Kitchen Notes

Spicy Watermelon Margarita

This slightly spicy watermelon mint margarita is hitting the Mexicue menu next week. We're sharing the recipe in case you'd like to give it a shot at home as well! 

  • 4 oz fresh watermelon juice

  • 2 oz tequila

  • 1 oz lime juice

  • 1 oz chili simple syrup  

  • Fresh mint 

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all liquids. Cover & shake until chilled. 

Tear mint in several pieces and place in bottom of glass. 

Add ice to glass and strain margarita into the glass. 

Garnish with lime and a whole mint leaf. 

What is the Scoville Scale?

A lot of hot sauce and chili pepper enthusiasts may be familiar with the term Scoville Scale. However, those who are new to making your own hot sauce or want to learn more about the world of chilies, the Scoville Scale is a number from 0 to infinity that describes the heat intensity of a chili pepper. Let's take a look at the history of the Scoville Scale and how popular peppers measure up today!

History of the Scoville Scale 

The Scoville Scale was named after an American pharmacist by the name of Wilbur Scoville. He created the scale by performing a taste test in 1912. Participants would try chili peppers that were watered down with varying amounts of sugar water.

This practice would continue until the heat was no longer present. Each serving of sugar water stood for a unit of heat. For instance, a pepper with a Scoville level of 250 must be diluted 250 times. Today this is known as Scoville Heat Units (SHU). 

How the Scoville Scale is Measured 

There are many particles in a pepper that causes our mouth to burn. The most prominent and well-researched is capsaicin. Capsaicin has shown to irritate mammal tissue, including the tongue and lips. The more capsaicin in a pepper, the spicier it is going to be. Therefore, those peppers will have a higher number of the Scoville Scale.

The only compound to surpass capsaicin in heat is a chemical known as resiniferatoxin. Resiniferatoxin is a compound found in cactus-like plants in Morrocco and Nigeria. It is molecularly similar to capsaicin, but their differences are monumental. This exotic compound clocks in at 16 billion SHU, making it up to 1,000 hotter than the next higher member of the Scoville Scale! 

Chili Peppers on the Scoville Scale

Like numbers, the Scoville Scale is infinite. The lowest you can get on the Scoville Scale is a zero, like bell peppers. As you climb, you will notice a lot of the most popular peppers like jalapeño (2,500 - 10,000 SHU), cayenne (30,000 - 50,000 SHU), and orange habanero (150,000 to 300,000 SHU). 

Scoville Scale

The hottest chili pepper known to humankind is the Carolina Reaper. At it's hottest, this pepper reaches 1,641,000 SHU!

Why Are Scovilles for Peppers Different?

You may have noticed that each chili pepper has a range on the Scoville scale. Like every person and snowflake, all chili peppers are unique. Their genetic makeup depends on everything from the amount of sun they receive to the soil they were grown in, to how soon they were picked. 

The earlier you pick a pepper, the less spicy it will be. In the same breath, it will also be crispier and more bitter. For a sweeter pepper, you wait longer. However, with that sweetness comes a bite. That's why we love chili peppers.

Alternates to the Scoville Scale

There is no doubt that the Scoville Scale is the most widely accepted way to classify heat intensity in foods. However, it's not the most scientific. SHUs are crafted by subjectiveness. If a taste-tester has a higher heat tolerance than the one next to them, that could influence the SHU rating.

Since 1912, science and technology have evolved. Now, we have High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC). HPLC tests the oils within the chili pepper to determine a correct heat level. 1 HPLC rating is equal to 15 Scovilles. While more accurate, the industry still leans on the Scoville Scale. 

Make Homemade Hot Sauce

Think you're a Scoville know-it-all now? Put your new knowledge to good use. Try out the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit. We deliver everything you need to make two artisan hot sauce flavors in your very own home.

Not sure about making your own hot sauce? No problem. Sample what making your own hot sauce tastes like with our unique blend of Chili Flakes.

Get Your Trios On!

No crafting necessary. Just sprinkle onto your meal, and you're good to go! 

10 Creative Ways Use Your Homemade Hot Sauce

Homemade Hot Sauce Kit and Avocado Toast

All right! You just made your first two hot sauces with your Homemade Hot Sauce Kit. Now what? You can do the typical drizzle over eggs or slather it all over a taco. However, we here at The Chili Lab like to encourage people to go beyond heat and get a little creative.

Now that we got your creative hot sauces flowing with your Homemade Hot Sauce Kit let's put that sauce to good use. Here are 10 Creative Ways to Use Your Homemade Hot Sauce.


What Are Hot Sauce Flavors in the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit?

If you've never used the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit or this is your first time making your own hot sauce, you might not know what flavor profiles we're working with. 

When you purchase a Homemade Hot Sauce Kit, we send you everything you need to make two artisan flavors in your own home. 

The Kit conveniently comes with:

🌶 2 Chili Lab Spice Blends (Forager's Blend and Grove Blend)
🌶 4 Glass Hot Sauce Bottles with Corks (4 oz)
🌶 1 Stainless Steel Funnel
🌶 1 Fine Mesh Strainer
🌶 1 Hot Sauce Instruction Card

We do everything but make the sauce. That's the fun part, and that is for you. Now, that you have a solid introduction of what the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit is, let's take a quick detour and explore the two flavors that are going to transform your menu.


Homemade Hot Sauce Kit: Forager's Blend

The Forager's Blend has the berry flavor you'd expect of a chili flake with this hue. Its sweetness is further enhanced by the smoky, almost oak-like undertones that linger with each bite. 

