Peach Habanero Hot Sauce

August 18, 2016(updated on July 5, 2022)

This peach habanero hot sauce brings sweet, gentle heat to all your favorite foods. Make sure to use peaches at the pinnacle of ripeness for maximum deliciousness.

finished peach habanero hot sauce

I am not someone who goes for crazy hot foods. I firmly believe that eating should be grounded in pleasure rather than pain or discomfort. However, I do believe that there’s something uniquely appealing about sauces that allow for the careful, targeted application of gentle heat.

And so, when I develop hot sauce recipes, they are relatively mellow, mild ones that enhance rather than sear. Dealer’s choice, as it were.

quick peeling peaches

That’s all to say that this may well be the most tame peach habanero hot sauce you’ll ever encounter. If you’re someone who likes to be challenged by your condiments, this probably isn’t the recipe for you. However, if you like sweet, easygoing heat, you are in the right place.

habaneros on a metal baking sheet

For this recipe, I used the peeling technique described in this post (quarter peaches, lay them in a heatproof baking dish, bring kettle to a boil, pour over peaches, rinse with cold water, peel). Once peeled, they went into a big pot with diced onion, a sweet orange pepper, six seeded habaneros (wear disposable gloves!), garlic, vinegar, a little sugar, lemon juice, and salt.

ingredients for peach habanero hot sauce

I simmered everything over medium heat while making dinner, giving it a stir on occasion and breaking up the peaches with my spatula with every turn. Once the peaches were totally tender and the onions were translucent, I used an immersion blender to puree the sauce smooth.

peach habanero hot sauce in pot

I canned the sauce in some of the barbecue sauce bottles I got from Fillmore Container, though you could just as easily use whatever canning jar you have to hand (the processing time remains the same for pints or smaller. If you move to a quart, increase the processing time by five minutes). I look forward to opening one up in a couple months, when it’s had time to mellow even more.

Oh, and in case you missed my post yesterday, this hot sauce was made with peaches from the folks at the Washington State Fruit Commission. I made this Gingery Peach Butter with the other half of the peaches. Nectarine recipes are still to come.

5 from 12 votes

Peach Habanero Hot Sauce

Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time45 minutes
Processing Time15 minutes
Servings: 4 pints


  • 3 pounds peaches, quartered and peeled
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 sweet orange pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 5-6 habanero peppers, stemmed and seeded
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 cup bottled lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sea salt


  • Prepare a boiling water bath canner and enough jars to hold 4 pints of hot sauce (you can also can this in 8 half pint jars or 15 12-ounce jelly jars).
  • Combine the peaches, vinegar, sugar, onion, peppers, garlic, lemon juice, and salt in a low, wide, non-reactive pan.
  • Set over high heat and bring to a boil. Once the contents of the pan are bubbling, reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until the peaches, peppers, and onions are tender.
  • Remove the pot from the heat and puree using an immersion blender.
  • Funnel into the prepared jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.
  • Wipe the rims, apply the lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 15 minutes.
  • When the time is up, remove the lid from the pot and turn off the heat. Let the jars rest in the cooling water for five minutes. When that time is up, remove jars and set them on a folded kitchen towel to cool.
  • When the resting time is up, remove the jars and set them on a folded kitchen towel to cool. When the jars/bottles have cooled enough that you can comfortable handle them, check the seals. Sealed jars/bottles can be stored at room temperature for up to a year. Any unsealed jars/bottles should be refrigerated and used promptly.

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132 thoughts on "Peach Habanero Hot Sauce"

  • I have noticed in your recipes using lemon juice you call for bottled juice. Is bottled better than fresh some how?

      1. I was hoping to swap strawberries for the peaches. Would that work? I have searched and searched for a strawberry habanero wing sauce and have had no luck!

        1. I haven’t done it that way, so I really don’t know. Strawberries tend to be less dense than peaches, so you’ll probably need to cook the sauce longer to get to a good consistency, so the yield will probably be less.

