. Though, to be honest, I’ve yet to find an instance where it isn’t welcome. Maybe on a scoop of ice cream. Then again...
Pat and Pinky’s – Original Wiri Wiri Pepper Sauce
Made using fiery Wiri Wiri and Tiger Teeth chillis, both of which are indigenous to Guyana, this pepper sauce from London-based Pat and Pinky’s offers a unique blend of spices you won’t find anywhere else. Notes of fresh cucumber, black pepper, thyme and even green mango all team up with the fragrant Wiri Wiri to give your palate a friendly bit of roughhousing. Buy it, slather it on everything, and then buy it again.
Peckham Sauce Co. – Batch Two
Batch Two from the Peckham Sauce Co. is the second batch of hot sauce made by this south London outfit. Habanero chillies, yellow peppers and peaches are fermented in a load of herbs and spices (including coriander, mustard seeds, and black pepper) to create Batch Two’s uniquely fruity flavour. If you’ve got a craving for a touch of sweet heat, then this is the hot sauce you should be seeking out while stocks last.
Friendly Neighbourhood – Grilled Pineapple and Habanero
This mild hot sauce from the folks at Friendly Neighbourhood is as approachable as the company’s name would suggest. It’s sweet, without being overly so, and there's a big whack of grilled pineapple flavour discernible in every glob you consume. Apple cider vinegar cuts through the sweetness while habaneros do all the heavy lifting in the heat department. A well-balanced hot sauce that won’t blow your head off.
South London Sauce Company – Hulk Juice
We couldn’t not include a hot sauce called Hulk Juice on this list of the best London hot sauces, could we? South London Sauce Company’s mildest sauce might be described as the one for “the softies in the group” but it still offers enough of a prickly tickle to keep you coming back for more. The combo of cucumber and green bell peppers also make this of the most refreshing sauces out there. Ideal for a fresh summer sally.
Catalyst Cafe – Coffee Sriracha
We’ve previously written about how this coffee sriracha is one of the six condiments that will change the way you cook but there’s honestly not enough praise we can heap on this hot sauce from Catalyst Cafe. It’s savoury, nutty, and tastes just enough like coffee that you’ll almost swear it’s given you a genuine caffeine buzz. Currently available in non-spicy, spicy, and extra spicy versions, this hot sauce should cater to just about every level of fuego pepper fiend out there.
Two Tribes – Devil Dog Hot Sauce Collab
The hot sauce range from the beer people at Two Tribes came about as a natural link between the worlds of brewing and fermentation. Two Tribes develop and design all of their sauces at their home in King’s Cross before they're then made in partnership with the team at Devil Dog sauces in Manchester. So, no, they’re not entirely London-made but we hope you’ll agree that, considering it's a local brewery who are making some top-notch sauces, that it definitely still counts. The best thing about Two Tribe's offering to the spice lords is that the trio of hot sauces they sell are constantly changing. You’ll never be stuck for options of something to slather your dinner in.