Our blend is thoughtfully crafted with three delicious chili peppers:

🌶 Guajillo
🌶 Chipolte
🌶 Pequin

These three chilies create a flavor profile that it makes this hot sauce particularly delicious with lamb and wild mushrooms. However, this article is about more out-of-the-box ways. Now, let's take a look at the other hot sauce blend flavor profile you get with the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit.


Homemade Hot Sauce Kit: Grove Blend


This is like the tropical oasis of hot sauce flavors. The Grove Blend has a zesty spirit that brightens any dish its added to. Don't let these tangy vibes fool you as the Grove Blend has a lingering bite. However, the sweet kiss of citrus keeps having you come back for more. 

This back-and-forth with your taste buds can be attributed to these three chilies:

🌶 Piri Piri 
🌶 Habanero 
🌶 Anaheim

Your Grove Blend Hot Sauce has a light texture that lends itself to seafood, chicken, and kale chips. However, you can be a bit more creative than that. Here are 10 ways how. 


Make a Salad Dressing

When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. When you have excess sauce, use a salad dressing. Many salad dressings you buy in the grocery store are high in calories and low on flavor. Since the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit recipe causes a vinegar base, your hot sauce makes for a great addition into a homemade salad dressing. 

Just as you got creative making the hot sauce yourself, think-outside-the-box when crafting your salad dressing. How about mixing a little honey mustard and peanut oil in with the Grove Blend? Perhaps combine some extra virgin olive oil,  a dash of raspberry balsamic vinegar, and some Forager's Blend Hot Sauce? With the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit, the salad dressing options are endless (Betcha never thought you'd say that!). 


Create a Popcorn Topping

Date night can be expensive. The popcorn alone can cost more than the movie. So, bring date night home. Pop some popcorn on the stovetop. While that's happening, heat up a 1/4 stick of butter. 

eating popcorn

As the butter becomes more solid than liquid, add in hot sauce. For beginners, try starting off with about 1/4 cup of hot sauce. We don't like to judge. Use as much as you want! 

You'll notice this sauce has a creamy, almost Buffalo sauce texture. It'll coat your popped kernels like a cozy hug. 


Fold Into Your Burger

What's more delicious than a juicy burger? Well, make it even juicier with some leftover homemade hot sauce. As you are working the patty, add in a little hot sauce. While both flavors would go magnificently with a hand-crafted burger, we'd recommend the Forager's Blend for your first go-around.

Usually, a mouth waters before eating a burger, but with this one causes your mouth to water as you chew. The woodsy flavors of this sauce burst with each bite into your burger, making you fire up the grill for seconds in no time. 


Make Corn Muffins

This right here is a game changer. Just a little hot sauce into your corn muffin batter will go along way. We highly recommend adding a touch of Grove Blend Hot Sauce to a jalapeño cheddar corn muffin. 

corn muffin

If you're making a berry muffin, there's no better compliment than adding some Forager's Blend to the mix. The chipotle nuances are amplified in the presence of berries. This makes for an eye-opening morning treat. 


Mexican Hot Chocolate or Tea

Ever had a hot sauce so good, you wish you could drink it? Well, now you could. Add a little bit of Forager's Blend to your hot chocolate. We suggest you do this around a fire for the ultimate internal warm-up. 

You can add some Grove Blend instead. That would be a delicious additive for someone who enjoys chocolate-covered citrus fruits. However, a 1/2 teaspoon of Grove Blend can transform your energizing green tea in a cup of island getaway!


Make More Sauce

Leave it to the makers of the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit to say make more sauce. While you can buy refills of Grove Blend and Forager's Blend Chili Flakes for future hot sauces (or try something new and get the Garden Blend), you can also use the hot sauce you already make more sauce.

Are you making some homemade spaghetti sauce? Add in some homemade hot sauce. Without question, the Forager's Blend will add a bold flavor to your sauce that will make family triple dipping their garlic bread.   


Want to switch up a marsala sauce for portobellos or fish? The Grove Blend is to the rescue. Your Grove Blend sauce pairs deliciously with chicken broths, white wines, and other light sauces used for leaner proteins.

Lastly, both flavors are perfect for homemade aiolis or mayo dips. We suggest mixing in some Grove Blend aioli with garlic and mustard on a ham sandwich or Forager's Blend aioli with a touch of brown sugar and minced onion on a pastrami wrap.


Add to a Smoothie/Juice

We throw many foods with bite into our smoothies and juices including ginger, lemon, and bell peppers. Why wouldn't you throw in a little bit of hot sauce?

Give your pre-workout routine the heat you need by combining the Grove Blend with tropical fruits and lighter colored vegetables. The citrus zest of the Grove Blend works well with oranges, bananas, carrots, mangos, and celery. 

If you have a berry-heavy blend, bring the flavor up a notch with some Forager's Blend. It's rich flavor also blends nicely with dark greens and beets. 


Mix In Your Hummus

We all love a good hummus dip. However, it seems like we've tried every flavor under the sun. That's why you need to go beyond the boundaries by going beyond the heat. 


Both flavors bring a unique experience to traditional hummus. If you want to jazz up a roasted red pepper, caramelized onion, or sun-dried tomato, try using the Forager's Blend first. Olive tapenade, spinach, and artichoke, and lemon hummus blend nicely with your refreshing Grove Blend Hot Sauce. 


