The only reason I go to restaurants is for the sauce. I can roast a chicken or boil pasta at home. A perfectly crafted sauce, however, takes an unbelievable amount of thought and effort.
As much as I love going out to eat, dining out every single time you crave a signature sauce isn’t easy on the wallet. Luckily, many major restaurant companies have come to my rescue and started bottling their sauces, so I no longer have to eat out with 20 tiny plastic to-go cups.
I will go to Buffalo Wild Wings just to eat this sauce. I get multiple sides of this Spicy Garlic Sauce and put it on everything I order: wings, fries, fried pickles, mac and cheese. They all pair perfectly with this sauce because everything pairs perfectly with this sauce. When I found out Costco sold bulk-size multipacks of it, my life changed forever. It isn’t particularly spicy, but it is so tangy. The garlic flavor is prominent. And, last but not least, it is so luxuriously creamy—which I didn’t realize I wanted until I met this one. My mouth is literally watering while I type this! I am not being hyperbolic!! I love this Buffalo sauce!!!
Whataburger Spicy Jalapeno Ranch
Because I live in Los Angeles, Whataburger is sadly not a regular fast food option for me. I only get to have my honey butter chicken biscuit and Dr. Pepper shake when I visit my aunt who lives in Austin every other year. For non-Texans like me, Whataburger bottled their line of sauces so you can pretend you’re looking at that giant “W” while you’re eating microwaved nuggets at your kitchen table.
Taco Bell Creamy Chipotle Sauce
Red alert: You can make Taco Bell Chipotle Chicken Melts at home with this sauce. You can make vegetarian Taco Bell Chipotle Chicken Melts at home, I should say. As someone who doesn’t eat much meat, I love being able to make veggie chicken renditions of my favorite Taco Bell items. Not into cooking? This is also really good on hard-boiled eggs (no judgment please).
Broccoli cheddar soup in a bread bowl is obviously the best item on the Panera menu, but the Fuji Apple Chicken Salad is a close second. This tangy, sweet salad dressing will up your at-home salad game and save you a ton of money since you’re not going to Panera to get this salad—you’re going out for the bread bowl.
Nando’s is a sauce lover’s paradise. The first time I went to one in London, I was taken aback by the sheer number of sauces. Their specialty is peri-peri, a chili pepper sauce from Africa. The restaurant sells every heat level of the spicy sauce, along with lemon pepper and garlic renditions. You can even get bottles of their perinaise—mayonnaise mixed with their signature peri-peri sauce. While I think you should buy every single product they sell, the Medium Peri-Peri Sauce is my favorite. It has the best combo of flavor, citrus, and heat in my personal opinion.
This is Olive Garden in a bottle. The tangy yet creamy taste is so distinct that it almost feels illegal to be able to eat it outside of an Olive Garden. I love it because I can remix the OG unlimited salad at home with better lettuce, no tomatoes, and three times as many pepperoncinis.
I don’t go to Chick-fil-A because I’m, you know, *painting nails emoji*. I do, however, like Chick-fil-A’s signature sauce. It tastes like honey mustard meets bbq sauce plus magic? I don’t know why it’s so good, but it is. Luckily, Target makes a knock-off “chicken sauce” that is just as delicious and much cheaper.