Sriracha (pronounced sir-rotch-ah or sear-raw-chah) is a bright red hot sauce that’s getting seriously popular. The paste-like sauce—named after Sri Racha, Thailand—is made from chili peppers, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and salt. The versatile hot stuff provides low-cal flavor and can be used as a dipping sauce for just about anything (Eggs? Sure! Chocolate ice cream? Yes please!), and is gaining fame as a go-to street-food condiment. If you want to sound extra cool, call it by its alias, “rooster sauce.”
To get started, make your own Sriracha with one of these recipes—honeyed Sriracha, simple Sriracha—or find it in most major grocery stores (typically in the Asian foods section) with a bright green cap and a rooster on the label. Added bonus: Besides firing up a meal, studies suggest the capsaicin in chili peppers can speed up metabolism and suppress appetite Effects of capsaicin, green tea and CH-19 sweet pepper on appetite and energy intake in humans in negative and positive energy balance. Reinbach, HC., Smeets, A., Martinussen, T., et al. Department of Food Science, University of Copenhagen, Rolighedsvej 30, Frederiksberg C, Denmark. Clinical Nutrition (Edinburgh, Scotland), Jun; 28(3):260-5. The effects of hedonically acceptable red pepper doses on thermogenesis and appetite. Ludy, MJ, Mattes, RD. Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana. Physiology and Behavior, 2011 Mar 1;102(3-4):251-8..
We’ve rounded up some of our favorite healthier Sriracha recipes, from healthy breakfast burritos, soups, and stews, to cocktails and sweet treats. Have a glass of milk on the ready, because it’s about to get hot up in here.
1. California Eggs Benedict Add slices of avocado and tomato to fluffy poached eggs for a new take on the old classic. Make a healthier hollandaise (it’s still creamy but has a little less butter) with Sriracha mixed right in.
2. Sweet Potato Breakfast Skillet Hash Counter the sweetness of sweet potatoes with Sriracha, garlic, and an egg. Added Bonus: You just need one pan!
3. Adobo Fried Rice Omelets These omelets don’t rely on stereotypical fillings like cheese and veggies. Instead, they’re stuffed with rice and chicken seasoned with ginger and soy sauce. For a healthier version, choose brown rice and low sodium soy sauce.
4. Sriracha Swirled Cornbread Muffins These moist corn muffins have Sriracha swirled right into the batter. Pack them for breakfasts on the go, or top with cottage cheese or plain Greek yogurt for a protein-packed snack.
5. Jalapeno Corn Waffles with Sriracha Maple Syrup This combination could not be more terrifying or more enticing all at the same time. Cut back on some of the cheese and sub in whole-wheat flour for a healthier waffle.
7. Sriracha and Veggie Frittata This frittata has tons of veggies and greens—spinach, red onion, peppers, mushrooms, and parsley—plus a mix of Parmesan and goat cheese. Sriracha goes right into the scramble, but a little drizzle on top is highly suggested.
8. Chopped Salad with Soba Noodles This clean eat has all sorts of healthy ingredients, including veggies, edamame, and cashews. Soba noodles are made from buckwheat, a gluten free flour (but check the label anyway since some manufacturers sneak wheat in there!).
9. BLT Summer Rolls This recipe is quick, simple, and light. Stuff the rolls with small strips of bacon, lettuce, and tomato. The Sriracha comes into play in the spicy-lime mayo. Find rice paper rolls in the international section of grocery stores or at Asian markets.
11. Lemongrass Sriracha Grilled Shrimp This Vietnamese-style dish takes less than 30 minutes to make and uses a garlic-lemongrass Sriracha marinade (Yum!). For extra heat, go buck wild with the chili dipping sauce. The skewers make for a pretty presentation for an appetizer or lunch.
12. Shrimp Quinoa Spring Rolls Quinoa strikes again! This time it’s used as a stand-in for rice in these healthier spring rolls. Julienned cucumbers and carrots accompany shrimp, lettuce, and quinoa inside rice paper wrappers. Dip them in a sriracha-infused peanut sauce to up the nom-factor.
13. Sriracha Fried Rice Choose brown rice and olive oil to make this spicy rice a slightly healthier lunch choice. Add some green with broccoli florets or Bok Choy, and beef up the meal with a protein like tofu, chicken, or steak.
14. Spicy Peanut Butter Tofu Tofu isn’t the most glamorous looking (or tasting) food. However, dousing it in garlic, ginger, soy sauce, Sriracha, and peanut butter make it exponentially more appealing. The tofu slices are browned, and the sauce thickens when cooked for non-rubbery tofu that’s anything but bland.
