Close-up of hot honey cascading over a slice of warm cornbread.Pin
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HOT HONEY

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This homemade hot honey recipe is simple and quick to prepare with just three ingredients, and it can be used in a multitude of delicious dishes!

Delicious hot honey drizzled over crispy fried chicken.Pin

Is there anything that isn’t better with a drizzle of hot honey?! 😍

We’ve become absolutely obsessed with this spicy-sweet condiment in our house over the past few years. Whether it’s drizzled on pizza, biscuits, fried chicken, baked salmon, shrimp boil, roasted veggies, cornbread, baked brie, or corn on the cob—hot honey is a game-changer. It’s also fantastic stirred into cocktails, hot tea (or a hot toddy!), or even a batch of salad dressing. And as a dip for fries, chicken fingers, or a charcuterie board? Absolutely. The surprise heat adds the perfect kick to countless dishes where you might normally just use a plain sweetener. If you’ve never tried it before, I’m sure you’re going to love it!

Nowadays, hot honey is pretty easy to find in grocery stores or online, but it’s often quite pricey. It’s much more economical to make a batch yourself, and it’s incredibly quick and easy. Plus, with homemade hot honey, you get to choose which type of hot peppers to use and control the spice level of each batch. All you need are about 15 to 20 minutes and three ingredients, and you’re set.

With the holidays coming up, I also want to mention that hot honey makes for great DIY gifts! Grab some cute jars (you can rinse and reuse old jam jars, order some mini tulip jars, or use these adorable honey bear bottles), simmer up a quick batch of hot honey, and I’m sure your friends and family will love it.

Alright, let’s make a quick batch!

Homemade hot honey with a hint of fiery chili peppers.Pin

HOT HONEY INGREDIENTS

Before we dive into the full recipe, here are a few notes about the three basic ingredients you’ll need for hot honey:

  • Honey: The type of honey you use is entirely up to you. I prefer a basic clover honey that isn’t overly floral, but feel free to use any variety you like. If possible, consider purchasing local honey to support bees in your area!
  • Hot Peppers: I typically make hot honey with crushed red pepper flakes because I always have them in my spice cabinet, and using dried peppers extends the honey’s shelf life. However, this recipe is also excellent with fresh chile peppers (such as jalapeños, serranos, habaneros, or Thai red bird chiles). You can also experiment with other dried chile peppers (such as dried anchos, guajillos, pasillas, or chiles de árbol). You can easily adjust the heat level by adding more or fewer peppers or letting them simmer longer.
  • Vinegar: I like to add a splash of apple cider vinegar (or red wine vinegar) to cut the sweetness a bit, similar to Mike’s Hot Honey. You can leave the vinegar out entirely if you prefer or experiment with adding more or less to taste.
A jar of artisanal hot honey ready for culinary adventures.Pin

HOW TO MAKE HOT HONEY

The full detailed recipe for making this recipe is at the bottom of this page, but here’s a basic overview (with a few optional variations):

  • Bring the honey and hot peppers to a simmer: You can do this on the stove in a saucepan or sauté pan, or heat the mixture in a measuring cup in the microwave if you prefer.
  • Let it infuse: Once the honey just reaches a simmer, remove it from the heat and let it rest for 10-15 minutes to allow the hot peppers to infuse the honey.
  • Taste it: Dip a clean spoon in the honey and give it a taste to test the heat level. If you want it spicier, add more hot peppers and/or let the honey continue to infuse for another 10 minutes. If you want it less spicy, add some extra plain honey to dilute it a bit.
  • Strain: Pour the honey through a fine mesh strainer into a clean jar to remove the hot peppers, which stops the infusion and lets you control the heat level. Some people prefer to leave the hot peppers in the jar, which will increase the heat over time. It’s up to you.
  • Use and enjoy: Your homemade hot honey is now ready! Check below for delicious ways to use it.
Jar of sweet and spicy condiment on a wooden tablePin

RECIPE VARIATIONS

Here are a few more fun ways to customize your own hot honey recipe:

  • Use Different Hot Peppers: You can use a variety of fresh or dried hot peppers. For fresh peppers, try slicing up jalapeños, serranos, habaneros, Scotch bonnets, or Thai bird chiles. For dried peppers, roughly chop dried anchos, guajillos, pasillas, or chiles de árbol. Remember, including more seeds will increase the heat of your recipe.
  • Use Hot Sauce: Some people prefer making this recipe with hot sauce (like Cholula or Frank’s) instead of vinegar and chiles. This method is quicker since the hot sauce doesn’t need time to infuse.
  • Use Lime Juice: Fresh lime juice is a tasty substitute for vinegar. Just note that hot honey made with lime juice should be stored in the refrigerator.
  • Add Salt: Depending on how you plan to use the hot honey, adding a pinch of fine sea salt can enhance the flavors, especially when serving it as a dipping sauce or pairing it with sweet foods.
  • Add Dry Seasonings: Get creative with dried seasonings to customize your honey. Some great options include black pepper, chipotle powder, ground cinnamon, and ground rosemary.

