Just look at how many household names have publicly declared their love for the spicy stuff; Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Charlize Theron, Russell Brand and Beyoncé to name a few – even Hillary Clinton claims to carry a bottle of her favourite sauce in her purse (Ninja Squirrel, for the record). Tiny bottles of Tabasco sauce were included in the British Army's ration packs to add flavour to the basic provisions inside, and hot sauce has even been known to save lives.
If you’re a fully paid up member of the Hot Sauce Appreciation Society, you’re already aware of how a few drops of a chilli-based condiment can upgrade even the most pedestrian of dishes. If you’re anything like us, you probably have a collection of half-full bottles in your kitchen, each poised to liven up all manner of occasions, moods and seasons, as well as foods.
A passion for pepper is about more than taste. Chilli, part of the nightshade family of fruit that also includes tomatoes and bell peppers, is known to have numerous health-benefits and is rich in vitamins and minerals.
They also contain capsaicin, which aside from giving chilli its moreish heat, can also boost metabolism, fight flu and even help with pain relief. Ever experienced a feel-good rush after chowing chilli?
There’s a reason for it: capsaicin tricks you into thinking you’re in pain (which you may be, depending on how far up the Scoville scale you dare to dance), and your brain will release endorphins and dopamine as a response, leading to feelings of elation. Is it any wonder we’re all hopelessly addicted?
Chillies in our diets has a proud and noble history that stretches back thousands of years, and our obsession with them is stronger than ever today. Such is the love for all things hot sauce that it’s sprinkled across pop culture, from music to fashion. It’s a unifier that brings together people of all ages, from all cultures and backgrounds.
Forget stashing a bottle of red hot in your bag - now you can attach it to your keys for added convenience. This empty bottle is made from squeezey plastic, ready to fill with Sriracha or your favourite brand of hot sauce. You'll get 30ml of sauce in this, and it comes with a handy clip so you can keep it on you wherever you go.
Wear your love for hot sauce right where everyone can see it; on your finger. This cool street-style ring is for those who take their hot sauce seriously and comes in a selection of finishings; brass (gold), white bronze (silver), 10ct and 14ct yellow gold. Sizes range from 5 to 13 with half sizes also available. The handmade piece is shipped from the US, so allow up to 10 working days for delivery.
For an altogether classier way to display your love for hot sauce, this poster imagines Tabasco through a surrealist prism. It's what Dali would have wanted.
Is there such a thing as too much sauce? Pah, never! Ideal for anyone with a soft spot for the hot stuff, this all-nylon bum bag will raise a smile from all who set their eyes upon it. There are three compartments sealed with quality zippers and held together with an adjustable strap on the waist - or over one shoulder as is the style du jour.
Anyone who has gazed in appreciation at the label on a bottle of Cholula knows it’s a work of branding art. It's thought the woman depicted in the centre is Camila Harrison, the matriarch of the Cholula company family, but no one can tell for sure.
Whoever she is, the illustration deserves more prominence than just as a wrapper which is why we’re so approving of this t-shirt with a supersized version of it splashed proudly across the chest. Available in black, grey and white and from sizes S to XXL.
They may look cute but these sweets are not for the faint of heart - or anyone with a low pain threshold. Infused with Habanero pepper, they pack serious heat and are best enjoyed with a cold pint or mixed in with regular bears as a fun/evil party favour. They’re strictly not for kids, unless your little ones happen to have tongues made of Teflon.
What better gift for a chilli fan than a kit that will allow them to make a spicy condiment of their very own? This all-in-one kit contains packets of various dried chilli (think Habanero, Dried Aji Amarillo Peruvian chillies and a Togarashi Japanese spice blend) as well as garlic flakes and a bottle of cider vinegar to get you on your way. There's also a funnel to decant your home brew into a pair of glass bottles. Finish with a personalised label and keep for yourself or give to a kindred spirit.
Perhaps not the ultimate but possibly the most expensive way to display your adoration for chilli is this charm from luxe jeweller Annoushka. Encrusted with fiery rubies and yellow and orange sapphires, the charm is tipped with 18ct rose-gold and attaches with a bail clasp. Wear with pride.
This bottle of red has cult status all over the US, particularly in the southern states from where it hails. It's more about flavour than blasts of eye-watering heat, delivering a delicious vinegar-led oomph to everything from red meat, shellfish, chicken and vegetables making it a store-cupboard staple.
Find a two-pack of Crystal Hot Sauce on Amazon, along side a bundle of other winners like Valentina Salsa Picante from Mexico.
This bumper gift set lets you travel the world via your taste buds with a selection of 15 spicy condiments from destinations such as Rio De Janeiro, India and the terrifyingly named Death Valley in east California. The only question is, are you tough enough? Roll it out at your next party alongside some tortilla chips for a foodie version of Russian Roulette.
As a hot sauce aficionado there's few things more distressing than being without your favourite bottle, especially when faced with a dreary meal. That's why our top spot goes to the Pocket Sriracha Hot Sauce Bottle Keyring. Less of a faff and more discreet than carting around a full-size bottle, it's perfect for taking with you anywhere and the 30ml capacity means it's even ideal for plane journeys.
If you have more cash to splash, we can't stop looking at SNASH's hot sauce ring. It's the ultimate accessory for die-hard fans.
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