It seems offensive to me to tell you what Hooters is since we all know and love this chain for what it seems like forever. Being around for 40 years, it has made history, serving millions of people their favorite food wrapped up in Hooters’ unique charm. So, since discussing an institution like Hooters is pointless, I am here to talk about their sauces, which are the final piece of magic making their food so delicious. So, let’s see what sauces does Hooters have.
Hooters sauce offer includes Ghost Pepper, Spicy Garlic, 3-Mile Island, Hot Honey, Daytona Beach, Honey Sriracha, General Tso’s, Chipotle Honey, Hot Buffalo Sauce, Medium Buffalo Sauce, Mild Buffalo Sauce, Samurai Teriyaki, Parmesan Garlic, and BBQ Sauce. They also have some sauces that come included and offer six different dry rubs.
As a massive fast food fan, one of my passions and bucket list activities is trying and describing the sauces at fast food restaurants. So, this time, I am placing Hooters sauces under the spotlight. In this article, I will tell you all about Hooters sauces and dry rubs. At the end, I will share with you what sauces are not listed on their menu.
List of Hooters Sauces & Their Heat Levels
Hooters has a rich offer of sauces, each with a different level of heat, adding a different kind of charm to the meal. What I appreciate most about Hooters, besides the finger-licking food they serve, is the variety of sauces, giving people with different tastes and heat tolerance to enjoy their meals. Check out the list of Hooters sauces, ranked by heat level, starting with the hottest one.
Kicking off this list with the hottest and meanest sauce on Hooters’ menu, the Ghost Pepper Sauce. I am not a fan of hot flavors, but I had to try it in the name of research, and it brought tears to my eyes; I kid you not.
Nevertheless, I can’t say that I didn’t enjoy it. I cautiously added a few drops to my wings and handled it well, but I don’t recommend it if you have a low heat tolerance. It is a very spicy and very hot sauce with a pronounced smoky note, which I loved.
I had it with wings, but I can see how it would fit with the other fried menu items, so don’t hesitate to have it with fries, nuggets, burgers, or tacos.
To replicate it at home, blend ghost peppers with vinegar, garlic, and sugar or honey to add a touch of sweetness.
Spicy Garlic, indeed. Although milder than the previous one, Spicy Garlic is not to be underestimated. It is still hot and pretty spicy, but it seems more tolerable because of the variety of flavors it offers.
I loved its garlicky and savory notes, interspersed with spiciness and a whole lot of charm. It would have been ideal if it were a bit milder, but I had fun having it nonetheless.
I had it with chicken tenders, and it paired really, really well. I recommend you give this sauce a shot with Hooters chicken menu items and fries. I would stay away from the burgers since they are pretty meaty, and I don’t see how they would go with this sauce, but if you want to experiment, go ahead.
Mix minced garlic, hot sauce, butter, and a pinch of paprika to make this home sauce.
3 Mile Island
Third on our list is the 3-Mile Island, with the same heat level as Spicy Garlic but with a very different charm. If you have high heat tolerance and genuinely enjoy the hot side of food, this is the one I recommend for you.
The savory note was the one that was the most noticeable for me, and it somehow suppressed the heat to some extent. The overall taste is vinegar-dominated with quite a bit of tang. Still, I’d say that this sauce wasn’t the right one for me, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a shot.
I had it with chicken wings, and the two made a nice pair. I think that it would also go well with a salad or maybe a burger.
For a homemade version, mix cayenne pepper, vinegar, and a bit of sugar for balance. Adjust the cayenne pepper amount for desired heat.
Hooters’ Hot Honey was a delight for my palate, ranked fourth on the heat level list and significantly milder than the sauces before. It is predominantly sweet and spicy, with a hint of heat, which works up your appetite.
I had it with a chicken sandwich and fries, but feel free to pair it any way you like. I think that it would pair nicely with any menu item.
Simply mix honey with hot sauce and a dash of cayenne pepper to make this delicious sauce at home. Yum!
The Daytona Beach Sauce is just as spicy and hot as Hot Honey but more on the tangy and smoky side. My favorite thing about this sauce is how it balances the included flavors and flows when paired.
I’ve had this sauce multiple times, each time with a fried menu item, such as chicken, fries, or other sides. I plan to pair it with a burger the next time I eat at Hooters, so we’ll see how it goes, though I’m optimistic.
To make this one at home, mix hot sauce, barbecue sauce, and honey.
Honey Sriracha at Hooters is a refreshment and a new way of presenting a familiar flavor. It is sweet and spicy, with the recognizable tang of the sriracha sauce. The heat level is more or less the same as that of Daytona Beach, so don’t be afraid to spill a little more.
I’ve had it with wings, tenders, and as a dipping sauce for fried items. I strongly recommend you have it that way.
To make your own homemade version, mix honey and sriracha sauce.
Inspired by the classic General Tso dish, the General Tso’s Sauce is sweet and savory with a spicy kick. I am a big fan of the dish (I even made pizza with it!), so I greatly enjoyed this sauce. The heat level is well within my heat tolerance limit, so I didn’t have to ration it and added a generous amount to my meal.
I’ve had it with the chicken breast strips, the sliders, and the fried pickles. Try it with whatever you think would fit.
Mix soy sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes to make it at home.
Smoky, sweet, and slightly spicy, the Chipotle Honey Sauce has a special place in my heart. It’s slightly hot but perfectly tolerable; I love how it pairs with almost everything on the Hooters’ menu.
