Sauces and Condiments

Classic Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce Recipe

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Last updated on July 9th, 2022 at 05:25 pm

This classic hot buffalo wing sauce recipe is literally finger-licking good. It’s the perfect blend of spice and flavor with that special tang that is unique to buffalo sauce.

Last year it was sometimes difficult to find buffalo wings available on any menu because of a wing shortage. But there were still a lot of options for the home cook, as long as you have a good buffalo sauce of your own. If you can’t find buffalo wings on the menu at your favorite restaurant, this recipe will turn you into a master wing maker.

Every once in a while my wife and I will have friends and family over for what we call a “wing party.” With everyone over, we fry up some chicken and then sauce it all up with 6 or 7 different flavors. Without fail we always have a classic buffalo sauce to serve.

Chicken drumsticks coated with buffalo wing sauce with a side of carrots and ranch

The best part is how simple this sauce actually is to make.

When you make hot buffalo wings, you really want to make sure that the sauce is on point. Sure, it’s all about the chicken and you really want that smoky hot flavor to be the star of the show, but without a proper wing sauce, you’re really missing out on some serious flavor.

You can use this recipe for chicken wings or as a sauce for all sorts of things: pizza, nachos, fries, salads, burgers, grilled cheese, etc. So let’s dig in.

Buffalo Wing Sauce Ingredients

There are a few ways to mix up the ingredients in a buffalo wing sauce, but it always starts with a base of hot sauce and butter. Vinegar, ground peppers, garlic powder, and Worcestershire sauce are then commonly added to help round out the flavor of the sauce.

For the hot sauce, the true classic original is Frank’s RedHot Original. This is a vinegary hot sauce that is a bit milder than most other hot sauces. This is the hot sauce I typically use for making buffalo wing sauce at home. However, you can use any hot sauce that you prefer.

Butter, hot sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and various garlic and pepper powders are all of the ingredients

The next step is to add some butter. The amount of butter will affect the heat and thickness of your final sauce. A lot of people like their hot sauces on the spicy side, but I tend to prefer a more balanced mix especially since my wife doesn’t love things too spicy. I like to use 1/2 cup of butter.

Once you’ve got the butter in the sauce, you can add some spices for more flavor. This is where you can get creative. You can add any spice that you’d like. I like to add some garlic powder and various ground peppers. These spices really round out the flavor of the sauce.

For the ground peppers, the most commonly used is cayenne powder. However, I also like to add in some ancho and chipotle powders to give even more mix of flavors.

How Spicy Is It?

Buffalo wing sauce doesn’t have to be extremely spicy. The best sauces are subtle with layers of flavor. I still want to be able to taste everything else, rather than having an inferno in my mouth. A good wing sauce can add heat without being overwhelming.

What makes a spicy wing sauce hot? Peppers. It starts with the hot sauce used, where I call for Frank’s RedHot Original. You can choose a spicier or milder hot sauce to use as the base of this sauce. The Frank’s sauce is the one originally used in the first buffalo sauce, so it is the one I still use today.

Cooked buffalo wing sauce in a jar, ready to use in your next recipe

The second part that affects the spice levels is the ground peppers added. If you aren’t into spicy foods, just omit all of the added peppers. On the other hand, if you are into that sweet burning sensation, be a little more generous when adding the cayenne, ancho, or chipotle powders.

The best way to determine if your wing sauce is hot enough is to taste it. Remember, though, that it is much easier to add more spice to the sauce and much more difficult to tone it down. So start on the lower side of things and then add more hot sauce or ground peppers until you’re satisfied.

And remember, you can always tame it down with a bit of ranch dressing.

How to Make the Buffalo Wing Sauce

The sauce starts with butter melting in a base of Frank’s RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce. Just add them both to a saucepan over medium-low heat. It is important not to heat the sauce on high, because it will be more likely to split.

While the butter is melting, measure and add in all of the remaining ingredients. Whisk it all together to mix everything well. Then stir occasionally and let the sauce come to a simmer. If needed, you can turn the temperature up slightly higher to medium heat. But be careful and make sure to watch it well.

Use a whisk to keep the sauce moving and prevent it from splitting

As the sauce heats up, it will thicken ever so slightly. But remember that this is still a fairly runny sauce.

Once the sauce just begins to simmer, remove it from the heat and continue to stir it for about a minute. Then you can either use it right away or let it cool and store it in the fridge for up to a week.

For different ideas on serving the sauce, make sure to check out the next section.

Ways to Use Your Sauce

Coat, dip, or drizzle.

If you’re a fan of buffalo wing sauce, there are plenty of ways to use it. You can simply enjoy it on the side or top of your pizza, and use it in dips, stir-fry, salads, or pasta. It’s a versatile condiment that you can add to a variety of dishes. Or if you’re feeling creative, you can even experiment with it.

Now, it’s time to put the sauce to good use. Marinades, basting, aiolis, salad dressings. Let your buffalo-coated imagination run wild.

Chicken drumsticks fully sauced with our homemade buffalo wing sauce

I love using this sauce as a base for buffalo chicken pizza. It is one of my all-time favorite dishes. My wife can attest that if that is an option on the menu, I will almost always order it to try out their creation. But, it is that much better to make your own homemade pizza with buffalo chicken on top.

Try out the following recipes:

Share your favorite way to use this sauce in the comments below.

Top Tips

Always keep an eye on your sauce. The sauce should only be heated up just to a simmer and then removed from the heat.

You can use your buffalo sauce in a variety of ways. Try it on fried chicken, as a salad dressing, marinade, dip, and on top of popcorn.

Store your sauce in a refrigerator when it has cooled off. It’ll keep for up to 2 weeks.

How did yours turn out?

I’d love to hear when you try out this buffalo sauce! Take a pic of your food and share your success with me by adding it to your Instagram stories or feed, and tagging me @doyouroux, or by using #doyouroux.

Plus, leave a rating to let me know how you liked the recipe. It helps me out a lot to know how things worked out… or didn’t.

Classic Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce

Recipe by Marc PetersonCourse: SauceDifficulty: Easy


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Cooking time


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Hot Buffalo Wing Sauce is a spicy, tangy sauce that is relatively simple to make at home. So try making your own homemade buffalo sauce to spice things up.


  • 2/3 cup Frank’s red hot sauce

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon ancho or chipotle powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder


  • Add the hot sauce and butter to a saucepan over medium-low heat
  • As the butter is melting add in all remaining ingredients
  • Whisk everything together to combine and continue whisking as the butter melts
  • Bring the sauce just to a simmer, then remove it from heat and continue to stir for a minute
  • Use the sauce immediately or let it cool and store it in the fridge

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