15. Peanut Chicken Grilled Cheese Make the grilled cheese part of this recipe healthier by using whole-wheat toast, plain shredded chicken, and ¼ cup of cheese. Believe us, there’s still plenty of creaminess thanks to the peanut sauce and avocado, plus tons of flavor from cilantro and—of course—Sriracha.
16. Sriracha Croutons Spice up a boring salad or soup with hot croutons. This simple recipe calls for only four ingredients—bread, oil, Sriracha, and garlic. Use whole grain bread for a heartier bite.
17. Black Bean Burger with Sriracha Sauce These meat-free burgers include red peppers, red onion, and green peppers, and stick together with panko breadcrumbs, egg, and black beans. The simple sauce is made up of non-fat plain yogurt, Sriracha, and minced cilantro.
18. Honey Sriracha Beef Skewers Marinate cubes of steak in a mixture of honey, soy sauce, and Sriracha. Serve them skewered on giant Boston lettuce leaves with cucumber slices and sour cream (or use Greek yogurt as a healthier substitution).
19. Miso Mushroom Pasta This hearty meal is more pasta dish than soup, and combines a mushroom sauce with red miso paste, Greek yogurt, lime, Sriracha, and broccoli florets. "Healthify" the recipe by using whole-wheat linguine.
20. Seared Scallops With Sriracha Beurre Blanc If you’ve never heard of this fancy-sounding sauce, we’ll clue you in. It’s got minced shallots, rice wine vinegar, lemon juice, butter, Sriracha, and fresh herbs. Plate the scallops with a sprinkle of fresh herbs, a lemon wedge, and a drizzle of sauce.
21. Sriracha-Lime Chicken Skillet This recipe doesn’t require many ingredients or much effort (the oven does all the work). Toss chicken thighs in an oven-safe skillet with olive oil, lime juice, Sriracha, and onion. Let the whole shabang hang out under a broiler toward the end of cooking to make it all nice and crispy.
22. Chicken Curry Soup Coconut milk is a perfect way to mellow out the Sriracha and curry paste in this flavorful soup. Once all the veggies are chopped and the chicken is diced, the curry soup whips up in less than 15 minutes.
23. Vegan Sausages “Vegan sausage” may sound like an oxymoron, but this spiced up version uses refried beans and chickpea flour as a base. If liquid smoke isn’t a pantry staple in your house, sub in Worcestershire sauce for equal flavor.
24. Sriracha Salmon Ceviche Towers These towers are totally fancy. The stacks of deliciousness are formed by filling an empty can (with both ends removed) with layers of salmon, guacamole, and a Sriracha-soy sauce. Radish and cucumber add a little crunch.
25. Baked Sriracha Spaghetti Squash with Turkey Spaghetti squash, the sneaky vegetable that pretends to be pasta, grows from a side dish into a main meal by adding in ground turkey. Onion, garlic, olive oil, fish sauce, and Sriracha season the squash.
26. Salmon Sriracha Pasta Salad
This recipe adds broiled, seasoned salmon to pasta (try whole-wheat for a healthier, more filling dish), fresh herbs, and greens. To up the health factor, use reduced-fat mayo and sub in plain Greek yogurt for the sour cream. This dish can be served warm or cold.
27. Grilled Sriracha-Sesame Turkey Meatballs Revamp meatballs with ground turkey, whole-wheat breadcrumbs, and the absence of fatty oils. Take meatballs out of the skillet and try cooking them on the grill for a smokier flavor profile.
28. Sriracha Sesame Ginger Popcorn This isn’t your average over-salted, over-fake-buttered movie theater snack. Give the popped kernels a good shake in a mixture of butter, olive oil, Sriracha, sesame seeds, garlic, and ground ginger.
29. Baked Sriracha Butternut Squash Fries Tell us one person who doesn’t like French Fries. While some people may steer clear of the prized fry’s lackluster nutritional value, these “fries” use butternut squash and an oven instead of potatoes and a deep fryer. Dip the sweet squash fries into a mixture of peanut oil and Sriracha.
30. Spicy White Bean Dip Hummus is cool and all, but when you’re feeling like a change, try this hot soy sauce and Sriracha-infused alternative. It’s got a lot going on with lime juice, curry powder, and garlic and works well with whole-wheat pita or as a sandwich spread.
