10-Minutes Pique Recipe Infused With Spicy Kick!

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Introducing our Pique Sauce Recipe — an explosion of bold flavors from fiery hot peppers, aromatic garlic, and a dash of spice-infused vinegar. Crafted in a snap, it embodies the essence of fiery perfection. Versatile and swift, it’s your ticket to flavor-packed meals with just minutes of preparation. Customize the heat to your liking, making it uniquely yours. A blend of simple ingredients guarantees a burst of spice with every bite.

When I was younger, my grandmother shared a simple yet flavorful Pique recipe. This sauce is the key to elevating many dishes. Remember, the ingredients and proportions can make or break the flavor. 

Pique Sauce Recipe

My advice is to ensure your ingredients are fresh. Studies show that fresher components typically yield better results. If you decide to make this sauce, this may help: find a way to incorporate your personal touch. 

It’s a great way to make the recipe your own. Eliminate any doubts; you can master this sauce with some practice.

What Is The Pique Recipe? 

Pique is a popular Puerto Rican hot sauce. You’ll need a mix of hot peppers, typically ají caballero or habaneros, chopped into large chunks to make it. Add them to a jar with crushed garlic cloves, black peppercorns, and apple cider vinegar. 

Some people also include pineapple rinds for a touch of sweetness. Ensure your jar is sealed tightly. Let this mixture sit for at least a week, allowing the flavors to meld. 

Add a dash to your dishes for some heat when it’s ready. Remember, it’s potent; a little goes a long way. My advice: adjust the ingredients according to your heat preference.

History Of Pique Recipe 

Pique originates from Puerto Rico, where it’s a staple condiment. Its origins are hard to pinpoint, as many families have passed down their own versions for generations. It’s believed that indigenous Taino people may have had their spicy concoctions. 

Over time, with Spanish colonization and African influences, the modern Pique was born. While we can’t credit a single inventor, it’s a testament to Puerto Rico’s rich cultural tapestry. Remember, Pique is more than a recipe; it’s a piece of history.

Interesting Facts About Pique Recipe

  • Caribbean Staple: Pique is a beloved condiment in Caribbean cuisine, particularly in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic.
  • Hot Pepper Base: It’s made primarily from hot chili peppers, commonly Scotch bonnet or habanero peppers, which give it a fiery kick.
  • Vinegar Infusion: Pique is created by infusing vinegar with peppers, often with additional ingredients like garlic, onions, and spices.
  • Versatile Use: It’s a spicy topping or marinade for many dishes, including meats, seafood, and rice and beans.
  • Homemade Tradition: Many families have unique pique recipes passed down through generations.
  • Flavor Enhancement: Pique adds heat and flavor to Caribbean dishes, enhancing their authenticity and spiciness.
Pique Sauce Recipe

What Are The Regional Adaptations Of This Sauce?

Pique sauce, like many recipes, has seen regional adaptations. Here’s a list of variations you might find:

  • Mexican: Uses jalapeños or serrano peppers and might incorporate lime juice.
  • Trinidadian: “Pepper sauce” can include scotch bonnet peppers and sometimes papaya or mango.
  • Thai: Their version, “Nam Prik,” typically uses bird’s eye chili, fish sauce, and lime.
  • Indonesian: Called “Sambal,” it may incorporate shrimp paste.
  • Indian: Their hot sauces, like “Mirchi ka Salan,” use green chili and tamarind.
  • Filipino: “Sili” sauce uses local chili varieties and vinegar.
  • Vietnamese: “Sriracha” combines red chilis with garlic and vinegar.

What Will Make You Love This Pique Recipe?

The unique blend of flavors in this Pique recipe is what will win your heart. The heat from the peppers, combined with the tang of apple cider vinegar, creates a zesty kick. Adding the subtle sweetness of pineapple rinds balances the spiciness

This blend is the key to its appeal. This sauce may be a game-changer if you decide to try a new condiment. Typically, its versatility stands out; you can use it on various dishes. 

Remember, it’s not just about the heat but the depth of flavor it adds. My advice: try it, and you may find a way to love it.

Pique Sauce Recipe

Ingredients List

White vinegar1½ cups
Habaneros (stemmed and chopped)2 ounces (about 10 chiles)
Chopped sweetened dried pineapple1 cup
Fresh chopped cilantro2 tablespoons
Minced garlic cloves2
Dried bay leaf1
Black peppercorns12
Salt1½ teaspoons

Ingredient Tips

  • Vinegar: Opt for distilled white vinegar for a clean, sharp taste.
  • Habaneros: Wear gloves while handling to avoid skin irritation. Remember, you can adjust the number of chiles based on your heat preference.
  • Dried Pineapple: Ensure your dried pineapple isn’t overly sweetened; it might overpower the sauce.
  • Cilantro: Freshness is critical. Ensure your cilantro is vibrant green without any wilted leaves.
  • Garlic: Use freshly minced cloves for better flavor depth than pre-packaged versions.
  • Bay Leaf: One large, intact leaf is typically best to make removal easier.
  • Peppercorns: Freshly whole peppercorns can offer a richer aroma.
  • Salt: Opt for sea salt or kosher salt for a more refined taste.

