In Thailand, sriracha is frequently used as a dipping sauce, particularly for seafood. In Vietnamese cuisine, sriracha appears as a condiment for phở, fried noodles, a topping for spring rolls [chả giò], and in sauces.
Sriracha is also eaten on soup, eggs and burgers. Jams, lollipops, and cocktails have all been made using the sauce, and sriracha-flavored potato chips have been marketed.
The origin and history of sriracha is unknown. The sauce is purported to have been first created by a Thai woman named Thanom Chakkapak in the town of Si Racha [or Sri Racha], Thailand.
In Thailand the sauce is most often called sot Siracha [Thai: ซอสศรีราชา] and only sometimes nam phrik Siracha [Thai: น้ำพริกศรีราชา]. Traditional Thai sriracha sauce tends to be tangier in taste, and runnier in texture than non-Thai versions.
In a Bon Appétit magazine interview, US Asian-foods distributor, Eastland Food Corporation, asserted that the Thai brand of hot sauce, Sriraja Panich, which Eastland distributes, is the original "sriracha sauce" and was created in Si Racha, Thailand, in the 1930s from the recipe of a housewife named Thanom Chakkapak.
Within the United States, sriracha is associated with a sauce produced by Huy Fong Foods and is sometimes referred to as "rooster sauce" or "cock sauce" due to the image of a rooster on the bottle. Other variations of sriracha have appeared in the US market, including a sriracha that is aged in whiskey barrels. In 2013, Sosu Sauces, a food startup based in San Francisco, created a Kickstarter project and successfully raised $104,146 to launch a Whiskey Barrel-Aged Sriracha that is fermented and aged in whiskey barrels.
Various restaurants in the US, including Applebee's, P.F. Chang's, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, Jack in the Box, Subway, White Castle and Gordon Biersch, have incorporated sriracha into their dishes, sometimes mixing it with mayonnaise or into dipping sauces. The name "sriracha" is considered to be a generic term, since the creator of the Huy Fong Foods sauce, David Tran, did not trademark it.