See more of the story

If you haven't yet heard, we are in a Sriracha shortage.

Huy Fong Foods, the company that makes the sauce housed in the familiar bottle with the rooster on it, announced that thanks to an "abysmal" red chile pepper crop this spring, it would have to stop making the sauce for a few months. That means shelves usually stocked with the beloved spicy sauce are sitting empty.

The heft felt with this loss highlights the ubiquitousness of this particular brand of hot sauce and the incredible versatility of it. Unlike other traditional hot sauces that were so popular before Sriracha's rise, its consistency is thick — almost like a textured ketchup. The flavor moves beyond heat and vinegar into a garlic-rich subtlety that lends itself to recipes and cooking. Rather than dashing a few drops over food, Sriracha is blended into dressings and used to add complexity to sauces, as well as dolloped on everything from leftovers to chips.

However, now is not the time to wring your hands in the face of bland eggs. Instead it's an opportunity to explore the wealth of potential replacements from local makers. We sampled dozens of locally made hot sauces to come up with new fridge-door favorites to spice up your life. Despite our collective reputation for beige palates, we have a bevy of brave Minnesotans who help raise the state's culinary heat index. Here are five hot sauces that bring that good burn.

When it comes to condiments, Minnesota makers bring the heat.
When it comes to condiments, Minnesota makers bring the heat.

Star Tribune

Cry Baby Craig's

The popular sauce was created by chef Craig Kaiser after a restaurant delivery resulted in a ton of habañeros instead of the jalapeños he was expecting and no obvious way to use them all. So, the chef tinkered with fermenting them with garlic, apple cider vinegar and a few other secret spices. The result was a condiment that other chefs across town were soon clamoring to order.

Fermented with habañeros, the heat doesn't melt your face off, but instead gives an artful kick to whatever it's dabbed upon. There's a zingy, vinegary twang that pairs beautifully with just about any kind of savory food. Zip up mayo for a chef-style sandwich, shake over fried eggs — or into egg salad, burgers and steaks. This sauce can be found on the tables of local spice lovers and hard-core food fans.

Best Sriracha replacement use: Liberally applied to cold pizza.

Buy it: 5-ounce bottles from $7 at Kowalski's and other grocery retailers, or $20 for three bottles at

Folly Coffee Hot Sauce

It would be understandable for anyone seeing the sleek bags of Folly Coffee dotting shelves of major grocery stores to think this was a major, long-established brand of coffee. But this small, fair-trade coffee roaster was launched in 2018 by Rob Bathe and works out of St. Louis Park with head roaster Jeff Mooney.

What does coffee have to do with the Sriracha-sized hole in your heart? Well, Bathe was wondering why there weren't more hot sauces made with brewed coffee. He hooked up with chef Kevin Coughenour (known as Kevin Coke) to remedy that. Coke took to the kitchen, toasted up dried chiles and garlic, blended them with a little allspice and finished off the mix with freshly brewed Folly Coffee. The resulting hot sauce is toasty with warm spice and a savory, almost fruity backbone from the coffee beans that teeters on a mole-like flavor. (Watch Coke make it here.)

Best Sriracha replacement use: Mix it into chilaquiles, Bloody Marys or other breakfast options for a rich and zesty eye-opener.

Buy it: 5-ounce bottles for $13 at, also available in several major grocery stores and co-ops, including Lunds & Byerly's and Fresh Thyme; prices vary.

Hoyo Basbaas

A taste of homemade by Somali mothers, this vibrant green vegan sauce is an ideal pairing for Hoyo's crispy sambusas (found in select local grocers and co-ops). The tangy bright acidity and vegetal mellow heat mingles with a mellow garlic presence, making it a wonderful baby step into the warm world for the spice-averse crowd. It's also a lovely way to wake up sleepy taste buds; stir it into soft scrambled eggs.

Hoyo is the Somali word for mother, and this local business was founded by a collective of mothers who have built a business for the benefit of other mothers. Founder Mariam Mohamed started the company as a way to help lift up other moms, with the intention of creating jobs and serving the local Somali community. However, once these sauces — and those sambusas — showed up in local co-ops, the demand quickly built.

Best Sriracha replacement: On crispy fried anything.

Cost: 12-ounce jar from $8.69 at local co-ops; three jars for $29.99 through Amazon. For other locations, go to

Jingle Jangle from the Salsa Collaborative

Brian and Nikki Podgorski spent their courtship wandering farmers markets and dreaming about launching their own food business. Now, as the Salsa Collaborative, the two have only just left their day jobs behind and gone full in on their dream. As a company, they have a wide range of hot sauce styles and heat levels, including a gojuchang-based chili crisp. But the Jingle Jangle is possibly the most versatile and crowd-pleasing bottle around.

Jingle Jangle was originally planned as a seasonal release, but fans demanded access to this versatile heat all year round. Bright and tart cherry syrup balances out the Fresno and red jalapeño peppers, and just a hint of cinnamon warms it all up. The spice level on this sauce is gentle, making it ideal for those craving the spicy ketchup side of Sriracha.

Best Sriracha replacement use: For that spice-step up from ketchup, try it on a hot dog or burger.

Cost: 5-ounce bottle for $10 at; also available at a handful of stores and farmers markets — see the website for details.

K-Mama Sauce

This hot sauce was born out of an ambition to do good in the world and it all comes from a mother's love. K.C. Kye's mother's cooking was often seasoned with her signature sauce, a spicy, complex mix of gochujang, a Korean chili sauce that dates back hundreds of years.

As Kye grew up, became a community organizer and eventually moved to Minnesota, he found that those flavors from his mother's kitchen weren't always easy to come by. That was when his entrepreneurial spirit came together with his desire to positively affect communities. K-Mama's sauce was built from the flavors found in his mother's kitchen — that particular kind of Korean spice from the gochujang, along with tart and sweet notes. Plus, K-Mama donates 30% of its profits to charity.

Just like Sriracha's ability to wind its way into recipes with a distinctive, crowd-pleasing heat, K-Mama's versatility and thick texture also make a great backbone to spicy recipes. (There's a gluten-free option, too.)

Best Sriracha replacement use: As an ingredient, like sheet-pan roasted vegetables; find several recipes on K-Mama's website.

Buy it: 6-ounce bottles from $3.99 at Target and other grocery retailers, or $12.99 for a two-pack at