Fermenting Hot Sauce in Oak Barrels

Fermentation is an anaerobic chemical process that breaks down compounds such as glucose. As a result of fermentation, microorganisms such as yeast and bacteria are responsible for the production of drinks such as beer, wine, yogurt, and many other meals.

And you’ll be amazed to know that fermenting hot sous in an oak barrel adds more taste and flavor than your typical unfermented sous does! No, it’s not a mold, and it’s not dangerous.

On the other hand, fermented hot sauce is a straightforward process that may be made more pleasant with a little effort and time.

In this article, we will share with you how you can ferment hot sous in an oak barrel and also some other information that will need you when processing so stay with us.

What is the difference between Fermented Sous and Unfermented Sous?

Fermenting Hot Sauce in Oak Barrels

An accurate idea of ​​this question can be given by seeing the example cold drinks price and wine price also taste. Both are not made by the same process, efforts, and time that’s why you can understand what the difference can be between fermented and unfermented sous. It’s probably the taste and flavor and also the price.

Because fermentation tends to reduce the heat from chili peppers, fermented hot sauces tend to be gentler as well as having more taste. Due to the lack of a fermentation process to mellow down the chili peppers, unfermented hot sauces tend to be spicier than fermented ones.

In addition, the fermented sauce has an intensely rich and distinctive taste which is impossible to achieve in a few hours of unfermented preparation. Aside from that, it contains probiotics like yogurt or kombucha, thus it is healthy.

The only downside of fermented sous is it takes a long time to prepare but despite the time it takes, it has more goodness and flavor than unfermented sous.

The ingredients that are needed to prepare Fermented hot sous in Oak Barrels

Here is the name of ingredients to make fermented hot sous that will help to add extra flavor in your hot sous. So try to gather them according to our list.

1. Hot peppers, red or green Jalapeno, Serrano, Habanero

Your sauce will be richer and more complex if you use a wide variety of peppers. Salsa, sauce, relish, garnish, and even producing a hot sauce can be made with serrano peppers for a tasty spicy kick.

You can use habanero to make salsa, sauce, and salad dressings, but you shouldn’t use it whole because it’s so hot. It will spice up your sous to the next level.

2. Sea salt and un-chlorinated water

If a hot sauce and the ingredients it is prepared with are made with salt, it increases the flavor. On the other hand, when it comes to fermenting, chlorinated water will cause problems. If you want to get rid of chlorine organically, leave the water outside for 24 hours in the sun to allow it to evaporate.

3. Onion, Garlic Cloves, and Tomatoes

Pureed tomatoes can be added, and roasted garlic is a common flavoring. Don’t forget to add onion to find a naturally bitter taste. These all ingredients generally need to add when blending.

4. Apple Cider Vinegar or Lemon Juice

For the same reason, many spicy sauces contain vinegar or lemon juice, which acts as a preservative. Try using this ingredient in your hot sous to give it a tangy flavor.

How to make oak barrel hot sous step by step

Fermenting Sauce in Oak Barrels

Here we are going to tell you the preparing process and try to follow them step by step as we say. So without wasting if you gather all of those ingredients let start the work.

1. Prep your peppers, red or green Jalapeno, Serrano, Habanero, onion, garlic, capsicums, and tomatoes to put in a barrel 

Pick out all the ingredients, wash them thoroughly, and cut them in half. Then put all those ingredients in the barrel. Pour the hot sauce mixture into the oak barrel using a funnel. We suggest you use some of the common hot sauce ingredients. But you can also add some that you like. You don’t mash the whole ingredients first to ferment let them ferment with their half-size pieces.

2. Add the cutting ingredients to the saltwater

You have to use 25 % of water according to your oak barrel the remaining is 75% and out of this 75%, 50% should be Ingrit’s Like Chilies, Tomatoes, Capsicum, and Other that we mentioned. Of the remaining 15%, 5% salt and 10% vinegar should be used. 

Why low quantity of salt is using because to process the fermentation useful bacteria is must but if you dissolve much salt it can prevent those bacteria and your whole fermentation process can be hampered.

So dissolve 5% of salt properly then add all those ingredients including peppers, red or green Jalapeno, Serrano, Habanero, onion, garlic, capsicums, tomatoes, and others that you like. Don’t add vinegar at this time let them ferment for around 4 weeks first. 

