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Best Hot Sauce Brands – which is best?

hot sauce brands

Best Hot Sauce brands

Best Hot Sauce Brands

– Like most “what is the best” questions there is a different answer for different needs so essentially you are asking what is the best  for me to use with my X, where x can be a hot dog to a quesadilla. The answer therefore can vary enormously. If I ask on Google what is the best Chinese restaurant in Edinburgh (a question I do ask all the time), I will get results that vary enormously based on the angle of the writer. So I will get told that this tiny take away is best in Edinburgh. But when I investigate the writer loves huge portions and is not fussy about quality. Well that’s not me I like good tasty food.

Before Covid we used to go to farmers markets and we found that for some people a teaspoon of our sauce would make their eyes water and steam come out the ears, and for some it was a shrug and oh this is tasty. So best hot sauce for what? There are people in the UK who eat hot sauce just to get the burn. Well obviously for them it needs to be very hot. Some people however need just a hint of heat. Our article on Scoville Scale may help identify the kind of chilli you want to focus on. LINK to story


One way to identify best hot sauce brands is to look at awards. A restaurant or hot sauce that’s won awards has at least been verified by someone.  Ooft! has 3, Great Taste, Scotland Food and Drink and Quality Foods. Both our sauces were awarded a Great taste Star a sign of a quality tasty product by expert judges. Great Taste is the world’s largest and most trusted food and drink awards.

Aged Hot Sauce - Awards
Ooft! Aged Hot Sauce – our awards
Our Own Ooft! Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce

So let see what’s important in a best hot sauce:-

  • What is a hot sauce
    • A hot sauce is a table sauce like Ketchup. You use it on meals as a taste expander. Its not a marinade although it can be combined with other things to make one. So our Ooft! Smoky Chipotle can be combined with tomatoes and herbs to make a lovely marinade for chicken or pork or even seafood before barbeque or grill. Our scotch bonnet can be combined with ketchup and mustard to make a great dip or hot dog or hamburger sauce.
  • Type of peppers used
    • There are about 50,000 varieties of hot pepper each with its own unique taste
    • Some hot sauces us multiple varieties but we have tried so many and found that for us with our taste the scotch bonnet is unique and we have spoken to many hot sauce lovers at farmers markets and they share our view.
    • Heat – peppers vary enormously, there is even an index called the Scoville Scale. Some people (maybe the food equivalent of skydiving) want the “Hottest”. Our view is that this is a condiment. What would be the point of a salt that was so salty that even a grain or two spoiled your meal so all you could taste was salt? We concentrate on a tasty blend that is hot yes but also has tremendous flavour.
  • Quantity or percentage of peppers in mix
    • We think that a good sauce should have lots of real peppers. But the most popular hot sauce in the world Tabasco contains no actual peppers, just the liquid extract as its used mostly for splashing on oysters or in drinks. In the Caribbean people like to see some pieces of pepper in the sauce, everyone is different
  • Other ingredients
    • Good Ingredients – No hot sauce contains only peppers. If it did it would be solid. So pepper makers use a variety of other ingredients. In Ooft! we use daikon a Japanese radish that we think adds umami or taste to our sauce. We also use garlic, sugar salt and vinegar to season the peppers. But our most important ingredient is time. We find that aging creates a unique taste. Tabasco also ages so we are in good company.
    • Bad Ingredients – Almost all available hot sauces contain additives and preservatives. Just look on the bottle to see colourings, flavourings and preservatives like guar gum. At Ooft! we don’t think they are necessary in a good sauce. So here is a key way to identify a good sauce. if the bottle has any additives or chemicals or emulsifiers avoid it.
  • Type of sauce
    • When most people talk about hot sauce they are talking about the West, sauces from Mexico or the Caribbean or the USA. But there is another whole branch of hot sauce used by those in the East although most of these are used to season food rather than as table sauces.
  • Price
    • Go into any large supermarket and there are perhaps 20 different hot sauces from £1.50 to £5 a bottle. Why such huge variation? Well a lot is to do with processing. if you are making huge quantity of sauce, bottling as soon as you blend, and churning them out then you can sell cheap. But my wife and I who hand check every single pepper for quality wonder what goes into those bottles. We find peppers that are going bad, we find peppers that look great on the outside but when cut are rotten inside and we wonder. If you are pouring a million peppers into a hopper how do you manage that?
  • Aging
    • As far as we know only Tabasco and Ooft! age all hot sauce. There are one or two speciality brands in the US that also age but they are sold as the companies top of the line products. All Ooft! sauces are aged. Our experience is that when you blend the raw ingredients they taste just that, raw. After a year or two aging and developing, the difference is quite remarkable.
    • The aging process also eliminate the need for any chemicals. When you blend raw ingredients you immediately have separation. So most companies add emulsifiers and chemical to keep the sauce consistent. Aging removes this need as time blend the ingredients naturally.

