12 Best Alternatives for Sriracha

If you’re just looking for a red, moderately hot sauce, harissa will do. Harissa is a North African chilli paste made from dried chillies, coriander, caraway seeds and garlic. The resulting heat is modest, comparable to sriracha, but this alternative is more smoky and layered in flavor. We love the diversity of harissa: different regions add a splash of flavor with add-ins like lemon and peppers in the Mediterranean variety or sumac and acerola berry in a modern North African version (for Best Products).

Empirically, the heat between these two is the same, but since harissa is a paste made mostly of mashed chili peppers, it may seem hotter than sriracha sauce. Lacking sweet sweetness and more earthy flavor through the herbs, harissa stands out for its added pepperiness with this sriracha substitute.

Each application is also different, but generally when cooking with sriracha, you can also cook with harissa. Sriracha, which isn’t quite a liquid or a paste, works well as a functional ingredient and as a dipping or topping flair. Harissa can be a paste or a powder, which aren’t ideal consistencies for dipping, but they work great as a component of sauces or for rubbing directly onto meats.

We like Mustapha’s because it is a quality product and a traditional harissa recipe. It is made with chili peppers, lemon, garlic, tomatoes, peppers and spices.

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