3. Add Apple cider vinegar 

After fermenting for 7 weeks, add the apple cider vinegar. It will add a tangy flavor and acidity to the hot sauce, which gives it a great taste feeling when consumed. There is no need to be confused between apple cider and white vinegar because both have a strong flavor.

Apple cider is richer in nutrients compared to white vinegar and is beneficial for weight loss, dandruff, and other skin issues as well as heart problems. So, after adding 10% vinegar, let them ferment for about a week more, if you don’t mind letting them ferment for two weeks for better results.

4. Drain the ingredients add salt and vinegar as your preference and blend until smooth

After completing the fermenting process pour all the ingredients into a container and drain them properly. After draining put them in the blender add salt and vinegar as your preference and blend until the batch gets mash and smooth. 

5. Boil the mash batch or store it in the refrigerator

Blending and getting smooth mash is not the end because the bacteria inside this mash are still there to continue the fermentation process. 

So add the fermented hot sauce to a pot and bring to a quick boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. 

It will stop the whole fermentation process or you can also store the batch in the refrigerator in sealed containers to release gas buildup and it will slow down the fermentation process.

After doing this your fermentation hot sauce is fully prepared now you can fill it in a bottle to sell or enjoying a delicious spicy sandwich.

6. Don’t try to taste the newly made sauce after storing only overnight (WARNING)

Hot sauce that has undergone fermentation develops an additional layer of flavor that becomes more and more complex as time passes. As a result, the first time you store it, it will taste extremely hot (spicy). After a week or two in the fridge, the fermentation process will be slowed down and the heat (over spiciness) will be significantly reduced.

The oak barrel alternative container where the hot sauce can be ferment

Fermenting Hot Sauce in Barrels

Oak barrel is not only a single option to choose it’s usually used for business strategies. There are so many other options that are also available that you can choose from. But generally, those options are can only meet your family’s demand as their making quantity. So have a short look at those options and you will like them.

1. Glass Jar

Due to glass jars’ durability and lack of chemicals such as BPA, glass makes a great container for fermenting vegetables. So for fermenting hot sauce, glass jars are the most convenient and cost-effective vessels to use.

Try to remember jars with metal lids can be used, but I prefer plastic lids. Even if the ferment comes in contact with the plastic lid, the metallic taste won’t remain.

2. Plastic Container

The use of plastic for fermentation is technically possible, but it is not recommended due to the possibility of damage and scratches to the material. Plastic can also contain unsavory chemicals that can affect the hot sauce’s taste and texture.

But there is a solution: choose BPA-free food-grade plastic. So, if you can arrange this type of food-grade plastic container, then you can use them without thinking about it at all.

3. Stainless Steel Container

In addition to being used for the fermentation process, stainless steel containers can be used to ferment any food. Oxygen ingress is significantly less in stainless steel fermenters than in plastic fermenters, and the seals tend to be better/tighter in stainless steel fermenters than in plastic ones. As a bonus, it’s also more resistant to damage than plastic

4. Ceramic Container

When making sauerkraut, kimchi, or any other fermented batch, such as fermented hot sauce, ceramic fermenters are the best choice. Because they have plenty of room and are sturdy enough to pack down your ingredients to remove any pockets of air which s useful for the fermentation process


  • Question: How long should I ferment my hot sauce?

Answer: This ferment can be left to ferment at room temperature for months if desired. We prefer it after at least 3 months because the flavors become more complex and rich as it ferments.

  • Question: Is it better to ferment hot sauce?

Answer: Because fermented hot sauce has a more complex tangy flavor that can only be obtained through fermentation. It’s like a time-tested recipe; the fermentation “cooks” up more flavor than you could ever get otherwise.

  • Question: Does vinegar prevent fermentation?

Answer: The short answer is that vinegar does not completely stop fermentation. It does, however, significantly slow the process.

  • Question: How does salt affect fermentation?

Answer: You can keep the drafter open while placing the sausage in a warmed smoker barrel at 130F. After the casings are completely dried, smoke the sausage for about 3 hours, turning them every 45 minutes.


Here we shared briefly the making fermentation process of hot sauce and not the process we add also some other information that might need everyone to know. 

For fermenting hot sauce you did not need much effort to apply but there frequently need experience. 

So preparing the first-time batch may not be require but after making few batches you will understand the proper percentage of every single ingredient. So now it’s your turn we have shared all information that a professional. Good Luck.