This hot honey recipe is the perfect combination of sweet and spicy. Drizzle it over 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 that adds exciting flavour to many dishes.
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 favourite local honey from 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.
- Hot honey has so many uses! 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.
🛒 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 favourite honey. I like to use local honey for many reasons. I know 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 favourite flavour: 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 hot 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 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. And if you'd like ALL the heat, don't strain the mixture at all. It will continue to infuse with flavour 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 flavour.
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.
🍽 So many 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: My favourite 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.
Salad dressings and vinaigrettes: Sometimes homemade dressings need a touch of sweetness or a little heat. A teaspoon of hot honey can correct the flavour in an instant!
Dessert: Yes, it's even delicious on dessert! Spicy honey on chocolate ice cream is an amazing taste treat!
⏰ Storage Instructions
To store: Store this spicy honey in a jar or honey pot with a lid at room temperature. It will last for about 6 months.
👍🏼 Hot Honey for gifts!
A small jar of hot honey makes a great hostess or holiday gift! Pour it into tiny honey jars as party favours, 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
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- 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.