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Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce Recipe

If you’re looking for a spicy chocolate sauce, I hate to burst your bubble, but there’s no chocolate in this delicious hot sauce.

But if you love heat, you’re going to love it!

I know it’s confusing, but this recipe is made using chocolate habaneros instead of the traditional orange or yellow versions.

Chocolate habaneros are also known as Chili Habanero, Cubano, or just plain Chocolate.

They get their name from their dark reddish-brown color, reminiscent of fine chocolate.

However, there’s nothing sweet about them – these peppers pack a lot of heat!

They’re nearly twice as hot as regular habaneros but with a hint of smokiness.

And don’t worry if you can’t find chocolate habaneros – this habanero hot sauce recipe tastes great using any peppers – regular habaneros, serranos, jalapenos, and even poblanos.

Plus, it’s so easy to make you can have it ready in just minutes.

So if you can’t say sauce without saying hot, you’ll love making this Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce recipe!

What Do You Need To Make Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce


Chocolate Habanero Peppers

These peppers get their name from their dark reddish-brown skin.

They are hotter than regular habaneros and have a slightly smokey flavor.

If you can’t find chocolate habaneros, feel free to use yellow or orange ones.

Fresh Garlic

Adds a pungent bitterness that goes perfectly with the spicy habaneros.

Fresh Onion

Gives your hot sauce a bit of savory flavor.

Use a sweet for the white for a sweeter-tasting hot sauce, while a red onion will give your sauce a more intense flavor.

Vegetable Oil

You need just a little for charring the peppers, garlic, and onion.

Fresh Orange, Grapefruit, and Lime Juice

Traditionally, this hot sauce is made with bitter orange juice, known as naranja agria in Mexico, but it can be almost impossible to find in the States.

However, you can create the same flavor by combining regular orange, grapefruit, and lime juice.

I recommend squeezing fresh fruit, but you can use bottled versions – just look for juice with no added sugar.


You want to use fresh cilantro for this recipe – no wilted stems – or your hot sauce will have a soapy flavor.

Can’t find fresh? Then skip the cilantro, as dried doesn’t have the same taste.

Salt and Pepper

Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper are best, but use sparingly so you don’t over-season your hot sauce.


  • Cutting board and knife
  • Skillet or griddle (for roasting the peppers, garlic, and onion)
  • Small bowl (for mixing the bitter orange juice)
  • Blender or food processor
  • Spoon or spatula

How To Make Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce

Step One: First, heat the oil in a skillet or griddle and add the habaneros, garlic (with their skins), and onion.

Step Two: Roast the vegetables, turning them regularly to get an even color. The garlic will take less time, so remove it before it chars and set aside.

Step Three: Once roasted, remove the peppers and onion and allow to cool with the garlic.

Step Four: Next, combine the orange, grapefruit, and lime juices to make the bitter orange juice.

Step Five: Remove the garlic skins and pepper stems and place them with the onion in a blender. Puree until they make a thick paste.

Step Six: Next, while the blender is running, slowly add the orange juice mixture and puree until your hot sauce is smooth.

Step Seven: Taste, adjust any ingredients, and season with salt and pepper.


TIP: all peppers contain capsaicin, the chemical that gives them their distinctive heat. I recommend using gloves when handling them and avoiding getting any on your skin, especially your eyes. Capsaicin repels water, so if you accidentally get some on you, use milk. The acids in milk break down the capsaicin, eliminating the heat rather than water which spreads it around.

Other Things To Consider When Making Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce

You Can Customize Your Hot Sauce

Chocolate habaneros pack double the heat as regular habaneros, so feel free to reduce the number to reduce the spice.

You can also add a teaspoon of honey to cut the heat and give your sauce a touch of sweetness.

Can’t find chocolate habaneros? You can use yellow or orange habaneros, jalapenos, or serranos – or try a mix of all three.

And for a hot sauce with not nearly the heat but loaded with great pepper flavor, try using poblano chilis.

What Can I Eat With Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce?

This Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce recipe will bring the great taste of the Yucatan to all your favorite dishes.

Use it anytime you’re craving some smokey, fiery heat.

  • Drizzle it over grilled fish, chicken, steak, and pork.
  • Adds the perfect amount of spice to your favorite stews and chilis.
  • Mix with mayonnaise for a spicy dip.
  • Use this hot sauce for great-tasting fiery chicken wings.
  • And speaking of chocolate, add a little to your favorite chocolate sauce and drizzle over ice cream for a spicy-sweet dessert!

Make More Than You Need!

Can’t get enough spicy heat?

Then go ahead and double the recipe.

This Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce recipe will stay fresh in the fridge for up to a month or you can freeze it for up to six months.

Yield: Yield: 1 ½ cups of sauce (approx. 16 servings)

Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce Recipe

Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce Recipe

If you are looking for an extra hot, hot sauce, you are going to need to follow this Chocolate Habanero Hot Sauce Recipe. Using chocolate habaneros, which are nearly twice as hot as regular habaneros but with a hint of smokiness, this is the perfect sauce for a wide range of dishes.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 8 chocolate habanero peppers
  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic
  • ½ medium white onion, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • ½ cup fresh orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. First, heat the vegetable oil in the skillet or griddle under medium heat. Once hot, add the habaneros, garlic (leave the skins on), and onion.
  2. Roast the vegetables, turning them regularly to get an even brownish color. The garlic cloves will cook faster than the peppers, so remove them when ready and set aside.
  3. Continue roasting the peppers and onion until done, remove from the heat, and allow to cool.
  4. While cooling, mix the orange, grapefruit, and lime juices together.
  5. Remove the garlic skins and pepper stems and place the habaneros, garlic, and onion in a blender or food processor and puree until they form a thick paste.
  6. Next, slowly add the orange juice mixture while running until you have a smooth sauce.
  7. Taste your sauce and adjust any of the ingredients.
  8. Season with salt and pepper.
  9. Place in a bowl to serve.
  10. Enjoy!


  • Change the peppers to change the heat. You can substitute regular habaneros, jalapenos, or serranos - or use a mix of all three.
  • Add a teaspoon of honey to give your hot sauce a touch of sweetness.
  • Like a tangy hot sauce? Add two tablespoons of apple cider or distilled white vinegar.
  • Add fresh mango or pineapple for a tropical flavor.
  • A ¼ teaspoon of ground allspice will give your hot sauce a Caribbean flair.

Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 15Total Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 15mgCarbohydrates: 2gProtein: 1g

Other Habanero hot sauce recipes you may want to try:

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