All About Hot Sauce
Everyone’s heard of hot sauce. Nearly every nation has its own cultural rendition of a spicy condiment to enhance the flavor of its food. While hot sauce has been popular in the U.S. for decades, it’s become increasingly popular in recent years. Hot sauce is more than just a common part of street food, as there is a science behind how spicy each sauce is, as well as a history of hot sauce’s origins. So, let’s talk about it!Shop All Hot Sauces
What is Hot Sauce Made Of?
Most hot sauce is a combination of chili peppers, vinegar, and salt. Many hot sauces are fermented to add a funky flavor element. They can be liquid or paste, green, red, or even brown. While there are other spicy condiments that get their heat from ingredients that aren’t chilies (Mustard sauce, Wasabi, Horseradish), we’ll just focus on chili-based sauces.
What Makes Hot Sauce Hot?
The chemical that gives peppers their distinctive spicy flavor is called capsaicin (which is also what contributes to jalapeno hands). Sources believe that nature intended capsaicin to deter many animals from eating peppers, but the chemical has had the opposite effect… because spicy food is delicious. Fun fact! Most species of birds cannot taste the spiciness of capsaicin, likely so that they could help spread the seeds of pepper plants by ingesting and excreting them.
Chile, Chili, or Chilli: How do you spell the spicy pepper?
You’ll likely see two different spellings used to describe our spicy little peppers. And while they can be used interchangeably, you may find that certain regions tend to use one option more consistently than the others. For example, you’ll likely find “chilli” with two ls is most common in India and the UK, while South and Central America tend to use “chile” with an "e"… not to be confused with the country of Chile, which is spelled the same, but is unrelated to the origins of this word.
Also, here in the U.S., chili with one "l" is the preferred spelling of the pepper, but it also refers to the beef stew that stems from Mexican chili con carne, which includes chili powder, beef, onion, tomatoes, and sometimes beans.
History of Hot Sauce
Most sources agree that hot sauce is an ancient invention that goes back as far as Mayan times. The first hot sauces were likely just a mixture of peppers and water, but it didn’t take long for people to begin breeding pepper plants to develop the most desirable traits in their peppers. Then, as with most foods, colonization led hot sauce to be evolved even further by introducing ingredients from other parts of the world, such as vinegar and other spices. It didn’t take long for spicy flavors to reach all corners of the globe after that.
In the 19th century, the Tabasco company brought hot sauce into the commercial scene by bottling and selling their products, mainly to hotels and restaurants. And today, there are countless varieties of hot sauce covering a broad spectrum of flavors, from sriracha to buffalo sauce.
Styles of Hot Sauce by Region
Just like most foods, there are people who craft specialty hot sauce and incorporate unique flavors into the mix. You can find artisanal hot sauces with fruity elements such as pineapple, mango, and even blackberry. But most hot sauce types are defined by the region from which they originate. Here’s our breakdown of hot sauce styles!
What is the Scoville Scale?
The Scoville scale is a system that measures the level of capsaicinoids (which includes all the spicy chemicals, not just capsaicin) in a particular substance. It was developed in 1912 by pharmacist Wilbur Scoville. Its unit of measure, Scoville heat units (SHU), is used when discussing the spiciness of a particular food. SHUs can also be used for non-food items, such as law-enforcement-grade pepper spray, which can be anywhere between 2 to 5 million SHU.
Pepper Scoville Chart
Check out our infographic for the scoville rating of many popular peppers.
While tasting spiciness can be a somewhat subjective thing, measuring the chemicals on the Scoville scale provides an objective means of communicating just how hot something is. And while chili peppers may come in all different shapes, sizes, colors, flavors, and even spellings, the fact that spicy foods can be found in nearly every country on earth is a unifying quality. Humans have enjoyed hot sauce since ancient times and, as with so many foods, it can serve as an international language to bring different people together and find common ground. So, whether you’re seeking to challenge yourself to taste the spiciest hot sauce on the planet, or you are simply interested in exploring the nuanced flavors of artisanal sauces, there’s certainly a hot sauce out there for you to enjoy.
What Is Curry and How to Use It
When you think of curry, you may envision a saucy stewed dish on an Indian restaurant’s menu, but is India the origin of curry? We research this aromatic food trend to discover what it is, how it’s made, and what curry varieties exist in the food industry. You may use the following links to navigate through the blog: What Is Curry? What Is Curry Powder? What Is Curry Paste? What Are Curry Leaves? Thai Curry vs Indian Curry Shop All Curry Powders What Is Curry? The word curry doesn’t refer to one dish in particular, but it is a general term used for a stewed meat, tofu, or vegetable dish cooked in a spiced gravy or aromatic sauce, then served on a bed of rice with flatbread. Curry flavor profiles can vary greatly depending on the chef and region, and they can range from mild to very spicy. Types of Curry When you see curry on a menu, most often you’ll find a more specific name for the dish you are ordering. Here are some popular curry dishes you may encounter: Chicken Tikka Masala - marinated chicken with a turmeric, tomato, and yogurt curry sauce over rice (English variation of curry) Butter Chicken - chicken with a buttery tomato cream sauce over rice (Indian variation of curry) Korma - mildly spiced chicken in a sweet creamy sauce with nuts over rice (Pakistani variation of curry) Dhansak - mutton or goat cooked in a lentil and vegetable sauce with a medium heat rating and served over brown rice (Persian variation of curry) Vindaloo - spicy pork marinated in a wine and garlic sauce, served with rice (Portuguese variation of curry) Panang - pork cooked in a red chili pepper and peanut sauce, reduced in coconut milk, and served over brown rice (Thai variation of curry) With all of these variations available, you may be asking “so, where does curry come from?” Keep reading to explore the origin of curry. Curry Origin Curry dishes originated from Indian cuisine, but the term curry was popularized by the British during their rule of India in the 18th century. The English likely became familiar with the term kari, which means sauce in Tamil (a language spoken in India). Although the term was created in the 18th century, sauce-based dishes are thought to have existed in India as early as 2500 BCE. The popularity of curry dishes spread around the world as the English created spice combinations to mimic the dishes they found in India and shared with other nations through trade routes and the Silk Route. Curry Nutrition Because curries recipes vary, their nutritional value will differ from each other. However, most curries share similar exotic spices and blends and many depend heavily on turmeric, coriander, and cumin. These spices have high anti-inflammatory and detoxifying properties. Curries are also great sources of vitamin B6, iron, magnesium, and fiber. Back to Top What Is Curry Powder? Curry powder is a blend of spices using ingredients typically found in Indian cooking. Curry spice blends were created by the British looking to bring the flavors of Indian cuisine back to England. Curry powders are most commonly used to make Tikka Masala, an English curry, but are generally