Hot Sauce Frosting

Just because they blew out the candle doesn't mean they blew out the heat. If you or your loved one is a Chili Head, make them some hot sauce frosting. 

When you are blending the cream cheese and butter to make the frosting, add in the hot sauce and mix a little more before adding in any dry ingredients. 

Which homemade hot sauce you use depends on which type of frosting you are making. However, we are partial to use Forager's Blend in icings on chocolate cakes while Grove Blend goes well with vanilla.


Add to Your Jam

We love pepper jelly. While you can make pepper jelly at home, sometimes you can just mix and match what you already have on hand. For instance, a blackberry jam with Grove Blend hot sauce on a cinnamon raisin bagel is the breakfast of champions. 

jam and toast

You know what else is our jam? Putting Forager's Blend Hot Sauce on some strawberry jam. From there, we put the jelly on top of cream cheese. Spread on cheese and crackers for an easy peppertizer at your next party!

Tips for Planting Peppers in Your Garden

Spring is in the air, and that means it is time for most of the country to start setting up your garden. Whether your tilling your compost, putting up your fences, or picking out your seeds, spring is in full bloom. If you are chili head like us here at The Chili Lab, then your garden must be chock full of peppers. 

The reason we celebrate chili peppers at The Chili Lab is that each fruit has a unique personality. Peppers have individual flavor profiles, Scoville rankings, and can compliment dishes in their own ways. Fostering this individuality begins with planting the pepper. That is why we are sharing secrets on planting peppers in your garden that we use in our Chili Flake blends

Tips for Planting Chili Peppers in Garden Blend

Our Garden Blend Chili Flakes is the newest of the bunch.

It has a very robust flavor profile. Not only is there a hint of berry and citrus in our Garden Blend, but these flakes burst with earthy tones with a touch of heat. That's much in thanks to these three delicious chili peppers. 

How to Plant Jalapeños

Jalapeños are slow growers. If you want them to flourish outside with the rest of your harvest, pot them indoors from 8 to 12 weeks before transplanting outside. 

These Mexican peppers flourish in the heat. They like full exposure to the sun and temps of 80° F to 85° F to produce the most exceptional yields. 

Scatter the seeds or transport potted soil 14 to 16 inches apart. Also, allow two to three inches per row. You can expect the jalapeño plants to sprout to about three feet.

Since the pepper is in the sun all day, keep the soil moist. However, don't overwater. Too much water can lead to root rot.

How to Plant Calabrian Peppers

These Italian peppers are tiny with a ton of personality. By personality, we mean heat. They are responsible for the bite in our Garden Blend. However, they also lend a bit of zest and brightness to the mix. 

Calabrians enjoy exposure to full sun and thrive with nutrient-dense soil. Plant eight to ten inches into the earth with the weather of no less than 60°F. Cover the area with mulch to retain water and nutrients. You want an NPK ratio of 12-12-12. Stop fertilizing after July. If temps dry too low at night, the extra nutrients may be a breeding ground for disease. 

How to Plant Green Hatch Chili Peppers

These big peppers are perfect stuffing...or for making Garden Blend Chili Flakes. While Green Hatch Chili Peppers thrive by planting indoor first, they are hardier than other peppers. Therefore, it's not necessary.

To get the highest yield, Green Hatch Chilies thrive in 85° to 90° F weather. Just make sure you don't plant outdoors if your nighttime temps hit 60° F. These plants do well indoors, so bring them in. Just make sure they are placed near a south-facing window for ample sunlight all day.

Tips for Planting Chili Peppers in Forager's Blend

The Forager's Blend Chili Flakes is our most popular.

It has a sweet kiss of a berry infused with a smoky bite that lingers long after you finish eating. Trust us, that's not a bad thing! There are three chili peppers in the Forager's Blend. Here are some tips on how planting them.

How to Plant Guajillos

Guajillos are popular in Latin cuisine. While they bring the heat, they also need the heat. Wait until the soil is around 70° F. Dig holes around the size of the guajillo root ball about 1.5 to 2 feet apart and place into their respective spot.

Water your plants after placing into the ground. From there, only water about two times per week. Be sure to use a spray nozzle even to disperse the water. By drenching the leaves, the guajillo plant becomes susceptible to mold.

If your plant becomes brown, stop watering for a couple of weeks. You will know the pepper is ready for harvest when all signs of green are gone, and the pepper boasts the bright red hue present in the Forager's Blend. 

How to Plant Chipotle Pepper

Chipotle peppers are actually dried out jalapeños. So, follow the growing process in the Garden Blend Chili Flakes section. However, don't pick these chilies while they are green. Wait for them to turn red.

From there, you want to smoke the jalapeños until they have a black and leathery exterior. After, dry them out. You officially have chipotles you can toss into a soup or sauce, or grind into a coarse powder. 

How to Plant Pequin Peppers

Pequin is one of our favorite peppers. In fact, our most popular Chili Salts are crafted with this zesty fruit. This Tobasco pepper produces a large yield. They just need full sun and well-draining soil. 

These peppers grow more efficiently if they are potted inside six to eight weeks prior to transplanting into the ground. Fruit will be ready to harvest around 80 days after planting.

Be sure to water the plant at least once a week with one to two inches of water. Pequins like plenty of nitrogen. Fertilize lightly up to eight weeks after transplant.

Tips for Planting Chili Peppers in Grove Blend

The brightest of the bunch, our Grove Blend Chili Flakes live up to their name.

