In Memory Of Karen Nicole Smith, 1972 - 2016

Shado Beni hot sauce which will rock your socks off!

trini-hot-sauceOn our last vacation to Trinidad and Tobago for carnival 2009, my sister had made reservations at the Hyatt Regency for our group to have breakfast. After all the amazing food we’ve been enjoying thus far on our trip, this day was going to be my BEST culinary experience on the island yet. Eddie my sister’s friend from Switzerland had spoiled us the past 4 days with amazing home-made dinners. Some of the best sauces I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing. Plus the street food we devoured every night after partying, were divine.

Back to the breakfast at the Hyatt… BTW if you’re everΒ  in Port Of Spain, be sure to have breakfast here. Not only is the food and service tops, nothing beats dining steps away from the ocean. While on my prowl at the buffet I noticed a green sauce sitting all lonely in a corner of the “meat” section. Long story short.. it turned out to be a “shado beni” hot sauce that the chef made fresh on a daily basis. Yea, I even got our waiter to sneak me some to take home in a little disposable cappuccino cup. It was that good. That little green sauce that was so full of flavor and punch, added a new momentousness to plain scrambled eggs and sausage.

Here’s my version of this amazing Shado Beni hot sauce.

You’ll need….

1 bunch of shado beni (subsitute 1 bunch of cilantro)

1 lime

1 hot pepper (or as many as you can handle)

1/4 teaspoon of salt

1/4 cup of water.

3 cloves of garlic

Don’t be fooled by how simple this recipe is… it’s GUARANTEED to excite your taste buds.


Remove the skin from the garlic, slice and place in food processor. Cut and squeeze the lime juice in the processor, then add the salt, water and hot pepper. Now wash and rough cut the shado beni (or cilantro) and … place in food processor.



Final step is to puree the entire lot for about 3-4 minutes, stopping to push the ingredients down so everything gets worked.


That’s it, you’re done! Be sure to check for salt and heat level. If it’s not hot enough for you, simply add more peppers as necessary. STORAGE – Use fresh or place in a container in the refrigerator.


USE? Anywhere you usually use hot sauce on. Grilled meats, chicken wings, as a side on dishes, on your eggs in the morning (yum).. be creative!

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  1. Natasha Alfred
    June 9, 2022 / 1:20 am

    How long can this chadon beni sauce stay in the fridge. I notice you did not add any vinegar to it to help preserve it.
    I recently made a very similar chadon beni sauce without the pepper and without any vinegar…and after about a month I was surprised to see that it had turned very dark and did not smell like chadon beni at all.
    I threw it out!

    • Leo
      November 29, 2023 / 11:52 am

      Indeed. You’ll be lucky if it lasts a week. with no acid in it (ie vinegar).

  2. Sharon
    September 23, 2021 / 1:47 pm

    I add a bit of ginger it compliments the cilantro

  3. D Burnette
    January 2, 2021 / 9:35 pm

    In Hamilton ON, where do we find shado beni? I would actually like a plant but will settle on a store to buy it! Thanks!

    • admin
      January 4, 2021 / 9:18 am

      Nations in Jackson Square

    • Nicole D
      May 11, 2021 / 9:38 am

      You can get seeds or plants(sold out for this year) from Richter’s Herbs just outside of Toronto. They will send seeds Canada Post & courier plants when weather warms up.

      • Nicole D
        May 11, 2021 / 9:39 am

        it is listed as culantro in their catalogue

  4. Peter Beckles
    June 11, 2020 / 8:59 am

    Cilantro cannot substitute for shado beni. Shado beni (or bandanya as we call it in Trinidad – I have some growing i9n my backyard) is a powerful seasoning. Cilantro is weak and poorly by comparison.

    • Suzanne
      March 11, 2021 / 5:32 am

      Peter, cilantro may not be as pungent as shado beni when blended, but almost no one can tell the difference when made into this sauce or when used in cooking. In fact, the Spanish name for shado beni is culantro. I am a foodie and use both in my cooking. Of course I prefer shado beni because I am a Trini woman, but in lieu of the real thing. cilantro is the best.