Best Hot Sauce Brands – history

Tabasco – The oldest known of best hot sauce brands is Tabasco who started making their own in 1868. Tabasco is also the most sold world wide. Tabasco is unique in that the liquid in the bottle is just that, strained liquid by product of aging the peppers in barrels.

Franks Red Hot claims to have started in 1920 in Detroit USA, but they really became well known much later in 1964 when they covered the first buffalo wings (or at least thats how the legend has it). We like our own buffalo wings see recipe at LINK

Pickapeppa – Started in 1920 in Jamaica and still around although if you taste it you will find its more like Worcester sauce and has little heat.

Crystal Hot Sauce – almost unknown outside Louisiana this sauce started in 1923 and is still going strong. The legend has it that the owner was going to open a syrup shop and found the recipe in a drawer from the previous tenant.

Hotter than the rest

Just because we don’t like extreme heat we thought we would cover this subject as well for those looking for pain! The ones listed below cover the worlds hottest, Carolina Reaper, Trinidad Scorpion and Ghost.

Hot Headz make a Trinidad Scorpion based sauce that’s pretty hot by anyone standards

The Chilli Mash company make a Carolina reaper sauce they claim is the hottest

Daves Gourmet makes a ghost pepper sauce that should give you the pain.

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Hot Sauce Review of Ooft! Aged Hot Sauce

Clifton Chilli Club


Hot Sauce review - Clifton Chilli Club
Hot Sauce review – Clifton Chilli Club

Hot Sauce review

Great review of Ooft! from the famous and impartial Clifton Chilli Club. REVIEW LINK

Buy Ooft! the sauce being reviewed by clicking this link.


Watch the faces as they taste our hot sauce. Note that they say they would buy this sauce, an acid test for reviews. These guys are brave see how much Ooft! they use. The Clifton Chilli club is the rolls Royce of hot sauce reviews and they have fans all over the world who watch them on Facebook.

Their club web page rightly says “We like to think that we are fully immersed in the world of chilli! We don’t just grow chillies, we cook with them, run eating contests with them, taste them (often to our detriment), review chilli products, go on adventures & more. To find out more, please click the heading of each subject and explore the sub pages.”

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Hottest Chilli or tastiest? Find out at Amazon

Ooft! Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce


Ooft! Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce
Ooof! Aged Hot Sauce

Hottest Chilli

Hottest chilli? No but here at Ooft! we make tasty hot sauces you can use very day. We don’t try to be the hottest chilli, we are the tastiest.  We sell through specialty stores and delis all over Scotland and in many parts of England. We also sell online and you can buy our sauce from us direct at this link.

But Amazon is trusted by a lot of people myself included. So we have finally put our hot sauce online with Amazon.

Amazon page for Ooft! Aged Scotch Bonnet at  – LINK

Amazon page for Ooft!  Aged Smoky Chipotle at  – LINK

Although we use PAYPAL on our site and customers can feel totally secure in buying there are a lot of people who already have all their details at Amazon and like the “one click” shopping style. So to make it easier to acquire our award winning aged hot sauce from anywhere in the world via we have finally put Ooft! up as a product. To find it search for ooft.

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Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce – what is a bonnet?


Early 1900's womens Tam
scotch bonnet hot sauce – tam o shanter hats

Scotch Bonnet

We make scotch bonnet hot sauce. You can buy a bottle by clicking this link.  A lot of people like the flavour but have you wondered where the name comes from? The Scotch Bonnet supposedly comes from the Tam O Shanter. But I wonder whether a Scottish woman in the Caribbean, or more likely a soldier.  See the examples and what do you think? Whether a lady from a ship or a soldier passing by, some old market lady, maybe in Jamaica, saw the hat and exclaimed, “that looks just like my peppers” and off we go into the present and the wonderful fragrant  peppers we use exclusively in our Hot Sauce.

