Is Sriracha Whole30 Approved? (No, Here’s Why)

Is Sriracha Whole 30

Are you a spice lover? Sriracha is an awesome, easy to find hot sauce that is packed with flavor and, you guessed it, spice. Not only that, but it actually fits in to most lifestyles! Whether you love a bit of fire on your tongue or not, you can still find out if Sriracha works for the Whole 30 diet.

No, Sriracha is not Whole 30 approved. The Whole 30 diet is a 30-day elimination diet that focuses on whole foods and the elimination of sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes, soy, additives, and dairy. Store-bought Sriracha contains sugar and preservatives, so it is not allowed during the Whole 30 diet. The best alternatives are Tabasco Hot Sauce or Stadnyk’s Hot Sauce.

Keep scrolling to learn more about why Sriracha isn’t okay for the Whole30 elimination diet, its ingredients, nutritional value, and alternatives!

The Whole 30 Diet

The Whole 30 diet is a 30-day challenge to eat only whole foods and avoiding products with added sugars, alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, artificial sweetener, and preservatives such as carrageenan, MSG, and sulfates.

This program has been shown to be a reset for the brain by teaching it to make better food choices without having to diet, count calories, or engage in lots of cheat days. This elimination diet is also used to help consumers identify any food intolerances or sensitives that they may have not even realized they had before. The overall goal is to allow you brain to undergo a reset while also understanding foods that are causing you to feel unwell or that you are sensitive to. That being said, many Whole 30 followers repeat this program multiple times or even extend it due to the benefits that they have seen such as a reduction in health issues and even weight loss.

This is program is structured around a 30-day time period with distinct instructions that should be strictly followed for the best outcomes. After the first phase, followers are to begin the reintroduction phase. During this phase, you’ll gradually introduce new foods into your diet and raise awareness of how they make you feel. This helps with retraining your brain to eat mindfully as well as identifying any food sensitives. All of these steps are outlined as part of the Whole 30 diet, which you can find on their website.

What is Sriracha?

Sriracha, pronounced “sr-aa-chuh” is a type of hot sauce that is made from chili peppers. It originated in Thailand and is named after the town it was created in, called Si Racha. Since then, it has been produced worldwide by the Huy Fong Foods. Interestingly, the original sauce that is still sold in Asia is known to be tangier and runnier than the sauce that is sold in Western countries. However, both recipes are made with the same base ingredients- chili pepper, distilled vinegar, garlic and salt.

I always referred to this sauce as “Rooster Sauce” because of the rooster label on the infamous red, white, and green bottle. My family uses it on recipes like ramen, omelets, and other Asian dishes, however many people across the world use it for just about anything.

How is Sriracha Made?

Sriracha is made in a few steps but can take up to a year to produce. Producers start by grinding up chili peppers, including its seeds, and then combined with distilled vinegar to break down the sauce and keep it preserved. Then, salt and other preservatives are added to the mixture. The sauce is then stored in barrels which are then opened and used for production throughout the year. When it’s time to open a barrel, sugar and garlic are added right before bottling.

Review of Sriracha Nutrition

Sriracha is a low-calorie food that is made with only a few ingredients. That being said, because it is made with ingredients such as sugar, xanthan gum, potassium sorbate, and sodium bisulfate, it is not compatible with the Whole 30 diet.

Health Benefits of Sriracha

While you may not eat Sriracha during this 30-day elimination diet, Sriracha is not a bad option for those looking for a spicy low calorie condiment. Chili peppers are rich in vitamins and minerals and have even shown to reduce the risk for heart disease. Research also shows that the key compound in chilis, capsaicin, may help reduce inflammation and relieve chronic pain.

Issues Around Hot Sauce

On the other hand, Sriracha, along with any other spicy food, can cause some digestive issues such as gastric reflux and stomach ulcers. It can also damage your taste buds if they are very sensitive as well as causes skin irritation if eaten too often. Sriracha contains additives, as well, which some consumers may take issue with. 

Nutritional Content of Sriracha

The regular, widely-known brand of Sriracha is not Whole 30 friendly, however there are a few different similar Sriracha varieties, some better fit for the Whole 30 diet than others. Below we’ll go over each of these varieties and their nutritional content. We’ll talk more about why the mainstream brand of Sriracha is not okay for the Whole 30 diet and explain the difference between different brands of Sriracha.

