Prior to Co-op Sauce was Co-op Image, a free arts and entrepreneurship organization that was started with Chicago youth by Mike Bancroft. To sustain the program Mike and the kids needed to raise funds, so in 2003 they began to brew, bottle and sell hot sauce. These hot sauces were very popular and in 2003 turned from a fundraiser to a legitimate business. The operation now has a cafe and retail location in Chicago's Roger's Park neighborhood, and no longer has to bottle out of a small art center. Batches are still made the same way as in the beginning, in small handcrafted batches with hand picked ingredients sourced straight from Midwest farmers. All sauces are All Natural, Vegan, and GMO-Free.
Co-op Sauce still donates half of its profits to Co-op Image and employs former program participants in the making and sale of the sauces.
One of the original Co-op sauces. Try it on fish tacos, or to give a lift to your normal salsa. Made with locally sourced jalapeños. The heat rating on this sauce is 3/10.
A Midwestern take on a Latin sauce. Carrots give this sauce a vibrant orange color and earthy sweetness, while habaneros give it heat. This sauce's heat rating is 7/10.
Hot sauce with fermented poblano, green pumpkin seeds and tomato. The most versatile of the original Co-op sauces. With a heat rating of 1/10 it is mild enough to spread on a sandwich or use in a vinegarette.
Flavors of fermented jalapeno peppers and garlic in the Co-op version of the East Asian sauce. Wonderful particularly on rice and noodles. This has a 6/10 heat rating.
Classic style hot sauce, aged in a Koval Distillery barrel and finished with Dark Matter coffee. A classic, all purpose sauce that adds heat to pizza or a dish of rice and beans. The Barrel has a heat rating of 2/10.
The cherry bomb chilies in this sauce are prepared fresh, fermented and roasted. Tomato based hot sauce with a bright acidity. Great on any meal as well as wonderful in soups. The heat in this sauce is rated at 5/10.
A smoky amalgam of peppers, pepitas and chocolate make up this original Co-op Hot Sauce. Mole sauce has a 5/10 heat rating.
Blazing Carolina Reaper peppers tempered slightly with rhubarb.