The Canaries hit the lead in the third minute at Villa Park through Wes Hoolahan but Christian Benteke scored twice with two minutes and Leandro Bacuna and an own-goal from Sebastien Bassong had the home side 4-1 up at the break.
That is the way the game finished with Villa moving up to 11th while Hughton's Norwich found themselves in 15th spot, just four points clear of the drop zone.
Hughton told Sky Sports: "For 25 minutes, I thought we played very well. We started the game well, got a goal and could have got a second.
"One thing you have to do here - they can get a crowd behind them and you have to quieten that crowd and we certainly did that.
"But in a 15-minute period, we conceded the one goal and they turned up the power and pace and we couldn't handle it for that 15 minutes.
"If you can't handle it, you have to make sure you don't concede and in a bad period for us we, of course, conceded the goals and at that stage there's no coming back from that."
Of the manner in which the goals came about, Hughton added further: "Even at 2-1, if you accepted Benteke's power allowed him to get the two goals that he got, then we have to gather as a team and make sure that at 2-1 we stay in the game.
"But we didn't and their pace took over from that moment and at 4-1 down there's no coming back."
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