      • Peter
        May 13, 2021 / 4:58 am

        You tell him Suzanne. Peter most likely is a fresh water Yankee. I mix cilantro with culantro to make an excellent substitute, Boricua style! Cooking is an art, not for show offing.

  5. Bek
    March 30, 2018 / 8:27 am

    Very cool!

  6. anita
    July 27, 2017 / 9:26 pm

    Trying to see if you can use lemon instead of lime but i see nobody can get any answers/replies!!
    Where are you busy Chris?????

    You’re followers need you !!

    • admin
      July 28, 2017 / 1:42 pm

      responded to your email. yes you can use lemon

  7. Dorris
    June 2, 2017 / 10:49 pm

    How long will it last in the refrigerator. Can I freeze it?

  8. Arlayne Shepherd
    December 16, 2016 / 10:45 pm

    Chris,Hello The reason I dont usually leave a comment on your recipes is because I am not on any social media web sites like facebook, twitter, instagram I did leave an e-mail regards, Arlayne Shepherd ScaScarborough ON

  9. Arlayne Shepherd
    December 16, 2016 / 10:41 pm

    Chris,Hello The reason I dont usually leave a comment on your recipes is because I am not on any social media web sites like facebook, twitter, instagram I did leave an e-mail regards, Arlayne Shepherd Scarborough ON

  10. April 16, 2016 / 3:25 pm

    That hotsauce sounds super delicious and exactly my taste, I will make it! I`m amazed I can always find fresh shado beni here bec I happen to live in Stockholm, Sweden….

    I suppose you can freeze in parts of this sauce in a ice cube tray and when frozen put in a plastic zip lock bag, I do that when I make green seasoning, always good to have some extra in the freezer.

  11. Roger Marshall
    April 7, 2016 / 9:45 am

    Made this last night to serve with rotis-excellent?

  12. Cecile Carrington
    March 16, 2016 / 9:08 am

    Very good sauce. Many years ago I got a similar recipe from an oyster vendor. His version included a little tomato ketch up which made it slightly sweet – makes a great shrimp cocktail.

  13. Jennifer
    November 29, 2014 / 7:03 pm

    Hi Chris,
    can I freeze this? I have a ton of hot peppers that I grew this year so looking forward to making lots of this and regular pepper sauce.
    Love your recipes.

  14. Margaret Brady
    November 12, 2014 / 1:04 pm

    Chris, have you ever grown Chadon Ben from seeds? Any tips? I got some seeds online from California.

    • Tony Goffe
      October 22, 2018 / 5:17 pm

      Margaret, I got seeds from the central hills in Jamaica, and they caught very easily… soak overnight and plant as usual. YOU HAVE TO KEEP PLANTS SHADED SO THEY WILL MAINTAIN A VEGETATIVE GROWTH…SUN MAKES THEM BOLT ….GO TO SEED …THIS PLANT IS A WEED IN TRINI, SO, BE CAREFUL WHERE YOU LET THE SEEDS FALL…. KAY ??

  15. amir
    November 6, 2014 / 4:57 am

    Always wanted to ma beni hot sauce. Will do now. Do you have a recipe for garlic sauce. Thanks in advance

  16. James
    October 11, 2014 / 1:18 pm

    Shadow Beni is called Culantro in America…

  17. primnath
    September 10, 2014 / 8:24 am

    hi great sauce the other name for shado beni is bandania

  18. Arlene Newton
    August 29, 2014 / 12:14 pm

    I love love love shado beni, I love your recipes and I just really LOVE Caribbeanpot.

