Sainsbury's Hot Pepper Sauce

Sainsbury’s Hot Pepper Sauce

I like to keep an eye on what supermarkets are doing with their own brand sauces, and it’s great when you come across an attempt that is actually quite good.  Well Sainsbury’s, this one is a blinder.

Sainsbury’s Hot Pepper Sauce is very much in the style of a Caribbean Scotch Bonnet sauce such as Windward West Indian sauce, or the Encona Hot Pepper sauce.  The sauce has a great colour and large visible pieces of Habanero within it, and has a loose and chunky consistency.

The flavour is fresh and fruity (what you’d expect from a Habanero sauce), and has short punchy heat followed by a longer burn which is actually quite devastating if you have a lot of it, we’re talking tears over a tablespoon.

A really good own-brand sauce.  Although it’s a great sauce for the price (£1.25), I personally wouldn’t buy it again since there are better examples of this style of sauce out there, however it’s worth a punt if your Sainsbury’s stocks it.

Rating: 3.5/5


After a few more tastes and chats with friends, I think I would perhaps buy this again over brands like Encona or Windward (which share shelf space) .  This sauce by Sainsbury’s has an very special individuality; for an own-brand sauce I can do nothing but tip one’s cap.

22 thoughts on “Sainsbury’s Hot Pepper Sauce

  1. I’ve had this in the past and it’s really f*cking hot! It was also on sale for .75p for a while so pick yourself up a bargain if you see it for that price

    1. It is hot isn’t it! It really creeps up on you, and I was very surprised by a supermarket brand.

      0.75p IS a bargain, I’ll keep an eye out for it at that price

  2. I bought this yesterday, just plastered it all over my Ginsters Pasty lol.

    Jesus! Hot! Hot! Hot! – Great stuff, when supermarkets say HOT you know its not going to be hot! But this is awesome!! 🙂

    1. Hey Ricky, thanks for sharing your thoughts on this one – it certainly IS hot and I know exactly what you mean about supermarket foods never being hot. I really applaud Sainsbury’s for going this devastating on the heat.

      I bet it went really well with the pasty!

      What are you favourite hot sauces at the moment?

    1. Fair enough, I know where you’re coming from. You may also be right about the colouring, but it is a natural colouring to be fair.

      Have you got any sauces you could recommend Toby?

      1. It’s worth looking at the cheap generic brands you find in ethnic shops. If you check the ingredients you’ll find their not all created equal despite having identical bottles and all being the same price.

        E.g. the rather gloopy Tropical Sun Caribbean Hot Pepper Sauce has Water as its main ingredient and contains only 26% peppers, plus citric acid and stabiliser, while the much better Grace’s Hot Pepper Sauce contains peppers first, then water, cane vinegar and salt. It’s also made in Jamaica.

        So I’d recommend Grace’s as a good standard Caribbean sauce, plus Crystal is pure, and mild so good as a cheap alternative to Tabasco at 79p a bottle.

        Also a fan of Encona Original. It contains a couple of additives (the universal xanthan gum, plus modified maize starch) but also onion and mustard which gives it a nice flavour in my opinion. It’s also surprisingly hot.

        1. Great tip, thanks for this. I’ve seen a few generic sauces in the past and generally not been too interested, but I’ll check them out next time I see them.

          And what you say about the pepper/water content is very interesting, all the best sauces I’ve had rarely have any water in and are just a mash of peppers and vinegar, plus other flavours.

          I’ve wanted to try Crystal for ages – it’s the white/blue label one right?

          Yeah I like Encona Original too, and the rest of their range is also pretty always spot on.

          Cheers Toby!

  3. I’ve posted the same opinion on the Sainsbury’s website but, honestly, not a Sainsbury-paid pusher! We’re into hot sauces a bit and have tried various concoctions, some quite pricey for what you get. We’ve always been on the lookout for a regular brand and, as we were making a delivery order, decided to throw in a bottle of Sainsbury’s own with a couple of other more exotic West Indians as a try-out (OK it was cheap!). It was, in fact, the last one of the three we opened when the other two were finished, such was our expectations of an own-brand. However no doubt about it, it was for us, search over. It has the heat, the flavour (no extract), the habanero after-burn, everything that we would expect from a premium hot sauce. We now have two bottles, one opened in the fridge and the other un-opened in the cupboard. As soon as that one’s opened then another is bought. Never without it. OK, there may be sceptisism, but at just over a quid must be worth a try. To be honest, it was a real surprise.

    1. Hey glad to see you’re enjoying this sauce and thanks for sharing your comments. Your discovery of this sauce sounds very similar to mine and other peoples – a complete surprise!

      I really hope other Supermarkets and Sainsbury’s themselves take note and really try to make their own brand sauces as good as this.

  4. I’m a fan of Encona hot chilli sauce but have recently been put off their larger bottles because of the squirty cap they now have. I find it tricky to direct the exact amount of sauce I want in the exact place that I want it.

    So, I ended up reaching for the Sainsbury’s own brand one day and quickly realised it’s much more potent than the Encona! SHEEESH! For an own brand stock item I was shocked at the strength of the stuff. It’s a seriously hot piece of gear and would knock the living daylights out of the Encona hot sauce in a fight.

    If you have kids who always want to eat your food, it’s great stuff to leave under a slice of pepperoni…..

    1. Hey Alan,

      Thanks for your comment. I’m also not a fan of squeezy bottles when it comes to chilli sauce – far too dangerous!

      Haha, you’re bang on about this Sainsbury’s sauce – it really does knock you for six!

      And that’s a pretty mean, but genius idea and keeping those pesky kids away from your food 🙂

  5. Just sprinkled some of this (far too much as it turns out lol) on my pizza along with a very small handful of red jalapeños. The jalapeños didn’t stck up against this absolutely mental hot sauce. I really wouldn’t want to be my arse tomorrow hahaha

    1. Typical, I’ve always passed on this one, I’m going to have to clear the shelf now I know it’s this good, as I’ve clearly been missing out!

  6. Yep. It’s now gone from our online selection list. Having gone through the other supermarket brands we found that Island Sun, available from Tesco, pretty near matched the recipe (and price!) and so we’ve got our first bottle. Yes, excellent substitute, even a few percent stronger on the habanero. At the moment a seamless transition.

  7. Gone again sadly, replaced by “Scorching Hot Chilli Sauce” which is much less hot and not as interesting, but quite fruity.

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