Authentic Horseradish Sauce Recipe – Bold And Tangy

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Horseradish Sauce Recipe is a savory delight, revered for its bold, sinus-clearing kick. This sauce often melds with cream or vinegar, resulting in a creamy or tangy mixture from the grated horseradish root. Its sharp, spicy character can elevate roasts and seafood, making it a sophisticated companion for many dishes. This age-old condiment holds a special place on dining tables, offering an intense flavor experience.

Experience the joy of crafting your horseradish sauce recipe. Transform simple ingredients into an unforgettable accompaniment for meats and sandwiches. Forget store-bought versions.

Homemade Horseradish sauce offers a bold, authentic flavor unmatched by commercial alternatives. 

Horseradish Sauce

Fresh horseradish root, blended with tangy vinegar and cream, produces a pungent, spicy condiment. The taste is refreshing, the texture sublime.

This recipe highlights the natural zest of horseradish without unnecessary additives or preservatives. 

Its versatility enhances a variety of dishes, elevating their flavor profiles dramatically. Ideal for prime rib, it also pairs well with grilled meats, roast beef sandwiches, and even seafood.

The preparation process is effortless, requiring just a few minutes and minimal equipment. 

Once made, the sauce keeps well in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Impress your guests, awaken your palate, and elevate your culinary creations with this remarkable horseradish sauce.

What Is Horseradish Sauce?

Horseradish sauce is a creamy, tangy condiment made primarily from grated horseradish root, vinegar, and often, dairy elements like sour cream or mayonnaise. This sauce boasts a unique, intense flavor and a spicy kick. 

It is an ideal accompaniment for various dishes, such as prime rib, roast beef sandwiches, and grilled meats.

Its strong, peppery notes cut through the richness of fatty foods, providing a balanced taste experience. 

Beyond meats, it also complements seafood and can be used as a zesty vegetable dip. Easy to prepare, it offers a flavor that enhances any meal.

History Of Horseradish Sauce

Horseradish sauce traces its roots back to Eastern Europe, where the horseradish plant originally grew wild. Over time, cultivation spread to other parts of Europe, including the British Isles. 

The sauce gained prominence for its medicinal properties, as well as its culinary uses. Historically, horseradish sauce has been a staple in Jewish Passover feasts and a common element in British and German cuisine. 

In the 19th century, it crossed the Atlantic with European immigrants, becoming a beloved ingredient in American kitchens.

Today, this pungent sauce is significant in various culinary traditions. It is celebrated for its unique ability to elevate various dishes.

Interesting Facts About Horseradish Sauce 

  • Historical Roots: Horseradish has been used for thousands of years, not only as a condiment but also for medicinal purposes. It’s believed to have originated in Eastern Europe and western Asia.
  • Culinary Versatility: Horseradish sauce isn’t just for meats; it’s also popular in seafood dishes, sandwiches, and cocktails like the Bloody Mary.
  • Wasabi Substitute: Real wasabi is expensive and hard to find. Many sushi restaurants use a mixture of horseradish, mustard, and food coloring as a substitute.
  • Spice Levels: The heat of the horseradish root comes from isothiocyanate. This volatile compound dissipates with heat, so the sauce is often served cold.
  • Nutritional Benefits: Horseradish is rich in dietary fiber, vitamins C and B6, calcium, magnesium, and other minerals, offering various health benefits.
  • Cultural Significance: In Jewish tradition, horseradish root or a sauce made from it is commonly used during Passover Seders as one of the bitter herbs.
  • Storage Surprise: Prepared horseradish can lose its pungency quite quickly. However, its shelf life increases when mixed into a sauce with vinegar or acidic dairy-like sour cream.
  • Global Variations: Different countries have unique twists on horseradish sauce, incorporating local herbs, spices, and even fruits.
  • Cream Factor: The creaminess in some versions of horseradish sauce comes from sour cream or mayonnaise, which balances the spiciness and makes it more palatable to some.
  • Quick Activation: Grated horseradish must “rest” for a few minutes to reach its full potential. In horseradish sauce, this means the flavor can change slightly over time.
Horseradish Sauce

What Are The Regional Adaptations Of Horseradish Sauce? 

Various regions have embraced and adapted Horseradish sauce with its fiery pungency.

It’s traditionally paired with roast beef in the UK and may include cream or sour cream for a milder finish.

In parts of Eastern Europe, beetroot might be blended with horseradish to produce a vibrant “chrain” relish. 

In the US, especially in the South, it’s sometimes combined with mayonnaise and dubbed “horsey sauce,” often used for roast beef sandwiches.