  19. August 16, 2014 / 10:03 am

    i am puerto rican and i love caribean pot so this is a little like sofrito without the hotness

  20. August 16, 2014 / 10:02 am

    i am puerto rican and i lve caribean pot so this is a little like sofrito without the hotness

  21. jabmalassie
    August 9, 2014 / 9:26 pm

    Nicey’s at Victoria Park and McNichol

  22. Arlene
    July 18, 2014 / 8:53 am

    I wish I could get some shado beni seeds to grow in southern Mexico. They should grow well here and I do love it.

  23. Subrata Basu
    April 7, 2014 / 3:27 am

    What is shadow beni in India?

    • Tom
      May 22, 2014 / 1:40 pm

      I’ve bought Shado Beni at the Vietnamese grocer on the southwest corner of Jane and Finch.

  24. Sabrina
    March 2, 2014 / 11:34 am

    Thank you for the recipe. Love Shado Beni. For those who don’t know, Shado Beni and Cilantro just smell and taste the same but they are NOT. I use Shado Beni all the time home (Trini)in almost everything; I use Cilantro here (Canada). Now I have this recipe, next time I go home, I will fix some up and bring back with me. Sando Beni is free in my parent’s back yard, don’t have to buy it. Keep up the good work guys. Love the recipes.

  25. jewan
    February 17, 2014 / 5:42 pm

    shado beni is not cilantro it is a weed that grows in your yard in trinidad it is usually weeded up with a hoe

  26. William
    December 30, 2013 / 10:24 pm

    Can this sauce be preserved for long periods of time (ie. canning or hot water bath)?

  27. Judy
    December 9, 2013 / 6:10 am

    Shadow beni is Culantro , also known as Recao.

  28. Gus
    December 2, 2013 / 7:50 pm

    Shado Beni is what is also known as cilantro.

    • trini
      August 22, 2014 / 4:08 pm

      Gus shado beni is not cilantro. Comes from the same familyh. shado beni is CULANTRO the other CILANTRE. Google it.

      • trini
        August 22, 2014 / 4:09 pm


  29. November 18, 2013 / 2:29 pm

    hi chris what is shado beni im from Jamaica and dont have a clue

  30. Latifah
    July 26, 2013 / 7:23 am

    Chris you keep bringing it man…my mother in law brings me a jar from TNT every 6 months, can't wait till she visits again will be giving her a jar to take back lol thanks for the recipes always.

  31. Lennox
    May 20, 2013 / 1:54 pm

    Shado beni or Bhandania is also named Thai Parsley(in the Thai Supermarkets).Thus another this wonderful food ingredient.Use and Love. Lennox

  32. Vere
    April 23, 2013 / 11:45 am

    I made the sauce and used it in my mango and cucumber chow…… waayyyy. It was hot hot hot.

  33. JOYCE
    January 1, 2013 / 5:58 pm


    • Jennifer
      January 28, 2013 / 9:52 am

      WOW! As a Trini, never heard of this. will be trying it this weekend for sure. Thanks, it doesn't hurt to learn more.

  34. Joyce
    December 3, 2012 / 12:57 am

    Hi Chris,
    thank you SO MUCH for all your wonderful recipes – especially the Shado Beni sauce – months ago I bought some living plants called Thai coriander . NOW I have a recipe to use it – thanks Chris.
    Joyce [ in Western Australia]

  35. Prince
    August 30, 2012 / 10:27 am

    Hi Chris
    You presentation and recipes are the best I have seen in many years at least 60 of the best.
    However what I liked most of all is simply your kitchen and the manner in which you get your hands into the business of cooking, this is simply great and none clinical.
    What is important to me is the taste of food, the simplicity of the instructions the videos and their presentations are excellent especially the manner of explaining the application of the ingredients.
    Your presentation is really down to earth, not stainless steel and shiny complicated nonsense.
    good luck and thank you and your crew for all your efforts, Trini cooking is no secret now.
    Thank you

  36. Ramona
    July 7, 2012 / 2:22 pm

    Wonderful Recipe Chris. Well my version of this is without the the lime juice because it is not a sauce but a chutney and I have a stone that I use to grind it on, with garlic and pepper add salt and that's it ……………..( I got the stone from my mom,(the name of it is Sill and Lohra) before she had a blender, she use to use that, I love the ole time methods for traditional foods, so I use it for coconut chutney and badania chutney (shado Beni)) etc I am sure you know what I am talking about:)……………And the chutney just like the sauce is best when fresh. We eat it with pelau, rice cook up, dhal and rice, curry, provisions etc. Thanks again for all the lovely recipes .God bless you.

