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Southern Style Pepper Sauce

Recipe and photography by Bev Davis.


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Posted November 12, 2017

A family friend's gift of various garden fresh peppers inspired me to make a bottle of pepper sauce.  This condiment consists of peppers and vinegar in a bottle with a sprinkle top covered with a cap or cork.  Never refrigerated.  Kept on tables in soul food restaurants and private residences.  Usually splashed on greens, black-eyed peas, barbecue, and other delicious food.  I like it on greens! 

Tabasco peppers are usually used to make this sauce.  However, I used a variety of peppers including jalapenos and a small chopped carrot to lessen the heat.  A bottle of pepper sauce will last for years.  When it gets low, top off with unheated vinegar.  When the peppers lose their heat, remove from bottle and eat.  Refill with fresh peppers.  Keep it full and it will last a looooong time.  Enjoy the taste of liquid sunshine!


Tabasco peppers OR whatever you prefer

1 clean glass bottle with a sprinkle top and a cap or cork 

apple cider vinegar OR distilled white vinegar


Remove stems from peppers.  Rinse.  Pat dry with a paper towel. Slit sides so vinegar will easily penetrate peppers to create delicious flavor.  If desired, remove ribs and seeds for less heat.   Stuff peppers into bottle until 1/2 full or 3/4 full.  Be sure to leave space for the vinegar. 

In a stainless steel saucepan,  add enough vinegar to fill the bottle.  Warm over low heat until simmering.  Do not boil.  Pour heated vinegar into bottle.  Secure cap or cork.  Shake.  Flavors will develop after 24 hours.  However, it's okay to use immediately.   Makes 1 bottle.


Wear gloves when handling peppers to prevent an unpleasant burning sensation.  Thoroughly wash hands in hot soapy water BEFORE touching eyes or face.  Because of the acidic nature  of pepper sauce, not necessary to refrigerate. When the vinegar gets low, top if off with unheated vinegar.  Peppers will lose heat over time.  Add more peppers to keep the sauce hot.  Pepper sauce can last for years.  Enjoy!

I used an two year old pretty bottle that was used to hold red wine vinegar.  It was just too cute to trash.  Perfect for this recipe.   Below is a photo of the new bottle shortly after purchase.  Posted it on Facebook to share with visitors.  Back then, I used a different print style for my watermark. Updated for easier reading.