not used in India. You can also find curry powder in the form of curry roux cubes, which are typically used in Japanese curries like kare raisu. What Is Curry Powder Made Of? These are the common spices used in curry powder blends: Turmeric Coriander Cumin Ginger Cloves Black Pepper Garlic Cinnamon Saffron Mustard Seed Fennel Variations and nuances may occur depending on where the curry powder is sourced. Curry Powder Shelf Life The shelf life of curry powder is 3-4 years when stored in a cool, dark place. Over time, the blend will lose its fragrance and potency. Curry powders found in supermarkets may have been sitting on the shelf for some time and may not be the freshest at time of purchase. You may make your own curry powders by grinding fresh herbs and spices for the richest flavors. How to Use Curry Powder When cooking with curry powder, you’ll want to heat the spices first to bring out the rich aromas and flavors before adding your protein. Heat oil on a medium heat in a pan. Add chopped onion and salt to the heated oil until onions are golden. Add ginger, garlic, and chopped tomatoes until the ingredients start to caramelize. Add the curry powders into the pan and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes, stir continuously. Add your protein and coat it in the curry. Saute for 1-2 minutes on a low heat with the lid on. Uncover and add water to create the sauce. Cover and let the dish simmer for 10 minutes. Add cream or yogurt and mix on a low heat (optional). Serve over rice. You can use curry powders to make traditional sauce-filled dishes, but you can also incorporate it into other recipes. Sprinkle curry powder on vegetables, popcorn, or deviled eggs for a flavorful twist. Use curry powder to season warm soups, or create a rich marinade for meats that will have your guests coming back for seconds. What Is Curry Paste? Curry paste is a flavorful puree made from spices mashed with chili peppers and galangal (a tropical root plant similar to ginger) that is used as the base ingredient in various curry dishes. Curry paste is usually used in Thai dishes instead of Indian-style dishes. Curry pastes come in various colors depending on the chili pepper used in their preparation, which tends to make them quite spicy. The most common curry pastes that you’ll find in a grocery store are red curry paste, yellow curry paste, and green curry paste. What Is Curry Paste Made Of? There can be slight variations to the ingredients used in a curry paste depending on the curry color and brand. Here are the common ingredients found in curry paste: Chili peppers (red, yellow, or green) Galangal Tomato Puree Lemongrass Ginger Turmeric Paprika Cinnamon Coriander Cumin Vinegar How to Use Curry Paste In South Asian cuisine, curry pastes are typically sauteed with oil and thinned using coconut milk. Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Season your protein and add it to the oil. Cook for 2-3 minutes until lightly browned. Add your curry paste and ginger and allow to cook for 1 minute. Add coconut milk, reduce the heat to medium-low. Bring the dish to a boil, stirring occasionally for 5-10 minutes or until the broth has reached desired thickness. Add desired vegetables, coating them in the sauce, and cook for another 2-3 minutes to allow them to soften. Removed from heat and garnish with cilantro and lime. Serve over rice. Along with stews and curries, you can also use curry pastes to make a salad dressing with yogurt or mayonnaise. Use it as a marinade for chicken, beef, and seafood to add a bold flavor to your menu. You can even prepare a vegan Thai curry with plant-based meat alternatives like tofu to accommodate vegans and vegetarians in your restaurant. Curry Paste vs Curry Powder The main difference between curry powder and curry paste is that curry powder is a dry ingredient that must have oil and water added to it, whereas curry paste is a wet concentrated ingredient that needs to be diluted in the cooking process. Curry paste uses whole chili peppers, while curry powder usually does not contain any chili, making the heat level in curry paste more intense than that of curry powder. Curry paste is not a substitute for curry powder or vice versa. Curry paste is ideal for Thai-style curries but the flavor profile does not match what is expected of an Indian-style curry. What Are Curry Leaves? Curry leaves are glossy green leaves that are typically used in curry dishes in the same way a chef might use bay leaves to add additional aroma and flavor to a dish. They come from curry trees, which are part of the citrus fruit family and feature a strong warming scent. Curry leaves are traditionally fried in oil to release the flavor and added to a curry sauce to simmer with the dish. Back to Top Thai Curry vs Indian Curry The main difference between Thai curry and Indian curry is that while Indian curries typically use a spice blend that is diluted with water and occasionally yogurt, Thai curries use curry paste that is diluted with coconut milk. Indian curries depend highly on turmeric and coriander, whereas Thai curries depend heavily on chili peppers. Thai curries usually feature more heat and a creamy consistency, while Indian curries are highly savory and more soup-like, closer to the consistency of hot sauce. Types of Thai Curry When you see curry colors listed on a menu, you are most likely encountering a version of Thai curries. The following is a list of the most popular types of Thai curry: Green Curry Red Curry Yellow Curry Panang Masam Sour Curry Below, we identify the difference between the three curry colors: What Is Green Curry? Green curry is a spicy stewed dish made by combining green curry paste with a protein or vegetable, and it is considered to be the most popular variation of Thai curry. Green curry is also the hottest of the curry colors. Green curry paste (kreung gaeng keo wahn) gets its vibrant green color from fresh green chili peppers, fresh cilantro, makrut lime leaves and peels, and basil. It usually also features lemon grass, shrimp paste, garlic, and peppercorn among its ingredients. It is typically served with beef or chicken. What Is Red Curry? Red curry is a medium sauce-based dish made by combining red curry paste with a protein or vegetable and it is considered to be one of the most versatile of the Thai curries. Red curry features a medium heat level, which can be boosted with chilies or mellowed with tomato paste. Red curry paste (kreung gaeng phet daeng) gets its bold red color from dried long red chili peppers, shrimp paste, and fresh turmeric. Among its ingredients list, you’ll also find cilantro root, coriander, cumin, lemon grass, and galangal. It is generally served with chicken, duck, or shrimp. Red Curry vs Green Curry Red curry is made from dried long red chilies and is milder in heat compared to green curry, which is made from green chilies and tends to be the hottest of the Thai curries. Green curry is the most popular in Thailand, while red curry paste is used in a greater variety of dishes. What Is Yellow Curry? Yellow curry is a mellow Thai stewed dish made from yellow curry paste that most closely resembles an Indian-style curry. Because of its resemblance to the Indian dish and its mild heat rating, yellow curry is a dish most commonly found on international restaurant menus. Yellow curry paste (nam prik gaeng karee) features a sweet flavor and soothing pale yellow color that comes from turmeric and yellow chili peppers. Other ingredients include coriander seed, lemongrass, galangal, ginger, cumin, and shallots. It is normally served with chicken or fish. Back to Top Increase your restaurant’s spice library by adding some curry options to your menu. Your customers will appreciate the warming flavors provided by these cultural dishes regardless of which recipe and style you choose.