They enliven every dish added to and cause you to pucker your lips in delight. These flakes are tangy, juicy, and hot. This complex dichotomy is much in thanks to these three mouth-watering peppers.

How to Plant Habanero Peppers

Unless you live in a subtropical climate, start your habanero peppers indoors. Put outside two weeks before the last frost is set to happen. 

Place your habanero seeds or plants 1/2 inch deep and 18 inches apart. These plants need infrequent watering. However, when you do water, make sure to go deep. You also may need to cover these peppers to avoid them from cracking and drying out from the sun.

You can start to pick when they are green or wait until the pepper matures to a shade of red. The longer you wait to harvest, the hotter these peppers will be.

How to Plant Piri Piri Peppers

Also known as the African Red Devil, Piri Piri bring some genuine heat with a touch of smoke. As you'd imagine, they flourish in hot temperatures. 

Make sure the piri piri gets plenty of sun. Only water once or twice a week, going one to two inches deep each time. Keep an eye out for rot on the leaves because the plant is susceptible to growth during rainy seasons. These plants grow up to two feet tall and are mature when bright red. 

How to Plant Anaheim Peppers

This crisp pepper brings a bit of sweetness to our tangy blend. Anaheims are refreshing with a mild heat. While their bite isn't the hardest, they need hot temperatures. Anaheims thrive in 90° F.

Plant your Anaheim peppers 18 to 24 inches apart. Funny enough, they should hit about 18 to 24 inches at maturity. Speaking of, you can expect the Anaheim to reach maturity around 74 days.

Give Every Meal a Chili Kiss

While there is nothing more rewarding than growing your own food, we do live a fast-paced life. That's why we turn toward convenient items like Chili Flakes to bring flavor to our meals. 

Do you think these three blends sound good to be true? Well, don't choose between them. Try our Chili Flake Trios and get a sample of each flavor.

A little goes a long way when you are looking to transform your meal! 

How to Cool Down After a Hot Pepper

We've all been there. The love of the chili pepper can come with quite the afterburn! Whether it's the citrusy kiss of habanero in our Grove Blend Hot Sauce or the extra helping of jalapeño in our guac, the allure of the pepper always pulls us back! So, how do you cut the heat when the intensity gets too much? Here are some tips on how to lessen the burn.

Drink Milk

Got Milk? Maybe it's time you did! The active compound in pepper that causes a burning sensation is known as capsaicin. Casein found in milk neutralizes this compound, breaking down the molecules, so they're less potent.  

drinking milk

Drink whole milk if it's available. Fats absorb nutrients such as capsaicin. Consuming milk with a higher fat content will make this spicy compound less prevalent in your stinging mouth and belly. 

No milk? No problem! Anything dairy will do. Ice cream, yogurt, and if you're desperate, even a stick a butter can help in cutting down the burn. 

A Spoonful of Something Sweet

A spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down. It also makes the swelling in your mouth go down, too. 

All things sweet are made up of little crystallines. These crystals tend to absorb capsaicin partially. Plus, a little sweetness adds another complexity to your palette. By the time you're done putting out the fire, you may make your own hot sauce!

Eat Fluffy Foods

While casein will neutralize capsaicin and sugar molecules will absorb some of it,  fluffy foods create a barrier. Think of when you have a headache. All you want to do is wrap your head in you fluffy pillow. Pepper burn is like a headache for your mouth and bread is that fluffy pillow.


Up the cooldown factor by throwing on some peanut butter. Peanut butter has healthy fats that will soak up the capsaicin. Plus, who doesn't love a good peanut butter sandwich? Just opt out of the Pepper Jelly this time, okay?

Not into bread? Other starchy foods like potatoes, rice, and pasta should also do the trick!

Creamy is Dreamy

For the carb-conscious, a loaf of bread or a bowl of pasta may not be the most viable option. Instead, go for something with a creamy texture like yogurt, avocados, or bananas. If you're not carb-counting, then by all means--have an avo toast!

Foods that become soft and smooth as you chew them will coat your mouth. Their creamy texture is like putting lotion on a rash. Sit for a moment to let the foods cool down your tongue before swallowing. 

Suck a Lemon

Sometimes the only way to cut heat is to bring acid into the picture. Grab something citrusy like a lemon or lime and chomp into it! 

While capsaicin is getting all the heat for bringing the heat, other capsaicinoids also cause these pain sensations. They bind onto our pain receptors, creating that little annoying reminder that we just ate something spicy. 

Many capsaicinoids are alkaline. Therefore, they change the temporarily change the pH balance of the area they're in. This change in environment is was causes the pain receptors to trigger our tingly mouth. 

Citrus fruits are highly acidic. This quality is ideal for bringing the pH balance back to what it was before eating the spicy food. 

Bring the Heat Home

No matter how you decide to handle the heat, don't drink too much water. Capcaisin is like an oil-base. Have you ever tried mixing oil and water? It's not going to happen. Therefore, you are just swallowing the heat all over again!

Now that you're fully equipped to stand the heat, why not dip your toes into the water? Make your own hot sauce with our Homemade Hot Sauce Kit. We deliver everything you need to craft, bottle, and enjoy two hot sauce blends in your own home!


5 Ways to Use The Chili Lab Garden Blend Chili Flakes

Chili peppers are our favorite type of food, but we understand the apprehension people have when it comes to these fruits. Spicy food could be a bit nervewracking for the sensitive palette. That's why we came up with The Chili Lab. There is more to chili peppers than spice.

