For those of you who have spent more than your fair share of time in a Hooter’s restaurant with a plate of hot wings (admit it), you know the simple pleasures of their many variations of the classic brown sugar and pepper hot sauce recipe. First created way back when in that first Hooters restaurant in Florida, the Hooters Hot Sauce has long been a favorite, simple and tasty and perfect for adding a bit of spice to your finger foods and appetizers.
Being able to bring that kind of flavor home with you is a compelling option, offering millions of fans the chance to add Hooters flavor to the mild chicken dishes lining your dining schedule. How does the sauce transition from the bawdy atmosphere of a Hooters restaurant to the dining room table though (and will your wife care to notice the brand name on the bottle)?
Hooter’s hot sauce is not nearly as hot as some of the more “expressive” sauces on the market. Made for the casual restaurant goer, it straddles the center line of taste and throat scorching to create a pleasantly sweet taste that goes with almost anything meat. It’s for that reason that Hooter’s Hot Sauce tends to be a cult favorite anywhere you go. It’s simple and tasty.
It translates well to similar foods around the house. On a chicken sandwich I put together the other day for dinner, I decided to use half barbecue sauce and half Hooter’s Hot Sauce, cutting the sandwich in half. The sweetness of the Hooters sauce was comparable to that of the barbecue sauce, but with the bite we’re all looking for in our chicken. It wasn’t bland and it didn’t disappoint. Not to mention the onion rings soaked in that red pepper goodness.
That covers the basics, and if all you’re looking for is a hot sauce to cover your basics with a bit of bit and flavor, you couldn’t do much better than this sauce. It’s when you start considering the use of the sauce for anything more savory or complicated that it loses a bit of its luster.
Added to a slightly more complicated dish of chicken tetrazzini, the hot sauce was quickly and easily diluted, losing much of the signature flavor that makes it so good.
The heat remained and was a nice kick, but when you’re considering the varieties of hot sauces on the market, why would you buy something with moderate and almost forgettable heat over something that can kick your socks off. It’s the flavor that makes Hooter’s Hot Sauce so damn good.
So, stick to that flavor and you’re good. My recommendation is to keep your Hooter’s Hot Sauce set aside for simple meals and barbeques. That’s what this stuff is made for, and it does a damn fine job of spicing up a plate of chicken wings or ribs and adding some flavor. Don’t pull the Hooter’s out for that family dinner though. This hot sauce isn’t best suited for cooking.
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