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Earlier this week, we asked our readers one of the most contentious questions you can ask a bunch of people just waiting to be pissed off: What’s the best dipping sauce? In response, the comments were expectedly heated. While some outright attacked me for my staunch anti-ranch position, others raised the fair assessment that my question was too vague to begin with.

What is the best sauce. It depends on what you’re dipping, right? Although I get where that argument comes from, I’m more inclined to agree with JescoWhite, a Kinja user who managed to articulate what I’d failed to:

You just haven’t tried hard enough. Dipping sauces are not, nor should they ever be single purpose.


Other commenters took a more combative approach, reporting me to the Kinja webmasters for my elegant prose.

But more importantly, some of our readers actually nominated their own dipping sauce of choice. This one’s for you, the flavor kings, queens, and everyone in between.

Whether you prefer to engulf a blooming onion at Outback Steakhouse or a generous serving of hand-battered tendies at home, here are your top dip picks.


Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce (Hickory & Brown Sugar)

Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ Sauce (Pack of 3) | $12 | Amazon
Graphic: Gabe Carey

I gotta go with Sweet Baby Ray’s. I’m partial to the Hickory & Brown Sugar version myself, but other flavors are pretty good too. Great for chicken, burgers, ribs, brisket, baked potatoes with bacon and cheese, even meatloaf if you make it right. Most grocery stores I’ve been to out west carry it, but if you can’t find it at yours you can go to - JobiWan

Sweet Baby Ray’s is the king of BBQ sauce. And Roy Rogers uses it as their BBQ sauce to-go packets! - TheSillyMan


Valentina Extra Hot Mexican Hot Sauce 

Valentina Extra Hot | $0.88-4.23 | Walmart
Graphic: Gabe Carey

In the Hot Sauce division, Valentina Extra Hot is the king. Packs a big punch but still manages to have actual taste. - dimeford

Valentina Extra Hot was one of the most pleasant, relatively recent surprises for me in the area of picante/heat. And the reasons are exactly as you say, very flavorful, but still manages to pack a kick. Yet it somehow manages to refrain from being overpoweringly hot if you happen to put a little too much on. Just a pleasant noticeable amount of heat whether you use a little or a lot. - Mmmm


Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce

Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce (Pack of 2) | $12 | Amazon
Graphic: Gabe Carey

I really love sweet and savory combinations, plus I’m a chilihead, so Mae Ploy Sweet Chili Sauce is my go-to dipping, glazing, basting, dipping-my-finger sauce. It makes a great base for a spicy-sweet barbecue sauce and just about any other sauce where you’d want a sweet/spicy flavor (which for me is nearly all the sauces).

There are dozens of brands of sweet chili sauce, but May Ploy is my favorite. The spice level is higher than many others and the consistency is ideal IMHO. - Thogar


Frank’s RedHot Cayenne Pepper Sauce

Frank’s RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce | $11 | Amazon
Graphic: Gabe Carey

Frank’s Hot Sauce. Great on its own with perfect heat/taste ratio, and mixing it about 2:1 with blue cheese dressing gives you a next level creamy/spicy dipping sauce. Plus, it’s cheap so you can put that sh*t on everything. - brnpttmn

Needs more heat, but easily remedied with adding red Tabasco. Goes great together. - inhuvelyn


Monical’s Sweet & Tart Dressing 

Monical’s Sweet & Tart Dressing | $5 | Monical’s Pizza
Graphic: Gabe Carey

Monical’s Pizza Sweet & Tart Dressing. It’s the best because somehow it makes you hate pizza unless you can dip it in this ... and everything else from chicken tenders, fries, chips, etc. are all delicious dipped in it too. - Hot Pants Summer

The dressing is very good. Unfortunately the salad they serve it with is the worst. Limp iceberg lettuce and some flavorless bits of tomato if you’re lucky. The only good things about the salad are the sweet and tart dressing and the generous amount of shredded mozzarella on top. I do love Monical’s pizza, though. It’s the pizza of my teen years, and though I’m almost 54 now, it’s still my favorite. - CSX321


Gabe Carey is the Commerce Content & Strategy Manager at The Inventory and Kinja Deals.

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