If you’ve spent any time on TikTok or any social media over the past few weeks you’ve probably come across this strange neon pink concoction. Dubbed “Pink Sauce” by its creator, chef Carly Pii, the condiment is currently sold out after bottles were sold online for $20.
So, what exactly is in this almost toxic-looking sauce that’s got everyone in a chokehold? Well, the Pink Sauce website lists the ingredients as honey, chilli, dragon fruit and sunflower seed oil. Previously, an earlier label of the product included a more detailed list: water, sunflower seed oil, raw honey, garlic, distilled vinegar, pitaya, pink Himalayan sea salt, dried spices, milk, lemon juice and citric acid.
The colour of Pink Sauce has seen multiple transitions since its inception from a glowing neon-looking pink to a slightly more natural (if you can call it that) saturated pink. Pii said in a YouTube video that the colour change was due to it turning consumers’ poop red. Although it probably caused quite a shock for customers, the sauce wasn’t causing any internal damage and was in fact a result of dragon fruit’s beets-like effect on the digestive system.
Somewhat worryingly, Pii riled up controversy after she said she couldn’t describe what the sauce tastes like. She later made a U-turn in one TikTok, where she described Pink Sauce as “sweet, spicy and tangy” going on to recommend putting it on “everything.”
Pii, a private chef in Miami, has come under fire for her brightly coloured sauce with buyers citing the potential for food poisoning in the wacky product. Supposedly, some bottles would arrive in bags instead of boxes and arrive damaged. People also pointed out that the list of ingredients included milk however, there was no indication the bottles needed to be refrigerated. TikTok user Misha Curiel posted a video last week stating: “You are selling rotten sauce to people in the summer heat,” in a video that has been viewed over 800,000 times.
It’s safe to say Pii isn’t best pleased with the public’s reaction to her beloved sauce, which she claims she’s been serving to private clients for over a year. “No one has ever gotten sick,” Pii recently told The Washington Post. In a nearly 52-minute YouTube video, the chef defended herself, “Y’all really just gotta give me a break. Y’all gotta stop this negativity. I have to separate from this stuff. I cannot allow y’all to bury me mentally.”
Pii caught flack once again when she appeared to not know what the “F” in FDA (Food and Drug Administration) stood for. “What do you mean, ‘FDA approved’?” she said in response to a question on a TikTok live session. “I don’t sell medical products. The Pink Sauce is not a medical product. The Pink Sauce don’t contribute to your health.” The FDA doesn’t actually have pre-market approval for food products, according to the FDA website, meaning the pink sauce didn’t have to go through certain background checks. The FDA does, however, have the ability to regulate foods when safety issues arise, so at the moment the sauce is in the clear.
The private chef recently revealed that the sauce is now manufactured in a facility that’s approved by the FDA. “We are currently in lab testing,” she said. “Once we go through lab testing we will be able to pitch to stores.”
Before the virality of her product, Pii only had around 800 followers on TikTok. Now she has more than 142,000 followers with four million likes on her posts. “This is a small business that is moving really, really fast,” she said in a TikTok video.
“Yes, this sauce is extremely controversial, but for my curious, artsy people that are actually into the Pink Sauce craze, like, I love y’all. Thank y’all so much,” the chef said last week in a now-deleted TikTok. “And the haters are not taking my light away.”