This homemade hot honey recipe features chiles de arbol.
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Homemade Hot Honey Recipe

Dip into Homemade Hot Honey, a fiery condiment infused with the bold flavors of chiles de arbol. With just a handful of ingredients, this easy recipe delivers a kick to any dish. Bursting with the spicy heat and subtle fruitiness of chiles de arbol, this easy recipe is sure to become your go-to condiment

Hot honey has become widely available in most grocery stores, but the markup is very high. Given how much we use it, I was inspired to create the tastiest version possible at home.

With just 3 ingredients, this recipe is a cost-effective way to tailor the heat to your liking. Plus, it’s a very simple recipe to prepare!

Keep the chile de arbol infused honey in a glass container for storing.

Why This Recipe Works

It’s actually spicy! I’ve tried many online recipes for homemade hot honey using dried chiles, and very few of them are what I would consider “hot”.

Typically the dried chile flakes, which are highly recommended, have been sitting on shelves for a long time, whether in the grocery store or your pantry. They lose their flavor and heat over time, meaning that the infused honey is not very spicy.

Read along and you’ll see why I chose to use diced chiles de arbol, which are spicier and tastier than the common dried chile flakes you’ll find.

Hot Honey Ingredients

There are only 3 ingredients to prepare this homemade hot honey, so let’s briefly discuss them:

  • Honey: Use any type of honey that you prefer. I’ve found that varieties of citrus honey taste extremely delicious with the heat from the chiles.
  • Chiles de Arbol: These are the perfect choice for making homemade hot honey because of their heat level and flavor profile. They are slightly fruity, with a slightly smoky, nutty flavor. The spice level is perfect for infused honey, and they are readily available at many grocery stores and online. Make sure to purchase chiles that are slightly flexible, which indicates a higher level of freshness.
  • Apple Cider Vinegar: Use a small splash at the very end of the recipe to create a slight tang, similar to that of many popular brands. The acid enhances the overall flavors of the ingredients, seasoning the hot honey as if it were a dash of salt.
Gently warm the hot honey and dried chiles to a simmer to infuse the flavors.

How to Make Hot Honey

This recipe comes together in minutes, but following the steps is critical. You don’t want to burn the honey!

  1. Prep the chiles. Don’t skip this step, otherwise you might be putting dust and dirt into the honey. Gently wash and pat them dry, then snip or slice them into small rings. For those seeking additional heat, don’t hesitate to use the seeds too.
  2. Simmer the honey with the chiles. Add the chopped chiles de arbol and the honey to a saucepan set to medium-low, and bring to a gentle simmer. If you have a temperature probe, aim for 140-150°F. Let it bubble for about 1-2 minutes before turning off the heat. Stir in the apple cider vinegar and allow it to rest for at least 15 minutes.

    Do not walk away while the honey is warming up, in case it heats up too quickly and starts to boil.
  1. Transfer and store the honey. Carefully pour the honey into a glass container and place a lid on it once the honey has completely cooled. Store in a cool, dark place.

Straining the honey is optional. Perhaps you don’t like the crunchy bits and seeds, so this would be a good choice.

Leaving the diced chiles de arbol in the honey allows the capsaicin to gradually infuse, intensifying the spice level over time. As the flavors meld, expect the heat to escalate, creating a more robust experience towards the bottom of the jar.

Strain out the chiles de arbol from the infused honey, which helps to keep the flavor consistent and smooth.

What do You Eat Hot Honey With?

The lure of hot honey lies in its versatility. Here are just a few ways to incorporate this sweet heat into your meals:

Once the homemade hot honey has cooled, it can be covered and stored in a cool, dark place.

Important Tips

Making your own infused honey is very simple, but here are a few things to help you get the best results:

  • Keep the honey sealed at room temperature to prevent crystallization. This should not be stored in the fridge.
  • Be mindful of the heat level when handling the chiles, as the oils can seep onto your skin. Don’t touch your eyes! Wearing gloves is an option.
  • Straining the honey is optional but can help maintain a consistent level of heat over time. Leaving the chiles in the jar will increase the spice level, which becomes more potent as you get to the end. Sometimes that’s fun too!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you fix crystallized honey?

Place the jar in a bowl of warm water and allow it to sit until the crystals dissolve. You may need to stir the honey after a few minutes to aid the process. Do not cook or boil the honey using direct heat, as this will change the flavor and consistency of the honey.

How long does hot honey last?

When stored properly at room temperature, homemade hot honey can last indefinitely. However, it’s very likely you’ll end up making many batches of it, because it’s so freaking good.

Thank You For Trying Our Recipe!

We’re here to bring people together with bold flavors, using spice and flames to ignite the food and friendships.

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This homemade hot honey recipe features chiles de arbol.

Homemade Hot Honey Recipe

Dip into Homemade Hot Honey, a fiery condiment infused with the bold flavors of chiles de arbol. This easy recipe delivers a kick to any dish.

  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: About 1 cup 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1216 dried chiles de arbol (depending on preferred heat)
  • 1 cup honey
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar (optional)

Instructions

  1. Store at room temperature. Seal the jar once the honey has completely cooled. Do not store in the fridge, which can add moisture and speed up crystalization.

Notes

  • Be mindful of the heat level when handling the chiles, as the oils can seep onto your skin. Don’t touch your eyes! 
  • Author: Brad Prose
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Sauces & Salsas
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Sauce
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