Those with a zeal for the spice of life understand why Sriracha has held first place in the hearts (or mouths) of the public for years. That sizzling kick has earned Huy Fong Foods’ popular Sriracha hot sauce a place in many restaurants and homes. A common addition to everything from pho and ramen to your favorite sandwich or breakfast eggs, this one-of-a-kind spicy sauce can be added to literally anything, so the current national shortage of Sriracha has left a culinary void for those who crave a splash of that familiar warmth.
Much to the dismay of fans, the makers of Sriracha last year announced a supply shortage of this beloved cult hot sauce, and limited supplies look set to continue into 2023. The shortage is due to a particularly scarce spring crop of the chili peppers used to make the Thai-inspired spice, Hugh Fong told CBS recently.
The Sriracha and Sambal Oelek rations are sold out on store shelves and online retailers. While the severe shortage of Sriracha still persists, there are a number of exciting substitutes that can deliver mouth-watering flavor to heartbroken Sriracha lovers.
From fake Srirachas to twists on the original and even a few similar but different condiments to try on your soups, sandwiches and stir-fries, these are the best Sriracha substitutes when you can’t have the real thing.
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Melinda’s makes over a dozen Sriracha substitutes that any spice lover can buy online. The closest thing to Sriracha is the delicious Thai Sweet Chili, but don’t sleep on others, including the and hot black truffle sauce.
Fly by Jing also makes excellent chili chips for topping sandwiches, ramen, stir-fries, and dipping your dumplings and other dim sum favorites. This Sriracha substitute offers a harmony of sweet, spicy, and salty flavors, but with a little more umami punch thanks to sesame oil, mushrooms, and fermented black beans.
A jar of this addictive condiment will set you back $17, or you can get them at a discount if you buy The Spicy Duo, which contains one jar of Chili Crisp and one jar of Zhong Sauce.
As we try new sauces, Fly by Jing’s Zhong sauce is just as excellent, though perhaps not as close in flavor to Sriracha as chili chips. This dipping sauce gets its rich sweetness from brown sugar and flavorful soy sauce.
David Chang and Momofuku make an equally delicious chili seasoning. This version has a healthy dose of sesame seeds and will keep your food seasoned enough until Sriracha is back in stock.
As you might expect, the popularity of Sriracha has spawned some fake creations. Bushwick Kitchen makes Weak Knees Gochujang Sriracha Sauce. It’s made with most of the same ingredients as Hoy Fung’s sizzling sauce, and it appears to be in stock (for now).
The Sriracha shortage is as good a time as any to experiment with twists on the sauce. Bushwick Kitchen also makes a Sriracha curry that is in stock and sells for $12 a bottle.
Heartbeat makes a full range of amazing hot sauces. While none of them are a perfect imitation of Sriracha, Shiitake Szechuan is the closest. If you like a little fruit sweetness with your spiciness — like I do — the Mango Habanero and Pineapple Habanero are also positively addictive.
Try a pack of four or shop the full range of Heartbeat sauces on the brand’s website.
Chili crisp isn’t an exact substitute for Sriracha, but it has many of the same flavors: hot, sweet, and umami. Lao Gan Ma’s Chili Chips are another cult-favorite condiment and can add some flavor to your meal when Sriracha isn’t an option.
I haven’t tested this yet, but the recipe is similar to Hoy Fung’s Sriracha, and this Thai chili sauce gets rave reviews on Amazon and elsewhere. A six-pack will set you back $19 on Amazon.
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