From berry to woody to citrusy, there are flavor profiles found in chili peppers you won't see from other foods. To celebrate their complexity, we came up with a chili flake blend with low heat and lots of flavors. Welcome to The Chili Lab Family - The Chili Flake Garden Blend.


From the Hot Sauce Kit to Chili Flakes


Our DIY Hot Sauce Kit--The Homemade Hot Sauce Kit, is extremely user-friendly. However, some people are a little hesitant to pick up the funnel. This hesitation doesn't mean they should be penalized from experiencing the spectrum of flavor that comes from chilies all over the world. That is why we came up with our line of Chili Flakes.


What is The Chili Lab Chili Flakes?


The Chili Lab Chili Flakes are a convenient way to bring flavor (and a touch of heat) to any dish, beverage, or sauce that you concoct. With a dash of a finger, the blandest pot roast can be transformed. It's that easy...and that delicious!

Our Chili Flakes come in three varieties:

🌶 Grove Blend
🌶 Forager's Blend
🌶 Garden Blend

Of the three, the Garden Blend has the lowest level of heat. That makes the Garden Blend a great introductory Chili Flake for the heat-hesitant. However, don't let a low-heat profile turn off the craziest of chili heads. There's still enough of a kick to satiate the buds.

With that being said, the flavor is unparalleled. The Garden Blend Chili Flake has a unique balance of:

🌶 Berry
🌶 Grassy
🌶 Spice

These are three sensations you wouldn't imagine melding together. Prepare to get your mind blown. So, how do you use the Garden Blend Chili Flakes? Here are 5 fantastic ways!


Rub Onto Pork


Meat is an integral part of the pork dish. However, if the protein isn't seasoned properly, then the recipe is rather pointless. A dry rub is essential to transforming from duller to dinner. 

pork tenderloin
The berry notes in our Garden Blend complements the juiciness of the meat. As it roasts, the juices will bind to the herbs. This marriage in flavor will guarantee an explosion of delight in your taste buds. 


Sprinkle Onto Popcorn


Let's face it. Nothing you make at home tastes quite like the movie theatre. So, stop clogging your arteries trying to get on their butter level. Turn a dry, flavorless popcorn into an artisan treat. 


What makes The Chili Lab Garden Blend stand out on popcorn is the herbal profile of the condiment. It gives a new take on popcorn that might just change the way you see this treat forever. Just don't be mad at us if the movie theatre shakes you down for trying to smuggle some Garden Blend Chili Flakes in!


Bloody Mary Mix


Let's face it. Every generation, the Bloody Mary game gets upped. Heck, Sunday brunches are littered with Build-You-Own-Blood-Mary Bars. Take it from the make your own hot sauce people...put some Garden Blend Chili Flakes in your next Bloody Mary!

tomato juice

The peppercorns in a Bloody Mary mix pairs wonderfully with the herbs in our Garden Blend. Then the tomatoes in the drink synchronize with the berry notes in the Garden Blend. And what's a Bloody Mary without a little heat? The three components of the Garden Blend Chili Flakes is refreshing icing on the Bloody Mary cake. 


Make Your Own Spice Blend


Part of the fun of getting in the kitchen is making the space your own. That includes making your own blends. Pre-packaged rubs and marinades are great and all, but you're talking to the same company who makes the DIY Hot Sauce Kit. Craft your own spice blend!


How do you think we came up with the Garden Blend Chili Flakes in the first place? You just need to see what works and go with it. Everyone's palette is different.

Use the Garden Blend Chili Flakes as a base and maybe sprinkle in some adobo and orange pepper for a chicken rub. Maybe mix the Garden Blend with some soy sauce and peanut butter to make an herby Thai teriyaki. The options are endless!


Make Your Own Hot Sauce


Of course, we are going to say make your own hot sauce. What's great about our Chili Flakes is that you can use them as refills for the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit. In fact, when you purchase the DIY Hot Sauce Kit, you get Forager's Blend and Grove Blend Chili Flakes as well. 

However, if you want to try a new type of hot sauce out, make your own hot sauce with the Garden Blend Chili Flakes. If you don't have the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit, you can also make a Basic Hot Sauce Recipe


St. Patrick's Day Recipes...with a Kick!

At the end of every rainbow might not be a pot o' gold, but this St. Patrick's Day you may find a pot of peppers. Whether you are looking for St. Patrick's Day appetizers recipes or traditional Irish St. Patrick's Day food, we have it all for you. And you know us, we even have a make your own hot sauce recipe. You know we can't resist. 

Corned Beef Stuffed Peppers

Image via Chili Pepper Madness

It wouldn't be traditional Irish St. Patrick's Day food without corned beef. And it wouldn't a Chili Lab post without chilies! So, we married the best of both words...or actually, Chili Pepper Madness did with these Corned Beef Stuffed Peppers.


🌶 2 bell peppers
🌶 1-1/2 cups shredded cabbage
🌶 1 small onion chopped
🌶 1 habanero pepper – or use a milder pepper if desired
🌶 2 cloves garlic
🌶 Dash of olive oil
🌶 10-12 ounces cooked corned beef chopped or shredded
🌶 ½ cup shredded Swiss cheese
🌶 3-4 tablespoons Thousand Island Dressing plus more for serving

Get the recipe via Chili Pepper Madness


Guinness BBQ Sauce


Guinness BBQ

Image Via The Messy Baker

As the makers of the Homemade Hot Sauce Kit, we felt pressured to deliver on a St. Patrick's Day make your own hot sauce recipe. Well...has does a HOT BBQ sauce sound? The best part? You can alter the heat to your liking. 