How to Bottle and Sell Your Own Sauce
You can elevate any dish from derivative to decadent with a premium sauce. The consumer trends towards healthy ingredients, global flavors, and sustainable practices created niche markets that sauce makers can tap into. Whether you own a BBQ restaurant and want to sell your house-made barbecue sauce in stores, or you have a killer pepper sauce recipe and want to learn how to bottle and sell your hot sauce, there are business strategies and legal requirements you need to uphold. To help you start your sauce business, we walk you through the steps of how to bottle and sell sauce. Shop All Sauce Packaging Use the following links to learn more about each step of starting a sauce business. Create a Sauce Recipe Write a Business Plan Bottle Your Sauce Labeling Requirements Choose a Sales Forum Produce Your Sauce Price Your Sauce Advertise Your Sauce Sauce Bottling FAQs How to Start a Sauce Business With e-commerce, social media shopping, and small markets, it’s easier than ever to start a sauce business. However, you can’t pour your sauce into a jar and start peddling it on a website. You need to follow food safety guidelines and institute solid business strategies. Transform your sauce recipe into a business with these simple steps. 1. Create a Scalable Recipe If you want to start a sauce business, you probably already have a delicious recipe your friends and family rave about. The question is, can you scale your recipe? In other words, can you produce your sauce in bulk year-round with affordable ingredients while maintaining a consistent flavor? Ask yourself the following questions to determine if your sauce recipe is fit for retail. How long does it take to make a single sauce recipe? If creating a small batch of your sauce is time-consuming, then it isn’t the best recipe for mass production. Are the sauce ingredients expensive? You need to sell your products at prices customers will pay, but you also need to turn a profit. Expensive ingredients make this challenging. Are the ingredients available year-round? You may have a delicious seasonal sauce, but if its ingredients aren’t available year-round, it can’t serve as the backbone of your business. Use our recipe converter to figure out how to make your sauce in bulk. 2. Write a Business Plan Once you have a solid sauce recipe (or several recipes you want to sell under one brand), it’s time to write a business plan for your sauce company. No matter the size of your operation, a business plan allows you to outline goals, projections, and strategies for your sauce company. You can use your business plan to secure financial assistance from banks and investors, and promote your product to local retailers. An effective sauce company business plan includes: Executive Summary - Briefly outline your company’s purpose, products, and goals. Company Description - Provide an in-depth look at your company’s mission, growth projections, and strategies. Concept and Menu - Detail your products and what makes your brand unique. Management and Ownership Structure - Build your sauce business on a firm foundation by creating a well-thought-out ownership structure and management system. Employees and Staffing Needs - Assess how many employees you’ll need to bottle your sauce. Even if you’re the sole employee at the start, consider what your staffing needs will be as your business grows. Marketing and Competitor Analysis - You need to identify who your core customer base is and analyze the competitors in your sphere. Advertising and Marketing Campaigns - Research marketing and advertising strategies and come up with a plan to reach your target demographic. Financials - Determine your initial and ongoing expenses. Create a realistic projection of when you can expect to see a return on your initial investment. Ready to dive in and write a hot sauce business plan? Check out our in-depth business plan guide to get started. 3. Choose Sauce Bottles Knowing your brand, target audience, and baseline finances, you can choose a package that meets your needs. The first thing you’ll need to do is choose sauce bottles. While bottles with interesting angles add visual appeal, we suggest using round-walled bottles. Round-walled bottles provide fewer areas for your sauce to clump up and dry out. You’ll also need to decide between plastic and glass bottles. We explain the benefits of each below, and why glass is preferable for sauce bottling. Plastic vs Glass Sauce Bottles Plastic bottles are cheaper than glass bottles and are usually cold filled, meaning the manufacturer dispenses the sauce into the bottle once it’s cooled. Cold filling saves money on chilling equipment, and it also protects you and your staff from burns. However, unless the manufacturer uses a blast chiller, cold filling exposes your sauce to bacteria. You may have to add flavor-altering chemicals and preservatives to your plastic bottled sauces. If you’re starting a hot sauce business, glass bottles are your only viable option, since peppers are acidic and can dissolve plastic bottles into your hot sauce. Glass bottles are perfect for the hot fill technique, which dispenses sauce at a high temperature. Hot filling prevents bacteria development so you can forgo unhealthful and flavor-altering preservatives. Acidic ingredients won’t break down glass bottles. While they may be more expensive to purchase, fill, and ship, if you’re creating a niche and premium sauce brand, glass bottles suit your product and your target audiences’ expectations. 4. Adhere to FDA Label Requirements Labels serve the dual functions of creating a recognizable brand and providing FDA-required ingredients and nutritional information. Most sauce companies use two separate labels, placing one on the front and the other on the back of their sauce bottles. The official name for the front label is “Principal Display Panel” (PDP). The FDA has specific size and elemental requirements for a product’s PDP. You’ll want to create an attractive logo for your PDP and use it across your products to raise brand loyalty and awareness. The label on the back reveals the ingredients and nutritional information. The law dictates that most packaged foods disclose their ingredients and their nutritional value. You may have to break your sauce down into serving sizes and provide the correlating calories per portion. If your product contains possible allergens such as nuts, gluten, or soy, you will need to identify these ingredients on your label. A freelance food scientist can perform a nutritional analysis and help you meet food labeling requirements. Food certifications and labels can also set your product apart as having increased quality and help you attract your ideal customer base. For example, if you sell Italian goods and you produce, process, and package them in a fixed geographic area following regional methods, you can apply for a DOP label to signify your product’s authenticity. Products that meet the requirements of alternative diet plans such as vegan, gluten-free, and keto can attract people following those diets through their labels. If your product is halal or kosher certified, appropriate labels catch the attention of shoppers looking for kosher or halal goods. What Information Must Be Stated on the Principal