  37. James
    May 30, 2012 / 6:24 pm

    I am looking for a place to get Shado Beni near Oakville, ON. This looks awesome.

    • Spicelady99
      September 8, 2012 / 6:34 am

      Look in the market for culantro not cilantro

  38. Tracy
    May 3, 2012 / 4:54 am

    I just found Culantro (Shado Beni) at our Home Depot here in Maryland. I was so excited. Now I can make that wonderful looking Hot Sauce.

  39. babs
    February 10, 2012 / 11:00 am

    Chris thank you for all your helpful information .I am from Belize .,still the Caribbean taste.I will try that sauce for my husband who loved pepper sauces

    Thanks again

  40. K Rich
    December 27, 2011 / 2:15 pm

    That's got to be nice!! Real hot sauce lovers are also great flavour detectors and I know with the right balance of shado beni ( or cilantro ), garlic, salt and lime in this recipe… Well, those are some of the "usual suspects" in great flavour!!!! Hope you all enjoyed your x-mas as I did. Made some amazing Punch of Creme, finally found some Dasheen bush for the calaloo ( I live in Montreal ) and different family members made different things. By the way, I'm really proud of all you youngsters under 23 who are learning these recipes so that you can know to cook your trini food and will not one day say" I don't know to cook"!!! Keep it up, it's important!!!!!

  41. lynda
    November 21, 2011 / 2:22 pm

    This sauce is fabulous with a tasty doubles YUMM

  42. Zenora
    October 13, 2011 / 4:11 pm

    This is absolutely great!!
    I make a nice chickpea side flavoured with shadon beni:
    1 can chickpeas or equivalent amount if soaked & boiled from scratch
    The juice of 1/2 lime
    Salt to taste
    Blackpepper to taste
    2 cloves garlic crushed
    1/4 scotch bonnet pepper crushed
    2 leaves shadon beni cut up finely or crushed
    3 tablespoons boiling water (optional)
    Put garlic, salt, blackpepper, shadon beni & pepper in bowl or mortar, crush with pestle (this could be done in the food processor or chopper – small bowl.
    Mix all ingredients together, let rest for 10 mins or enjoy immediately
    Enjoy as a snack

  43. Judy
    September 7, 2011 / 9:46 pm

    Hi Chris,
    Love this recipe, I like the smell of shado beni. Sado beni goes by the name REACO you can find it in the Asia stores like Korean or Chinese. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

  44. drive
    August 14, 2011 / 8:05 pm

    growing up in guyana this shado beni was wild bushes for us we used to weed the yard or try hard to get raid of this magic herb well atlease for me .thanks for all your recipt ,since i have no lady to do the cooking lol

  45. Ronnie
    July 28, 2011 / 7:49 am

    I love everything you emailed me and the instruction by picture is absolutely perfect and so nice. Keep sending and since I'm relocating to North Florida (where most of the ingredients for caribbean food is NOT found) I'll be doing a lot of planting, and traveling to Atlanta Ga. or South Florida, cause I ain't giving up my taste for these delicious flavors. Salt fish and bakes, (NO COD FISH) taking it with me from NY. Thanks in advance for future emails and your sie is the BEST!

  46. charmaine
    July 6, 2011 / 7:59 pm

    this pepper sauce also taste good in doubles,Chis did you have our trin doubles when you were here.

  47. Rachael
    May 26, 2011 / 12:17 pm

    Shadon Beni Sauce – simple but fantastic. Perfect with fried fish nuggets.

