Peri Peri Sauce from Scratch | Homemade Spicy Piri Piri Sauce

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Peri peri sauce recipe With step by step photos – Here comes a hot and fiery piri piri sauce from the portuguese cuisine. Its made from piri piri, a type of bird’s eye chili from africa.

peri peri sauce recipe

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. You can also serve it with snacks like french fries, veg momos, spring roll, aloo tikki etc.

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 marination for meat or seafood 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 potato wedges and it was yum.

For making 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 to 3 hours or 15 to 20 minutes in hot water 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 marination for tofu, paneer (cottage cheese), veggies like cauliflower, potatoes, mushrooms, capsicum, aubergines and then grilled, roasted, sauteed or fried. Even while making simple fried rice, 1 or 2 teaspoons 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.

How to make peri peri sauce

1. Take 11 to 12 dry red Kashmiri chilies or any fresh red chili. Remove the stems from the red chilies. You can also use any variety of dry red chillies having low to medium heat. If using bird’s eye chili then you can add 4 to 5 of them in combination with the dry red chillies.

peri peri sauce recipe

2. Rinse the dry red chilies in water. Soak them in hot water for 10 to 15 minutes before blending them. But if you are using fresh red chilies then skip this step.

peri peri sauce recipe

3. Peel and chop 7 to 8 medium sized garlic cloves. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready for making the peri peri sauce.

peri peri sauce recipe

4. In a blender or food processor, add ¼ cup chopped coriander leaves (or cilantro leaves or parsley leaves) and the soaked dry red Kashmiri chilies.

peri peri sauce recipe

5. Next add 7 to 8 chopped garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon red chili flakes (optional) and salt as required.

peri peri sauce recipe

6. Pour ¼ cup olive oil or vegetable oil. The amount of olive oil can be increased if you want a thin sauce and a longer shelf life of the sauce.

peri peri sauce recipe

7. Lastly add juice of 1 medium sized lemon or 1 tablespoon lemon juice. You can also use ½ tablespoon vinegar instead of lemon juice.

peri peri sauce recipe

8. Grind in a blender or food processor and blend to a smooth paste.

peri peri sauce recipe

9. Store the Peri peri sauce in a container in the refrigerator. You can serve peri peri sauce as a side condiment with any snacks like french fries or peri peri potato wedges or baked potato wedges or veg cutlet. You can also use this peri peri sauce for marination.

peri peri sauce recipe
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peri peri sauce recipe, homemade piri piri sauce recipe

Peri Peri Sauce

This homemade peri peri sauce is a hot and fiery piri piri sauce made with red chilies from the portuguese cuisine
4.75 from 12 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Total Time 10 mins
Cuisine World
Course Condiment, Side Dish
Servings 1 small bottle


  • 11 to 12 dry red chilies
  • 7 to 8 medium garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes or red chili powder (optional, and if you want a more hotter sauce)
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro (coriander leaves) or parsley. a combination of both greens can also be used
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice or juice of 1 medium sized lemon or ½ tablespoon vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil or vegetable oil
  • sea salt or salt as required


  • Remove the stems from the dry red chilies.
  • Rinse them in water and then soak in hot water for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Peel and chop the garlic.
  • Add all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend to a smooth paste.
  • Store the peri peri sauce in a container in the refrigerator.

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Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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  1. This home-made peri-peri sauce is the bomb and you should have a jar in your fridge at all times.

  2. Chilli and capsicum originated in South America and were brought to Europe by the Portuguese from where it spread to the rest of the world.5 stars

  3. Hi, i tried this recipe , but didn’t turn out so red as shown in picture, I used birds eye chilli still it wasn’t as red as shown in picture.The texture looked exact though and tasted yumm …. please help me out with the colour.4 stars

    1. shanaya, i have used kashmiri red chilies and hence the red color. with bird’s eye chilies, the peri peri sauce won’t have a deep red color.

  4. Hi D, hope you and the family are well. Fortunately for me, I live in Durban, SA, Nandos is everywhere,Birds Eye chilli too, as little as $1 a kg.I want to make my own basting sauce(Nandos too expensive and they sell sauces and not basting here). I already have a tasty dry rub for chicken. I have 2 questions, by soaking dry chillies in water, would that not make the sauce go bad faster. Second, what do u think about blending fresh cream with your sauce? Thank you in advance for our feedback:)5 stars

    1. vignesh, you can use fresh bird’s eye chilies. soaking dry red chilies in hot water and then grinding does not spoil them. i make schezwan sauce also in a similar way and even red chili garlic chutney for chaat recipes. just remember to be generous with oil if storing for a long time in the fridge. you can even add a layer of oil after storing the sauce in a jar. if you use fresh cream, the heat of the chilies will get toned down, but the sauce won’t stay long for many days as cream perishes faster.

  5. Thanks for the peri peri sauce recipe.
    I will be using it in my sandwich shop in South West London.
    Steve Troy.

  6. 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

    1. 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.

  7. I tried this today and it came out to be lovely 😀 Thank you soooooo much dassana 😀5 stars

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

    1. i just googled sambal belacana and the peri peri sauce looks similar to it.

  9. 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.

    1. 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.

  10. 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.


    1. 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.

  11. Hi,
    One small query. The red chillies for Peri Peri sauce has to be fresh ones or the dried red chillies?5 stars

    1. you can use any. i had made with dry red chilies. but you can use any. fresh peri peri chilies will give a different flavor.

  12. Hi, I tried this recipe today and came out very nice, going to try it with chicken!

  13. 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.

  14. Hi there,

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