I've always been a big fan of ketchup, and I add it to practically everything. But as much as I love this sweet condiment, it can get boring quickly. I often added pepper to regular ketchup to give it some depth, but this was always met with interesting looks from others asking me how it tasted. My pepper ketchup days were before I was introduced to the infamous Whataburger Spicy Ketchup. My life was never the same after that. Admittedly, Whataburger's ketchup was quite a bit spicier than my own peppery concoction, but it was extremely good. 

After several instances of driving past other fast food options in order to get my hands on Whataburger's spicy ketchup, I finally created a spicy ketchup recipe since I can't get enough of it. Homemade ketchup is actually surprisingly easy to make and requires little time and effort.

Copycat Whataburger Spicy Ketchup

  • Prep Time:5 mins
  • Cook Time:30 mins
  • Total Time:35 mins
  • Servings:16
  • Easy


  • 1 jalapeño
  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/8 cup + 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon honey
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • pinch ground cloves
Jordi Almeida
  • Step 1

    In a small sauce pot, boil the jalapeño over medium heat until tender, about 20 minutes. Strain out all of the water.

    Jordi Almeida
  • Step 2

    Add all the ingredients to a blender or food processor. Pulse for about 30 seconds or until smooth.

    #SpoonTip: To make a slightly less spicy ketchup, you can remove the flesh and seeds of the jalapeño.

    Jordi Almeida
  • Step 3

    Optional: Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and place in a small sauce pot.

    Jordi Almeida
  • Step 4

    Simmer over low heat for about 5 minutes until the sauce thickens. Allow ketchup to cool in the refrigerator until and serve cold.

    #SpoonTip: If you want to further enhance the flavor of your ketchup, I highly recommend refrigerating the ketchup overnight to give the ingredients time to meld together.

    Jordi Almeida
  • Step 5


    Jordi Almeida

This spicy ketchup recipe yields about one cup of bomb ketchup that lasts around a week in the fridge, but can be canned or sealed in a jar for long-term storage. You can, and should, put this on everything from fries, chicken tenders, burgers, tater tots, hot dogs, or even scrambled eggs and say goodbye to your regular ketchup. If you're feeling adventurous, you can add this to meat marinades and other wild creations.