31. Whole Wheat Sriracha Cheese Crackers These cheddary, spicy crackers aren’t exactly as healthy as a handful of carrots. But if you’re jonesing for a cheesy crunch (without all those hard-to-pronounce ingredients from processed versions), they’re a great homemade alternative.
32. Sriracha-Glazed Wings Whisk up soy sauce, vinegar, Sriracha, ginger, sesame oil, and a dash of sugar to coat chicken wings. Bake them in the oven until the sauce thickens up, and make sure to have a stack of napkins nearby. Feel free to use the glaze for spicy-sweet chicken breasts, too!
33. Shrimp Pot Stickers with Sriracha-Ginger Dip These pot stickers are simple: Shrimp, carrot, and scallions get tucked inside wonton wrappers. The dipping sauce combines soy sauce, Sriracha, sesame oil, ginger, and a touch of sugar (as always, feel free to reduce the sugar). Serve as a party appetizer or use the glaze as a marinade for any protein.
34. Sriracha, Cilantro, and Lime Roasted Chickpeas We’ve tackled crunchy, roasted chickpeas before. This time, coat canned chickpeas (dried ones work too!) in a mixture of olive oil, Sriracha, lime juice, sea salt, cilantro, and lime zest for a flavorful snack.
35. Spicy Avocado Rice Cakes Take a boring dry rice cake to new levels with Sriracha, avocado, and arugula. Choose a super-ripe avocado to make a spread that’s more likely to stick to the crunchy cake.
36. Sriracha Deviled Eggs Deviled eggs can be the devil when they’re loaded with mayo. Keep a healthy food healthy by using less mayo (or choosing a reduced-fat variety), and add flavor with Sriracha and garlic.
37. Roasted Brussels with Sriracha Aioli Brussels sprouts get racy in this super easy recipe. Roast ‘em up with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper, then dip them in a mixture of Sriracha and reduced-fat mayo or plain Greek yogurt.
38. Taro Fries with Sriracha Ketchup Taro is kind of a funky root veggie, but makes for a great healthier version of chips and fries with its nutty, slightly sweet flavor. Dip the fries in a mixture of ketchup, Sriracha, and a touch of chili oil.
39. Spicy Roasted Edamame This recipe has only five ingredients: Edamame, oil, soy sauce, Sriracha, and wasabi powder (Note: This recipe is almost guaranteed to open up your sinuses). For a protein-filled crunch, these spicy beans fit the bill.
40. Green Tomatoes with Sriracha Ranch These “fried” green tomatoes are gluten free (thanks to almond flour) and baked in an oven for a healthier take on the naughty pub fare. Dip each crispy tomato round into a mixture of ranch and Sriracha, or skip the ranch and go straight to the Srirarcha for fewer calories.
41. Strawberry Sriracha Margarita This, we’ve got to try. After blending up margarita staples—strawberries, tequila, ice—bump up the spice level with a good helping of Sriracha (For a lesser-guilt beverage, feel free to cut back on the sugar.). Just get us a pool, some floaties, and we’re in.
42. Sriracha Mango Cocktail These shots are “not for sissies.” Each glass layers a mix of mango puree, whiskey, and lime with a base of Sriracha. The little shooters start out sweet and then kick you right in the tush.
44. Sriracha and Wasabi Bloody Mary A good bloody is known for its kick, but this one gets an extra boom boom pow from the trio of wasabi, Worcestershire, and Sriracha. The recipe makes enough for two, but we won’t tell anyone if you chose not to share.
46. Ginger Citrus Cocktail Ginger and Sriracha—often paired in food recipes—share the spotlight in this vodka-spiked cocktail. Serrano chilies make it even hotter.
47. Chocolate Sriracha Ice Cream Your mind may be blown, but Sriracha in ice cream is a real thing. Coconut milk cools down the hot-pepper flavor. Cocoa powder, ground cinnamon, and maple syrup also take a ride in the ice cream maker. Let's be honest: This dessert is no fruit kebab, but it’s healthier than many store-bought frozen novelties.
48. Spicy Banana Fritters Chunks of banana are literally painted with Sriracha to make these fritters. They may not be the healthiest choice, but at least we’re getting some potassium as part of this sweet treat. Since frying isn't exactly a healthy cooking method, we recommend popping these tasty slices under the broiler instead.
50. Spicy Strawberry Milkshake For a slightly healthier take on this scrumptious recipe, combine nonfat or low fat strawberry frozen yogurt, skip the graham cracker crumbs, and add Sriracha and whipped cream for a spicy but cold, semi-“healthy” dessert.
Originally posted February 2013. Updated August 2013.