Display Panel? The Principal Display Panel (PDP) is the front label on a food product. We explain the FDA’s requirements for PDPs below. Principal Display Panel Size Requirements The size requirements of a PDP vary by its shape. Rectangular Packages PDP Size: Must encompass the entire front of the package. Cylindrical Package PDP Size: Must encompass 40% of the package’s total side area. To arrive at this, multiply your package’s circumference by its height. Miscellaneous Package PDP Size: Must encompass 40% of the package’s surface area. Required Elements on a Principal Display Panel The FDA requires the following elements to appear on the PDP: The common name of the food item The net quantity the package contains FDA Labeling Requirements Review our summary of the standard FDA labeling requirements below: Labels Must Have a Nutrition Facts Chart - The FDA-required Nutrition Facts Chart provides the serving size and the number of calories per serving. The FDA has a specific format for the Nutrition Facts Chart you must follow. Familiarize yourself with the font sizes, order of contents, and placement of the Nutrition Facts Chart. Labels Must Share Every Ingredient the Product Contains - List every ingredient in descending order by weight percentage. Unlisted allergens are the primary reason the FDA requests product recalls. No matter how small the amount, be sure to list the most common allergens, such as peanuts, eggs, wheat, fish, shellfish, milk, tree nuts, and soybeans. If you make your sauce in a facility exposed to common allergens, you need to disclose this as well, even if your product doesn’t contain the allergens. Nutrition and Health Claims Must be FDA Approved - Before including health claims on your label, submit claims to the FDA and verify that scientific evidence supports your claim. Labels cannot make unbacked promises that the product will affect the normal structure or function in humans. Required Label Information - The FDA requires the following information: total calories, calories from fat, total fat, saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, sodium, dietary fiber, sugars, vitamins A and C, calcium, and iron. Base nutrient percentages on recommended dietary allowances. Write Nutrition Facts in English - While other languages can appear on labels, the FDA requires manufacturers to print their Nutrition Facts panel in English. Back to Top 5. Decide How You’re Going to Sell Your Sauce If you’re just starting your sauce business, you may assume you can produce your sauce in your home kitchen. While this may be the best strategy while you test your product and grow your brand, it limits where you can sell your sauce. Cottage food laws regulate whether entrepreneurs can produce low-risk foods for sale from their homes. Cottage food laws vary from state to state. They apply to micro businesses with low revenues. Below, we outline the typical ways cottage food businesses can and cannot sell their products. Check with your state and local guidelines to adhere to the cottage food laws in your area. How Do I Sell My Cottage Food Products? From your residence to the consumer Farmer’s markets Flea markets Roadside Stands Where Can't I Sell My Cottage Food Products? Restaurants Stores E-commerce If there are no cottage food laws in your area or you find them too restrictive, use a commissary kitchen to prepare your sauce. Commissary kitchens are rentable commercial kitchens. They allow small businesses to prepare their goods in an FDA-approved kitchen without investing in an expensive facility. If you prepare your sauces in a commissary kitchen, you can sell them in every forum. 6. Production Strategy The ideal production strategy for your sauce business depends on the size and scale of your operation. If you’re creating small batches of your sauce to sell at local markets, you can produce it on your own or with the help of a few employees. If you’re selling to a wide audience on your e-commerce site or grocery stores, consider outsourcing your sauce production to a co-packer. What Is a Co-Packer? A co-packer is an established food manufacturing company that businesses pay to produce their products. Also known as co-manufacturing, co-packers own heavy-duty equipment that streamlines food production. Co-packers either manufacture your product line for you, or they can package your finished product. Most co-packers offer various service packages, so their customers decide how many logistical details they want to handle themselves. For example, one client may pay a co-packer to bottle and package their BBQ sauce. Another customer may only want to pay for bottling and will handle the packaging and shipping themselves. A third customer may have the co-packer handle everything from making their hot sauce to shipping it to their clients. Working with a co-manufacturer is a cost-effective way to bring your product to market without having to build your own manufacturing facility. It also saves labor costs such as wages, benefits, and training. According to a Contract Packaging survey, 85% of respondents believed co-packing effectively cut costs and brought their margins up, and 68% reported increased business flexibility. When Is Your Sauce Company Ready to Partner with a Co-Packer? Given the benefits of co-packing, you may be interested in working with a co-manufacturer from the start. However, co-manufacturing only makes sense for larger operations. Unless you’re selling your sauce in bulk to grocery outlets or selling thousands of units on your e-commerce site, you’re not ready to work with a co-manufacturer. Most co-packers will not work with entrepreneurs. A trial process validates mass-producing a product, and small food businesses typically lack the funds to conduct multiple test runs. Since running experimental production runs and line times can cost thousands of dollars, co-manufacturers work with established food companies that can back the investment. Co-manufacturers don’t advertise their facilities. They use brokers to connect viable clientele to their services. Working with a broker benefits you as well. Brokers make sure the co-packer produces your sauce to your specifications, and they help you establish legal protection in case the co-manufacturer cannot uphold their end of the deal. 7. Determine The Best Price for Your Sauce With the first five steps of starting a sauce business in place, you can generate a profitable price point. To price your sauce, you need to find out what your competitors are charging. If you’re planning to sell a specialty salsa, go into gourmet and natural food stores in your area and look at the prices of competing salsa brands. If you’re interested in mass-producing a product, your co-packer will give you a manufacturing price. With that number in mind, go into retail stores and see if the stated manufacturing price allows you to charge a competitive amount and still earn a profit. If not, you may need to adjust your recipe and use less expensive ingredients. After you browse the aisles, research your competitors’ sales figures to make sure people are paying their asking price. 