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Vegan Hot Sauce

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Heart Healthy Salsa Loaded With Flavor

Do you have visions of heat waves emanating from your lips as you plunge your chip into a heaping dish of fiery plants? Are you taste buds begging for some excitement?  Look no further, this hot sauce is your one stop shop for a kick in the pants fiesta.  

The idea for this  hearty bowl of goodness comes straight from Mexico, courtesy of my grandfather.


colored tomatoes in purple dish

Are Hot Sauce and Salsa the Same Thing?

Salsa is literally the Spanish translation for sauce.   So are salsa and hot sauce the same thing?  Sometimes!  

Growing up, my family called anything in a semi-liquid form with a kick to it “hot sauce.”

I remember for the longest time being perplexed at school or parties when someone whipped out some good old can of Pace and declared “salsa” on the table.  

It didn’t seem  logical to me as it Pace was kind of spicy, and clearly a sauce. When my family brought out any Pace, we called it hot sauce.   

So the general conclusion here is this: If the salsa or “sauce” is hot then they’re one and the same!

If the salsa is made with mild peppers, and is in fact not hot, I’m going to say we drop the hot lingo and just call it salsa. In essence, hot sauce is one type of salsa.    

Herbs and Veggie On Counter
Salsa Ingredient Options

How Do you Make a Good Hot Sauce From Scratch?

To make a winning hot sauce, we traditionally would need some heat in there.  The intensity of the heat, can vary.  

The first step to creating the perfect hot sauce is to choose your ingredients- which will reflect desired spice level! 

Hot Pepper Choices For Salsa

  • Habañero peppers
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Jalapeño peppers
  • Red Savina
  • Ghost peppers

Mild Pepper Choices

  • Bell Peppers
  • Poblano Peppers
  • Anaheim Peppers
  • Shishito Peppers 
  • Banana Peppers

Non-Pepper Vegan Hot Sauce Additions: 

  • Tomato 
  • Onion
  • Green onion
  • Garlic
  • Vinegar
  • Chocolate
  • Paprika
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Sugar
  • Cilantro
Not all of these ingredients were used in this recipe, but I encourage you to experiment to change flavor/spice!  Drop a line if you find a good combo in the comments! 
At the end of the day we’ll just need a blender or food processor to mix it all up!

Does Hot Sauce Contain Garlic?

In my humble opinion, you can’t really get enough garlic in a recipe.   But i’ll leave that up to your discretion.  

I always like to say, even when the recipe calls for one clove, add two.  I guess it really depends on what you’re doing later on and who has to tolerate standing in a room with you *gasps!*

However, aside from acting as organic vampire repellent (and potentially everyone else repellent depending on how seriously you take my advise), garlic has some real health benefits! 

So do yourself a favor, try for 2-3 cloves in this dish at your own risk.  Here are some health benefits of adding a smidge more garlic to your jalapeno salsa: 

  • As early as 3000 BC, we knew that garlic was the good stuff. It has long been known for its medicinal properties. 
  • Garlic is antimicrobial.
  • Benefits of garlic include reducing risks of chronic conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. 
  • Garlic is an antioxidant, it aids in cell repair and reducing oxidative damage. 
  • Did I mention garlic improves the immune function?  It’s cold out there and pathogens are brewing- Get your garlic here!
string of garlic
tortillas falling and tortilla ingredients
Whats Your Favorite Way To Use Hot Sauce?

What Can You Use Salsa For Besides Chips?

Take your mind out of the chip bag and start exploring other opportunities for salsa (it’s been sold short!)

Here are a few of my absolutely crazy ways to use this rediculously easy jalapeno salsa: 

  • In A salad
  • On a veggie burger (or real burger if your heart desires)
  • Enchiladas 
  • Tacos (of course)
  • Mac & Cheese 
  • Pasta
  • Soups 
  • In quinoa 
  • On Sandwiches 
  • In Stir Frys
  • Combined with Ramen Noodles 

I am not kidding, this is the easiest, most flavorful everything food of your life!

I typically make it at the beginning of the week and it lasts me several days.

Keep hot sauce in the fridge for up to 4 days in a sealed container. It actually begins to taste the best after a couple days of the flavors mingling! 

This is the quickest way to pack your meal with veggies while hardly even noticing the commitment! 

The best part about this hot sauce  is it only takes about 5 minutes to prep and make. 

Wash your veggies, chop off the un-edible portions and throw them in a blender.  Press pulse a few times and your salsa is complete! 

Is It Okay to Eat Hot Sauce Every Day?

You Might Be Cautious About Eating Hot Sauce Every Day If: 

  • You have gerd
  • You have renal issues
  • You’re sensitive to spice 
  • You have IBS
cutting board with fresh veggies
Tortilla with Sauce
Create A Wrap

On The Go Vegan Snacking

The best part about this spicy treat  is it only takes about 5 minutes to prep and make.  Wash your veggies, chop off the un-edible portions and throw them in a blender.  Press pulse a few times and your salsa is complete! 

I’d love to know how you enjoyed this recipe, if it fit your spicy desires, and if you adjusted it to make it your own! Drop a line below! 

Vegan Hot Sauce In Blue Dish
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Vegan Hot Sauce

This salsa is packed with jalapeno and drizzled with lime goodness. is the perfect little vegan snack or flavor packed punch for any occasion. Use this recipe as a good old chips and salsa must have, an additive to eggs, a go-to for soups or as part of your favorite mac and cheese dish!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: jalapeno salsa
Servings: 8 people
Cost: 4


  • Blender


  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 3 whole tomato medium sized
  • 4-5 whole cherry or grape tomato
  • 1 whole lime squeezed for juice only
  • 1 whole purple onion
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 4 whole jalapeno pepper
  • 1 whole sirrono pepper


  • Chop jalapenos for salsa removing stem
  • Cut tomato into halves or quarters. De
  • Chop 1 cup cilantro
  • Cut onion in to quarters
  • Toss all ingredients into blender. Use pulse button until desired consistency is achieved. Product should be a little juicy!



Serving is equivalent to about 1/2 cup of salsa.  May make slightly less or more than noted here based on size of produce. 
This recipe can be adjusted for spice by adding a greater number of peppers or reducing the quantity. 


Singletary, K. (2011). Red Pepper: Overview of Potential Health Benefits. Nutrition Today46(1), 33–47.

Rahman, M. S. (2007). Allicin and Other Functional Active Components in Garlic: Health Benefits and Bioavailability. International Journal of Food Properties10(2), 245–268.–heart-health


Shena Jaramillo. Registered Dietitian

Hi I'm Shena. I'm an eating disorders dietitian in Washington state. I hold bachelors degrees nutrition & dietetics, cultural anthropology & psychology. I believe in honoring your hunger, having your cake whenever you want it, and that critically analyzing diet culture can change the world!

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