Easy 5-Ingredient Homemade Buffalo Sauce

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My go-to Homemade Buffalo Sauce recipe is incredibly quick and easy to make! You only need 5 minutes and 5 pantry staple ingredients – Frank’s RedHot, butter, honey, garlic powder, and paprika. Mix it all into a thick, spicy-tangy sauce perfect for slathering on buffalo-anything – chicken wings, veggies, salad, you name it!

Naturally gluten-free and vegetarian. Easily dairy-free and vegan.

A side shot of a glass jar of homemade buffalo sauce sitting on a white surface alongside a bottle of Frank's Red Hot, small bowls, and a pepper grinder.
Photography by Gayle McLeod

Make Your Own Tangy-Spicy Buffalo Sauce To Slather On Chicken, Veggies, and More!

We are absolute buffalo sauce fanatics here at the PWWB House. Wings, bowls, tacos, whatever – you put buffalo on it and I will devour it. 😋

I used to buy the pre-made Frank’s RedHot wing sauce for convenience, but then I realized how truly simple it is to make a perfectly tangy, spicy buffalo sauce from scratch.

This easy buffalo sauce recipe is the result.

An easy recipe for homemade buffalo sauce created by and for buffalo sauce fanatics. 🧡

It’s my go-to because tastes just as good as the OG (pinky swear!), it only requires 5 ingredients, and it takes less than 5 minutes to make.

(In fact, I make it so often that it takes me just seconds to whip up a batch!)

From there, the options are endless. You can slather it on buffalo chicken sandwiches, crispy tacos, grilled chicken wings, and more for a punch of classic tangy heat. It’s an absolutely perfect, totally all-purpose buffalo sauce recipe!

Get to Know the Iconic Buffalo Sauce and You’ll Realize How Easy It Is To Make At Home🔥

Quick history. ⇢ According to legend, the cooks at Anchor Bar & Grill in Buffalo, NY created the infamous buffalo sauce we all know and love back in 1964. It was a simple combination of Frank’s RedHot, melted butter, and paprika, and it’s been a classic ever since. It’s called “buffalo sauce” because of the city where it was invented!

An overhead shot of ingredients displayed on a marbled white surface: Franks Red Hot, butter sliced into pieces, and various bowls of honey, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper.
This homemade buffalo sauce recipe creates classic flavor with 5 simple pantry staples: Frank’s RedHot, butter, paprika, garlic powder, and honey.
A side shot of a glass bottle of Franks Red Hot on a white surface in front of a white background.
Frank’s RedHot is a signature (and, IMHO, totally non-negotiable) ingredient – a vinegar-based hot sauce made with cayenne pepper and garlic.

This homemade buffalo sauce recipe is made with Frank’s RedHot and melted butter, just like the original wings recipe from Buffalo, NY – plus a little paprika, garlic powder, and honey for extra oomph. 5 simple ingredients I always have on hand!

As far as I’m concerned, it’s just not a buffalo recipe without the tangy-spicy flavors of Frank’s RedHot. Made with aged cayenne peppers, garlic, and vinegar, it has just enough heat for a spicy kick without torching your taste buds. A big bonus of making homemade buffalo sauce is you have total control over the spice level, so add more or less if you desire!

Shopping Tip! ⇢ I use Frank’s RedHot labeled “Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce” to make this sauce. It’s a staple in the condiments aisle and always stocked in my pantry at home.

How to Make Buffalo Sauce From Scratch

I say this homemade buffalo sauce takes 5 minutes to make but it honestly takes even less.

An overhead shot of a white bowl containing sauce ingredients sitting atop a white marbled surface.
Simply add all of the ingredients to a bowl…
An overhead shot of buffalo sauce being held up with a spoon in a white stoneware bowl atop a white marbled surface.
…and mix to combine. Ready in seconds!

Simply whisk together Frank’s RedHot, melted butter, honey, a little garlic powder, and smoked paprika. The mixture will be rich, tangy, and well-balanced from the natural sweetness of the honey. Its consistency should be slightly thick and easy to slather on whatever you’re using it for.

Prep Tip! ⇢ Make a big batch of homemade buffalo sauce and store it for up to 1 week in the refrigerator. The butter may cause the sauce to separate or solidify in the fridge – no worries! Just give the it a quick zap in the microwave and whisk it back together.

A side shot of a glass jar full of homemade buffalo sauce with a spoon in it sitting atop a white marbled surface in front of a white background. Carrot and celery sticks sit alongside the jar.
Tangy, spicy, and ready in less than 5 minutes!

Easy Swaps & Substitutions

This buffalo sauce recipe is very versatile and easy to adapt to your preferences. A few options:

  • Use your hot sauce of choice. If you don’t have Frank’s RedHot on hand, feel free to use another vinegar-based hot sauce that you love! Be sure to adjust the amount depending on whether it’s spicier or milder than Frank’s.
  • For a dairy-free homemade buffalo hot sauce, swap melted butter for a dairy-free or plant-based butter.
  • For a vegan buffalo sauce, substitute the butter and swap in agave nectar or maple syrup for honey.

