Boost Regional U.S. Flavors with El Yucateco

Updated: Mar 2

The Art of Pairing Classic Favorites with Bold Flavor

By Chelsea Vincent

3 hot dogs with fries and drizzled with El Yucateco Hot Sauce beside US flag and beer.

From sea to shining sea, we all love the pep in our step from a little extra flavor and spice. But each area tends to have its own way of doing things, from the jobs we do to the recipes we celebrate and share.

Despite our differences, hot sauce is here to stay. As Quartz recently explained, since the year 2000, the hot sauce market in the United States has outpaced BBQ sauce, ketchup, mayo, and mustard combined, growing at a whopping 150%. Clearly, we like some oomph with our food.

While we can agree that just about everything tastes better with hot sauce, the type of sauce you choose can enhance different foods in different ways. With four distinct regions in the USA – the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West, according to the Census Bureau – knowing your way around hot sauce pairings can take your summer to a whole new level.

Whether you’re setting off on a road trip or re-imagining some of your favorite dishes from places you love, we’ve got your back. Here’s a run-down of quintessential regional favorites, complete with perfect pairings from the El Yucateco line-up.

The Northeast: Hearty Seafood & Staples

Table full of seafood being enjoyed by busy hands, including lobster, shrimp, crab, and more.

New England’s coastal towns and Colonial influences still endure today, with delicious Clam Chowder, Baked Beans, and New England Boiled Dinner – which combines corned beef and variety of vegetables into a one-pot, beloved meal – topping the charts locally. Red habanero peppers can help to bring out the flavors in these dishes, without overpowering the traditional tastes we have grown to love.

Pair with: El Yucateco Red Habanero Hot Sauce

The Midwest: All About Links

4 hot dogs lined up on a table with various brightly colored toppings.

While we all love our hot dogs for camping trips and the Fourth of July, the Midwest reigns supreme, when it comes to combining meat and breading. Hot Dogs in Chicago, Corn Dogs in Indiana, and Beer Brats in Wisconsin never seem to go out of style, and for good reason – they’re juicy, delicious, and the epitome of summer! For a modern twist on these classics, a bit of island flair complements these items with a fresh, light taste.

Pair with: El Yucateco Caribbean Habanero Sauce

The South: Tried, Fried, and True

Ah, the good ole South, where most things need a bit of lard or oil to be deemed delightful. Take Fried Chicken (or Catfish), Shrimp & Grits, or Collard Greens with Bacon as perfect examples. To add a bit of smoky, rustic flavor to these tea-tempered plates, opt for a pairing which brings chipotle into the mix. You won’t be disappointed, and you’ll pay homage to that other familiar Southern favorite, barbeque.

Pair with: El Yucateco Chipotle Sauce

The West: Farm – and Ocean – to Table

Poke bowl viewed from above with tuna, edamame, cucumber, avocado, and seaweed, with hand holding chopsticks.

Last but not least, the West brings us favorites from the Pacific and the mountains, including Poke (thank you, Hawaii), Rocky Mountain Oysters, and Bison Burgers. These distinctive flavors are fantastic with a hint of sweet-and-salty smoke, which can take the place of eel or barbecue sauce to create a rich, robust taste in every bite. Pair with: El Yucateco Black Label Reserve

Looking for more fun recipe ideas this summer, or have your own regional pairing to share? Be sure to follow us on Instagram or Facebook for bold flavor and content!

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