As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Some recipes may contain affiliate links that earn me a small commission, at no additional cost to you.
This is a quick and basic version of Asian Chilli Oil using a neutral oil and Asian aromatics to infuse into a fragrant, bold and addictively umami condiment.
How to enjoy Asian chilli oil
Bursting with appetising aromas and a tingling taste, this chilli oil is perfect for enhancing a wide range of Asian dishes. From fried rice to wonton soup, a little drizzle goes a long way.
Don’t be fooled into thinking it’s a heavy or calorific condiment – this homemade version is free from preservatives and MSG, lower in salt compared to store-bought options, and takes your cooking to a new height. Its attractive colour and irresistible flavour may even lead you to discover new ways of enjoying it, such as adding it to morning eggs, pasta and steamed vegetables!
What dishes go well with Asian chilli oil?
This chilli oil can wake up any dish especially if you are looking for some savory umami spiciness. My top picks of dishes to add chilli oil or serve it on the side are:
Asian dumplings like potstickers
As a marinade or condiment to meat, fish and vegetables
Tofu such as the Asian dish, Mapo Tofu
Not only can you use the chilli oil as a condiment, but the oil is excellent for cooking, offering more flavour and aroma. If stir-frying*, I would advise frying with the strained oil first then adding any sediments at the end or they may burn and taste bitter.
Is Asian chilli oil beneficial for your health?
Incorporating chilli into your diet is known to boost metabolism. By combining it with gut-healthy ingredients like garlic and ginger, my homemade chilli oil offers a myriad of health benefits. When used in moderation, it can be a healthy addition to your meals.
What oils are suitable for making chilli oil?
I recommend using neutral oils such as sunflower, vegetable, canola, peanut or soya bean. These oils provide a perfect base for infusing the aromatic flavours without overpowering the final result. The main objective is to create an instant, delicious condiment by infusing a mild, neutral oil with the finest ingredients.
The chilli oil is meant to be consumed within a week or so due to the presence of garlic and ginger. If you wish to extend its shelf life, omit these two ingredients, although the boldness of the flavour might diminish without them. However, the pungent chilli remains the star ingredient of this condiment, adding a satisfying umami spiciness to elevate countless dishes.
Asian Chilli Oil
- Small saucepan
- Small heatproof metal bowl 200 ml approx.
- Glass jar
- mortar & pestle optional
- 2 tbsp dried Kashmiri or Cayenne chilli flakes
- 4 whole dried Kashmiri or Cayenne chilli peppers, chopped into small pieces
- 1 tbsp mild chilli powder I used Korean chilli powder
- 1 tbsp white sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2.5 cm ginger piece, minced
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp ground Sichuan peppercorns (use a mortar & pestle to crush the peppercorns)
- 1 whole star anise
- 100 ml neutral oil: sunflower, canola, soya or peanut oil
Preparing the ingredients
- If using whole dried chilli peppers, cut the ends off and shake the seeds out if you prefer to have a mild spicy chilli oil, otherwise include the seeds.
- Slice the dried chilli into small flake pieces and measure the remaining ingredients.
- Add the remaining ingredients except for the star anise and oil to a heatproof bowl.
Adding the oil
- In a small saucepan, heat the oil with the star anise over medium heat and immediately remove from the heat when it is shimmering hot but not smoking.
- Carefully pour the hot oil over the chilli ingredients in the metal bowl. To prevent marking your countertop, place a folded tea towel under the bowl to protect it.
- The oil will sizzle for a few minutes. Avoid moving or touching the bowl during this time.
- Once the oil has stopped sizzling, leave the oil to cool down completely.
- Once cool, transfer the chilli oil to a clean glass jar.
- Cover with a lid and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.
- Keeps chilled for 2 weeks maximum (when garlic and ginger are included)
- Keeps chilled for 2 months (without garlic and ginger)
- Unsuitable to freeze