Some regions in Germany might mix it with mustard for an extra zesty flavor. 

What Will Make You Love Horseradish Sauce? 

Horseradish sauce is a bold condiment that captivates with its sharp, zesty flavor profile.

For those who adore an exhilarating kick in their food, horseradish sauce offers an intense yet refreshing pungency, different from the heat of chilies. 

This sauce doesn’t just provide heat; it awakens the senses, clearing the sinuses and bringing an unexpected depth to dishes.

Paired with savory foods like roast beef or steak, it cuts through the richness, enhancing the meat’s natural flavors. 

Additionally, horseradish sauce can be mellowed with cream or mayonnaise, providing a creamy texture and balancing its intensity.

This adaptability, combined with its unique taste, can easily make one fall in love with horseradish sauce.

Horseradish Sauce

Ingredients List 

Sour Cream1 cup
Prepared Horseradish2 teaspoons
Chopped Fresh Dill Weed1 tablespoon
SaltTo taste

Ingredient Tips

  • Quality Sour Cream: Opt for a high-quality, full-fat sour cream for a richer flavor and smoother texture.
  • Prepared Horseradish: Choose a fresh, reputable brand. Check the expiration date and ingredients to avoid preservatives or added sugars.
  • Fresh Dill Weed: Freshness is critical; wilted or dried dill will not impart the same vibrant flavor. Consider growing dill in your herb garden for the freshest supply.
  • Salt: Use kosher or sea salt for a cleaner, purer taste. Avoid iodized salt, as it can alter the sauce’s natural flavors.
  • Storage: Keep your fresh horseradish root and sour cream refrigerated until needed. Cold ingredients help the sauce maintain its texture.
  • Scaling: Accurately measure each ingredient, especially when scaling the recipe. Balance is crucial for optimal flavor.
  • Optional Add-Ins: Consider adding a dash of lemon juice or a pinch of black pepper for extra complexity. However, these are optional and depend on your taste preferences.

What Are The Variations Of Horseradish Sauce Recipe? 

Horseradish sauce can be crafted to suit different tastes and dishes.

Here are some variations:

  • Creamy Horseradish Sauce: Blend prepared horseradish with sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. This milder, creamy version is great with roast beef.
  • “Horsey” Mayo: Combine mayonnaise with horseradish, lemon juice, and seasonings. Perfect as a sandwich spread.
  • Beet Horseradish (Chrain): Mix grated horseradish with cooked, grated beets. This Eastern European relish is both spicy and sweet.
  • Mustard Horseradish: Merge Dijon mustard with horseradish for a zesty, tangy sauce.
  • Cocktail Sauce: Blend ketchup, horseradish, a splash of Worcestershire, and lemon juice for a seafood-friendly dip.

Recipe Directions

Cooking Method

  • Preparation: Gather all the ingredients—sour cream, prepared horseradish, fresh dill weed, and salt—along with a small mixing bowl and a stirring spoon.
  • Combine Ingredients: In the small bowl, stir the sour cream, prepared horseradish, and freshly chopped dill weed until well-mixed.
  • Seasoning: Add salt to taste and stir again to ensure an even distribution of flavors.
  • Taste Test: Take a small sample to check if additional seasoning or adjustments are necessary.
  • Serve: Once satisfied with the flavor, serve the horseradish sauce immediately as an accompaniment to your choice of meats, seafood, or vegetables.

Ferment Method 

  • Grate Horseradish: Peel and grate fresh horseradish root.
  • Mix with Vinegar: Combine the grated horseradish with white vinegar in a jar, leaving some space at the top.
  • Seal and Store: Seal the jar tightly and store it in a cool, dark place for at least two weeks to ferment.
  • Use in Sauce: You can use this prepared horseradish in your sauce recipe as indicated after fermentation.

Scaling The Recipe 

The horseradish sauce recipe may be easily scaled. Still, it’s important to pay attention to the ingredient ratios for a flavorful balance.

Each ingredient’s quantity should be multiplied by two to double the recipe; split it in half. 

When scaling up for a big gathering, use a bigger mixing bowl to accommodate the additional capacity.

Always taste-test the prepared mixture to ensure the seasoning is still appropriate; you might need to make some salt or other ingredient adjustment. 

Consider using a smaller bowl and a teaspoon for more precise measurement when decreasing a recipe.

Maintaining ingredient proportions is essential to obtain the best outcomes, whether the recipe size increases or decreases.

Horseradish Sauce Recipe

Can This Sauce Be Used As A Marinade, Dipping Sauce, Or Dressing For Salads And Other Dishes?