WAYS TO USE HOT HONEY

Looking for fun ways to use hot honey? The options are endless, but here are a few of my favorites:

  • Pizza: I’m completely obsessed with adding a drizzle to any type of pizza, especially pepperoni.
  • Biscuits and Breads: this recipe tastes absolutely divine drizzled on a warm biscuit, a slice of cornbread, or French toast. But feel free to drizzle it on any of your favorite breads.
  • Vegetables: Add a drizzle to your favorite grilled or roasted vegetables or stir-fry. It’s also fabulous on corn on the cob!
  • Meats, Seafood, and Tofu: Hot honey chicken wings are a classic! It also tastes delicious on steak, pork, shrimp, sausage, bacon, fish, scallops, tofu, and other favorite proteins.

Fried Foods: Hot honey fried chicken (or fried fish) is another match made in heaven. It’s also fantastic on french fries and various other fried foods.

  • Charcuterie Boards: Serve this recipe as a dipper with your next cheese board, or drizzle it atop a wheel of baked brie.
  • Vinaigrettes: Hot honey is a great way to sweeten your favorite salad dressing while adding a touch of heat.
  • Desserts: Drizzle it over ice cream, brownies, cheesecakes, and more.
  • Drinks and Cocktails: Use this recipe as a spicy sweetener in your next cocktail (I especially love it in an old fashioned, mojito, or gimlet) or stir it into your next hot cup of tea or hot toddy.
Close-up of hot honey cascading over a slice of warm cornbread.Pin

Frequently Asked Questions

What is hot honey made of?

is a wonderfully simple blend of honey and chili peppers. By infusing honey with dried chili peppers, you create a sweet and spicy topping that’s perfect for nearly any dish. Check out the basic recipe below to make your own hot honey at home.

Is hot honey good for health?

has strong antibacterial properties that help heal wounds and soothe inflammation in the upper respiratory tract. It also calms the mind, strengthens the body’s defense systems, and acts as a powerful antioxidant to prevent premature aging of cells.

How long does hot honey last?

Heat the honey mixture over medium heat until it simmers, then remove it from the heat. Allow the mixture to rest for 15 minutes to let the flavors infuse into the honey. Strain the honey mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a clean jar. Let it cool completely in the jar before covering and storing in a cupboard for up to 4 months.

Is Warming honey safe?

Heating honey changes its chemical composition, although it doesn’t make it toxic and harmful to consume. However, heating alters the honey’s ingredients, weakening and reducing their effectiveness.

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Close-up of hot honey cascading over a slice of warm cornbread.Pin

HOT HONEY

This homemade hot honey recipe is simple and fast, requiring just 3 ingredients, yet it opens up endless delicious possibilities!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 1 CUP
Calories: 22kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of honey
  • 3 tablespoons of crushed red pepper flakes or 1 fresh jalapeño pepper sliced
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar”

Instructions

  • Simmer: Combine honey and crushed red pepper flakes (or jalapeño slices) in a medium sauté pan or saucepan. Heat over medium heat until the honey just begins to simmer. Stir briefly to mix, then remove from heat.
  • Rest: Let the mixture sit for 10 to 15 minutes to infuse the flavors.
  • Taste: Sample the honey to check the spice level. For more heat, add additional red pepper flakes (or jalapeño slices) and continue infusing as desired.
  • Strain: Once infused to your liking, strain the honey through a fine mesh strainer into a clean storage jar. Stir in apple cider vinegar until well combined.
  • Serve or Store: Use immediately or follow storage instructions below.

Notes

Storage Instructions: To store hot honey, allow it to cool to room temperature first. Seal the jar tightly with a lid and store at room temperature for up to 3 months. If using fresh peppers like jalapeños, store the hot honey in the refrigerator for up to 1 week instead.

Nutrition

Sodium: 6mg | Calcium: 2mg | Vitamin C: 0.04mg | Vitamin A: 99IU | Sugar: 6g | Fiber: 0.1g | Potassium: 10mg | Calories: 22kcal | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Carbohydrates: 6g | Iron: 0.1mg

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