The Best, Award-Winning Hot Sauces of 2020

The Best Award-Winning Hot Sauces of the year
Illustration by Zac Zemantic

If you're looking for all of this year's award-winning hot sauces, you're in the right place. We've gathered a list of the winners from the biggest and longest running national competitions. We'll be updating this every year, and will be adding in previous years to the archive over time. If you're looking to find a new sauce to try, or to give someone as a gift, you can't go wrong with any of these.

Scovie Awards

National Fiery Foods Show

National Fiery Foods Show

The Scovies may be the most well-known award in the industry. It's common to see products advertising that they have won this prestigious award, often with a badge—sometimes adorning the packaging of the bottle or jar.

They are voted upon by a panel of tasters at the National Fiery Foods show. First, second, and third place awards are given out in a slew of categories, including condiments, barbeque, salsa, hot sauces, rubs/seasonings, wing sauce, and more. To keep things short, these are the 1st place winners in the various "Hot Sauce" sub-categories.

2019 — 1st Place

Louisiana-Style

Habanero

Medium Hot

Unique

Fruit

Elijah's Xtreme - Reaper Sauce
Elijah's Xtreme - Reaper Sauce

Elijah's Xtreme Gourmet Sauces, Inc

XXX Hot

Hot

Fruit Based - Mild/Medium

Screaming Mi Mi Awards

New York City Hot Sauce Expo

New York City Hot Sauce Expo

This award is given out at the New York City Hot Sauce Expo. This expo is one of the longest running—since 2013, and attracts a large crowd. It has since expanded, hosting another event in California. The Screaming Mi Mi award winners receive a golden trophy, shaped like a flame.

2019 — 1st Place

Pepper Blend - Hot

Caribbean Style

Jersey Barnfire - Indian Summer
Jersey Barnfire - Indian Summer

Jersey Barnfire Hot Sauce

Fruit

Fruit Based - Hot/X-Hot

Louisiana-Style

Reaper Pepper Sauce

XXX Hot

Chicken Wing

Rippin' Red Wing Sauce - Hot
Rippin' Red Wing Sauce - Hot

Rippin' Red Sauce Company

Spicy BBQ Sauce

Fiery Food Challenge

ZestFest

ZestFest

These are the #1 winners of the Golden Chile Award, in each category of "consumer ready" hot sauces. The winners at selected at ZestFest every year. Second and third place ribbons are also given out. The best overall receives the Golden Chile trophy.

2019 — 1st Place

Best Hot Sauce

Extra Hot

Pepper Blend – Mild/Medium

Pepper Blend – Hot/X-Hot

American Style - Mild/Medium

American Style - Hot/X-Hot

Asian Style - Mild/Medium

Caribbean Style - Mild/Medium

Caribbean Style - Hot/X-Hot

Chipotle Style - Hot/X-Hot

Exotic - Mild/Medium

Exotic - Hot/X-Hot

Fruit Based - Hot/X-Hot

Latin - Mild/Medium

Latin - Hot/X-Hot

Spicy Sweet - Mild/Medium

Spicy Sweet - Hot/X-Hot

Ghost Pepper Sauce

Reaper Pepper Sauce

Trinidad Pepper Sauce

Lucky Dog - Heat’s a Peach
Lucky Dog - Heat’s a Peach

Lucky Dog Hot Sauce

World Hot Sauce Awards

WorldHotSauceAwards.com

WorldHotSauceAwards.com

"The World Hot Sauce Awards are a celebration of spicy sauces and food with the awards ceremony in the historical center of Hot Sauce production—Louisiana." Judging is done by a group of food industry professionals using blind tasting methods. Entrants into the contest send in their sauce(s) for evaluation. In 2019 the winners were broadcast live.

2019 — 1st Place





The year's best hot sauces - Illustration of an Anteater holding a golden trophy fill with hot sauces bottles, standing on top of a pile of hot chile peppers.
Illustration by Bonnie Zemantic