  • Marinade: Its tangy and spicy qualities can tenderize and flavor meats, especially beef or pork. It pairs well with marinade ingredients like garlic, soy sauce, or lemon juice.
  • Dipping Sauce: It’s ideal as a dip, especially for seafood like shrimp or roasted vegetables. Its creamy texture makes it a delightful accompaniment.
  • Dressing for Salads: Thinned down, it can be a unique salad dressing base. Mixing it with olive oil, vinegar, or lemon juice creates a creamy, spicy, and tangy dressing.
  • Other Dishes: It can be swirled into mashed potatoes, drizzled on sandwiches, or added to soups for a flavor boost. The adaptability of horseradish sauce makes it suitable for numerous culinary applications.

What Are The Best Dishes To Accompany Horseradish Sauce?

  • Roast Beef: A classic pairing; the sauce complements the rich flavors of beef perfectly.
  • Seafood: Especially with smoked salmon, shrimp, or oysters, it adds a spicy kick.
  • Sandwiches: Elevate cold cuts, roast beef sandwiches, or vegetarian wraps.
  • Potatoes: Drizzled over roasted potatoes, stirred into mashed potatoes, or atop potato pancakes.
  • Grilled Vegetables: The tangy sauce balances the charred flavors of grilled veggies.
  • Steaks: As a topping for grilled or pan-seared steaks.
  • Sausages: Works well with both mild and spicy sausages.
  • Eggs: Whether it’s deviled eggs, scrambled, or egg salads, the sauce adds a punch.
  • Coleslaw: Mix into coleslaw for an extra zing.
  • Burgers: It adds a flavorful twist, especially with beef or veggie patties.
Horseradish Sauce

What Are Some Classic Dishes That Feature Horseradish Sauce?

Horseradish sauce starring in various classic dishes, enhancing flavors and adding a spicy kick.

One of the most iconic pairings is with prime rib, where the sauce’s pungency cuts through the meat’s richness. 

Roast beef sandwiches also benefit from a dollop of horseradish sauce, lending a zesty contrast to the savory beef.

In the United Kingdom, it’s a traditional accompaniment for Sunday roast dinners, particularly roast beef.

 In Jewish cuisine, horseradish sauce or “chrain” often accompanies gefilte fish during Passover.

Seafood lovers also enjoy the sauce with oysters and smoked salmon. Additionally, the sauce can serve as a zingy dip for vegetables like crudites.

What Are The Key Flavor Profiles And Taste Sensations That Horseradish Sauce Offers?

Horseradish sauce presents a complex interplay of flavors and sensations stimulating the palate.

At its core, the sauce exhibits a pungent, spicy kick derived from the horseradish root. This peppery note is the primary flavor driver, providing a bold, refreshing experience. 

The tangy undertone from the vinegar complements the spiciness, which adds acidity and lifts the sauce’s overall profile.

If dairy elements like sour cream or mayonnaise are included, they contribute a creamy, rich texture that tempers the heat.

Additional herbs like dill introduces aromatic, earthy nuances. Collectively, these components create a balanced sauce that is spicy, tangy, creamy, and occasionally herbal, offering a multi-layered taste experience.

Horseradish Sauce

Can This Sauce Be Stored And Preserved For Future Use? What Is Its Shelf Life?

Yes, horseradish sauce can be stored for future use. Once prepared, transfer the sauce to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator. Properly stored, it has a shelf life of up to two weeks. 

The sauce’s quality may degrade after this period, losing its pungency and potentially becoming watery or separated. It is not advisable to freeze the sauce, as freezing can alter its texture and flavor. 

Always check for signs of spoilage, such as off-smells, mold, or color changes, before consuming stored sauce.

The sauce may last slightly longer if you’re using fresh, fermented horseradish as a base.

What Are The Substitutes For Horseradish Sauce? 

If you’re out of horseradish sauce or are looking for alternatives due to flavor or dietary preferences, several substitutes can be considered:

  • Wasabi: Both horseradish and wasabi have a similar fiery kick. Wasabi is often used in Japanese cuisine and can be a direct substitute, though it has a greener hue.
  • Dijon Mustard: While not as pungent as horseradish, it brings a sharpness that can work in many recipes.
  • Ginger: Freshly grated ginger offers a spicy zing, though its flavor profile is distinct.
  • Spicy Brown Mustard: Delivers a tangy heat that can sometimes work in place of horseradish.
  • White Pepper: Adds a sharp, spicy note.
  • Radish: Grated radish provides a fresh, peppery bite but lacks the intense pungency.
Horseradish Sauce

How To Adjust The Consistency Of The Sauce?

