peri peri sauce recipe, how to make peri peri or piri piri sauce


peri peri or piri piri sauce – here comes a hot and fiery sauce from the portuguese cuisine. its made from piri piri, a type of bird’s eye chili from africa.

legend has it that from africa the piri piri chilies went to portugal via the portuguese invaders. the piri piri chilies found their way into a sauce developed by the portuguese and has now become a staple in portugal. i do not know the real story…. who developed the sauce and who did not? all i know is that the sauce is REALLY AWESOME.

the peri peri sauce is so yum and spicy that we have it with everything like vegetables, rice, salads, bread. it brings some zest and spice to the dish, especially if the dish is bland and not spicy. simply love it.


my sis informed me of the peri peri sauce and i couldn’t resist making this recipe. when i heard the name peri peri, i had something of a deja vu… felt as if i have heard this name some where, some time…

i googled for peri peri and came across nando’s peri peri sauce. now the deja vu even became more strong. hmmmm…. where i have heard or seen the words “nando’s peri peri”…..  just couldn’t figure it out.

finally, again googled and found out that nandos have one of their restaurants in bangalore, india. within a flash…. i then remembered seeing their banner and restaurant in bangalore…. so this explains the deja vu :-)

anyways, coming back to the peri peri sauce now…. usually the sauce is used as a marination for meat or sea food that is going to be roasted or grilled or fried. but like i mentioned before, but we have the peri peri sauce with our everyday vegetarian food. it is so good…

one recipe i made with the peri peri sauce was peri peri potatoes much like peri peri chicken and it was yum!!!… a pic below of the peri peri potato fries.


for the peri peri sauce, you could use even the indian red chilies… i used kashmiri red chillies and they were hot enough for all of us. the rest of the ingredients are always easily available in the kitchen pantry.

a blend of different red chilies can also be used depending on their hotness. for dry chilies you can soak them in water for 2-3 hours before blending them.

instead of lemon juice one can also use vinegar/cider vinegar or half-half quantities of lemon juice and vinegar, each. i did not add vinegar to the sauce. i only used lemon juice.

the amount of olive oil can be increased if you want a thin sauce. the more the sauce ages, the better it becomes.

for vegetarians, the sauce could be used as a marination for tofu, paneer/cottage cheese, veggies like cauliflower, potatoes, mushrooms, capsicum, aubergines and then grilled, roasted, sauted or fried. even while making a simple fried rice, 1 or 2 tsp of the peri peri sauce will make the rice spicy and yum. the sauce is a must for people who like spicy and hot food.

if you are looking for more sauce recipes then do check schezwan sauce, tomato sauceno sugar basic applesauce and basic tomato pizza sauce recipe.

peri peri sauce recipe details below:

4.8 from 5 reviews
peri peri sauce
CUISINE: world
SERVES: 1 small bottle
INGREDIENTS (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
  • 11-12 red chilies
  • 7-8 garlic flakes
  • 1 tsp red chili flakes or red chili powder (optional and if you want a more hotter sauce)
  • ¾ cup chopped cilantro/coriander leaves or parsley ( a combination of both greens can also be used)
  • juice of 1 medium sized lemon
  • ½ cup olive oil or vegetable oil
  • sea salt or salt
  1. remove the stems from the red chilies.
  2. rinse them in water.
  3. peel and chop the garlic
  4. add all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend to a smooth paste.
  5. store the peri peri sauce in a container in the refrigerator.

{ 28 Responses }

  1. Roger Knight says

    Hello Dassana,
    I am searching for a peri-peri sauce using cucumbers.
    I knew a lady a few years back, who made it, Delicious.
    Sadly, she has now passed on.
    Can you help

    • says

      saurabh, will stay good for about 1-2 weeks in the fridge. if you want to keep it for longer than add more oil. so that some oil layer floats on top.

  2. Connie Toong says

    Nothing like Malaysia. Sambal belachen, but this one reminds me of it. Thanks.

  3. Prabhat says

    Hi Dassana,
    I tried making peri peri sauce with fresh red chillies. Taste was good but after grinding all the ingredients, the colour changed to light brown instead of red. Somewhat like peanut butter.
    Please advise.

    • says

      thats due to the green color coming from coriander or parsley. this is the only ingredient that will change the red color more so since fresh chilies were used. next time you can reduce the amount of coriander and if possible add kashmiri red chilies. they will give a nice red color. but i think the color is fine as even i have seen ready piri piri sauces in the peanut butter color and even orangish.

  4. Prabhat says

    Hi Dassana,

    I have been following your site very closely and tried few of your recipes. They are awesome.
    I have learnt that originally italian pasta are made in pasta sauce.
    Please post a good recipe for pasta sauce.


    • says

      thanks. actually pasta can be made in various sauces. i usually make pasta with a fresh tomato basil sauce, pesto or white sauce. i will add a pasta sauce recipe. i have the pasta sauces request by a few more readers too.

  5. Prabhat says

    One small query. The red chillies for Peri Peri sauce has to be fresh ones or the dried red chillies?

  6. Manjula says

    I Didnt know nandos is in India too. I saw this restaurant in Malaysia. peri peri is spicy word in African. can you please post some more pasta dishes. may be in more Indian way. thanks.

  7. Radhika says

    Hi there,

    My husband loves hot and spicy stuff. will sure make for him. DO you know the shelflife of this sauce?