Serving Suggestions

Using this recipe as a buffalo wing sauce is the most obvious choice (and my personal favorite! 😋). But there are SO many more ways to add a little spice to mealtime and snack time.

Toss your homemade buffalo sauce with shredded chicken, baste veggies, drizzle it on a salad – whatever!

A close-up angled overhead shot of a jar of buffalo sauce with a spoon in it atop a white marbled surface.
An all-purpose hot sauce for grilling, game day, weeknight dinners, and everything in between.

A few more ideas to get you started…

I can’t wait for you to try my Easy 5-Ingredient Homemade Buffalo Sauce! If you love buffalo sauce as much as we do, this is guaranteed to be your new go-to recipe.

If you do give it a try, be sure to let us know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo and tag @playswellwithbutter on Instagram. We LOVE seeing your PWWB creations! ♡ Happy cooking!

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A side shot of a glass jar full of homemade buffalo sauce with a spoon in it sitting atop a white marbled surface in front of a white background. Carrot and celery sticks sit alongside the jar, and a bottle of Frank's Red Hot and a pepper grinder sit in the background.

Easy 5-Minute Homemade Buffalo Sauce (5 Ingredients)

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  • Author: Jess Larson
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: ½ cup 1x
  • Category: Sauces & Condiments
  • Method: No-Cook
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

An easy recipe created by and for buffalo sauce fanatics!

This quick sauce is my go-to whenever I make buffalo-anything. It tastes just as good as the OG (pinky swear!) and only requires 5 ingredients: Frank’s RedHot, butter, garlic powder, paprika, and a little honey for the perfect touch of sweetness.

It’s an all-purpose homemade buffalo sauce you can use for grilling, game day, weeknight dinners, and everything in between – check out the blog post, above, for plenty of serving ideas to get you started. ♡ Happy cooking! 


Ingredients

Scale
  • ⅓ cup Frank’s RedHot or hot sauce of choice (see Recipe Notes)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • kosher salt and ground black pepper, to season

Instructions

  1. Mix the buffalo sauce: To a small bowl, add the hot sauce, melted butter, honey, garlic powder, and paprika. Whisk to combine well; the mixture should come together as a smooth and creamy sauce. Taste and season with kosher salt and ground black pepper as desired.An overhead shot of homemade buffalo sauce being held up with a spoon in a white stoneware bowl atop a white marbled surface. Small dishes of melted butter, honey, salt, pepper and paprika sit alongside the bowl of sauce.
  2. Serve: Enjoy your homemade buffalo sauce immediately as desired. Of course, it’s fantastic for tossing into a batch of buffalo wings – my Best-Ever Grilled Chicken Wings are our favorite. You can also use it to create an endless variety of buffalo-inspired snacks and treats, from cheesy Buffalo Chicken Sliders to homemade Buffalo Chicken CrunchWraps to Grilled Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches, and so much more. Get creative and have fun with it. Enjoy!A side shot of a glass jar full of homemade buffalo sauce with a spoon in it sitting atop a white marbled surface in front of a white background. Carrot and celery sticks sit alongside the jar, and a bottle of Frank's Red Hot and a pepper grinder sit in the background.


Notes

Jess’ Tips and Tricks:

  • Hot sauce: It’s not buffalo sauce without Frank’s RedHot, the tangy-spicy hot sauce (made with aged cayenne peppers, garlic, & vinegar) used in the original buffalo chicken wings recipe from Anchor Bar & Grill in Buffalo, New York. Frank’s RedHot is readily available in the condiments aisle at most conventional grocery stores; you can also order it online.
  • Dietary restrictions: This homemade buffalo sauce recipe is naturally gluten-free and vegetarian. For a dairy-free buffalo sauce, simply swap butter for plant butter or your favorite dairy-free alternative. To take it a step further and make a vegan buffalo sauce, swap honey for agave nectar or pure maple syrup.

Storage: Homemade buffalo sauce will keep, stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, for up to 1 week. If the sauce separates and solidifies in the refrigerator, simply warm it slightly in the microwave or on the stovetop until it’s liquid again, then whisk to combine well.

Follow along with Plays Well With Butter on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and Pinterest for more unfussy recipes that pack a big punch of flavor!

Hi there, I'm Jess!

If there’s 1 thing to know about me, it’s this: I am head-over-heels in love with food. I’m on a mission to make weeknight cooking flavorful, fast, & fun for other foodies, & PWWB is where I share foolproof recipes that deliver major flavor with minimal effort. Other true loves: pretty shoes, puppies, Grey’s Anatomy, & my cozy kitchen in Minneapolis, MN.

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