What Are The Variations Of Pique Recipe?

Pique sauce has several variations, reflecting personal tastes and regional influences:

  • Citrus Twist: Some recipes incorporate orange or lime juice for a tangy flavor.
  • Herb Infusion: Apart from cilantro, people may add oregano or cilantro.
  • Sweeteners: Honey or agave can be used instead of dried pineapple to balance heat.
  • Peppers: Ají caballero or Scotch bonnet peppers can replace habaneros.
  • Fruits: Mango or papaya chunks are sometimes added for a fruity touch.
  • Spices: Cumin or coriander seeds can be introduced for depth.
  • Base Liquid: Besides white vinegar, apple cider vinegar is also popular.

Recipe Directions

Cooking Method

  • Bring the vinegar to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat.
  • Stir in the chiles, pineapple, cilantro, garlic, bay leaf, peppercorns, and salt.
  • Once all ingredients are combined, remove the saucepan from the heat.
  • Cover the saucepan and let the mixture sit until it cools to room temperature.

Ferment Method

  • Once cooled, transfer the mixture to a sterilized jar.
  • Seal the jar tightly and store it in the refrigerator.
  • Let the sauce ferment for at least a week for the best flavor development. However, the sauce can be stored and used for up to 6 months.

Scaling The Pique Recipe 

Scaling Up

  • Proportions: Maintain ingredient ratios. If doubling the vinegar, double all other ingredients.
  • Cooking Time: Boiling time might increase slightly with more liquid. Monitor closely to prevent over-reduction.
  • Fermentation: A larger batch may take longer for flavors to meld.

Scaling Down

  • Proportions: Reduce ingredients equally. If using half the vinegar, halve all other components.
  • Cooking Time: Less liquid means quicker boiling. Be vigilant to avoid excessive evaporation.
  • Fermentation: Smaller batches typically ferment faster. Check flavor development periodically.
Pique Sauce Recipe

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

Yes, the Pique sauce boasts a versatility that complements many culinary applications.

  • Marinade: Its spicy, tangy profile makes it an excellent choice for marinating meats, poultry, seafood, and vegetables. The vinegar helps tenderize, while the flavors penetrate and enrich the ingredients.
  • Dipping Sauce: Its vibrant taste and consistency make it a perfect accompaniment for snacks like chips, fried foods, and grilled meats.
  • Dressing: When mixed with olive oil or another base, it can serve as a zesty salad dressing, giving them a spicy kick.

What Are The Best Dishes To Accompany Pique Recipe?

The Pique sauce pairs beautifully with a variety of dishes, enhancing their flavors:

  • Grilled Meats: Whether it’s beef, pork, chicken, or lamb, the spicy tang of Pique complements the charred flavors.
  • Seafood: Drizzle over grilled shrimp, seared fish, or seafood tacos for added zest.
  • Rice Dishes: It elevates simple rice dishes like pilaf, fried rice, or plain steamed rice.
  • Tacos & Burritos: A few drops can boost the flavor profile of these Mexican favorites.
  • Vegetable Stir-Fries: The sauce adds a punch to sautéed or stir-fried veggies.
  • Eggs: It’s a great way to spice up scrambled eggs, omelets, or egg sandwiches.
  • Soups & Stews: A few drops can intensify the taste, especially in bean or lentil soups.
Pique Sauce Recipe

What Are Some Classic Dishes That Feature Pique Recipe?

Pique sauce shines in various dishes, enhancing flavors with its spicy tang:

  • Mofongo: A Puerto Rican dish made of mashed plantains, often drizzled with Pique for added kick.
  • Arroz con Gandules: Rice with pigeon peas, where Pique provides a flavorful contrast.
  • Tostones: Fried plantain slices are often paired with Pique as a dipping sauce.
  • Empanadas: These savory pastries may benefit from a Pique splash.
  • Carne Guisada: Stewed beef often gets a spicy uplift with Pique.
  • Grilled Meats: Whether chicken, pork, or beef, a Pique drizzle can elevate the flavor.
  • Seafood: Shrimp, fish, and other seafood dishes can gain depth with a Pique touch.

What Are The Key Flavor Profiles And Taste Sensations That Pique Recipe Offers?