The consistency of the soup, whether thick or thin, largely depends on the specific recipe and the ingredients used.

Horseradish sauce is not a soup, so clarifying which soup you’re referring to is essential. 

However, incorporating horseradish sauce into a soup can add a creamy element that may thicken the dish slightly, depending on the quantity used.

Chowders or cream-based soups are thicker, while broths and consommés are generally thinner. 

The thickness can also be adjusted by simmering to reduce liquid or adding thickeners like cornstarch or roux.

Should We Serve The Sauce Cold Or Warm? 

Horseradish sauce is traditionally served cold or at room temperature. Its pungent and sharp flavors are best preserved and most pronounced when kept cool.

Serving it cold also provides a refreshing contrast, especially with hot dishes like roast beef, steak, or sausages

However, some recipes or dishes have horseradish integrated into a warm sauce or gravy. Still, these are exceptions rather than the norm.

For optimal flavor and consistency, especially when using a creamy base, it’s advisable to serve horseradish sauce chilled or at room temperature and to store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

Sauce Cold

Nutritional Values

Horseradish sauce isn’t just a flavor enhancer; it packs a nutritional punch. While the primary ingredient, horseradish, offers several health benefits, other components contribute to the overall nutritional profile.

What Are The Total Calories In Horseradish Sauce? 

The total calories in horseradish sauce can vary depending on the specific ingredients and their quantities. 

Generally, a sauce with 1 cup of full-fat sour cream, 2 teaspoons of prepared horseradish, and a tablespoon of fresh dill would have approximately 450-500 calories for the entire batch. 

This calculation assumes that full-fat sour cream contains around 45 – 60 calories per tablespoon.

You can use low-fat or non-fat sour cream or alternative dairy-free options for a lower-calorie version. Always check nutritional labels for precise caloric information.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Horseradish Sauce 

  • Dairy Content: Traditional recipes often use sour cream, making it unsuitable for those who are lactose intolerant or have a dairy allergy.
  • Gluten-Free: Generally, horseradish sauce is gluten-free, but always check labels on prepared horseradish for possible gluten-containing additives.
  • Vegan/Vegetarian: The standard recipe is not vegan due to the dairy content, but it is vegetarian.
  • Low-Carb/Keto: The sauce is usually low in carbohydrates, making it suitable for low-carb and keto diets.
  • High Sodium: Prepared horseradish can be high in sodium, a concern for those on a low-sodium diet.
  • Nut Allergies: Typically nut-free, but cross-contamination is always a risk if not made at home.
  • Sugar Content: Most recipes don’t include sugar, but variations may affect those with diabetes or sugar restrictions.
  • Spiciness: While not a formal dietary restriction, the spiciness may be problematic for those with gastrointestinal issues.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

Are There Any Common Mistakes To Avoid When Making Or Using This Sauce? 

  • Overpowering Spice: Horseradish’s heat can intensify if too much is used. Begin with a modest amount and adjust accordingly.
  • Not Letting it Rest: Letting the sauce sit for a while can help flavors meld. Instant usage might deliver a partial depth of flavor.
  • Using Aged Horseradish: Fresh horseradish offers the best flavor. Older horseradish can become bitter.
  • Overcomplicating: Overloading too many additional ingredients can overshadow the sauce’s core flavors.
  • Ignoring Consistency: Ensure a balanced ratio of creamy components to avoid a runny or overly thick sauce.
  • Not Storing Properly: An airtight container in the fridge is essential to maintain freshness and prevent spoilage.
  • Overuse in Dishes: A little goes a long way; excessive amounts can overpower other flavors in a dish.

What Are Some Creative Uses Of Leftover Sauce?

  • Dip for Vegetables: Use the sauce as a tangy dip for raw veggies or roasted vegetables.
  • Sandwich Spread: Elevate sandwiches, burgers, or wraps with a layer of horseradish sauce.
  • Potato Enhancer: Mix into mashed potatoes or drizzle over roasted potatoes for added zest.
  • Salad Dressing Base: Thin it with vinegar or olive oil for a unique salad dressing.
  • Seafood Complement: Pair with grilled or baked fish or use as a dipping sauce for shrimp.
  • Stir into Soups: Add a dollop to soups or stews for an extra layer of flavor.
  • Steak Topping: Use as a tangy accompaniment to grilled steaks or roasts.
  • Mixed with Eggs: Swirl into scrambled eggs or omelets for a spicy kick.
  • Pasta Dressing: Toss with cold pasta salads for a creamy, zesty touch.
  • Bloody Mary Boost: Stir into a Bloody Mary for a spicy dimension.
Horseradish Sauce Recipe