I have done a bit of research but the origin seems lost in time. My own view is a soldier, but I must admit the images of ladies hats looks closer.  We have tried so many other peppers and just cannot get the flavour we want from any other. Scotch Bonnet are a cousin or part of the group Habanero an pepper grown in the Caribbean but also in Africa and India. They are high in heat with a Scoville rating of about 250,000.

soldier wearing tam
Old soldier with tam

scotch bonnet hot sauce named after this Modern Tam?
scotch bonnet hot sauce named after this Modern Tam?

Scotch Bonnet hot sauce and peppers
Scotch Bonnet hot sauce and peppers

Early 1900’s womens Tam

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Umami Foods – Daikon, the yummy deliciousness secret

Daikon best aged hot sauce uk

Umami Foods
Daikon Japanese radish also called Mooli

Daikon brings Umami

Yummy is what its all about with taste. We think aged daikon brings umami and its “yummy deliciousness” to our sauce and that is what brings customers back time and again. When you use our scotch bonnet sauce you create Umami food. Buy our hot sauce now

We get asked a lot about daikon, so many people do not know this mild giant Japanese radish. We are the only hot sauce maker in the UK to age and to use daikon.  As one fanatic from Iceland said (when he trekked all the way to our door) I’ve finally found the perfect sauce!

White daikon radish has many nutritional values. Daikon or mooli as its known in India has very high water content, about 94%. It is low in calories and has high levels of dietary fibre, calcium, phosphorus, iron, potassium, vitamin C and folic acid.

Daikon is a ”natural digestive agent.” It contains various digestive enzymes, which can break down starch and fat in food, promote food digestion, relieves chest tightness, and inhibit hyperacidity. It helps stomach peristalsis, promotes metabolism, and also detoxifies. This digestive enzyme is not resistant to heat, so white radish is suitable to eat raw.

Mercola Food facts says about daikon:-

One benefit that you can get  is its ability to improve digestion, thanks to an enzyme called diastase, which helps relieve indigestion, heartburn and may even curb hangovers. 11 Meanwhile, isothiocyanates, which give daikon its peppery and pungent qualities, may help improve blood circulation and prevent clots.

The juice extracted from raw  has been traditionally used to alleviate headaches, fever, swollen gums and hot flashes, as it has anti-inflammatory and cooling effects. 12 Daikon radish also contains high amounts of potassium, vitamin C and phosphorus – nutrients that are essential for good health.

While you may think that the benefits are only attributed to the root, you’ll be surprised to know that the leaves have an impressive nutritional value, too. They’re actually loaded with vitamin A, essential for eye health, and vitamin C – more than the root, actually. They also provide beta-carotene, sodium, iron, phosphorus and calcium. 13

Organic Facts provides a good summary of the health-promoting properties of this food:
Alleviates respiratory issues. It can help clear out excess phlegm and eliminate bacteria and other pathogens from your respiratory tract.
Promotes digestive health.  helps facilitate better digestion of proteins, complex carbs and fats, which in turn prevents constipation and increases nutrient uptake in the gut.

Assists in detoxification. It stimulates urination, which is necessary for keeping the kidneys clean.

Has potential cancer-preventive ability. This vegetable possesses antioxidant phenolic compounds that may help reduce certain types of cancer.
Bolsters your immunity. The vitamin C in daikon stimulates white blood cell production, which may speed up repair and healing in your body.

Alleviates inflammation. The juice’s anti-inflammatory properties can help decrease inflammation throughout your system, which may lead to a healthier heart, lower gout and arthritis risk and reduced pain from injuries and muscle cramping.

Promotes bone and skin health. Its high calcium content may be helpful in preventing osteoporosis. It also has antioxidant benefits, which may help prevent wrinkles, increase circulation and even reduce the appearance of blemishes and age spots, giving your skin a natural glow.

Helps with weight management. Daikon is a low-calorie and low-cholesterol vegetable, but it’s high in fiber and many other nutrients – qualities that are ideal for people who want to maintain a healthy weight.