How Hot is Frank's Red Hot Brand Hot Sauce on the Scoville Scale?
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Posted on 21 Nov 2013 18:51

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Frank's Red Hot brand hot sauce is a Louisiana style bottled hot sauce based on cayenne peppers. It is often claimed to be the sauce used in the original Buffalo Wings sauce.

The sauce originated in Louisiana in 1918, but was sold to Durkee Famous Food, Inc. in 1977, and then sold to Reckitt Benckiser in 1995. The brand now has eight flavors, including a pre-made Buffalo Wings sauce. The original is one of the best selling hot sauce brands in the U.S.

The sauce was created by Jacob Frank and Adam Estilette. Frank worked for the Spice and Tea Company in Cincinnati, Ohio and contracted Estilette, a Louisiana Farmer, to grow cayenne peppers to make a sauce based on a secret recipe of Frank's that used peppers, garlic, and spices.

Its most famous moment is claimed to have come in 1935, when Teressa Bellissimo of the Anchor Bar and Grill in Buffalo, New York, used it as the base of a sauce she created for chicken wings - the Buffalo Wings sauce. Many others have laid claim to being the originator of the Buffalo wing, however.


Frank's Red Hot Sauce, original, bottle

Frank's Original Red Hot Sauce
Image by Jamesfcy689 via wikipedia. Product label intellectual property of Reckitt Benckiser, used here for illustrative purposes in and educational article, believed to be fair use for this purpose.Image Credit

Frank's Red Hot Sauce, original, bottle

Frank's Original Red Hot Sauce
Image by Jamesfcy689 via wikipedia. Product label intellectual property of Reckitt Benckiser, used here for illustrative purposes in and educational article, believed to be fair use for this purpose.Image Credit



Franks Red Hot Scoville

As hot sauces go, Frank's Red Hot isn't exactly red hot. Many others are at least as hot as a jalapeno, at over 2000 Scoville Heat Units, while other modern sauces come close to 100,000 SHU's. but Franks comes in at around 400 to 500 on the Scoville heat scale. This is often given as 450. It is nowhere near as hot as the cayenne peppers it is based on, which are 30,000 to 50,000 SHU. It is important to realize, however, that many of today's ultra hot sauce brands, such as Dave's Insanity, and others, were created for not other reason than to be as hot as possible. When a sauce becomes this hot, flavor no longer really has anything to do with its consumption. It's about bragging rights. So don't fault Frank's Red Hot for not being hot enough. It's plenty hot for the everyday, and it has a good, classic flavor.

Besides the original, Franks now has seven other varieties of sauce: Ketchup Style Hot Sauce, XTRA Hot, Sweet Chili, Chili N' Lime, Buffalo Wings, Hot Buffalo Wings, and Kickin' BBQ Sauce.

How Hot is Frank's Red Hot Xtra Hot Sauce?

According to the company, the Xtra hot version of Frank's Red Hot is four times as hot as the original. If the Scoville Heat Unit rating of the original is 500, then this would make the Xtra hot 2000 on the Scoville Scale. However, it is given as 2085 on both chilliworld and wikipedia, with no explanation. It is safe to say that it is something like a mild jalapeno or a hot poblano.

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