Special Tools & Equipment Needed

  • Grater or Food Processor: Essential if using fresh horseradish root to achieve a fine consistency.
  • Mixing Bowl: Preferably a non-reactive material, like glass or stainless steel, to mix ingredients.
  • Whisk: Helps in thoroughly combining and achieving a smooth texture.
  • Measuring Cups & Spoons: For precise ingredient quantities.
  • Airtight Container: To store any leftover sauce, ensuring it remains fresh.
  • Rubber Spatula: Useful for scraping down the sides of bowls and ensuring no waste.
  • Glass Jars: For long-term storage or if making large batches.
  • Mortar and Pestle: If choosing to grind fresh horseradish or herbs.
  • Gloves: To protect hands when handling fresh horseradish, which can be pungent.
  • Tasting Spoons: To sample and adjust seasoning accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is There A Difference Between Horseradish Sauce And Prepared Horseradish?

Yes, prepared horseradish is the grated horseradish root preserved with vinegar. Horseradish sauce typically combines prepared horseradish with creamy ingredients like sour cream or mayonnaise and added seasonings.

Can I Use Fresh Horseradish Root For The Sauce?

Absolutely! If using fresh horseradish, you’ll need to peel and grate it. Remember, fresh horseradish is potent, so adjust the amount based on your preference.

How Long Can I Store Homemade Horseradish Sauce?

The sauce should remain fresh for up to one week when stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Always check for signs of spoilage before using.

Can I Use Horseradish Sauce As A Marinade?

Yes, horseradish sauce can be an excellent marinade for meats, imparting a spicy and tangy flavor. You might want to thin it down slightly or mix it with other marinade ingredients for the best results.

I Find The Sauce Too Spicy. How Can I Mellow It Down?

If the sauce is too spicy, add more sour cream or a touch of honey or sugar to balance the heat. Remember to mix well and taste as you adjust.

Authentic Horseradish Sauce Recipe – Bold And Tangy

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Recipe by Lana Rivera Course: Hot Sauces


Prep time




Ferment/Rest Time



Horseradish sauce is a zesty condiment renowned for its bold and spicy kick. Made from grated horseradish root blended with vinegar and a touch of cream, it delivers a fiery, sinus-clearing flavor that enhances roast beef, sandwiches, and seafood dishes. It is a perfect balance of heat and tang for culinary enthusiasts.


  • 1 cup 1 Sour Cream

  • 2 teaspoons 2 Prepared Horseradish

  • 1 tablespoon 1 Chopped Fresh Dill Weed

  • Salt (To taste)

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Preparation: Before you begin, ensure you have all the ingredients. If using fresh horseradish, it should be grated, and the dill should be finely chopped.
  • Choose the Right Bowl: Take a small mixing bowl. Ensure it’s clean and dry.
  • Combining Ingredients: Add the sour cream to the bowl, ensuring it’s evenly spread at the bottom.
  • Adding Horseradish: Gently stir in the prepared horseradish, integrating it well with the sour cream.
  • Incorporate the Dill: Add the freshly chopped dill to the mixture. This will introduce a fragrant and slightly tangy flavor.
  • Seasoning: Season the mixture with salt. Start with a pinch and mix well. Taste and adjust according to your preference. Remember, you can always add more salt but can’t take it away once added.
  • Final Stir: Give the mixture one last thorough stir, ensuring all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  • Serving: Transfer the sauce to a serving dish if desired, or serve directly from the mixing bowl.
  • Storage: If not serving immediately, cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Recipe Video


  • Vitamin C: Horseradish is a good source of vitamin C, which is essential for collagen synthesis, immune function, and iron absorption.
  • Dietary Fiber: This aids digestion and contributes to overall gut health. Horseradish contains a fair amount of fiber.
  • Low Caloric Content: Despite the creamy texture (often from sour cream), horseradish sauce is relatively low in calories, making it a healthier condiment choice.
  • Minerals: The sauce provides small amounts of calcium, magnesium, and potassium, crucial for bone health, muscle function, and blood pressure regulation.
  • Phytochemicals: Horseradish contains compounds with antioxidant properties, which can help combat free radicals in the body.
  • Dairy Consideration: If made with sour cream or mayonnaise, the sauce will contain dairy, contributing to its calcium and vitamin A content but also making it unsuitable for those with dairy allergies or lactose intolerance.

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