The Pique recipe delivers a symphony of flavors and sensations:

  • Heat: Stemming primarily from habaneros, this offers a fiery kick.
  • Tanginess: The white vinegar introduces a sharp, acidic note.
  • Sweetness: Dried pineapple provides a sweet counterbalance to the heat.
  • Herbaceous: Fresh cilantro brings a green, refreshing undertone.
  • Pungency: Garlic adds depth and a slight bite.
  • Earthy: The black peppercorns and bay leaf offer subtle woody and warm notes.
  • Saltiness: Salt enhances and unites all the other flavors.
Pique Sauce Recipe

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

Yes, this Pique sauce is designed for extended storage and preservation. It can be stored in the refrigerator once prepared and transferred to a sterilized jar. The vinegar acts as a preservative, ensuring longevity. 

Typically, the sauce has a shelf life of up to 6 months when refrigerated. However, always check for any signs of spoilage, like an off odor or mold growth, before consumption. 

I advise labeling the jar with a preparation date so you can easily track its age. If you decide to make a larger batch, remember that refrigeration is essential to ensure your sauce remains fresh and safe to consume.

What Are The Substitutes For Pique Recipe?

If you’re looking for alternatives to the Pique recipe, several substitutes can be considered:

  • Tabasco Sauce: A vinegar-based hot sauce that offers a similar kick.
  • Sriracha: Thai-origin sauce that provides heat with a hint of garlic.
  • Sambal Oelek: A spicier, chunkier option with a strong chili presence.
  • Cholula: A Mexican hot sauce with a deep, spicy profile.
  • Louisiana Hot Sauce: Offers a tangy heat reminiscent of Pique.
  • Peri Peri Sauce: A spicy, citrusy sauce with African and Portuguese roots.
  • Harissa: North African chili paste with cumin and coriander notes.
  • Ajvar: Balkan pepper-based relish with a mild heat.
Pique Sauce Recipe

How To Adjust The Consistency Of The Sauce?

Adjusting the consistency of the Pique sauce can be achieved in several ways:

  • Thicker Consistency: Reduce the sauce by simmering it longer, allowing excess liquid to evaporate. Alternatively, add more solid ingredients, like chopped peppers or pineapple.
  • Thinner Consistency: Add extra vinegar or a touch of water. Blend the sauce using a blender or immersion blender to achieve a smoother texture.
  • Straining: If you prefer a clearer, less chunky sauce, strain out the solid ingredients after the flavors meld.
  • Blending: For a uniform texture, blend all ingredients thoroughly.

Should We Serve The Sauce Cold Or Warm?

The Pique sauce serving temperature often depends on personal preference and the dish it accompanies. Typically, it’s served cold or at room temperature, straight from the refrigerator, especially when used as a dipping sauce or a drizzle over finished dishes. 

This cold application provides a refreshing contrast to hot foods. However, warming it up is suitable if you’re deciding to incorporate it into a cooked dish, like a stew or a sauté. Heating the sauce can intensify its flavors and make it more aromatic. 

I advise experimenting with both methods to find a way that best compliments your culinary creations and personal palate.

Pique Sauce Recipe

Nutritional Values

The Pique sauce, in its basic formulation, offers the following nutritional values:

  • Calories: Low due to minimal sugar and fat content.
  • Carbohydrates: Present mainly from dried pineapple and minimal amounts from peppers.
  • Proteins: Negligible amounts.
  • Fats: Virtually none, as the recipe doesn’t include oils or fats.
  • Vitamins: Vitamin C from habaneros and some minerals like potassium.
  • Dietary Fiber: Minimal amounts from peppers and garlic.

What Are The Total Calories In Pique Recipe?

Piqué, a traditional Puerto Rican seasoning, primarily consists of peppers, spices, and a liquid base like vinegar or alcohol. A typical serving contains minimal calories as it’s used sparingly for flavor. 

Depending on the specific ingredients and their quantities, a dash or teaspoon of Piqué might contain 10 to 15 kcal. It’s worth noting, however, that the calorie content can vary based on the exact recipe and serving size.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Pique Recipe

The Pique sauce is typically suitable for a wide range of dietary preferences:

  • Gluten-Free: No ingredients contain gluten, making it suitable for those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
  • Vegan & Vegetarian: The sauce contains no animal products.
  • Low-Calorie: It’s a low-calorie choice with minimal sugar and fat content.
  • Paleo & Keto: Fits within these diets, though those on keto should monitor the dried pineapple content.
  • Allergies: Those allergic to peppers or other ingredients should avoid them.
  • Low-Sodium: Moderate due to salt, but can be adjusted for low-sodium needs.

Nutrition Table

Nutrition Table

What Are Common Mistakes While Making This Sauce?