  48. afeisha jones
    May 7, 2011 / 1:45 pm

    boom i love it!

  49. Cliff Drew
    March 12, 2011 / 4:25 am

    sounds like a realy nice sauce/dip i would like to make and try it but dont know where to get either shado beni ore cilantro, being in england these items maybe hard to get but will try, have these items any other names please,anyone please held and let me know.

  50. jana
    March 2, 2011 / 12:01 pm

    Hi.Chris thanks for all your wonderful recepies..right now im needing one for roti…dont know where to turn…can you help?jana

  51. Samantha
    December 9, 2010 / 6:10 am

    thanks Chris! I am looking forward to making both the mango based and the cilantro sauces in time for xmas for my friends!

  52. Chris H
    November 3, 2010 / 8:10 pm

    A nice way to freeze this is to pour the mixture into several ice cube trays; freeze ; pour our the seasoning cube into a freezer storage container and use a cube of the mixture when you cook

  53. Paddy
    August 28, 2010 / 2:01 am

    Hey Chris, I'm really enjoying the recipes. I'm wondering if you have a recipe for doubles. I recemtly visitied my aunt in Trinidad, and had doubles from George's wife twice in the week I was there. I would love to try to make them – with all the condiments too.
    BTW, when you say to use once bunch of shado beni, how much, in terms of a cup, is that? I'm growing some here, and it looks a lot smaller than what's in your picture. My leaves are only about 5 inches long, and 3/4 in wide. Thanks.

  54. Miriam Ajokeh Scott
    August 18, 2010 / 5:32 pm

    I am loving Caribbeanpot and the tasty recipes and photos provided. It a tremendous help in futher enhancing my culinary skills and delightful comments from those who have the pleasure to "taste my hand" as we say in the Caribbean. Thanks Chris.

  55. jtstarke1
    July 11, 2010 / 11:50 am

    When I had my Hot Sauce company in Puerto Rico some years back, one of my tastiest and least hot sauce was one similar to this, with the addition of some onion and papaya (green and ripe) with vinegar, which was great for marinating meat too, because of the papain in the green papaya. Good stuff. Keep up the good work. The love shows through.

    • July 14, 2010 / 7:48 pm

      I like the idea of using green papaya, it's something my uncle used to use in his as well. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

      • Ann
        September 12, 2011 / 6:49 am

        Hi Chrs
        I just love chadon beni in almost everything I cook and we cn easily get it here all through the year.
        Keep those yummy recipes coming and gr8 job.

  56. Chrissy
    April 18, 2010 / 8:38 pm

    Hey Chris,

    This sauce sounds very tasty and I can't wait to try it. Have you or anyone else made the garlic sauce found at Smokey and Bunty's or several other locations? It is so good and I'd like to smother it on everything I eat. πŸ™‚ Thanks for all the great recipes.

    • June 17, 2010 / 1:30 am

      I've had a couple requests lately for that sauce you're talking about so I'll try to get it posted soon. Seems that sauce is a HIT in trinidad and Tobago, as everywhere we go they have a version of their own

  57. praim sankar
    February 19, 2010 / 4:17 pm

    This exactly my recipe for seasoning.

  58. Tracy Archer
    January 5, 2010 / 7:30 am

    Hi thanks for reminding about this lovely hot sauce – I remember having this many years ago in Trinidad and my dad always uses it in his cooking!! As I live in the UK, its difficult to get hold of shadow beni however I use Coriander as a substitute and it tastes fabUlous!! Keep up the goood work!

    • June 17, 2010 / 1:31 am

      Lovely substitute.. I use it quite often as well and there's always a patch in my herb box during the warm months.

  59. Latha
    January 4, 2010 / 2:25 pm

    Hi Chris,
    This looks and sounds so hot and tasty. Thanks for sharing i plan to make it this week. God bless Latha

    • June 17, 2010 / 1:32 am

      Let me know your thoughts when you make up a batch.

