Fermented Hot Sauce

Hot sauce can take anywhere from a few weeks to 4 to 6 months to ferment. I tend to let mine go on the longer side. My most recent batch was a four-month ferment.

Keep it simple with a single pepper type, or use a variety of (similar colored) peppers with differing levels of heat and flavors. If you use a mix of red and green peppers, you will wind up with a grayish-brown product. Not very visually pleasing, but it will likely still taste delicious!

Fermented Hot Sauce

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Prep Time 15 minutes
Fermentation Time 90 days
Course condiment
Makes 1 quart/liter


  • upcycled soy sauce or hot sauce bottles
  • funnel
  • blender, vitamix or food processor


  • 2 lbs. (1 kg) fresh chile peppers, any variety
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) pickle brine or whey
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) sea salt plus more to adjust taste
  • 6-8 cloves fresh garlic
  • distilled vinegar or ripe kombucha to adjust consistency


  • Cut stems off peppers.
  • For more heat in finished sauce, keep the seeds and membranes in hotter peppers. To reduce heat, cut them out and discard or compost.
  • Peel garlic and add to work bowl of a food processor or blender.
  • Add salt and pickle brine or whey to work bowl.
  • Add peppers to work bowl. Pulse until you reach the consistency of pickle relish or salsa.
  • Transfer contents to a quart-sized jar. Secure with a fermentation airlock device, or cover with a swatch of clean cloth or a paper towel. Secure with mason jar ring.


  • Ferment for anywhere from 3 weeks to 6 months.


  • If yeast or mold formed on top, wipe, scrape, or scoop off the top layer.
  • Drain and reserve the brine from the pepper solids.
  • Add solids to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth (up to 5 minutes depending on speed and power of your device).
  • Adjust the final consistency with the reserved fermenting brine or distilled vinegar, and adjust the flavor by adding salt to taste.
  • Dispense into upcycled sauce bottles. Store at room temperature or in refrigerator. Keeps for many months.
Have you made this recipe?Mention @fermentersclub or tag #fermentersclub!




Not sure how hot each pepper is? Consult the Scoville scale to get your chile bearings.

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