Zero Waste Pineapple, part 2. Fermented Hot Sauce.

The best thing about pineapple is that there is always at least one ferment that comes out, which is tepache. Tepache is a traditional Mexican drink that is often made and drunk in Mexican prisons. It is served cold. Tepache is the ultimate in sustainability, because tepache is made from the pineapple waste.

Drunk criminals are a danger to themselves and their fellow men, so alcohol in jail is reserved only for those who know how to make it themselves, with a few ingredients.

Julius Theis

You can then either eat the flesh of the pineapple, or make fermented pineapple sauerkrautfrom it, or this hot sauce.


  • 2/4 of a small organic pineapple, peeled and cored
  • 8 orange habañeros
  • 1 red habañero
  • ½ big white onion
  • 1 orange bell bell pepper
  • 250 ml water
  • 8 gr salt
  • 3 tbsp. raw cane sugar


Make a 3% brine from the water and the salt. The water does not have to be warm for this, it is enough if you do this step first and stir diligently.

Chop the pineapple, bell pepper and onion randomly into larger pieces. Remove the stalks and caps from the habañeros. It may be advisable to wear gloves - depending on what else you are going to do that day...

Put everything in a suitable vessel and weigh it down with a weight. This is important because peppers and habañeros have strong buoyancy and a tendency to mold (information about weights). The best vessel for this is a fliptop glass jar. The gases that develop during fermentation can escape, but oxygen does not get in. Best conditions for success!

If you do not want to sterilize the sauce later, so as not to destroy the positive effects of lactic fermentation, you must let it ferment for at least 8 weeks. Leave it in the warm kitchen for the first 4-5 days and observe. The yeasts on the fruit can lead to increased gas formation, in case of doubt it is better to release pressure more often. When pressing down the rubber tab, you will quickly notice how much pressure has been created inside. After 5 days, move to a cooler room. In my case, the ferments are stored in the hallway shelf at approx. 18°C.

How long should the hot sauce ferment for?

After 8 weeks the sauce is pureed. Pour off the brine and fill the rest into the food processor. In small sips, add only as much brine as necessary to create a nice, viscous consistency.

The sauce is very hot and sour. The pineapple flavor comes out well when the large pieces are pureed, but the sweetness has disappeared due to the long fermentation. I have added 3 tablespoons of raw cane sugar. This can be more or less, depending on your taste, of course.

Fill the sauce into glasses and place in the refrigerator until consumed. Since the sauce is unpasteurized, do not screw the lids on tightly, it will continue to ferment silently and quietly. The full aroma unfolds after another 2-3 weeks in the refrigerator.

I keep fermented hot sauces in the refrigerator for at least 10 months.

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