Nightshade Free Hot Sauce Recipe- Paleo, Vegan, Delicious

I love my hot sauce. Whether tobasco or sriracha or any other type, being able to add a kick to my food easily is something I really enjoy. In a discussion with a friend of mine who is off of nightshades (the family that includes potatoes, peppers, eggplant, and tomatoes), she noted how I use nightshades in most of my dishes. That confused me, as I avoid potatoes, eggplants, and peppers because they bother my stomach, and make many tomato free dishes. Then it hit me- hot sauce. I use it a lot. And it is made with hot peppers or hot pepper flakes.
It got me thinking- what if I could make a hot sauce that is nightshade free? Peppercorns are actually not in the nightshade family, so if I could make a hot sauce based on them instead of the usual hot peppers, we'd be in luck, and hopefully all those sensitive to nightshades would be able to finally have hot sauce. (People off nightshades are often told to add horseradish or mustard or fresh garlic or ginger to their food in place of hot sauce, but it is definitely not the same. They have very different tastes.
I set out to see if I could make a peppercorn based hot sauce, but first scoured the internet to see if I could find something like that already out there, but came up empty. So here it is. And it's darn good. I would say it rivals my homemade sriracha sauce in terms of taste. I highly highly recommend this recipe, and not just to people who can't use nightshades, but everyone. The one issue with it is the color not being as attractive as the bright red sriracha you see in the grocery store. Oh well.

While I used sweet potato in this recipe, if you're on the GAPS diet or another diet that forbids sweet potatoes, I am confident that it would work just as well with pumpkin, butternut squash, or carrots in place of the sweet potato. The purpose of the sweet potato is to add a mild sweetness that sriracha has, as well as thickening it, and any other orange veggie would work as well.

Nightshade Free Hot Sauce Recipe- Paleo, Vegan, Delicious

1 cup sweet potato, peeled and diced small
2 cups apple cider vinegar, divided
6 tablespoons ground (coarse or fine) black pepper
1 medium onion or 1 cup chopped
2 1/2 cups water, divided
2 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons salt, divided

1. Put the sweet potatoes, pepper, onion, garlic, 1 1/2 cups vinegar, 2 cups water, and 1 teaspoon salt in a pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer covered, mixing periodically, until the sweet potatoes are tender enough to stick a fork into them easily.

2. Transfer to a food processor and blend as finely as you can.

3. Put a mesh strainer over a large bowl, and using the back of a spoon, press as much sauce through the strainer as possible. What is in the bowl below can be already used as hot sauce, but I recommend completing all the steps.

4. Take the solids that remain behind in the strainer and return them to the pot with another teaspoon of salt, half a cup vinegar and half a cup water. Bring to a boil and simmer covered for approximately 10 more minutes, stirring often.

5. Press through a mesh strainer, catching the liquid that comes out, and mixing it with the hot sauce from the previous batch.

6. Enjoy as you would any hot sauce! Because of the vinegar and pepper acting as a preservative, this will last a very long time in the fridge.

Are you a fan of hot sauce? Do you prefer tabasco style, just sour and spicy, or more like sriracha with the added sweetness? Do you usually make your own hot sauce or buy?
Do you know anyone off nightshades? Does this look like a recipe you'd try?

Penniless Parenting

Mommy, wife, writer, baker, chef, crafter, sewer, teacher, babysitter, cleaning lady, penny pincher, frugal gal


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  1. Ooooo thank you thank you!!!! I miss my siriracha sauce on eggs in the morning! I'm so trying this!!!

  2. How much hot sauce does this make?

  3. Would beetroot powder work as a colouring?

    1. A combination of beetroot powder and turmeric works well

  4. This is not for everyone. I followed the recipe exactly, and the cooking sauce gave off a bizarrely petroleum-like odor. I tasted one drop of the finished sauce, and within a few minutes, my throat felt like it was closing up! 😢 Oh well, I guess I'll be sticking with horseradish and ginger to satiate my desire for spicy food.

  5. my husband has had a lot of pain with feet and ankles and was told when we last went to the er that there was some arthritis. It is mostly a plantar issue but I think the arthritis could be hindering a lot of the healing. He also loves anything hot and spicy and most of these foods are full of nightshades. So have been looking over the net for the proper replacements. I hope he will enjoy your hot sauce, he loves to put hot sauce on everything so I need something he will be ok using just to see if his body will improve some being of nightshades.

  6. This is great, but throw a raw, peeled beetroot in with the sweet potato and you've got your colour problem sorted :)

  7. I tried the recipe today and rather than using a food processor I used my Vitamix. I did not have any vegetable bits leftover after the first blend as it was all pureed. I'm assuming that was ok, but the only thing was I didn't add the last 1/2 cup of vinegar and water to the recipe. It turned out great, nice kick to it that's fore sure!

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