  60. December 20, 2009 / 9:37 pm

    Thank you all so much for coming up with this website!!! I am first generation American, born of Trinidadian parents. I want to show my children that we are not just Americans or even African-Americans but we are Caribbean-Americans! Our Sunday dinners,Thanksgivings and Christmas’ have a uniquely wonderful aroma and taste. I want to pass down the flavors of the Islands so that they can continue to pass it down to their children. Thanks for keepin we han’ sweet for generations to come!

    Blessings and Love,Tamika K. Watkins

    • June 17, 2010 / 1:33 am

      Thanks for leaving such a wonderful comments. i too try my best to share our culture with our kids, friends and now with as many people as I can with this blog. cheers.

  61. kathleen
    November 15, 2009 / 5:06 pm

    i have done this all the time its nothing new but i do enjoy your style still bring them on thanks

  62. sophia
    November 3, 2009 / 11:35 am

    i love this it looks hot

  63. liza
    October 31, 2009 / 2:55 am

    I love shadon beni I season all foods with it I even put some in my eggs on mornings. Shadon Beni give food a nice flavour yum yum.

  64. October 26, 2009 / 9:48 am

    uuum hot i say

    thanks for the tip.

    this is great to spice the slice.

  65. ella
    October 26, 2009 / 9:34 am

    I know about the sause because I use it. Thanks anyway.

    • June 17, 2010 / 1:28 am

      Wow! Nice to have you here and commenting. BTW readers, this is one of the pioneers of Caribbean food blogging, so be sure to check out her site when you're looking for ideas on what to cook.

  66. May 28, 2009 / 5:46 am

    Ah boy! You making my mouth water here! πŸ™‚

    Cynthia’s last blog post..Salt to Taste

  67. Chris
    April 11, 2009 / 8:31 am

    @Elijah – that’s the stuff. Pelau is on today’s menu 9if I can find the time). Funny thing is when we were kids, we HATED watercress.. now I go out of my way to find it locally. That reminds me..I have to post my cucumber and watercress salad – with a spicy twist.

  68. April 11, 2009 / 12:42 am

    Ha! Yeah man – my uncle Mikey used to make a mean shado beni – it goes the best with a nice pelau and some watercrest!

    Elijah’s last blog post..20 Site Flips In 30 Days

  69. Chris
    April 10, 2009 / 9:44 am

    @lisaiscooking remember you can also use cilantro, which is a bit less pungent but a great alternative.

    @OysterCulture I got a couple emails asking for info so I posted “Shado Beni Explained” Hopefully it will give you and others a better idea of what it is.

    Have a great weekend all!


  70. April 10, 2009 / 3:50 am

    This sauce sounds wonderful the way you described it, and I look forward to trying it. Not sure if I've seen shado beni around but will look for it.

    <abbr>OysterCulture’s last blog post..Waffles – honeycombs for flavor</abbr>

    • Vere
      April 23, 2013 / 11:40 am

      Shado Beni has a similar taste to Cilantro….. more pungent than cilantro. If you can find an asian store around a caribbean setting they may carry it. if there are no West Indian stores around

  71. April 10, 2009 / 3:29 am

    This sounds fantastic! I wasn't familiar with shado beni, and now I want to try it. Thanks for the info.

    <abbr>lisaiscooking’s last blog post..Chilled Lemon Souffles</abbr>

    • June 13, 2010 / 2:30 am

      Sorry if this in the wrong place i couldn't figure out where else to comment,
      Anyway I have many "pepper sauce" recipes but none say what kind of vinegar….white, apple cider, red wine, rice?????
      Help, I'm looking for a certain taste my grandmother from Barbados used to get when she made Souse

      • Gigi
        January 17, 2012 / 7:55 pm

        It's white vinegar

        • Lez
          January 7, 2013 / 8:55 am

          Yes you are correct. It is white vinegar.

      • tara
        May 30, 2013 / 9:51 am

        regular white vinegar ..

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