While making the Pique sauce, several pitfalls can affect the final product:

  • Overcooking: Boiling the mixture for too long can evaporate the vinegar excessively, altering the desired consistency and flavor.
  • Inadequate Sterilization: Not using sterilized jars can introduce unwanted bacteria, potentially spoiling the sauce during fermentation.
  • Uneven Heat: Using too many or too few habaneros can make the sauce overpoweringly hot or mild.
  • Skipping Resting Time: Not allowing the mixture to cool to room temperature can hinder flavor melding.
  • Substituting Ingredients: Replacing key ingredients without considering their flavor profiles can drastically change the sauce’s taste.
  • Improper Storage: Storing the sauce outside the refrigerator can shorten its shelf life and promote spoilage.

What Are Some Creative Uses Of Leftover Sauce?

Leftover Pique sauce can be repurposed in inventive ways:

  • Marinade: Use it to marinate meats, seafood, or tofu, infusing them with spicy flavors.
  • Dressing: Mix with olive oil for a zesty salad dressing.
  • Pasta: Drizzle over pasta dishes for an extra kick.
  • Pizza: Spread a thin layer on pizza bases before adding toppings.
  • Bread Dipping: Mix with olive oil for a spicy bread dip.
  • Stir-Fries: Add to stir-fries to enhance the overall taste.
  • Gravy Enhancer: Mix into gravies or sauces a little for a spicy twist.
  • Eggs: Drizzle over scrambled eggs or omelets.
Pique Sauce Recipe

Special Tools & Equipment Needed

  • Medium Saucepan: Essential for boiling and simmering the mixture.
  • Glass Jars: Preferably sterilized, these are necessary for storing the sauce. The glass won’t react with the vinegar, preserving the sauce’s flavor.
  • Knife and Chopping Board: For chopping habaneros, pineapple, and other ingredients.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: To accurately measure ingredients.
  • Stirring Spoon: To mix the ingredients while simmering.
  • Strainer (Optional): If you prefer a smoother consistency, this can help separate the liquid from solids.
  • Blender or Immersion Blender (Optional): Useful if a more homogenized sauce is desired.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Pique Sauce Made Of?

Piqué sauce is a Puerto Rican hot sauce made from hot peppers, garlic, black peppercorns, and other spices. These ingredients are steeped in a liquid base, typically vinegar or alcohol, which allows the flavors to infuse together.

How Long Does Homemade Pique Last?

Homemade Piqué can last up to a month if stored in a cool, dark place. However, its longevity can be influenced by the ingredients’ freshness and the storage container’s cleanliness.

How Long Does Pique Last In The Fridge?

Piqué can last even longer when stored in the refrigerator, typically up to 3-6 months. The cold temperature slows the degradation process, preserving its flavor and spiciness.

Does Pique Go Bad?

Yes, like any other food product, Piqué can go bad. Signs of spoilage include mold growth, an off or sour smell, or a change in consistency. Always inspect and taste a small amount before using it, especially if stored for an extended period.

Can I Eat Expired Hot Sauce?

While expiration dates are a guideline for peak freshness, many hot sauces, including Piqué, can be consumed after their printed date if stored correctly.

However, always check for signs of spoilage. If there’s any doubt, it’s best to err on caution and discard the sauce.

10-Minutes Pique Recipe Infused With Spicy Kick!

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Course: Hot Sauces


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Piqué is a Puerto Rican seasoning that infuses dishes with a spicy kick. Made by steeping hot peppers, garlic, black peppercorns, and other spices in vinegar or alcohol, this concoction is stored in a bottle until flavors meld. Drizzled sparingly into recipes or sauces, Piqué adds depth and a fiery touch to Caribbean cuisine.


  • cups White Vinegar

  • 2 ounces 2 Habaneros (stemmed and chopped)

  • 1 cup 1 Chopped Sweetened Dried Pineapple

  • 2 tablespoons 2 Fresh chopped Cilantro

  • 2 2 Minced Garlic Cloves

  • 1 1 Dried Bay Leaf

  • 12 12 Black Peppercorns

  • teaspoons Salt

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Begin by heating the medium saucepan over high heat.
  • Once hot, pour in the white vinegar and bring it to a boil.
  • Carefully stir in the chopped habaneros, dried pineapple, cilantro, minced garlic, bay leaf, black peppercorns, and salt.
  • Cover the saucepan.
  • Allow the mixture to sit until it cools to room temperature.
  • Once cooled, transfer the mixture to sterilized jars.
  • Securely close the jar lids.
  • Store the jars in the refrigerator for preservation.
  • The sauce can be kept for up to 6 months.

Recipe Video


  • The heat level can vary based on the type and number of habaneros used. Adjust accordingly to your preference.
  • Ensure your jars are thoroughly sterilized to prevent contamination and extend shelf life.
  • Blend the mixture before transferring to jars if a smoother consistency is desired.
  • While the sauce matures, tasting it periodically helps gauge its developing flavor.
  • Always use fresh ingredients for the best results.
  • For a milder version, seeds from the habaneros can be eliminated before adding.

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