Interesting rankings on hot sauce from Cooks. The comment 'hekhsher' refers to kosher certification.
From Cooks Illustrated.
I found it interesting that the old stand-by, Tabasco, is “Not Recommended.”
Sriracha Has a hekhsher, though not O-U
Sodium (per teaspoon)
Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce
Despite its unconventionally thick consistency and sweeter profile, this squeeze-bottle condiment (which we threw into the mix as a ringer) impressed tasters with its “full,” “rich,” “bright” heat. We even enjoyed its heavier body in Buffalo sauce; several tasters remarked that it coated the chicken “perfectly.”
Chile [red jalapeño], sugar, salt, garlic, distilled vinegar, potassium sorbate, sodium bisulfite, xanthan gum
$4.29 for 17 oz (25 cents per oz)
Frank’s RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce
“Hello, Frank!” said one taster, who recognized this familiar-tasting condiment as the base for the original Buffalo sauce recipe. In both applications, it struck a perfect balance between tanginess and “tomatoey sweetness,” with heat that “wasn’t too hot” and “added to the food rather than overpowering it.”
Aged cayenne red peppers, distilled vinegar, water, salt, garlic powder
$2.29 for 12 oz (19 cents per oz)
Original Louisiana Hot Sauce
Even with just three ingredients, this sauce had a “complex,” “balanced” profile and “mild punch.” A few tasters even picked up on “smoky,” “roasted” notes with “a pleasant fruitiness.” Its sodium content was at least double or even triple the amount found in most other brands.
Peppers [cayenne], vinegar, salt
$0.99 for 6 oz (17 cents per oz)
Tapatío Salsa Picante
Several tasters noted that this Mexican condiment delivered a “smoky” sweetness that reminded them of barbecue sauce or even Worcestershire sauce. Most of us agreed that the warm spice flavor is unusual for Buffalo sauce but not necessarily unwelcome.
Water, red peppers [undisclosed], salt, spices, garlic, acetic acid, xanthan gum, sodium benzoate.
$1.95 for 10 oz (20 cents per oz)
Texas Pete Hot Sauce
When eating it straight up over rice, tasters found this bright red sauce “pleasingly hot and spicy,” with a burn that “builds and lingers.” A few tasters felt that the heat petered out a little once the condiment was mixed into Buffalo sauce, turning this hot sauce into a “milder,” more “ketchup-y” version of Frank’s.
Red peppers [3 undisclosed types], salt, xanthan gum, benzoate of soda.
$1.55 for 12 oz (13 cents per oz)
Valentina Salsa Picante
For a low-salt sauce, this Mexican sample boasted surprising “complexity.” That’s probably due to the use of dried chiles and spices that gave it a “smoky,” “sweet,” “tomatoey” taste. However, lots of character meant that it lacked the “universal applicability” that some tasters preferred, and a few found it “dusty.”
Water, chile peppers [dried puya and serrano], vinegar, salt, spices, 0.1% sodium benzoate
$1.39 for 12.5 oz (11 cents per oz)
El Yucateco Salsa Picante Roja de Chile Habanero
This habanero-based sauce was “mouth-meltingly” hot but also “sweet,” thanks to the addition of a little tomato. Those who liked it praised its “earthy, almost fruity” flavor, but others felt that it was out of place on Buffalo chicken.
Water, habanero pepper, tomato, salt, spices, acetic acid, xanthan gum, citric acid, sodium benzoate, FD&C red No. 40, calcium disodium EDTA
$2.69 for 4 oz (67 cents per oz)
Recommended with Reservations
Cholula Hot Sauce, Original
Some tasters appreciated this Mexican sauce’s “sweet” flavor and “mild smokiness,” but others were unimpressed. Criticisms revolved around its low salt content, which a few tasters felt rendered the sauce “washed out.” “I’m bored,” said one taster.
Water, peppers (arbol and piquin), salt, vinegar, spices, xanthan gum
$3.69 for 5 oz (74 cents per oz)
Tabasco Pepper Sauce
Thanks to its high amount of vinegar and skimpy measure of salt, this top-selling hot sauce sank to the bottom of the chart. Tasters described it as “flavorless,” “vinegary,” “out of balance”—even “vile.” Its consistency was off, too, saturating rather than saucing the chicken. (Tabasco also sells Buffalo Style Hot Sauce; we didn’t test it since we were looking for an all-purpose product.)
Distilled vinegar, red peppers [tabasco], salt
$3.49 for 5 oz (70 cents per oz)
*Prices subject to change.