🌶 1 tablespoon canola oil
🌶 1/4 cup green pepper, finely chopped
🌶 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
🌶 2 garlic cloves, minced
🌶 1 1/2 cups Guinness
🌶 1 cup ketchup
🌶 1/3 cup brown sugar
🌶 1/4 cup molasses
🌶 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
🌶 1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
🌶 1 teaspoon ground mustard

🌶 salt& pepper

Get the full recipe via The Messy Baker.


Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie


Vegetarian's Shepherd's Pie

Image Via Delightful-Delicious-Delovely

Sure, this might not be the most traditional Irish St. Patrick's Day food. However, this vegetarian recipe gives a new spin on an old classic. Plus, it features the  jalapeño pepper...which we love. 


"Meat" Filling

🌶 1 block of extra firm tofu that has been frozen, then thawed, and shredded to the appearance of ground meat
🌶 1 large onion, chopped
🌶 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil
🌶 1/4 teaspoon of thyme
🌶 1/2 teaspoon of ground coriander seeds
🌶 freshly ground pepper to taste
🌶 3/4 cup of walnuts, toasted and chopped
🌶 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
🌶 2 tablespoons of soy sauce

Veggie Layer:

🌶 3 carrots, diced
🌶 10 Brussels sprouts, chopped
🌶 1 fennel bulb, chopped (optional)
🌶 1 jalapeño, seeded and diced (optional)
🌶 olive oil 
🌶 salt and pepper to taste

Jalapeño Mashed Potatoes:

🌶 2 large Russet potatoes
🌶 3 jalapeño peppers (or to taste)
🌶 4 T butter
🌶 4 oz cream cheese
🌶 salt and pepper to taste
🌶 more butter for browning 
🌶 parsley, chopped as garnish 


🌶 3 T butter
🌶 1/4 cup flour
🌶 1 1/2 cup vegetable stock
🌶 2 T soy sauce
🌶 1/2 tsp pepper

Get the full recipe via Delightful-Delicious-Delovely.


Creamy Potato Casserole with Bacon and Poblano Peppers

Creamy Potato Casserole


Image Via The Heritage Cook

You had us at creamy potato casserole. Throw in some poblanos and we're sold! Then, bacon? Come on now! Oh, and this is dish and gluten-free too. So, creamy, delicious, and traditional Irish St. Patrick's Day food all in one. Check it out!


🌶 6 to 8 strips of bacon, cooked until medium-crisp, drained and crumbled
🌶 4 Poblano peppers
🌶 4 large Russet (or Idaho) potatoes, scrubbed and peeled
🌶 1 tbsp organic olive oil
🌶 Kosher or sea salt
🌶 Freshly ground black pepper
🌶 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro or Italian parsley
🌶 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
🌶 1/3 cup heavy cream or half and half

Get the full recipe via The Heritage Cook.


Potatoes O'Brien


potatoes o'brien

Image Via: Savory Experiments

When it comes to traditional Irish St. Patrick's Day food, potatoes take center stage...even at The Chili Lab. However, we make sure we find recipes with chili peppers in them. Case in point, this take on Potatoes O'Brien. The name was created by an Irish cook who was tired of the same ol' fried potatoes. If you're tired of the same ol' too, give them a new type of seasoning with our Garden Blend Chili Flakes.


🌶 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
🌶 3 large red potatoes chopped into 1 inch pieces
🌶 1/2 cup red bell pepper chopped into 1 inch pieces
🌶 1/2 cup green bell pepper chopped into 1 inch pieces
🌶 1/2 cup onion chopped
🌶 Fine Sea Salt & Pepper
🌶 1 T Worcestershire sauce

Get the full recipe via Savory Experiments.

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with The Chili Lab. Tag us in your posts on social media. Want a hot sauce for every occasion? Check out our Hot Sauce Field Guide to make your next get-together a bit more flavorful.


    Peppertizers - Easy Pepper Appetizers That Everyone Will Love

    Here at The Chili Lab, we encourage you to do more than just make your own hot sauce. We want you to go beyond heat and enjoy the chili pepper for the unique fruit that it is. That is why we like to showcase ways you can use peppers to entertain your audiences. If you are looking up easy appetizer recipes, look no further than these pepper side dishes. They take little work on your end and will be the talk of your gathering.

    Cream Cheese & Sausage Stuffed Tribelli Mini Peppers

    Cream Cheese Stuffed Mini Peppers via That Skinny Chick Can Bake

    Image via That Skinny Chick Can Bake

    What we love about this peppertizer is how easy it is to make a lot of them. These mini peppers come in bulk in many produce aisles. So, for just five bucks, you'll have a bunch of bases. While we love our chilies, this stuffing is where the gold is. After you read this recipe, you might want to get a couple of bags of mini peppers!


    🌶 8 Morita Chili Peppers
    🌶 1 pound fresh Divine Flavor Tribelli peppers (sweet mini peppers)
    🌶 1 pound mild Italian sausage, cooked, crumbled, drained of fat
    🌶 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
    🌶 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
    🌶 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
    🌶 Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

    Get the full recipe courtesy of That Skinny Chick Can Bake.

    Bell Pepper Pizza

    Bell Pepper Pizzas via Peas and Crayons

    Image Via Peas and Crayons

    You had us at pizza. But then you go and throw bell pepper in there, and we're definitely sold. This recipe is another take on stuffed peppers but with everyone's favorite Wait, isn't the pizza supposed to be the one with the toppings? Well, it still can with this peppertizer!