I’ve had it with many of the fried items and the sliders, and I encourage you to experiment with it since it is very versatile.
For a homemade version, blend chipotle peppers in adobo sauce with honey and a bit of vinegar. It’s that easy!
Hot Buffalo Sauce
The Hooters’ Buffalo is a staple on their menu and has three variations. The Hot Buffalo Sauce is one of them and the hottest one of the three. Still, the name can be a little misleading since it isn’t that hot, and coming from me, it means that it is perfectly tolerable for palates with low heat tolerance.
It is tangy, slightly hot, and very savory. I love the mouth-watering sensation it creates.
I’ve had it with everything chicken on the menu, but I like it best with the buffalo wings. The buffalo shrimp platter is also a great option.
Mix hot sauce, melted butter, and a dash of vinegar to make a homemade version of this sauce.
Medium Buffalo Sauce
Medium Buffalo Sauce is, essentially, a milder version. It has very similar tasting notes, minus the spiciness. It is still tangy and flavorful and perfect for you if you want all of the flavor and none of the heat.
Pair with wings or tenders, which is my winning combination.
To make it at home, follow the same recipe as for the Hot Buffalo, but reduce the amount of hot sauce.
Mild Buffalo Sauce
This is the gentlest version of the Hooters’ Buffalo, and it’s also my favorite. It is mild and buttery, with a hint of buffalo tanginess and a whole lot of richness.
I strongly recommend this sauce with Hooters chicken wings. It pairs with other chicken-based menu items, but the wings are definitely the best option.
Make it at home following the Hot Buffalo recipe, but with significantly more butter than hot sauce.
If you like teriyaki sauce, you will enjoy Hooters teriyaki, but if you aren’t a fan of the teriyaki taste, I suggest you skip this sauce since it does taste expressively like teriyaki. I love it for its balance between sweet and savory and the irresistible umami note.
It pairs great with grilled or fried chicken or shrimp, as a dipping sauce, or even as a salad dressing.
Create a teriyaki sauce by mixing soy sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic, and a bit of rice vinegar.
The Parmesan Garlic is another of my Hooters favorites, and I strongly recommend it. Taste: Creamy, garlicky, and rich, enveloped in the richness of parmesan cheese, this is an irresistible sauce I can get enough of.
Parmesan Garlic pairs great with chicken wings or tenders, or anywhere you want to add a creamy and flavorful note.
Mix minced garlic, grated parmesan cheese, melted butter, and parsley for a homemade version.
The BBQ Sauce at Hooters is a classic sauce with the recognizable sweet, smoky, and tangy notes and the staple barbecue flavor. I love it on almost any item menu, but I prefer it with burgers, and I strongly recommend you try it that way.
Mix ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, and spices to create a homemade version of this barbecue sauce.
List of Hooters Dry Rubs
In addition to the sauces, Hooters also has dry rubs that can’t go unmentioned in this article. Take a look at the dry rub list and see what the best fit is for you.
The Caribbean Jerk Dry Rub balances the bold and spicy flavors and is definitely for the braver ones. It is a mix of spices like allspice, thyme, cinnamon, and peppers for a savory and slightly spicy kick with a hint of sweetness. If you like vibrant and unusual flavors, give this dry rub a try.
The Texas BBQ is a dry rub that includes the classic barbecue flavors, so it is the meatiest of all Hooters dry rubs. It’s smoky, slightly sweet, and has a subtle heat with hints of paprika and brown sugar.
The Lemon Pepper Dry Rub is the zingiest and zestiest dry rub at Hooters. It has a pronounced zesty and citrusy flavor, and it is a true refreshment for your meal. I love it for its tangy, lemony notes and the hint of peppery warmth.
Salty, savory, and a bit spicy, this is the perfect dry rob if you are a fan of spicy foods and seafood-based meals.
Inspired by Cajun cuisine, this dry rub is bold and spicy. It combines paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic, and herbs for a savory and fiery taste.
The garlic habanero dry rub combines the heat of habanero peppers with the pungent and aromatic quality of garlic. It’s a fiery and flavorful combination, and I really appreciate it, but it is a little too hot for me.
What Is the Difference Between Hooters Sauces and Dry Rubs?
The main difference between Hooters sauces and dry rubs is in the texture and application. While the sauces are liquid or creamy condiments that you add to your meal to make it more flavorful or enrich it with a particular flavor, the Hooters dry rubs are mixtures of dry ingredients, like spices and herbs.
You dip your food in the sauces or smear the sauces onto your meal while you sprinkle the dry rub. The sauces add moisture to the food, while the dry rubs add a powdery texture and more intense flavor.
Are These All the Hooters Sauces?
Actually, no. Hooters also has some sauces that you can’t order as a side. Rather, they come included with the meal. For example, if you order a shrimp platter, it will come with cocktail sauce.
When ordering boneless chicken wings, you can choose either bleu cheese or ranch dressing. However, you won’t be disappointed if you order a buffalo platter because the list of available sauces is vast. Besides the classics, there are Cajun, Chipotle, Caribbean jerk, Garlic habanero, and Texas BBQ.
Some teasers come with their own tasty dipping sauce and one dressing of your choice, which can be classic ranch, bleu cheese, or their perfect remoulade. Also, if you look at their Tex-Mex teasers, you’ll notice that some of them have sour cream as a topping.
This popular fast-food restaurant also offers desserts with the choice of chocolate or raspberry sauce as a side.
What is your favorite Hooters combination? I would love to try it out, so make sure to write it down in the comments below!