Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce Review

Don’t let the name and the cayenne chilies on the label scare you — Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce is big on classic pepper sauce flavor and mellower than expected on heat. But how balanced is that spiciness? Is it too mellow to live up to the devilish name and flavor in the bottle? And is it as usable as the original Trappey’s? Let’s take the Red Devil out for a spin and see what it’s all about.

SUMMARY
Trappey's Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce
3.8
$9.58

Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper is a tasty blend of cayenne peppers, vinegar, and salt — all-in, it creates a slightly different flavor experience than Trappey’s Original Recipe. But it’s surprisingly mild, especially given the pepper used and the branding. 

Heat Level: Mild
Pros:
  • Flavorful cayenne pepper sauce
  • Unique balance on ingredients compared to original recipe
  • Very versatile
Cons:
  • Surprisingly mild for the chili used (and the branding)
  • High in sodium
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12/08/2021 11:31 am GMT

Flavor

Let’s start by comparing the ingredients in the classic Trappey’s Louisiana Hot Sauce with Trappey’s Red Devil.

  • Original: Distilled vinegar, red pepper, salt, guar gum, xanthan gum, ascorbic acid, and red#40.
  • Red Devil: Distilled vinegar, aged cayenne peppers (red cayenne peppers, salt), salt, guar gum, xanthan gum, ascorbic acid.

Pretty similar, right? The only differences here are the named chili pepper (cayenne pepper in Trappey’s Red Devil Hot Sauce) and the inclusion of red#40 in the original. Beyond that, the ingredients are the same and map in the same order. So overall, we’re talking a similar flavor, right? Not so fast.

Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce still has that classic Louisiana-style hot sauce flavor, but the vinegar kick doesn’t taste quite so pronounced here compared to the original. Maybe it’s the difference in peppers or in the amount of salt used (which is 100% more than the original, see below.) Maybe there’s a slight decrease in the vinegar or ascorbic acid? Who knows. The balance is different, and you really taste the combo of chili pepper and salt upfront. Yes, it’s still vinegary, just not as vinegar-forward as the original.

Trappey's Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce on a spoon
Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce on a spoon

You, of course, still get a vinegary flavor right up top, but it’s quickly matched mid-bite by the sweet-heat from the chili pepper mash and salt. And from there on in, it’s all about that flavor combo.

On that sodium. It’s high. Higher than Trappey’s Original. Red Devil has 150 mg per teaspoon, or 6% of your daily allowance. That’s up 30% from the original (115 mg per serving.) It does provide us a clue that the balance is different in the ingredients. And for those watching their sodium intake, neither Trappey’s hot sauce is great, but if you’re going to choose one, go with the original. Yes, this is a dasher sauce, so it’s not like you’re pouring this sauce on, but it can add up.

Heat Balance

Unlike their original recipe, Trappey’s lists the chili pepper used here: cayenne peppers. Cayennes range from 30,000 to 50,000 Scoville heat units, which puts the chili solidly in the medium-heat range of peppers.

Of course, Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper Sauce comes nowhere near those chili pepper marks. There’s a lot of dilution in play. No, this is a mild sauce, sitting at roughly 11,200 Scoville heat units. And what I find interesting is that it tastes milder than Trappey’s Louisiana Hot Sauce (roughly 1,600 SHU.) You’d think with the moniker “Red Devil”, there’d be a bump in spiciness, especially with cayenne peppers in the mix. Appears not. The sauce feels like it should be hotter, both in the overall balance and the branding.

The mild spiciness come and goes all within a couple of seconds. If you want to enjoy the spiciness for prolonged periods, you’ll need to go back to the bottle often. For those looking for a milder sauce that doesn’t linger, this is great. But for those that love that tingly linger, it’s just not there. Think warming on the linger rather than spicy.

Usability

You’ll go far in terms of usability with Trappey’s Red Devil Pepper Sauce. Though, if you’re looking for that vinegar tang on certain foods, you’ll want to reach for the Louisiana-style original recipe. It works perfectly as a wing sauce, a marinade, and even as a salad dressing,. Yes, being as mild as it is, you can dash this like a vinaigrette and be quite happy.

It’s also great with egg dishes, from scrambled eggs to egg salad sandwiches, all work well. And it’s a fine dasher sauce to heat up your soup and crackers.

Just note the salt again. If I’m using Trappey’s Red Devil, I’m typically not using any additional salt. It’s already so high in sodium, and you’ll get the salty flavor right from the pepper sauce.

Trappey’s Red Devil is packaged in a dasher bottle, so you can control this thin sauce pretty well on the plate. That’s a good thing, seeing thin sauces tend to quickly blend. You can easily over-pour without a dasher top.

Collectibility

The label is simple, featuring the Red Devil name (in the expected fiery red) with three fresh cayennes floating to the right and a smiling impish devil to the left. It’s a fine label, but again I can’t help but think this sauce is going to be much hotter than it is from the design.

Trappey’s Red Devil isn’t hard to find, but it’s not as simple as picking up Trappey’s original recipe. So points there — it can surprise your friends that there’s something different about the Trappey’s on your table. But overall, this isn’t a hot sauce that truly stands out in a line-up. Or if it does, it’ll likely surprise you for its lack of heat.

The Score

Trappey’s Red Devil Cayenne Pepper is a tasty blend of cayenne peppers, vinegar, and salt — all-in, it creates a slightly different flavor experience than Trappey’s Original Recipe. But it’s surprisingly mild, especially given the pepper used and the branding.

FINAL SCORE3.8
Overall Flavor4
Heat Balance3
Usability4.5
Collectibility3.5
X-Factor3.5
Based on a scale from 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest)

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on November 26, 2021 to include new content. It was originally published on November 24, 2021.
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