Cocktail Sauce

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.

Cocktail Sauce is made in just 2 minutes and tastes amazing and nothing like the bottled variety. The perfect dipping sauce to wow  your party guests.

Cocktail Sauce is an easy sauce recipe to keep in your back pocket like Sweet and Sour Sauce, Blue Cheese Dressingand A1 Steak Sauce (Copycat). The homemade versions always taste better than the bottled variety.

Cocktail Sauce Cocktail Sauce

This recipe seems almost too easy to post. But as we’re heading into the holidays I promise you’re going to want this for your shrimp cocktail platter (shrimp cocktail recipe coming tomorrow!).

The difference in flavor from a bottled cocktail sauce and the fresh variety cannot be stressed enough. The bottled variety is like slightly spicy ketchup with chunks. This fresh version with horseradish and lemon just POPS.

I’ve been serving this recipe with shrimp cocktail at client events for almost 10 years and I can tell you that when you see people taste it for the first time they will either immediately ask you for the recipe of they just walk over to get more.

What is cocktail sauce made of?

Plus, it’s so incredibly easy to make. The magic is just in the freshness of the ingredients and the mixture. Yes, you’re using a pre-made ketchup but the Worcestershire sauce and the lemon add depth of flavor and a bright acidic punch. The horseradish brings out all the classic flavors of cocktail sauce.

Just make sure (this is the only important thing to be careful about), that you’re letting the mixture sit before serving. If you serve it right away the flavors will not have had time to come together and taste like cocktail sauce. It will taste like spicy ketchup.

Save Recipes
Create An Account & Save Recipes

What to serve with cocktail sauce?

Along with the classic shrimp cocktail, cocktail sauce is often served with other shellfish and seafood including crab, oyster and even salmon. If you want to temper the flavors of it to make a glaze or a dipping sauce add some mayonnaise and serve it with fried mushrooms, or calamari. You can also use the glaze as a topping for meatloaf or add it with some tomato juice as a bloody mary starter.

Easy Fresh Cocktail Sauce

Pin This

Like this recipe? Save it to your Pinterest board now!



Save Recipe

Cocktail Sauce

5 from 8 votes
  • Yield: 12 servings
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Course: Dip, Sauce
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder
Cocktail Sauce is made in just 2 minutes and tastes amazing and nothing like the bottled variety. The perfect dipping sauce to wow  your party guests.


  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup horseradish
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 lemon juiced
  • 1 dash Tabasco sauce


Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Mix all the ingredients together and refrigerate at least 60 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 12 servings, Amount per serving: 28 calories, Calories: 28g, Carbohydrates: 6g, Sodium: 212mg, Potassium: 95mg, Sugar: 5g, Vitamin A: 2.1g, Vitamin C: 8.4g, Calcium: 0.9g, Iron: 1.2g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keywords: horseradish, shrimp
Save Recipe


About the Author

Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

See more posts by Sabrina

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


Christmas Easter Recipes Holidays New Years Eve Party Foods Recipe Sauces Thanksgiving Vegetarian

Leave a comment & rating

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Great recipe! You can adjust the ingredients to make it as spicy or mild as you like. Most of my family likes it with a kick so I add a little more horseradish and for mild a little less. Thank you so much.

  2. I have made mine like this for year and love.I have a tip sometimes I like it a little,more hot add lemon.When you buy horseradish it is not that hot.

  3. I love how simple and delicious this cocktail sauce is! Shrimp cocktail is always the first thing gone – and this cocktail sauce is so delicious!

  4. I like the ingredients you used. In mine, I don’t use the Tabasco sauce or Worcestershire sauce. I add chilli sauce. When I made mine and it was for a major hotel in the city where I live.

    I will give your recipe try at the next family gathering. Love your recipes. Even though I don’t comment very I love your recipes. Except for pasta ones as I am not a great fan of it. Have a great day and keep on cooking.