Homemade Cocktail Sauce

Everyone needs a homemade cocktail sauce that’s plenty spicy thanks to a wallop of horseradish and chili sauce. Just as God intended.

Cocktail Sauce

Many a homemade cocktail sauce recipe relies on lemon alone for tanginess. Not this homemade rendition, which instead draws its balanced acidity from vinegar-based hot sauce. Although since a squeeze of citrus rarely is a bad thing, we’ve chosen to include it as well. We’ve heard no complaints.–Renee Schettler Rossi

How To Use Cocktail Sauce

Wondering how to use cocktail sauce beyond steamed shrimp perched precariously on the rim of a cocktail glass? You can use it with just about anything. Seafood of all sorts, natch. But not just that. Everything on the list of items below are improved by a dribble of cocktail sauce.

Served alongside steamed crab legs
Dribbled atop fried or broiled fish
Dolloped on raw oysters
Blended with mayo for a Thousand Island-like salad dressing
Brandished as a condiment for a clambake
Incorporated into deviled eggs
Served alongside grilled sausage links
Mixed into or slathered atop meatloaf
Dunked into with deep-fried anything—fries, onion rings, even egg rolls
Stirred into cream cheese and served with crackers
Plopped alongside a grilled cheese for dipping
Offered as a dip for crudités
Added to a bloody Mary

Cocktail Sauce

  • Quick Glance
  • 5 M
  • 5 M
  • Makes about 3/4 cup
Print RecipeBuy the Two If By Sea cookbook

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  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) chili sauce
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) prepared horseradish, or more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) vinegar-based hot sauce such as Tapatio, Cholula, Tabasco, or Frank's, or more to taste
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) Worcestershire sauce
  • A small squeeze lemon juice (optional)
  • Pinch of salt


  • 1. Stir all the ingredients together until well combined. If time permits, let the cocktail sauce rest at room temperature for an hour and then taste and tweak with any ingredients as your heart desires. The cocktail sauce keeps, covered, for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

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