Learn how to make the BEST Buffalo Sauce from scratch!
This tangy, versatile sauce is vegetarian and vegan friendly, ready in minutes, and couldn't be easier to make. Just one taste, and you'll never resort to using the bottled stuff again.
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Hey, spicy food lovers .... I've got a super delicious recipe for you today!
Have you ever made your own Buffalo Sauce? Sure, you can buy a bottle, but this spicy, tangy, super popular hot sauce is even tastier when homemade.
My version has a unique ingredient for a fun twist on the classic recipe, it's a little lighter, and you only need a few simple, easy to find ingredients to make it. Best of all, it's ready in mere minutes!
Ready to dig in? Then keep reading for the easy recipe, tons of tips and variations, and lots of fun ideas for using it that go way beyond wings!
What is Buffalo Sauce?
Buffalo Sauce (aka Wing Sauce) is a spicy sauce that's made from a combination of hot sauce, butter, and other ingredients. It's traditionally tossed with deep-fried chicken wings, but there are tons of other ways to use it, too.
Those popular wings were created in 1964 at the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, New York. The story goes that bar owner Teressa Bellissimo cooked up a batch of spicy wings for her son and his friends late one night. Her son enjoyed them so much, that she served them in her bar the next day.
Today, you can find those saucy wings in pretty much any U.S. sports bar, and they're a staple at home on game day, too.
Don't eat chicken? No problemo ... there are just about a million other ways to use this piquant sauce!
Wondering what's in this vegetarian Buffalo Sauce? You can find the ingredients in any grocery store ... here's what you'll need:
- Hot Sauce - While you can technically use another hot sauce, Frank's RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce (say that three times fast!) is the most classic choice. It's easy to find Frank's in pretty much any grocery store (or online), so don't skip it. If you can't locate it for some reason, feel free to try another thick, full-flavored sauce.
- Butter - This essential ingredient helps temper the heat, and it makes the sauce creamy. My version has a less butter than most recipes (some call for equal parts hot sauce and butter), which means it's lighter, and it's also spicier. Don't worry if you like things less spicy though. You can easily customize the heat level according to your preference.
- Garlic - Fresh garlic gives this tangy sauce tons of flavor. If you'd prefer a smoother sauce (or don't have any fresh), you can either grate the garlic using a microplane zester instead of mincing it, or you can substitute one teaspoon garlic powder.
- Sriracha - While not a traditional ingredient (don't come at me, lol), I love adding a generous dash or two of Sriracha Sauce to this recipe. It adds a little extra kick and flavor. Feel free to leave it out if you prefer.
Pretty basic, right? And it's easy to customize, too ... you'll find lots of tempting variations below!
How to Make Buffalo Sauce from Scratch
This zippy hot sauce couldn't be easier, or faster, to make! You'll find a detailed, printable recipe at the end of the post, but here's a quick overview of the steps:
- Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- When the butter is melted and hot, add the garlic. Stirring constantly, cook the garlic for about 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
- Add Frank's Hot Sauce, and if using, the Sriracha. Mix until all the ingredients are incorporated.
- Bring the mixture to a boil, then remove from heat.
And guess what? There's no step five ... you are done, and your amazing, homemade Buffalo Sauce is ready to use! So simple, right?
Now that you've mastered this basic Buffalo Wing Sauce recipe, you can have fun experimenting! Here are a few ideas to inspire you:
- Milder - To make this recipe milder, skip the Sriracha for starters. You could also double the butter (most recipes call for more than mine does).
- Spicier - Like things extra spicy? Add extra Sriracha or ground cayenne to taste.
- Sweet + Spicy - Enjoy a little sweet with your heat? Add a tablespoon or two of honey, maple syrup, or brown sugar.
- Smoky - Give your homemade hot sauce an intriguing smoky flavor, by adding a dash of Liquid Smoke or a teaspoon of smoked paprika.
- Tangier - Add some extra tang to your sauce by stirring in two to three teaspoons of white vinegar.
- Truffle - Are you a truffle fan? Whisk a tablespoon of truffle oil or truffle butter into the finished sauce (or add to taste).
- Ranch - Buffalo + ranch is a classic combo! To make a super tasty dipping sauce or salad dressing, simply mix the cooled sauce into your favorite ranch dressing (to taste).
- Vegan - This recipe is super easy to make vegan! Just swap in your fave plant-based butter alternative.
How to Use
Now that you've mastered this easy sauce, you'll find that there are a million ways to use it that go way beyond wings! For starters, you can add it to any recipe that calls for Buffalo Sauce ... these are my faves:
- Buffalo Cauliflower Bites
- Buffalo Tatchos (Tater Tot Nachos)
- Buffalo Cauliflower Dip
- Buffalo Tofu
- Buffalo Cauliflower Mac and Cheese
But don't stop there! Here are some other easy ideas:
- Hot Sauce - You can use this spicy sauce anywhere you'd use your fave hot sauce! Try drizzling it on eggs, breakfast burritos, tacos, pizza, hummus, baked potatoes or french fries, nachos, veggie nuggets, burgers, soups, or chili. And don't be afraid to add it to your fave recipes ... it would be totally delish in this Egg Salad!
- Dipping Sauce - Use this tangy sauce as a dip for chips, garlic bread, or fresh, grilled, or roasted veggies. Enjoy dipping on its own or mix it with a little mayo or yogurt to thicken it up a bit.
- Mixed with Ranch Dressing - Create your own Buffalo Ranch Dressing by mixing this homemade sauce with your fave Ranch, then use it on salads, as a dipping sauce, or anywhere else you'd use Ranch.
Store any leftover sauce in a small jar or other air-tight container. Once refrigerated, it will stay fresh for up to a week. Rewarm leftover sauce in your microwave, or on your stove top, before serving.
More Homemade Sauce Recipes
Now that you know how easy it is to make Buffalo Sauce from scratch, try one of these other classic sauce recipes next!
- 4 tablespoons butter (regular or vegan)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 cup Frank's RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce
- 2 teaspoons sriracha (optional)
- Small Saucepan
- Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
- When butter is hot, add garlic. Sauté, stirring constantly, until fragrant (about 30 seconds).
- Add Frank's sauce and sriracha (if using). Mix ingredients together until fully combined.
- Bring sauce to a boil, then remove from heat.
- Use in your favorite recipes. Enjoy!