Sichuan Chili Sauce- The Spicy Sweet Sauce For Everything

This Sichuan Chili Sauce is one of the condiments that I always keep in my fridge (because it lasts for months!) and use as a go-to whenever I need a little kick to my Chinese dishes. I love spicy food. But I also like to taste the nuances of flavors that make a dish interesting. It can't blow my mind if it blows my palate, if you know what I mean. This Sichuan Chili Sauce is the kind of sauce that you keep around and simply eat on EVERYTHING! Better than just spicy, it has a bit of sweetness and lots of umami, so grilled vegetables never tasted better!

sichuan chile sauce

What Makes a Dish Sichuan?

Usually, when people refer to a dish being Sichuan, they associate it with hot, tongue-numbing heat. However, what I love about true Sichuan food is that the flavors are layered with aromatics, sweets, and sours. For example, this Sichuan chili sauce uses- of course- chilis. In addition, it also uses a chili oil filled with aromatics like star anise, cinnamon, clove, and tingling Sichuan peppercorn. It's balanced with sweetness and the tang of rice wine vinegar and pumped with umami using fermented Chinese black beans.

How Spicy is this Sichuan Chili Sauce?

The answer is, this sauce is as spicy as you want it to be. The magic of making homemade condiments is that you can control exactly how spicy it is. In this fast recipe, I use a pre-made chili paste as well as a homemade Sichuan Chili Oil. The chili oil adds more flavor than heat, so I would not adjust that, but you can alter the spiciness by how much chili paste you add. The level of this recipe, as it is written, is of medium heat.

You Can Freeze It!

This sauce will keep up to two months in the refrigerator. However, if you think that you will use this sauce only occasionally, you can freeze it in ice cube trays. Simply pop them out once they're frozen and store in a zip lock bag. The cubes of sauce will keep frozen for up to 6 months and you can pull them out one at a time.

What to Eat with Sichuan Chili Sauce

Because this sauce is so easy to make and keep, I tend to use it any time I am craving a little spice. Grab for it as easily as you may grab that bottle of sriracha sauce or sambal sitting around. This sauce packs more flavor than either of those! Great on roasted vegetables, or thin with a little water or soy sauce to use on rice or noodles. Also, check out this recipe for Clay Pot Tofu. It's one of the ways I use it in combination with other ingredients for a complete dish. Stir this into stir fry and noodles or spice up your rice and veggies.

Got Dumplings? I say: Got Chili Sauce??

Sichuan Dumplings on a plate


sichuan chile sauce

Sichuan Chili Sauce

A simple but complex sauce of spicy-sweet with a punch of umami. Great for dumplings or as a boost for veggies and rice.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Chili Oil Recipe Required 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Recipes- Condiments
Cuisine Chinese
Servings 24 tablespoon
Calories 53 kcal



  • Rinse the black beans, swirling with your hand in running water to remove some of the outer salt. Then, let soak in cold water for 30 minutes.
    soaking fermented black beans
  • Once the beans have been soaked, rinse and drain and then chop. Place in a mixing bowl.
    chopped black beans
  • Add the mala chili paste to the bowl. The amount of chili paste added controls how spicy your recipe is, so add more or less to taste.
    adding chili paste for sichuan chili sauce
  • Next add the ketchup.
    adding ketchup to sichuan chili sauce
  • Add the vinegar.
    adding vinegar to sichuan chile sauce
  • Add the sugar.
    adding sugar to sichuan chili sauce
  • Finally, add the Sichuan chili oil.
    a jar of sichuan chili oil getting ready to add to recipe
  • Whisk ingredients together to combine. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
    whisking ingredients together for sichuan chili sauce
  • When done, the sauce should be a deep, rich red color with flecks of texture from the chopped black beans and chili oil
    finished sichuan chili sauce in a bowl


This sauce can be used as-is for a glaze on roasted vegetables or ingredients.  If using for dumplings or over rice, I sometimes thin with a little water or soy sauce for a lighter consistency. 


Serving: 1tablespoonCalories: 53kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 0.3gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.5gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gSodium: 13mgPotassium: 33mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 117IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 5mgIron: 0.2mg
Keyword Best Vegan Recipes, sichuan, vegan, vegan chinese food, vegan sichuan, vegetarian
Like this recipe?leave a comment or star rating (below) to show your love!


No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

link to our privacy policy here.