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Hot fill, flip and hold method for filling Hot Sauce Bottles

Last year we posted a blog detailing how to santise your jars and bottles before using them. But what if there was another way?

This method is perfect for our 150ml Worcester Sauces bottles and therefore is perfect for using with any chilli sauce or hot sauce. The hot fill, flip and hold method can be used for all kinds of sauces and drinks that are stored in glass bottles. Basically any product that needs to be cooked before bottling.

This method is great for helping finish off your sterilisation process. We still highly recommend using a standard sterilisation method on your bottles that you receive from us. Unfortunately we are unable to supply bottles that are pre sterilised, so it's always best to sterilise any products before use!

Hot fill, flip and hold sterilisation method

What is the Hot Fill, flip and hold method?

It's exactly what it says on the tin! It's a method for filling bottles with plastic caps in particular. It will make sure that a great seal is created with the cap and that the bottle is sterilised.

It's really easy and shouldn't add much more time to your production. It just takes 6 simple steps and should be done in about 10-15 minutes.

Below is our guide on how to hot fill, flip and hold your sauce bottles!

What you will need to do this sterilisation method

What you need to hot fill glass bottles

How do you do it?

Hot fill

Step 1 - Heat your product in a pan and bring it up to at least 90-100°C for at least 10 minutes.

Step 2 - Fill your bottles. Use a funnel and be careful as your product will be hot enough to burn you.

Step 3 - Make sure you leave a little room at the top of the bottle and secure the lid.

Step one. Hot fill your bottles


Step 4 - Flip the bottles over.

Step 2. Flip your bottles


Step 5 - Leave them upside down for at least 5 minutes. If you have purchased your 150ml Woozy bottles from us they will have come in a nice box with dividers. Perfect for storing your upside down bottles!

Step 6 - Take them out of the box and turn up the right way. That's it your done!

Step 3. Hold your bottle

Why use this sanitisation method?

Why use this hot fill method for sterilisation and filling rather than a hot water bath?

Hot sauce bottles are not designed to work in the same way as jars do. The lids will not allow air to escape like they would with a mason or standard jar.

If you were to heat a sauce bottle with the product already inside, hoping for the cooling product to create a vacuum seal, this won't happen. As the air isn't able to escape during the heating process, no air is released. So when the product cools the internal pressure returns to where it started.

However if you hot fill a Woozy bottle and then apply the cap, the cooling of the product will cause it to contract and create a hermetic vacuum seal.

Another problem with using the hot water bath method for these bottles is that the hot water can effect the caps. The caps for these particular bottles are made of plastic and can therefore warp and distort in high temperatures. We definitely don't want this as it will affect the performance of the cap!

Bottle caps don't always allow air to escape
Bottle caps don't always allow air to escape

Why Flip and hold?

So if we are hot filling to create the vacuum seal, why do we need to then flip and hold the bottles?

Because there is still a potential for contamination! The bottle is not pasteurised like in the hot water bath method so we need to sanitise the bottle after filling.

We still recommend you clean and sanitise your bottles before using this method. You can read more about different techniques here. We feel it's better to be safe than sorry with health and safety.

Flipping the bottle and keeping it there allows the hot product to make contact with the entire bottle. Giving it sufficient time to sanitise the entire inside of the sauce bottle. This is why we had to heat our product to 90-100°C before filling.

The product needs to stay at 82°C for 5 minutes to sanitise the inside of the bottle. This is why we heated the product to slightly more. So that it could stay at the correct temperature for the full 5 minutes.

It's important to get the temperature correct.
It's important to get the temperature correct.

What did you think of our latest guide? Will you be using this filling method for your next batch of hot sauce, ketchup or BBQ sauce?

Don't forget you can buy your woozy bottles directly from us. They even come packed in awesome boxes with dividers (dependant on quantity order. If you are worried, get in contact and we can help). Perfect for the hold section of this method. And perfect for shipping on the full bottles to your customers.

What else would you like us to cover in our blog? Comment below or get in contact today and let us know.

All the best

The team at Sen5es

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