Sriracha is a mild hot sauce that is made from red jalapeño peppers, garlic, vinegar, salt, and sugar. Originally used in Thai food, Sriracha has become a popular condiment that can be used in many dishes including noodles, chicken wings, and soup.
Sambal oelek and chili garlic sauce are good substitutes for Sriracha as they are similar in taste and texture to Sriracha. These substitutes also hit the same flavor notes as Sriracha and you can use them in similar dishes.
Best Substitute for Sriracha: Sambal Oelek
The best substitute for Sriracha is sambal oelek as it is made from red chile peppers and offers a similar taste to Sriracha. Sambal oelek is slightly chunkier than Sriracha sauce but it has the same heat level when it’s measured on the Scoville scale. You should be careful when using sambal oelek in dishes, as it tastes slightly spicier than Sriracha sauce due to its low sugar content.
Extra ingredients sometimes found in Sambal Oelek:
- Lime or lemon juice
Some sambal oelek sauces don’t contain garlic, so you can simply add garlic powder to sambal oelek to mimic the taste of Sriracha. You can use the same amount of sambal oelek as you would Sriracha sauce in most dishes.
If you are sensitive to spicy food, you should add sugar to the sauce to lessen the heat. Sambal oelek goes well with noodles, soup, and burgers.
Other Sriracha Substitutes, Alternatives, and Replacements
There are many sauces you can use in place of Sriracha. These include other common sauces found in grocery stores as well as common items you may have in your cupboard at home.
Homemade Sriracha Sauce
Homemade Sriracha sauce is a good substitute and is easy to make, especially if you have fresh chilis at home.
- 1 ½ pound red jalapeños peppers
- 4 cloves garlic
- 3 tablespoon light brown sugar
- ½ cup white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon salt
- ⅓ cup water
To make homemade Sriracha sauce, place all of the ingredients (minus the vinegar) into a blender and blend to form a mash. Leave the blended mash covered in a dark place for three days and stir daily. After three days, place the mash into a blender with vinegar and blend until the sauce is smooth.
Once blended, strain the mixture into a pan and cook over medium-high heat for up to 10 minutes, or until the mixture starts to boil.
Homemade and store-bought Sriracha have similar flavors and heat intensities, but you can adjust the number of jalapeños in the homemade sauce according to your heat preference.
Chili Garlic Sauce
Chili garlic sauce is a good substitute for Sriracha because they both contain similar ingredients. Chili garlic sauce differs slightly in texture from Sriracha, and is also much fresher than Sriracha. This is because chili garlic sauce doesn’t go through a fermentation process.
Sriracha has a tangier taste than chili garlic sauce due to its higher vinegar content. However, strong chili and garlic flavors are predominant in both Sriracha and chili garlic sauce. While Sriracha is good as a condiment, chili garlic sauce will work better as a sauce with a chunkier texture.
Chili garlic sauce can be used as a sauce on various foods, including vegetables, burgers, noodles, pasta, and soup. You can use chili garlic sauce as a 1:1 substitute for Sriracha.
Peri-Peri sauce offers the same consistency as Sriracha, although its heat level differs depending on the type of Peri-Peri sauce. Peri-Peri sauce is a Portuguese sauce that is commonly found in grocery stores and contains garlic, chilis, and vinegar, among other ingredients.
Peri-Peri comes in mild, medium, hot, and more, so you will need to determine the right heat level for you. The hot peri-peri sauce can be used in the same amount as you would normally use Sriracha.
Peri-Peri sauce is a good substitute for Sriracha when it’s used as a marinade or a rub for meat dishes.
Tapatio Hot Sauce
Tapatio is an American hot sauce that was created based on Mexican cuisine. Tapatio is a good substitute for Sriracha because tapatio offers a similar tangy flavor and spiciness to Sriracha.
Tapatio has a neutral flavor, so you should add some garlic powder to the sauce to boost its intensity.
Tapatio is spicier than Sriracha, so you should add less to your meal to get the same heat. You should use tapatio as a 0.5:1 alternative for Sriracha. Tapatio is a good substitute for Sriracha in noodles and in soups.
Chili paste is a good substitute for Sriracha. They both have the same heat intensity and should be used in similar quantities in recipes. However, Sriracha is thicker and has a more peppery flavor than chili paste.
Certain chili pastes can mimic the taste of sriracha, but they often contain other spices that introduce different flavor profiles when added to a dish. If you want to stick to the classic Sriracha flavors in your food, you should use another alternative.
You can use chili paste on sandwiches, in stews, or as a dipping sauce instead of Sriracha. You can use a similar amount of chili sauce as you would when using Sriracha sauce, although the heat levels of chili paste will differ based on the brand you buy.
Gochujang is a popular Korean cooking paste that offers a similar fermented taste to Sriracha. Gochujang lacks the tanginess from the vinegar in Sriracha, but you can add vinegar to the dish while it’s cooking.
Gochujang is thicker than Sriracha, so add it in moderation and water the sauce down if you need to. Gochujang is slightly hotter than Sriracha, so you should use a ratio of 0.5:1 when substituting for Gochujang paste.
Gochujang paste goes well in stir-fries, stews, soups, and Korean dishes.
Flakes and Spices
Cayenne pepper is a dried spice that offers heat without much flavor. This neutral spice can be used as a substitute for Sriracha if you want an extra-spicy alternative.
You can sprinkle cayenne pepper onto your food or add a pinch to food during cooking. Add cayenne pepper slowly to your food and taste as you go since cayenne pepper is a lot spicier than Sriracha.
You should use ⅛ teaspoon of cayenne pepper for every four drops of Sriracha sauce you would normally use. Cayenne pepper goes well sprinkled on pasta, vegetables, and fries.
Crushed Chili Flakes
Crushed chili flakes add spice without altering the flavor of the dish. This substitute works well in dishes that need extra heat without added flavor.
You can sprinkle crushed chili flakes over your food or add chili flakes to the dish during the cooking process.
You should use ¼ teaspoon of crushed chili flakes for every four drops of Sriracha on your dishes. Dried chili flakes work well on cooked vegetables, pasta, noodles, and fries.