ot Peppers and Scoville scale depicting what makes the hottest pepper and hottest Scoville sauce

The Measure of a Pepper Head and What Makes a Scoville Sauce

Ed Currie

There are hot sauces and then there are Scoville sauces that are so ridiculously hot that you’ll cry when you eat them. Some have been known to go into an otherworldly, hallucinogenic state when eating too much too fast. And, hot sauces just keep getting hotter, thanks in part to trail blazers like Puckerbutt Pepper Company’s Smokin’ Ed Currie ® and his quest to continue to create the world’s hottest peppers and pack them into the hottest sauces imaginable. These Scoville Sauces and hot peppers aren’t for the faint of heart and should come with a serious warning before making their way to your table.

So, to answer the question of how big of a Pepper Head you are, start by seeing where are your tolerance lands on the Scoville Scale.

Scoville scale

The Scoville Heat Scale

The Scoville scale rates the heat of chili peppers. The method to measure the heat found in chili peppers was created back in 1912 by Pharmacist and Pepper Head, Wilbur Scoville. Wilbur’s mission was to measure the heat of chili peppers; by providing samples of chili peppers and capsaicin extracts and measuring how diluted a sample needed to be in order for people to consume it without pain.

Today, measuring the Scoville heat of sauces and the chili peppers they’re derived from has become much more accurate; like the laboratory tests used by the Guinness World Record  to measure Smokin Ed’s ® Carolina Reaper ® and declare it the hottest pepper in the world. And today, people sample Scoville sauces for fun, (here’s looking at you Pepper Heads!).

Scoville Heat Units (SHU) is still the golden rule used when ranking the heat of hot sauces and chili peppers. The active compound in chili peppers that make them blazing hot is Pure Capsaicin, which ranks 16 million on the Scoville scale. Our very own Carolina Reaper © created by Puckerbutt Pepper Company owner and self- proclaimed mad scientist, sets at the top of the Scoville scale for chili peppers at a scorching (1.6 Million Scoville units)

So What Separates Hot Sauces from Scoville Sauces

Most people in the chili pepper community consider sauces rated between 100,000 SHU and 1 million SHU as Scoville sauces. Anything less than that is just considered a regular, less adventurous hot sauce. Tabasco for example, carries a mere 5,000 SHU, …child’s play.  On the fiery, inferno side of Scoville Heat Scale are Scoville sauces and chili pepper extracts. Chili pepper extracts are pure, hellish capsaicin heat and can create an unbelievable and painful shock to the body if consumed in large quantities. So, proceed with caution when playing with these bottles of fire. Just a few drops of chili pepper extracts can be used to add extreme heat to food as well as in combat and settling old scores. A single drop on your tongue will get you as close as you will ever get to a fire breathing dragon.

Start your journey from Mild to Wild, with a tasting adventure that gradually gets hotter with each sauce until you reach insanely hot with our Reaper Scoville Sauce.

mild to wild top-sellers-3-bottle-gift-pack

Most Scoville sauces, are between 200,000 SHU and 600,000 SHU. Our Smokin Racha sauce is packed with 50% Habanero Peppers; a chili pepper with an avg Scoville rating well over 250,000 SHU; making it a very hot sauce that inches near Scoville Sauce territory. Our Reaper Sauce on the other hand, made with 70% Carolina Reaper ® peppers with a 1.6 Million SHU, is one of the hottest Scoville sauces you can imagine.

Watch Some of the Legends of the Chili World and Ultimate Pepper Heads in Action as They Take on the Carolina Reaper ®

egends of the Chili World and Ultimate Pepper Heads in Action

Before adding Scoville sauces to your next meal, pace yourself.

It’s damn near impossible to truly enjoy a Scoville Sauce before you build up a tolerance. So before dousing your next meal with a Scoville Sauce, keep in mind that a few drops is all you’ll need. As you progress to a Pepper Head and Scoville Sauce aficionado, you’ll gradually start to develop an appreciation for the simultaneous flavor and burn.

To go head first into the inferno try our Reaper Squeezin’s Scoville Sauce which is the most painfully hot sauce we produce made with 92% Carolina Reaper ® peppers.  

And yes, we speak from experience when we say, you’ll absolutely become addicted. So as you start incorporating more hot sauces and Scoville sauces into your meal adventures, be prepared for the health benefits that come with these sauces and living life to the hottest. And Stay tuned for our upcoming article on the health benefits of Scoville sauces, full of incredibly high amounts of capsaicin.

 From our garden to yours,

 The PuckerButt Pepper Co team