Huy Fong Foods Sriracha


  • Chile pepper
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Garlic
  • Distilled vinegar
  • Potassium sorbate
  • Sodium bisulfite
  • Xanthan gum

Nutritional Information:

In a 1 tablespoon serving of Huy Fong Food Sriracha there is:

  • Calories: 15
  • Total Fat: 0 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 g
  • Sodium: 240 mg
  • Carbs: 3 g
  • Sugars: 3g
  • Protein: 0 g

Alternatives to Sriracha

Tabasco Hot Sauce

Tabasco Scorpion Hot Sauce (5 Ounce) Ingredients:

  • Tabasco peppers
  • Distilled Vinegar
  • Salt

Nutritional Information:

In a 1 tablespoon serving of Tabasco Hot Sauce is:

  • Calories: 1
  • Total Fat: 0 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 g
  • Sodium: 30 g
  • Carbs: 0 g
  • Protein: 0.1 g

Tabasco is an American brand of hot sauce, and is actually given the title of “#1 Hot Sauce Asked For By Name.” It is thinner and runnier than Sriracha. A 1 tablespoon serving of Tabasco Hot Sauce has less calories, sodium, and carbs than Sriracha. Tabasco is also Whole 30 friendly as it does not contain any sugar or preservatives. Although it is thinner in texture, you can still swap in this hot sauce just the same as you would with Sriracha.

Stadnyk’s Hot Sauce


  • Organic carrots
  • Habanero peppers
  • Kosher salt
  • Organic vinegar

Nutritional Information:

In a 1 tablespoon serving of Dr. Stadnyk’s Hot Sauce

  • Calories: 0
  • Total Fat: 0 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 g
  • Sodium: 30 g
  • Carbs: 0 g
  • Protein: 0 g

This hot sauce is made from Dr. Stadnyk himself. It is an original recipe made from homegrown chili peppers, carrots, salt, and vinegar. This sauce is comparable to Tabasco in its sodium content, however it has even less calories and protein (0 for each!). Most sources deem Tabasco to be a very healthy and minimally processed product. Not only is it super healthy, but it is Whole 30 friendly, as well.

Along with these options, there are many recipes online for Whole30-friendly Sriracha sauces. So, if you’re feeling like getting creative in the kitchen, feel free to give one of them a try!


After gathering all of this information, we can see that Sriracha is unfortunately not compatible with the Whole 30 diet. Whole 30 dieters will have to wait until after the 30-day elimination period to reintroduce this sauce onto their plates. However, it is not the worst condiment as it is low in calories and serving sizes are small, so I would still deem this a healthy choice. In the meantime, Whole 30 followers can use different forms of hot sauce including Tabasco or Dr. Sadnyk’s hot sauce. Keep in mind that any form of hot sauce does have some health benefits but it can also cause issues in those that are more sensitive to spice or when it is consumed in large amounts over time.

Related Questions

Is Sriracha gluten free?

Yes, Sriracha is gluten free. It is not made with any wheat or gluten-containing ingredients and is not often produced in gluten-producing facilities. That being said, you should always check the label is cross-contamination is a concern for you.

Is Sriracha sugar-free?

No, Sriracha is not sugar free. That being said, each serving is very small, so only a little amount of sugar is included in each tablespoon. Some consumers may not find this a concern, however in sugar free diets, including the Whole 30, sriracha would be considered a product to avoid.

Is Sriracha vegan?

Yes, Sriracha is vegan. It does not contain any animal meat or animal-derived products. Some Asian sauces, such as fish sauce or oyster sauce, do contain animal products, so be sure to check your label to grab the right one.

Is Sriracha good for joint pain?

Research shows that Sriracha and other spicy foods may prevent and even treat joint pain. This is due to a key compound in chili pepper called capsaicin. Capsaicin can reduce inflammation, which is often associated with joint pain.

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Kelsey Butler

Kelsey Butler is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist with a Masters in Nutrition Sciences. She is an expert in nutrition research, recipe and menu development, dietary advice, and food sciences. Currently she is working on a culinary nutrition certification, as well as working as a nutrition researcher for a health app and starting a meal planning business. Kelsey takes a mindful approach at nutrition and values the creation of healthy relationships with all foods. She also understands the importance of providing others with information about different food that anyone can enjoy, no matter their dietary restrictions or preferences. When she's not focusing on the world of nutrition, Kelsey has a passion for cooking, enjoys the outdoors, stays active, and loves to travel.

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