Sriracha has built a fervent fanbase over the years, but the makers of this cult-favorite hot sauce announced an according to Huy Fong (PDF)., much to the dismay of spicy sauce-lovers. The shortage is a product of a particularly meager spring harvest of chili peppers used in making the Thai-inspired condiment,
Sriracha rations have already become depleted on store shelves on online retailers. While a world -- or even a summer -- without the spicy and slightly sweet sauce sounds like a bummer, there are some excellent Sriracha alternatives to add to your pantry shelves to tide you over.
From knockoff Srirachas to spins on the original and even a few similar-but-different condiments to try on your soups, sandwiches and stir-fries, these are the best Sriracha substitutes for when you can't have the real thing.
The best Sriracha alternatives to try this summer
Chili crisp isn't an exact Sriracha replacement but it has a lot of the same flavors: heat, sweet and umami. Lao Gan Ma's chili crisp is another cult-favorite condiment and can add some nice pop to your foods when Sriracha isn't an option.
This is one I haven't tested yet, but the recipe is similar to Hoy Fung's Sriracha and this Thai-made chili sauce gets enthusiastic reviews on Amazon and elsewhere. A pack of six bottles will run you $18 on Amazon.
Fly by Jing also makes an excellent chili crisp for topping sandwiches, ramen, stir-fries and dipping your dumplings and other dim sum favorites into. It sports a harmony of sweet, spicy and salty flavors, but with a bit more of umami punch courtesy of sesame oil, mushroom and fermented black bean.
A jar of this addictive condiment will run you $15 or you can nab them at a discount if you buy four or six at once.
While we're trying new sauces, Fly by Jing's Zhong sauce is equally excellent, although perhaps not as close in flavor to Sriracha as chili crisp. This dipping sauce gets a rich sweetness from brown sugar and aromatic soy sauce.
David Chang and Momofuku make an equally delicious chili crunch condiment. This version has a healthy dose of sesame seeds and will keep your food sufficiently spiced until Sriracha comes back in stock.
As you might expect, the popularity of Sriracha has spawned some knockoff creations. Bushwick Kitchen makes the Weak Knees Gochujang Sriracha sauce. It's made from most of the same ingredients as Hoy Fung's sizzling sauce and appears to be in stock (for now).
The Sriracha shortage is as good a time as any to experiment with twists on the sauce. Bushwick Kitchen also makes a curry Sriracha that's in stock and selling for $11 a bottle.
Cholula's chili garlic sauce is another classic condiment that seems to be in short supply, but the sweet habanero is another good substitute that can shoulder some of Sriracha's load during the shortage. Amazon has bottles for just over $4 each when you buy a pack of six.
Heartbeat makes a full lineup of incredible hot sauces. While none of them are a perfect imitation of Sriracha, the shiitake Szechuan is closest. If you like a little sweetness from fruit with your spicy -- as I do -- the mango habanero and pineapple habanero are also both positively addicting.
Melinda's makes over a dozen excellent sauces that you can buy online. The closest to Sriracha is the tasty Thai Sweet Chili, but don't sleep on others, including the habanero honey mustard and black truffle hot sauce.