3 Point Gross Cost Calculation System To figure out how much you should sell your product for, you need to calculate the total cost of producing it. Add together the following three things to calculate your gross production cost: Cost of the materials - packaging, ingredients, shipping materials Labor costs - salaries, benefits, training materials Overhead costs - taxes, rent, insurance, marketing, transportation, and any other fees incurred Pricing Formula Once you know the gross cost of producing your product, you’re ready to plug that number into the pricing formula. To determine the ideal wholesale price for your sauce, multiply your gross cost by 1.5. This will yield the base price for your product if you’re selling it to a store. The store will then multiply that number by 1.5 to generate your product’s retail price. If you’re selling your product directly to your customers, multiply your gross cost by 3 to find its retail price. Average Prices of Common Sauces While a sauce’s sales price varies by its customer base and where it’s sold (ex: e-commerce vs farmer’s market vs supermarket vs gourmet grocery store), we’ve rounded up the average prices for various jarred items to help you get a sense of how much you can charge for your sauce. Average Specialty Hot Sauce Price - The average 8.78 oz. jar of specialty hot sauce costs $5. While some specialty brands cost more than $5, they usually remain under $10 a bottle. Average Specialty BBQ Sauce Price - Most specialty BBQ sauce brands charge .57 cents per oz. Average Chutney Price - On average, chutneys sell for $1.31 an oz. Average Pasta Sauce Price - When you average the prices of specialty and generic pasta sauces, the average pasta sauce costs .66 per oz. Average Specialty Salsa Price - Many specialty salsa brands price their products at .71 cents an oz. 8. Advertise Your Sauce You can have a fantastic recipe, attractive packaging, and competitive prices, but none of that will matter if no one knows about your sauce company. We recommend taking advantage of as many advertising avenues as possible. Discover some of the best ways to advertise your sauce brand below. Social Media Advertising No matter where you’re planning to sell your product, creating a strong social media presence can boost brand loyalty. If you’re planning to sell your wares at local farmer’s markets and festivals, use your social media account to share your location and encourage your followers to find your booth. Having a large social media following makes you a more attractive vendor applicant because event coordinators prefer vendors with large social media followings because they draw crowds. Giveaway Free Samples In the specialty sauce sector, samples are one of the best ways to convert potential customers to paying customers. At events, free samples draw attendees to your booth. Contact local grocery and gourmet markets and ask if you can set up a booth/sample station inside their store. In-store demos are critical for smaller brands that aren’t on shoppers’ grocery lists. Having an on-ground representative allows you to engage prospective clients and explain why your small sauce brand is worth more than a big box brand. You can detail your sauce’s ethical production strategy, local ingredients, and how your cultural heritage influences your sauces. While free samples have changed in the pandemic’s wake, they’re not off-limits. Lather your sauce on crackers, chips, or bread, then place individual portions in sealed condiment containers. Rather than leaving a tray of samples out in the open air, you can opt for a covered display dome, or you can serve guests individually upon request. Create a Website Web presence provides legitimacy. If you’re producing your sauce in a commissary kitchen, you can sell it on your website. You can also use your website to keep customers up to date about new flavor launches, build email lists, and provide coupons. If stores sell your sauces, offer a list of locations where customers can purchase them. If you’re not comfortable building a website, hire a web designer to make sure your website is easy-to-use and visually appealing. If people are searching for a killer hot sauce, you want to make sure they find yours. So, work with a search engine optimization strategist to make sure your website is appearing on the first page of Google search. Attract Media Attention Entering your sauce into a state fair, food competition, or magazine’s “best of” list can provide invaluable exposure for your brand. If you win, you can mention your achievement on your product’s label and use it in your advertising. Offering free samples to food reviewers and social media influencers is a fantastic way to spread awareness of your sauce brand. If they like your product and share it with their following, that will drive sales. Back to Top Bottling Your Own Sauce FAQs Now that you understand the basics of how to start a sauce business, you need the details of how to operate your unique sauce brand. From the nuances of starting a hot sauce business to the gritty details of bottling a sauce for retail, we break down the most frequently asked sauce bottling questions below. How to Start a Hot Sauce Business The largest brands in the hot sauce industry only make up one-third of the sector’s sales, so starting a hot sauce business can be a profitable venture for entrepreneurs. If you start a hot sauce business, your chief competitors will be other small producers rather than big brands like Tabasco. The best way to make yourself stand out in the hot sauce market is to create a niche product. When you make your hot sauce recipe, consider its heat level. While you can promote your product to the micro-market that loves the experience of lasting pain, most consumers won’t enjoy a scalding sauce. Experiment with different heat levels and have test groups provide feedback. You can use the Scoville scale as a guide and play with your pepper sauce’s heat level. If you’re working with extremely hot peppers, you’ll need to wear PPE. The capsaicin in peppers that creates a burning sensation in your mouth can damage your body. Ask yourself what type of heat sensation you want to create. Do you want your hot sauce to flash or linger on the palate? You’ll need to research how the body responds to different peppers. A habanero will immediately produce a burning sensation on the tongue and cling to the back of the mouth. Jalapenos send a heatwave to the tongue and the roof of the mouth before dissipating. How to Bottle and Sell Your Own BBQ Sauce Besides the general steps for how to start a sauce company, there are special considerations for how to bottle and sell your own BBQ sauce. Depending on the types of BBQ sauce you’re selling, you’ll need to choose between the hot and cold packing methods. Hot packing is ideal for acidic sauces, so if you’re selling a vinegar or tomato-based BBQ sauce, this is the packing method for you. If you specialize in Alabama white sauce or Carolina Gold sauce, consider the cold packing method. BBQ sauce companies can market their products directly to barbecue restaurants. While a BBQ joint may have spectacular smoked meat, that doesn’t mean they have a premium sauce to serve it with. Contact local BBQ restaurants and pitch your sauce to them. Becoming the signature barbecue sauce of a local restaurant provides a steady stream of revenue because they will purchase your sauce in bulk. The