Cocktail Sauce

Homemade Cocktail Sauce is a spicy sweet dip made with ketchup and horseradish that is typically served with shrimp cocktail. It’s easy to make at home in just a few minutes and tastes so much better than bottled. It pairs perfectly with my Shrimp Cocktail Recipe.

A bowl of homemade cocktail sauce surrounded by a platter of shrimp.

I have been enjoying shrimp cocktail for as long as I’ve been alive it seems. It was always the first thing on the list for any family party, and my dad was usually the first one to break into the platter. While my mom would usually buy the pre-cooked shrimp at the butcher , she always made her own sauce and it was always amazing.


When I asked my new husband to pick up some shrimp from the grocery store for this recipe, he came home with the 2 pounds I’d asked for, and a bottle of cocktail sauce. When I asked him what in the world he was thinking buying a bottle, he simply stated that he was excited for the shrimp cocktail I was going to make. I shook my head and said, “No, no my dear. We make this stuff from scratch!” He was skeptical that there would be a difference, but I made a believer of him in a matter of minutes. The fresh pop of flavors in this homemade cocktail sauce cannot be denied, plus it’s so easy you’ll never buy bottled again!

A shrimp dipped in a bowl of cocktail sauce.


Here are the ingredients you will need to make this delicious homemade cocktail sauce recipe:

Stir the ingredients together in a small bowl until they are well combined. Be sure to taste your sauce and adjust the flavors to your liking, because everyone’s pallet is different! Store in a tightly sealed container in the fridge until ready to serve. Serve alongside some juicy shrimp for dipping.


Cocktail Sauce is a delicious spicy ketchup based sauce that is traditionally served with shrimp cocktail. It fresh flavors and acidic pop make it an excellent choice as a pairing with a variety of seafood, like crab, oysters and calamari. I like to place the shrimp cocktail on a pretty platter, surround the cocktail sauce in a beautiful small bowl.

A shrimp dipped in homemade cocktail sauce sitting on the edge of the bowl.

What to do with leftovers

This recipe makes a decent amount that perfect for a party. But if you happen to have leftovers, store cocktail sauce in an airtight container for up to one week.

Here are some more seafood recipes to try:

If you’ve made this recipe, please come back and leave us a star rating or a comment below. Or, tag us on social media @yellowblissroad or #yellowblissroad for a chance to be featured.
Social media image of Shrimp and cocktail sauce

Cocktail Sauce

A sweet sauce made from ketchup, horseradish and seasonings, perfect for dipping shrimp or for other types of fish.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Appetizer, condiment
Cuisine American
Servings 10 servings
Calories 31kcal


  • 1 cup Ketchup
  • ¼ cup Prepared horseradish or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Lemon juice or more to taste
  • pinch of salt or more to taste


  • Stir together ketchup, horseradish, Worcestershire, 2 teaspoons lemon juice and salt in a small bowl until well combined. 
  • Taste and adjust flavors to your liking.
  • Cover and store in the fridge until ready to serve.


The horseradish brings the heat. Feel free to adjust the amount to your liking.


Calories: 31kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 249mgPotassium: 95mgFiber: 1gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 123IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 7mgIron: 1mg
Keyword cocktail sauce

Homemade Cocktail Sauce collage of photos.

Kristin Maxwell

Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.

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  1. Super easy to make with pantry ingredients. Spicy, but not too hot. Add more horseradish if you want more heat.

  2. Very Good, said my wife. I made a hotter version with sriracha. It’s really a good flavor, with either. I use a lot of plain horseradish.