This hot honey recipe is the perfect combination of sweet and spicy. Drizzle it over fried chicken, pizza, salmon, shrimp, veggies, cornbread, Parmesan cheese, even ice cream! It's an easy 3-ingredient spicy honey recipe made with crushed red pepper flakes to add exciting flavor to many dishes. Free printable gift tags!
What is hot honey?
Hot honey, also called spicy honey, is honey that has been infused with fresh or dried chili peppers. It's a sweet and spicy condiment with a kick!
❤️ Why you'll love this recipe
- Easy to make: While you can buy hot honey, it's so easy to make your own. Not only will you save money, but you can make it with your favorite local honey from the bees where you live!
- Control the spice level: Making infused honey, like I've done in this recipe for Fresh Apricots with Goat Cheese and Lavender Honey, is not difficult at all. You can easily control the level of heat in this homemade hot honey recipe by making your own.
- So many fun ways to use hot honey! I love to serve it as a dip on a charcuterie board or cheese plate, especially with a wedge of Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino Cheese.
- It's also delicious on: try these Air Fryer Hot Honey Wings, or try it on shrimp or prawns, chicken strips, flatbread, baking powder biscuits, cornbread, pizza, and roasted or air-fried vegetables. It takes Brussels sprouts and bacon to a whole new level!
- Free printable gift tags: A small jar of this deliciousness makes a great hostess gift! Download your gift tags below. My gift to you!
🛒 Ingredients and substitutions
You'll only need three simple ingredients that you probably have in your pantry to make this easy DIY hot honey recipe:
- honey: You can use your favorite honey. I like to use local honey for many reasons. I know raw honey produced near my home will be pure and unprocessed and I like to support local bee-keepers in my area. Many bee-keepers in my area use a blend of wildflower and fireweed honey, resulting in my favorite flavor: not too strong and not too flowery!
- hot peppers: To keep this the easiest hot honey recipe, I use crushed red pepper flakes to give this homemade hot honey sauce its heat. However, if you want more heat, you can use dried Thai red chili peppers or even a Scotch Bonnet pepper (if they're available where you live.) Habanero peppers will also increase the spice level of this infused honey.
- apple cider vinegar: The secret (in my view) to Mike's Hot Honey is the addition of apple cider vinegar! Vinegar adds a little tang and helps to balance the heat. As an alternative, you can add a splash of hot sauce like Frank's RedHot Sauce or even Tabasco Sauce, instead. (affiliate links)
🔪 How to Make Hot Honey
Here's an overview of what you'll do to make this recipe perfectly. You'll find complete instructions for how to make spicy honey in the recipe card at the end of this post.
- Simmer the honey: Start by adding honey to a small saucepan along with crushed red pepper flakes and stir until evenly combined. Over medium-low heat, bring the honey mixture to a simmer. You'll notice tiny bubbles forming around the edge of the pan. That's your cue to remove the pan from the heat.
- Stir in the apple cider vinegar.
- Strain: Here's the point where you can decide how spicy or "hot" you'd like it. For a mild flavor, let the mixture sit for 5 - 15 minutes, then strain it through a fine mesh strainer into a clean glass jar.
- Like it a little stronger? Let the honey and crushed dried red chili flakes infuse a little longer, for 30-40 minutes or so, then strain as above. And if you'd like ALL the heat, don't strain the mixture at all. It will continue to infuse with flavor over time.
- Store: I like to store mine in a glass jar or one of these cute Weck jars.
Hot honey will last for up to six months at room temperature if you've used crushed red pepper flakes. If you've used fresh peppers, like a jalapeño, serrano or habanero, you'll need to refrigerate it. It will keep for about a week.
If you've found you've let your hot honey infuse too long, or if it's too "hot" for your taste, add more honey to dilute the flavor.
Bees that live near you make local honey, which means the pollen they bring back to the hive has been collected from local plants. Seasonal allergies can be caused by these same plants, so eating honey that contains the pollen in those plants may help to combat those allergies.
🍽 Favorite ways to use hot honey!
Meat and seafood: If you haven't tried hot honey wings yet, you're in for a treat! Drizzle it on grilled or baked salmon, or grill fresh shrimp or prawns and use hot honey as a dipping sauce. It's incredible with Bangkok Crab Cakes!
Charcuterie boards: Pecorino with Hot Honey appetizer! My favorite way to use hot honey is to drizzle it over a wedge of Pecorino or Parmigiano Reggiano. That salty-sweet-hot combination on a cheese board is irresistible. Drizzle it over a wheel of Brie, as in this recipe for Easy Baked Brie with Hot Honey.
Biscuits, flatbread, or cornbread: What could be better than a pat of melting butter and a drizzle of hot honey on a freshly baked biscuit or wedge of cornbread? Can you imagine how delicious it is on avocado toast?
Salad dressings and vinaigrettes: Sometimes homemade salad dressing needs a touch of sweetness or a little heat. A teaspoon of hot honey can correct the flavor in an instant!
Dessert: Yes, it's even delicious on dessert! Drizzle a little over vanilla ice cream for a tasty dessert. Spicy honey on chocolate ice cream is an amazing taste treat!
⏰ Storage Instructions
To store: Store this spicy honey in cute jars or a honey pot with a lid at room temperature or in an airtight container. It will last for about 6 months.
👍🏼 Hot Honey for gifts!
A small jar of hot honey makes a great gift for a hostess or a holiday gift! Pour it into tiny honey jars as party favors, or gift it along with a cute honey pot. Add one of my free printable gift tags! Download here!
🗒 More recipes for dips and sauces
🌟Did you make this recipe?
When you make this spicy hot honey recipe, please leave a comment and a star rating below. I love hearing from you! Thanks in advance. Subscribe to my newsletter and have new recipes delivered straight to your inbox.
- 1 cup pure honey
- 2 teaspoons dried red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- Simmer the honey: Start by adding 1 cup honey to a small saucepan along with 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes. Stir until evenly combined. Over medium-low heat, bring the honey mixture to a simmer. Remove from the heat, then stir in the apple cider vinegar.
- Strain: For a mild flavour, let the mixture sit for 5 - 15 minutes, then strain it through a fine mesh strainer into a clean glass jar.
- Like it a little stronger? Let the honey and crushed chili flakes infuse a little longer, for 30-40 minutes or so, then strain as above. For an even stronger kick, don't strain the mixture at all. It will continue to infuse with flavour over time.
- Store: Store in a clean glass jar with a lid at room temperature. It will keep for up to 6 months.