restaurant may even allow you to sell bottles of your barbecue sauce in their store. How to Get Your Product in Stores To get your product in grocery stores, contact local sellers and ask if you can show your product in their store. Small markets are more receptive to emerging brands than chains. We suggest reaching out to local gourmet, specialty, and organic grocers. Offer the product manager a sampler packet of your sauces so they can decide if they meet their clienteles’ tastes. If they think your product is a good fit for their store, ask to set up a product demonstration booth and provide samples at your booth. In-person stores are not your only option. You can sell your sauce on an online wholesaler’s website. As the largest restaurant supply store, WebstaurantStore is always looking to partner with innovative brands. We can ship your products to 90% of the US in two days and expose millions of visitors to your products each month. You can also hire a specialty food broker. A food broker handles the placement and delivery of food products created and advertised by a small business. They are independent agents who work on commission. Get legal advice before contracting with a food broker. How to Bottle Sauce for Retail Most sauces bottled for retail sale use either the hot fill or cold fill canning process. We explain the differences between these two techniques below. Hot Fill Canning Process The hot fill canning process uses heat to sterilize the food product and the container it’s going into. Manufacturers begin the hot fill process by heating the food product to a temperature between 194- and 203-degrees Fahrenheit. They inject the hot liquid into its packing container and hold both the container and its contents at a high heat temperature for 15-20 seconds. This sterilizes any bacteria that may have clung to the packaging or contaminated the product. The packer leaves the containers to rest until they cool to 180 degrees Fahrenheit. They then seal the packages and leave them to finish cooling. Which products are hot filled? - Acidic products require the hot fill canning process. Examples of hot filled products - vinegar-based sauces, hot sauces, juices, and sodas. Cold Fill Canning Process Wondering what cold packing means? In the past, cold packing meant putting raw food into a jar. When modern manufacturers cold pack food items, they use extreme cold to kill bacteria during its packaging process. They keep the food at low temperatures before they distribute it into the packaging, and they blast the packaging with icy air to sterilize it. Which products are cold filled? - milk or cream-based foods Examples of cold filled products - Alfredo sauce, Alabama white BBQ sauce, bechamel sauce, Bolognese sauce. How to Sell Homemade Sauce To sell homemade sauce out of your residential kitchen, you’ll need to check the cottage food laws in your area. Cottage food laws regulate the sale and production of low-risk foods (such as sauces) from an entrepreneur’s home. In most states, you can sell foods produced under cottage food laws from your residence to the consumer, at farmer’s markets, flea markets, and roadside stands. In most areas, you cannot sell cottage food items to restaurants, stores, or e-commerce applications. Are Nutrition Labels Required to Be on Food Products? The FDA requires a Nutrition Facts label on most food packages. To adhere to the law, labels should have a heading that reads “Nutrition Facts”. The “Nutrition Facts” heading must extend the width of the Nutrition Facts box and have the largest type size in the nutrition label (it must exceed 8-point font, but it doesn’t have to exceed 13-point font). Back to Top Whether you want to start a hot sauce business or bottle BBQ sauce, there is a lot of money to be made in the sauce sector. You can sell your sauces directly to consumers online or sell your sauces at festivals and specialty grocery stores. Since unique sauces are one of the fastest-growing food trends, now is the time to start a sauce company and tap into this expanding market. <aside class="pquote"> <blockquote> The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. Please refer to our Content Policy for more details. </blockquote> </aside>
Types of Spices From Around the World
As global dishes continue to dominate restaurant food trends and you explore new international recipes for your menu, you may run across some rare spices and spice blends you’ve never heard of before. These spices are the key to achieving the signature flavors in popular types of global cuisine. We’ll take you on a tour of unique spices from around the world, describe their flavors, and explain how they are used. Shop All Wholesale Spices Click any of the spice names below to learn more: Asafoetida Amchur Chaat Masala Fenugreek Garam Masala Green Cardamom Kala Namak Nigella Seed Aleppo Pepper Baharat Berbere Dukkah Harissa Ras el Hanout Urfa Biber Za’atar Chinese 5 Spice Galangal Golden needles Makrut Lime Powder Sichuan Pepper Star Anise Togarashi Types of Indian Spices You probably know that Indian cooking relies on spices like cumin, turmeric, and curry powder, but what about the spices you don’t recognize? This list of spices includes the secret ingredients you need to create authentic Indian dishes. 1. Asafoetida Asafoetida is a secret ingredient of Indian cooking that highlights the other spices in a dish, similarly to how salt brings other flavors forward. It has a strong, pungent smell and mimics the flavor of onions and garlic. You only need a pinch or two of the potent yellow powder to achieve the desired effect, and it’s wise to seal the container right away or the overpowering aroma will fill your kitchen. Asafoetida is made from dried resin tapped from the roots of an herb in the celery family. Asafoetida Form: Powder Asafoetida Flavor: Sulphuric, pungent, similar to garlic and onions Asafoetida Uses: Adds savory, umami flavor to vegetable dishes Asafoetida Cuisine: Indian Asafoetida Pronunciation: As-uh-fuh-tee-duh Other Names for Asafoetida: Hing, heeng, asafetida 2. Amchur Amchur is the powdered form of unripe, dried green mangoes. It’s used in Indian cooking to add tangy, citrusy flavor to dishes without any of the moisture that would come from adding ripe fruit. Because it contains fruit enzymes, amchoor can be used in marinades to tenderize meat and poultry. You’ll also find it used in chutneys and pickles to add fresh, sharp flavor. Amchur Form: Powder Amchur Flavor: Sour, tangy, citrusy Amchur Uses: Adds acidic, citrus flavor to soups, stews, fruits, and vegetables Amchur Cuisine: Indian Amchur Pronunciation: Am-kur Other Names for Amchur: Amchoor, aamchur 3. Chaat Masala Chaat masala is an Indian spice blend made from amchoor, cumin, coriander, ginger, black salt, asafoetida, and chili powder. In India, the word chaat refers to a savory, crunchy snack seasoned with chaat masala. This popular blend tastes best when made with freshly ground spices, and the ingredients can vary slightly between blends. The key components that give chaat masala its signature eggy, zingy flavor are black salt, asafoetida, and amchoor. Chaat Masala Form: Spice blend Chaat Masala Flavor: Sulphuric, sour, spicy, zingy Chaat Masala Uses: Sprinkled on street snacks, sandwiches, and fruit