    🌶 8 Morita Chili Peppers
    🌶 1 large bell pepper
    🌶 1/4 cup pizza sauce or spaghetti sauce
    🌶 1/4 cup grated cheese
    🌶 a pinch of red pepper flakes
    🌶 a pinch of basil or parsley
    🌶 as many toppings as you can fit

    Get the recipe via Peas and Crayons.

    Mini Hummus & Roasted Red Pepper Phyllo Bites 

    Mini Phylo Bites via Cook in Canuck

    Image Via Cook in Canuck.

    This vegetarian appetizer will have the carnivores salivating. It has the vegan marriage made in Heaven: roasted red peppers and hummus. Roasted red peppers and hummus is the new age peanut butter and jelly, trust us. 


    🌶 30 Athens Mini Fillo Shells (2 boxes), defrosted 
    🌶 3/4 c + 3 tbsp hummus (I use Sabra)
    🌶 1/2 c diced English cucumber
    🌶 1 roasted red pepper (2 halves), diced
    🌶 1 1/4 oz. (1/4 c) crumbled feta cheese
    🌶 2 tbsp minced flat-leaf parsley

    Get the recipe via Cook in Canuck.

     Blistered Shishito Peppers with Sriracha Aioli

    Blistered Shishito Peppers with Sriracha

    Image via Savory Simple.

    Sriracha and Shishito? Both sides of our mouths are watering. These peppertizers are mild with a hint of heat that will make your guests keep coming back for more. So, be sure to set some aside for yourself!


    Sriracha Aioli

    🌶 1/4 cup mayonnaise
    🌶 1 tablespoon Sriracha, or more to taste
    🌶 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
    🌶 1 clove garlic, grated or minced (see notes)
    🌶 Kosher salt if desired

    Blistered Shishito Peppers

    🌶 8 ounces (approximately 4 cups) shishito peppers; Padrón peppers may be substituted
    🌶 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (grapeseed or canola oil are also good options)
    🌶 1/2 medium lemon (approximately 1 tablespoon juice)
    🌶 Kosher or sea salt to taste

    Get recipe via Savory Simple.

    Really Good Jalapeño Dip

    Really Good Jalapeno Dip

    Image Via Inspired by Charm

    Every party needs a good dip. Why not kick this dip up? Literally! Sure, many people turn to the jalapeño for the tried-and-true jalapeño popper. However, there are many other uses for the jalapeño. For instance, why not give this favorite pepper the center stage as the kick needed in your dip?


    🌶 2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese softened
    🌶 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
    🌶 1 envelope dry ranch dressing mix
    🌶 1 large red pepper finely diced
    🌶 5 jalapeño peppers seeded and finely diced
    🌶 1 bag Tostitos Scoop chips

    Get the recipe by Inspired by Charm.

    Learn more about the chilies you've seen today with our Hot Sauce Field Guide!

    Pepper of the Week: Morita Pepper

    The Morita Pepper is one of the most popular chili peppers in Mexican cuisine. Typically used died, Morita chili peppers pack a lot of heat. While Morita chili peppers have a kick, they back up the bite with a ton of flavor.

    Morita Pepper

    A Morita pepper has a nutty profile that boasts a lingering smoky afterbite. Popular with the Aztecs and with a long line of fanatics today, let's shed the spotlight on the Morita Pepper. 

    What is a Morita Pepper?

    Morita chili peppers received their name as a loose Spanish translation to "pepper black berry." Many liken their looks to that of a mulberry. These resemblances are much in thanks to the dried chilies' dark red/purplish hue. Like the mulberry, the Morita has a bit of a sweet flavor. This fruity nuance bursts through the initial heat you experience when biting into a Morita pepper. 

    While it may look like a berry and have citrusy nodes, the Morita Pepper is actually a member of the jalapeño family. These fruits develop their chocolate-like aromas when they passed the ripening stage, becoming red. At its highest heat, the Morita pepper can boast a Scoville level of 10,000 SHU. 

    How to Use a Morita Pepper?

    Being such a celebrated staple of the Mexican community, you can use the Morita pepper in a litany of tantalizing dishes.

    Morita chili peppers are typically used in:

    🌶 Moles

    🌶 Stews

    🌶 Hot Sauce

    🌶 Salsas

    🌶 Adoboes

    🌶 Soups

    As you can see, the versatile flavors of the Morita pepper offer this fruit as a great accompaniment to any dish. Here are some of our favorite recipes involving the Morita pepper.

    Pork Tenderloin

    with Morita Chili Pepper Salsa

    Pork and salsa? This is an authentic Mexican dish made to make your mouth-water. The spiciness and fruitiness of the salsa bring great balance to the juicy pork tenderloin. Check out the recipe courtesy of Que Rica Vida.

    Pork Tenderloin

    🌶 8 Morita Chili Peppers
    🌶 3 Garlic Cloves
    🌶 2 cups of Water
    🌶 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
    🌶 1 tsp Ground Cumin
    🌶 2 tsp Powdered Seasoning
    🌶  Sea Salt, if necessary
    🌶 3 lbs Pork Tenderloin
    🌶 1 T Olive Oil
    🌶 6 Slices of Pineapple

    Get the recipe via Que Rica Vida.