    1. It looks like a “bull’s horn” type pepper. I’m no expert but when I’ve had them, they tasted like bell peppers.

    2. It was a sweet orange pepper from the farmers market. You could just as easily use a bell pepper. This is just what I happened to have.

  • So is the sugar needed for canning, or could it be omitted? I know it will up the heat a little since it won’t be there to balance.

    1. The sugar helps retain the color and adds flavor. You could swap in some honey if the refined sugar is the issue.

  • Yum, I want to make this. I have some Habanero on the counter and had no idea what to do with them! What do you eat it with?

  • I’d like to hear from folks how they would use this sauce. I don’t have habeneros; but I do have an overabundance of jalepenos (which would probably affect the color).

    *searching the recipe archive now for “too many jalepenos”*

    1. It’s not painfully hot, like some habanero sauces you find. It’s definitely going to be spicy, just not uncomfortably so. Some of the recipes I read called for as many as 18-20 habanero peppers. And the big orange pepper was a sweet pepper from the farmers market. No different from a bell pepper.

  • I too was shocked that 6 habaneros does create a “hot” sauce. I do love very spicy everything. So I’d like to make this really hot. If I add a bunch more habaneros, will it affect the canning process? Thanks much.

    1. It’s not un-spicy. It’s just a mellow heat rather than a totally searing one (some of the recipes I read called for as many at 18-20 habaneros for a similarly sized batch). You can increase the amount of peppers if you want something a little more intense.

  • Could have used this recipe last week…pickled some…canned the rest. All peached out. Maybe I’ll try this next year. Thks for posting

  • I made a very similar sauce not long ago that also had bourbon in it. For those that want it hotter, add a hotter pepper. I used about the same number of habaneros but also added two Carolina Reapers. It kept the flavor of the habs, but is very very hot.

  • I also took the mash after running it through the food mill and dried it out and ground it up. I use the dried powder more than the sauce!

  • Thanks so much for this ‘moderate’ hot sauce! I am surrounded by folks who think food is ‘just right’ when it brings tears to your eyes and flames shooting out of your mouth. I thought I was done with peaches too but I’m going to get some more for this and to try your peach chutney.

  • What kind of bottles and caps do I need for hot water bath if I prefer sauce bottles over canning jars?

  • Any hints on fitting those jars in the canning pot. I always have to fill mine to the rim and it simmers over.

  • I made this delicious hot sauce the other day and used the recommended bottles and hot water bath. They are absolutely beautiful but the sauce is starting to separate in some of the bottles. Is this normal? If so, what is the recommended shelf life?

    1. Did you heat the peaches, cool them, and then heat them again? The process of heating, cooling, and heating often causes peach pulp to separate. It’s entirely safe, it just doesn’t look as pretty. The sauce should still keep for at least a year.

  • Yes!! I started too late in the evening so I canned the next day. I’ll keep these for family and make another batch for gifts. I love this recipe and the local peaches have been extraordinary this summer.

    I see that you are going to Nashville – I wish you would come to Memphis!

    1. So glad I was able to diagnose the problem. I’m really sorry I wasn’t able to make it to Memphis this time around. Hopefully next time!

  • I just made this and when I took the jars out of the water bath, I noticed some separation. All of the jars have sealed but I am not sure if this is normal? I am new to canning so I am worried I did something wrong.

  • Do you know about how many cups of chopped peaches would be equivalent to the 3#? I have some chopped frozen peaches that I put up during our peach season this year year, and would like to try this.

  • I am in the process of canning this recipe right now and it is SO GOOD! I doubled up on the batch and it turned out super spicy. I love the heat so it’s great for me. I think my peaches weren’t quite ripe enough and also had trouble peeling them so the sweetness wasn’t as forthcoming as it probably would’ve been if they had been more ripe. How long do I have if I don’t process the leftovers?