to add umami flavor Chaat Masala Cuisine: Indian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani Chaat Masala Pronunciation: Chot mah-sahl-uh Other Names for Chaat Masala: Chat masala 4. Fenugreek Fenugreek is another secret ingredient of Indian cooking that complements the flavors of other spices. It is both sweet and bitter, which gives it the ability to balance out sour, spicy notes in curries and sauces. Small, hard fenugreek seeds can be toasted to remove bitterness before being ground. The leaves of fenugreek are also edible and can be used in place of other types of leafy greens like mustard greens. Fenugreek Form: Leaves and seed, whole or ground Fenugreek Flavor: Sweet, nutty, notes of maple or burnt sugar Fenugreek Uses: Curry powder, spice blends, tea Fenugreek Cuisine: Indian, North African, Middle Eastern Fenugreek Pronunciation: Feh-nyuh-greek Other Names for Fenugreek: Methi, shambalileh 5. Garam Masala Garam masala translates to “warm spice blend” and usually consists of coriander, cumin, cardamom, cloves, black pepper, cinnamon, and nutmeg. In India, the recipe for garam masala varies by region and by chef. Families are known to create their own garam masala blends with up to 30 different spices and pass the recipe down through the generations. To make this popular spice blend, the whole spices are toasted to bring out their flavors, then ground into a powder form. Garam Masala Form: Spice blend, paste Garam Masala Flavor: Sweet, warming, fragrant Garam Masala Uses: A finishing spice that adds deep warmth to a variety of dishes Garam Masala Pronunciation: Guh-rahm mah-sahl-uh Garam Masala Cuisine: Indian, Pakistani 6. Green Cardamom Nicknamed the “queen of spices,” green cardamom comes in the form of papery green pods filled with dark brown or black seeds. All parts of the cardamom pod can be used to add a unique floral, pungent flavor to sweet and savory dishes. The whole pods are added to dishes to infuse them with flavor and later removed before serving. Seeds can be removed and ground into the powder form you'll find in the spice aisle at the grocery store. Green Cardamom Form: Whole pods, whole seeds, or ground seeds Green Cardamom Flavor: Pungent, sweet, hints of lemon and mint Green Cardamom Uses: Added to Turkish coffee, basmati rice, chai tea, curries, desserts Green Cardamom Cuisine: Indian, Middle Eastern, and Swedish Green Cardamom Pronunciation: Kaar-duh-muhm Other Names for Green Cardamom: True cardamom 7. Kala Namak Kala namak is a type of salt with a sulphuric taste and aroma. It’s used in the Indian spice mixture chaat masala to give the blend its distinctive savory flavor. Also called black salt, kala namak starts out as Himlayan pink salt and goes through a process in which the salt crystals are fired in a kiln with charcoal and herbs. A chemical change occurs that enhances the natural sulfites in the salt, resulting in a flavor similar to cooked eggs. Kala Namak Form: Salt crystals Kala Namak Flavor: Salty, sulfuric, egg-like Kala Namak Uses: Spice blends, chutneys, raitas, table salt, tofu scrambles Kala Namak Cuisine: Indian Kala Namak Pronunciation: Ka-luh Nuh-muhk Other Names for Kala Namak: Himalayan black salt, kala loon 8. Nigella Seed Small, black nigella seeds come from the seed pods of a flowering plant and have a peppery, oregano-like flavor. They’re commonly sprinkled on top of foods to add texture and crunch. One of the most common uses of nigella seeds is to sprinkle them into the dough of flatbreads like naan bread. Nigella Seed Form: Seeds, whole or ground Nigella Seed Flavor: Herbal, hints of oregano and toasted onion Nigella Seed Uses: Naan bread, curries, lentil dishes, root vegetable dishes Nigella Seed Cuisine: Indian, Moroccan, Middle Eastern Nigella Seed Pronunciation: Nai-jeh-luh Other Names for Nigella Seed: Kalongi, charnushka, black cumin Types of African and Middle Eastern Spices The bold flavors found in Ethiopian, Moroccan, and Turkish cuisine can be replicated with this group of palatable spices, blends, and condiments. Try adding these seasonings to couscous, lamb tagine, and stews for the most authentic global dishes. 1. Aleppo Pepper Uniquely fruity and salty, Aleppo pepper originates from the city of Aleppo in Syria. War and conflict disrupted the trade of this chili pepper, and Syrian refugees brought the spice to Turkey, where most of the world’s Aleppo pepper is now produced. The ruby-red flakes of the Aleppo chili produce mild heat and have a tangy, raisin-like flavor. Aleppo Pepper Form: Flakes Aleppo Pepper Flavor: Mildly spicy, fruity, salty, hints of sun-dried tomatoes Aleppo Pepper Uses: Added to dips, meze platters, grilled meats, kebabs, also used as table pepper Aleppo Pepper Cuisine: Middle Eastern, Mediterranean Aleppo Pepper Pronunciation: Uh-leh-po Other Names for Aleppo Pepper: Turkish red pepper flakes, Halaby pepper, pul biber 2. Baharat Baharat is a spice blend common to Middle Eastern cooking. The types of spices included can vary from region to region, but baharat usually contains a mixture of black pepper, cardamom, cumin, coriander, paprika, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. In Turkish cuisine, baharat will also contain mint. Just like garam masala in India, baharat is considered a staple seasoning of Middle Eastern cuisine. Baharat Form: Spice blend Baharat Flavor: Sweet, smoky, aromatic Baharat Use: Seasoning for meats, seafood, dry rub, marinades, soups Baharat Cuisine: Middle Eastern, Turkish, Greek Baharat Pronunciation: Bah-huh-raht Other Names for Baharat: Lebanese 7-spice 3. Berbere Berbere is the key to recreating authentic Ethiopian flavors in your dishes. This sweet, smoky spice blend can contain over a dozen different spices that vary depending on the region. The most common spices included are red chili peppers, fenugreek, garlic, coriander, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove. Berbere is used in the dish, doro wat, a chicken stew and the national dish of Ethiopia. Berbere Form: Spice blend or paste Berbere Flavor: Sweet, spicy, smoky, fragrant Berbere Uses: Added to dry rubs, marinades, stews, also used as a condiment in paste form Berbere Cuisine: Ethiopian Berbere Pronunciation: Bair-bair-ay Other Names for Berbere: Ethiopian spice blend 4. Dukkah Dukkah is a coarse blend of roasted nuts and seeds seasoned with pepper, salt, black sesame seeds, cumin, and coriander. Considered more of a condiment than a spice, dukkah can be sprinkled on dishes or used as a coating on meat and fish. One of the most common ways to enjoy dukkah is by dipping pita bread into olive oil, then coating the bread with the crunchy seed blend. Dukkah Form: Nut and spice mixture Dukkah Flavor: Smoky, savory, crunchy Dukkah Uses: Dip for pita bread, coating for meat and fish Dukkah Cuisine: Egyptian Dukkah Pronunciation: Duh-kuh Other Names for Dukkah: Duqqa, du'ah 5. Harissa Harissa is a North African chili paste made from roasted peppers, olive oil, and spices. It’s a staple condiment in Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco and has become more prevalent in the US as global dishes have grown in popularity. The level of heat in harissa varies depending on the recipe. Some variations of the chili paste contain rose petals or rosewater to balance