    Smoky Spicy Amaretto

    After a long day, a stiff drink is much needed. A great way to unwind is to sweat out the stress. Enjoy the decompression process with this biteful, spiteful, and delightful drink! Courtesy of Well Preserved



    🌶 Chili Syrup
    🌶 1 cup of Sugar
    🌶 2-3 Dried Morita Peppers 
    🌶 1.5 ounces Amaretto 
    🌶 1 ounce Chili Syrup 
    🌶 1 ounce Lemon Juice
    🌶 Ice
    🌶 Thin Slices of Lime, Lemon, Morita Peppers

    Get the recipe via Well Preserved

    Celebrate the Morita Pepper

    Can't get enough of the Morita pepper? We don't blame ya one bit! That's why it's our Pepper of the Week. Join us on Instagram @TheChiliLab. We'll cover all things Morita Pepper including how to make your own hot sauce. 

    Want to take your love for food to the next level. Try our DIY Hot Sauce Kit. This Hot Sauce Making Kit has everything you need from bottles, strainers, to chili flakes. Artisan hot sauce...but homemade!


    Pepper of the Week: Raja Mirchi


    Pepper of the Week

    Raja Mirchi/Ghost Pepper

    We're used to going bold each #POW, but this week we just went bolder. It's the ghost pepper, Raja Mirchi.

    This pepper commands respect from foodies...and their taste buds. Once dubbed the "hottest chili pepper in the world," people keep coming back for more.

    Why are they hooked on the ghost? Let's dive a bit deeper in the Raja Mirchi, ghost pepper. 

    What is a Raja Mirchi Pepper?

    This beautiful pepper means a lot to many cultures. The Raja Mirchi brings a delicate heat to so many Asian delicacies. From curries to chutneys, the Raja Mirchi's spice is slightly offset by the fruit's sweet flavor. That complexity is the charm that keeps the locals hooked on this ghost pepper! 

    Raja Mirchi

    Image via Down to Earth

    The popularity of this chili pepper has earned this fruit many monikers. Therefore, you might see these peppers in specialty produce stores...and might not even realize you're looking at them!

    The long list of names for the Raja Mirchi Pepper includes:

    🌶 Naga Jolokia (Serpent Chili)

    🌶 Bhut Jolokia (Ghost Chili)

    🌶 Bih Jolokia (Poison Chili in Assamese)

    🌶 Raja Mirchi (King Pepper in Hindi)

    🌶 Pasa Kala (Chief Chili in Mishmi)

    With such revered names, you can see this scorcher is well-respected. So, why does the Raja Mirchi command such respect? Let's look a little closer this week's #POW.

    Characteristics of a Raja Mirchi Pepper:

    🌶 Heat intensity: Hot

    🌶 Size: 2 -3 inches 

    🌶 Scoville Units: 800,000 to 900,000 SHU

    🌶 Flavor Profiles: Subtly Sweet, Grassy Nodes

    As you can see, despite the heat, the Raja Mirchi has quite a nuanced flavor. Its subtle sweetness makes for a burn you can long for. 

    History of the Raja Mirchi Pepper

    This pepper's history is far entwined with Indian culture and cuisine. While natives have long heralded the heat that comes from the ghost pepper, the Raja Mirchi didn't rise to foodie prominence until the early 2000s.

    Raja Mirchi Pepper

    Image via The Better India

    A London, England-based restaurant called the Cinnamon Club carried a dish known as the world's hottest curry. This meal is brandished the Bollywood Burner.

    The lamb-based dish contained seven of the deadly hot peppers in its creamy gravy. Those who chose the dish have to sign a waiver before being served!

    Since its debut in the mainstream, the heat behind the Raja Mirchi has come to light. In fact, Indian military is tinkering with using this pepper in their weapon arsenal! In the meantime, this aromatic fruit is also used as a deterrent to protect elephants and crops in Asia. 

    Raja Mirchi Pepper Recipes

    Think you can stand the heat? Then get in the kitchen. There are so many ways to use King Pepper in your everyday life. Here are a few!

    King Chili Chutney

    Chutney is such a versatile tool in the kitchen. You can use it as a glaze for your meats. However, it's also a great accompaniment to toast in the morning. What's fun about chutney is you can add a little spice to the sweetness. To make it even easier, we just happen to have this recipe courtesy of Roots and Leisure here

    King Chili Chutney

    Image via Roots and Leisure


    🌶 1 King Chili Pepper (Raja Mirchi)
    🌶 1 Large Tomato
    🌶 1 Clove of Garlic
    🌶 Salt to Taste

    Look simple enough? Get the recipe courtesy of Roots and Leisure here. 

    Naga Style Pork Raja Mirchi

    Perhaps no other meat complements the complexity of Raja Mircho more than pork. It's flavored get lost within the pork's fibers, bringing out more nuances with each bite. Your mouth-watering yet? Then check out the recipe courtesy of First Post here

    Pork Chili

    Image via First Post


    🌶 1 T Salt
    🌶 Pork
    🌶 1 Raja Mirchi Pepper
    🌶 4 Dried Red Kashmiri Chillies

    🌶 8 Cloves Garlic
    🌶 1 tsp Salt

    To get the complete recipe, check out First Post here.

    Celebrate Pepper of the Week

    Don't ghost us all week long on the ghost pepper. Follow us on Instagram @TheChiliLab as we celebrate all things Raja Mirchi Pepper.

    These recipes get your mind turning? Try making some sauce at home. It's now easier than ever with our Homemade Hot Sauce Kit.