  • Made this and used 10 orange habaneros (1/2 of them I left the seeds) and added a touch more sugar. Also added just a drop of orange food coloring so it had a nice color. Spicy and sweet

  • I notice you said you “canned” the sauce in the sauce bottles pictured. Can you can in these types of bottles to make a product shelf stable? I’m considering starting a business selling some of my home
    made sauces and would prefer to use those types of bottles rather than canning jars, but I assumed I would have to sell my products refrigerated. Any thoughts or suggestions?

  • Could you substitute mangos for the peaches? I’ve been looking for a mango habanero bbq sauce recipe for months for canning. Thanks!

    1. I would be uneasy about using mango in this recipe because they contain less acid than peaches do. While there is a goodly amount of additional acid in this recipe, I based this version on tested recipes that were designed for peaches, and so just don’t know how mangos would perform.

  • I have used this recipe as a base for a Strawberry Citrus hot sauce and an Apricot Citrus hot sauce. Both are incredible, and because I like the heat, they are VERY hot.
    Thanks for the recipe!!

  • I had to refrigerate the mixture overnight. so, the peeled peaches and all the ingredients, minus the salt and lemon juice. Can I pick up the day after with those contents having been in the fridge overnight? Will it affect the acidity of the peaches, etc?

    1. The only thing I will potentially effect is the sauce’s ability to resist separation. It will not impact the safety or acidity.

  • Found this recipe last week , and I have a few habarenos hanging around so I made some peach sauce. I cheated though. Fresh peaches are not available for picking in Florida this time of year so I used up some of my canned peaches ???? that was a few years old. The only thing different was I didn’t throw in the peaches as they were already cooked until the rest of the ingredients were softening. Man, the sauce came out so good I went and bought a peck of habarenos and ended up over the weekend making over 20 pints of peach habareno sauce. It’s a keeper. I did add a little more habarenos to my last two batches. A little more kick but still a pleasant flavor. Probably good for a year or two unless I give it away.

  • Peaches cost a fortune here in the Philippines as it is not a local produce. But we have mangoes aplenty! Would that be a safe swap?

    I am new at canning. What do you use for canning? Would a pressure cooker do? Or a professional canner with the works?


    1. Unfortunately, mangoes have less acid than peaches, so making that swap might not be safe (and there’s no way for me to say definitively). Sorry I don’t have a better answer for you.

  • Sounds yummie! Do you measure the 3 pounds of peaches before pitting and peeling. Or after? (As that seriously effects the volume)

  • Hi Marisa, I just made this sauce and canned in regular 8 oz. jelly canning jars. The jars just came out of the canner and are sealing as we speak. Several of the jars look like the contents has separated and there is about a 1/4″ of almost what looks like clear liquid in the bottom. Is this normal? At first I thought I didn’t tighten jars enough and water leaked in but they’re all sealing and the seals are finger tight. Thoughts?

  • I just saw your reply to the person about heating cooling and heating again. I ended up doing this a little bit because as the sauce was cooking I realized I hadn’t started to heat the water bath yet. So I took it off the stove just for a couple minutes and then heated it back up again to finish… Sounds like this made my peach pulp separate.

  • How thick is this sauce? It looks like it has a similar consistency to Tabasco but I’m looking to make a thicker sauce. Thanks

  • I made it and love it. I put in extra very hot red chili peppers. My wife will not go near it. Love peaches and hot peppers. It will go so well with chicken and even hot dogs.
    Even added some Tabasco Sauce.
    Thank you for the recipe. Will enjoy it up here in British Columbia when it is cold.

  • Love, love, love this recipe! I did everything – bought the awesome jars, grew all my ingredients, and bottled it up this weekend. I happened to grow orange spice jalapenos instead of the habanero, but it worked out amazingly. Hot stuff! Thanks!

  • Hi Marisa, congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby boys!!

    I have all the ingredients, and the same jars you used in this post and plan on making this today! In the directions you say 1/2” headspace, but it looks like a lot more than that in the picture of your final product, is that just it settling after canning?