out the spiciness. Harissa Form: Spice blend or paste Harissa Flavor: Spicy, aromatic Harissa Uses: Added to couscous, soups, stews, meats Harissa Pronunciation: Her-ee-suh Harissa Cuisine: Tunisian, Moroccan 6. Ras el Hanout The name of the North African spice blend ras el hanout translates to “head of the shop” and it was historically made with the highest quality spices a shop had on hand. Like many spice blends, the exact ingredients of ras el hanout vary but may include cardamom, clove, cinnamon, coriander, and cumin. Ras el hanout is similar in composition to the Middle Eastern spice, baharat. Ras el Hanout Form: Spice blend Ras el Hanout Flavor: Sweet, warm, pungent Ras el Hanout Use: Added to tagines, spice rubs, marinades, soups Ras el Hanout Pronunciation: Rahs-el-hah-noot Ras el Hanout Cuisine: Tunisian, Morrocan Other Names for Ras el Hanout: Mrouzia spice 7. Urfa Biber Urfa biber is a chili pepper grown in Turkey that turns a deep burgundy color as it ripens. The pepper is crushed, sun-dried, and then wrapped up tightly to retain the pepper’s natural oils. Similar to the Aleppo pepper from Syria, urfa biber is more widely available and has an earthy flavor with notes of chocolate. Urfa Biber Form: Flakes Urfa Biber Flavor: Mildly spicy, smoky, earthy, hints of chocolate and wine Urfa Biber Use: Added to poached eggs, lamb, eggplant, kebabs Urfa Biber Cuisine: Turkish, Kurdish Urfa Biber Pronunciation: Urr-fuh Bee-behr Other Names for Urfa Biber: Urfa pepper, isot pepper 8. Za'atar Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend containing oregano, thyme, sumac, toasted sesame seeds, and salt. The exact ingredients vary by region, and it’s common for families to develop their own closely guarded recipes for za’atar. This green blend of herbs is often eaten with pita bread or labneh - a thick, tangy yogurt. Za'atar Form: Spice blend Za'atar Flavor: Herbal, savory, robust, lemony Za'atar Uses: Added to hummus, pita bread, dry rubs, vegetables Za'atar Cuisine: Middle Eastern, Mediterranean Za'atar Pronunciation: Zah-tahr Types of Asian Spices Many dishes from the Asian continent are full of intense flavors that are hard to reproduce without using native spices. Authentic Vietnamese pho, Thai coconut-based soups, and Chinese stir-fries rely on the spices below to create an appetizing balance of taste and aroma. 1. Chinese 5 Spice Chinese 5 spice powder is a blend of spices intended to incorporate the five tastes of sweet, sour, bitter, salty, and savory. Used as a staple ingredient in Chinese and Taiwanese dishes, most versions of 5-spice will contain cloves, fennel, star anise, cinnamon, and Sichuan peppercorns. There are many variations on the blend that may include more than or less than five ingredients. Chinese 5 Spice Form: Spice blend Chinese 5 Spice Flavor: Sweet, peppery, pungent Chinese 5 Spice Uses: Added to dry rubs, roasted meats, marinades, soups Chinese 5 Spice Cuisine: Chinese, Taiwanese, Vietnamese Other Names for Chinese 5 Spice: 5-spice powder 2. Galangal Galangal is the secret ingredient you need to achieve a fresh, sharp, citrusy flavor in Thai soups and curry paste. Sometimes confused with ginger root, galangal has paler skin and tougher flesh. Fresh galangal provides the most intense flavor but powdered galangal can be used as a last resort. Substituting ginger for galangal can be done, but it won’t produce the same nuance of flavor. Galangal Form: Fresh, ground Galangal Flavor: Piney, citrusy, tart Galangal Uses: Added to Thai curry paste, seafood soups, peanut sauce Galangal Cuisine: Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian Galangal Pronunciation: Gah-lehn-gahl Other Names for Galangal: Thai ginger, Siamese ginger 3. Golden Needles Golden needles are the dried buds of an unopened, edible lily plant. They resemble small pieces of golden straw and have a sweet, fragrant aroma. These needle-like buds are used in popular Chinese dishes like moo shu pork and are often combined with wood-ear mushrooms. Golden Needles Form: Dried flowers Golden Needles Flavor: Floral, musky, sweet Golden Needles Uses: Added to stir fries, hot and sour soup, noodle dishes Golden Needles Cuisine: Chinese Other Names for Golden Needles: Tiger lilies, dried lily buds 4. Makrut Lime PowderThe makrut lime is a small, wrinkled lime with bumpy skin that grows in Southeast Asia. Much more potent and bitter than a regular lime, makrut limes are prized for their leaves and rind rather than their juice. The glossy, dark green leaves are responsible for the bright, citrus flavor in many Thai dishes. Best used fresh, makrut lime leaves can also be dried and ground. Makrut Lime Powder Form: Fresh or dried leaves, powder Makrut Lime Powder Flavor: Strongly aromatic, fresh, citrusy Makrut Lime Powder Uses: Added to soups, curries, coconut dishes, salads Makrut Lime Powder Cuisine: Thai, Lao, Cambodian, Vietnamese, Indonesian Makrut Lime Powder Pronunciation: Mah-gruut Other Names for Makrut Lime Powder: Thai lime, k-lime 5. Sichuan Pepper Neither a pepper nor a chile, the Sichuan peppercorn comes from the seed husks of the prickly ash tree. The flavor of Sichuan peppercorns is entirely unique in the spice world and creates a numbing, tingling sensation in the mouth. This numbing quality makes the spice a prized ingredient in Chinese cooking. It’s also an important component of Chinese 5 spice powder. Sichuan Pepper Form: Whole peppercorns, ground Sichuan Pepper Flavor: Numbing, lemony, hints of lavender Sichuan Pepper Uses: Added to stir-fries, soups, stews, braised meats, infuse oils Sichuan Pepper Cuisine: Chinese Sichuan Pepper Pronunciation: Suu-chwann Other Names for Sichuan Pepper: Szechuan peppercorn 6. Star Anise Star anise is the highly recognizable star-shaped seed pod that gives Vietnamese pho its distinctive flavor. The whole pod is added to soups and stews to infuse them with flavor and then it's removed before serving. Freshly ground star anise is also used in the spice blend, Chinese 5 spice. The licorice-like flavor of star anise is compared to fennel and anise seed. Star Anise Form: Whole seed pod, ground Star Anise Flavor: Sweet, licorice-like Star Anise Use: Added to soups, sauces, marinades, braised meats Star Anise Cuisine: Chinese, Vietnamese Star Anise Pronunciation: Star ann-iss Other Names for Star Anise: Badian 7. Togarashi Togarashi is a flavorful spice mixture that contains red chili pepper, orange peel, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, seaweed flakes, sichuan peppercorns, and ginger. Popular in Japan, togarashi is used as a table seasoning and sprinkled on ramen, udon noodles, steamed rice, and grilled meats. Togarashi Form: Spice blend Togarashi Flavor: Sweet, mildly spicy, zesty, savory Togarashi Uses: Added to soups, noodle dishes, rice crackers, snacks Togarashi Cuisine: Japanese Togarashi Pronunciation: Toh-gah-rah-shee Other Names for Togarashi: Japanese 7-spice, shichimi Consumers are showing a growing interest in global cuisine and new, interesting flavors, which makes it the perfect time to experiment with exotic spices and dishes from around the world. Update your menu with unique, appealing dishes and use our spice guide to help recreate the signature flavors associated with different types of international cuisine.