  • I don’t have access to habaneros this year. But a friend grew Sugar Rush Peach Hot Peppers. Can I switch out the hot peppers? I know I’ll be taking a risk that the heat might be different. Thanks in advance!

  • I made this hot sauce today. I tasted it before canning and it does have some heat!! I used a little less sugar and wished I reduced it a little more. I does taste delicious though. My question is, should this sit for a month or so before eating, like pickles, or is it ready to use as soon as it’s been canned.

  • Hi, I will be making this recipe to water bath can in 12 oz sauce bottles with Black Metal Lids/Plastisol Lined. Do have any other hot sauce recipes that I can process in these bottles? Most recipes I see are for half pints or smaller. Thank you.

  • Thanks Marisa. I made the sauce today and can’t wait to try it when it mellows. Bit of a learning curve using the bottles, so I’m a little insecure about the seals, but they seem concave. (I didn’t see the bit about removing them from the canner immediately- oops). Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  • Hey Marisa (long time canner here with a quick question) –> In your recipes, when you specify “apple cider vinegar”…are you using pasteurized, standard/typical, apple cider vinegar? OR are you using raw/unpasteurized typically organic, apple cider vinegar (like brand name: Braggs …or similar)?

    Both are 5% acidity, but the raw is **much** more flavor-intense (so I would use 50% of the raw/organic and 50% of white distilled …both 5% acidity…to end up with the intended flavor of the more common, pasteurized apple cider vinegar).

    Thanks for the great site & recipes!

    1. I do typically use Braggs, but use it in the same volume as the conventional stuff. Your technique of blending two vinegars is an interesting one.

  • This came out great. I cut the recipe in half and used honey in place of sugar. In place of the orange pepper I used half a yellow bell and half a red bell, since that’s what I had on hand. Tastes great. Husband says it’s not spicy enough so I may increase the amount habaneros next time. Really looking forward to try this on crispy chicken wings.

    1. I don’t have a similar recipe that uses cherries in place of the peaches. However, you should be able to make the swap without issue.

  • This recipe looks fabulous. When I was visiting St Lucia, I had a mango habanero hot sauce that my husband just loved. Your ingredients look similar. Do you think I could substitute mango for the peach?

    1. Yes. There’s enough vinegar in this sauce to make up for the slight acid difference between the peaches and mangos.

  • 5 stars
    Made this with fresh peaches today from The Peach Truck and it’s fabulous! I left the seeds in from 2 of the habaneros because we wanted a touch more heat. Very well balanced, excited to share, and would absolutely make again!

  • 5 stars
    Love this recipe! I double the recipe and make it every year. I was wondering though if i could mix it up and swap out the peaches for pineapple?

    1. From a safety perspective, I imagine you could. I’ve not tried it though, so I can’t speak from any experience.

  • 5 stars
    This is wonderful! The fruit really highlights the fruity flavor of the habanero chiles. I didn’t have enough peaches on hand; only 20 ounces. I made up the difference with some plums, strawberries, and raspberries.

    Thank you for the bottle canning tutorial. Up to now, I’ve only used mason type or Weck canning jars.
    The bottles of sauce are in the boiling water bath as I type this. So excited!!

  • Am anxious to try this. I use your book as my go-to all the time! Question: you repeatedly told people they couldn’t substitute mango because of the acidity level but I noticed in a question from this year you told a guy he could definitely sub mangoes. So I’m not sure which is the correct answer. Asking in case I might want to make with mangoes sometime

    1. Between the vinegar and lemon juice, there is a ton of acid in this recipe. I don’t recommend swapping mango in for peach in jam, but in this recipe, it will be fine.

  • Could I replace the haveneros for Aji Cristal hot peppers? Or Sugar Rush Peach? I was planning on making a peach hot sauce with my sugar rush peach peppers.

    1. I would imagine you could. I don’t believe that the pH of peppers varies wildly from one varietal to another.

  • Do you have a habanero pineapple hot sauce recipe that can be canned also? All recipes I find for pineapple habanero do not offer canning.