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8 Delicious Chili Oil Recipes to Spice Up Your Meals

chili-oil-header

Chili oil is one of those condiments that you just can’t do without, especially if you like your food deeply flavorful and delicious! There are tons of chili oil recipes that you can make and store for a huge variety of dishes. 

It’s no surprise that we love chili oil, seeing as we definitely consider spicy food a staple in our diets! In the early days of immi, we used to challenge each other to spicier and spicier chili sauces until we’d literally start crying from the insane Scoville levels. 

There’s a whole range of easy and convenient chili oil recipes that you can make, from the milder ones with more flavor, to the super spicy ones. To help you get in on the chili oil goodness, we’ve decided to list our top 8 chili oil recipes that we love using to top our immi ramen.

Try these chili oil recipes on all the flavors from our Variety Pack!

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Thai Bird’s Eye Chili Oil

birds-eye-chili-oil

Bird’s eye chili is a spicy Thai culinary staple that’s on the hotter end when it comes to spice levels. 

They’re thin, brightly colored chilies that don’t darken the oil too much, even if you simmer the chilies in it. It also makes a more vibrant, almost fruity-tasting chili oil, especially if you use an oil that already has a flavor, such as coconut or light olive oil. 

What’s great about bird’s eye chili oil is that you can increase the actual heat that the oil carries by infusing it with raw, chopped chilies in a jar. This way, the oil can act as both a flavoring agent and a preservative.

Ingredients

Thai Bird’s Eye Chili: 8-10, roughly chopped

Canola/Peanut Oil: 2 cups or 16 ounces 

Cinnamon: 1 medium stick

Garlic: 2-3 cloves

Sichuan Peppercorns (optional): 1-2 teaspoons

Instructions

  1. Put the chopped chilies in a large container or jar
  2. In a pan, cook all ingredients other than the bird’s eye chili on a very low simmer for one hour
  3. If you have a food thermometer, make sure the temperature stays at 220-230 degrees Fahrenheit
  4. At the half hour mark, take out the garlic cloves and replace them with 2-3 fresh cloves
  5. Once the oil is super fragrant, strain and slowly pour the oil over the chilies
  6. Leave to cool completely and infuse for at least 2 hours
  7. Give the oil and chilies a good mix before serving

Once the oil has cooled down completely, you can also put in whole or halved bird’s eye chilies to preserve them. 

Sichuan Pepper Oil

sichuan-chili-oil

Sichuan peppercorns are technically not a chili but they make an amazing chili oil, which we love as both a topping and a frying base. 

It’s one of KLee’s favorite chili oils because as soon as you drizzle it on something, it immediately gives you a whiff of that amazing Sichuan food aroma and a numbing mouth sensation that can’t be described.

Since Sichuan peppercorns already have a great flavor, you don’t need a ton of spices during cooking either. This makes it easy to prep, in case you need to quickly make a large batch of it for a party or to give as a gift. 

Ingredients

Red Sichuan Peppercorns (whole): 2 tablespoons

Green Sichuan Peppercorns (whole): 2 tablespoons

Red and Green Peppercorn Flakes: 4 tablespoons

Star Anise (optional): 2 flowers 

Cinnamon (optional): 1 stick

Preparation

  1. Heat the oil to 230 degrees 
  2. Cook the whole peppercorns and optional spices for 30 minutes
  3. Slowly strain the hot oil over the peppercorn flakes
  4. Let it cool completely before using

You can even use the whole peppercorns that you strained out of the oil. Grind them to a paste to use in a Taiwanese spicy beef ramen recipe, or add it to a hot chili sauce for extra flavor.

Serrano Chili and Shallot Oil

serrano-chili-oil

Serrano chili is a relative of the Jalapeno that’s so famous in the West. What’s great about this chili is its complex flavor profile that’s earthy and slightly more citrusy than its relatives.

The actual name for this type of oil is ‘chili crisp oil’. This is because of the crispy bits of the chili peppers inside that add a bit of texture to the liquid. 

Regardless of the name, we love it because it’s an awesome East-West fusion condiment that you can use in almost any dish that requires an aromatic oil. 

Ingredients

Light Vegetable Oil/Peanut Oil: 1 cup

Serrano Peppers: 2-3 (large, finely chopped)

Garlic: 8-10 cloves (sliced)

Shallots: 1 (roughly chopped)

MSG: ½ teaspoon

Honey: ½ teaspoon

Red Chilli Flakes: ½ tablespoon

Preparation

  1. Heat the oil to 220-230 degrees
  2. Cook the Serrano chilies, garlic, and shallots until the latter two turn a dark brown
  3. In a bowl, mix the red chilli flakes, and MSG together 
  4. Pour the oil over the chili flake mixture
  5. Let the oil cool down completely before serving

For a spicier oil, increase the amount of chili flakes to a full tablespoon.

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Siling Labuyo Oil

siling-chili-oil

Siling Labuyo is a type of small, hot chili from the Philippines. It’s commonly used to add heat to vinegar and some other dipping sauces.

It looks very similar to Thai Bird’s Eye Chili and is often mistaken for it in international markets. 

What’s great about this chili is how it maintains its heat level even after cooking. Of course, this means a spicy oil that’ll have you fanning your mouth with each bite!

Ingredients

Siling Labuyo Chilies: 8-10 (finely chopped)

Peanut Oil: 1 cup

Salt (optional): ½ teaspoon

Preparation

  1. Heat the oil to 220-230 degrees
  2. Once it gets up to temperature, drop in the chilies
  3. Cook for 30 minutes or till the chilies turn a dark brown
  4. Take off the heat and let it cool for five minutes
  5. Stir in the salt and mix well
  6. Let the oil cool down completely before serving

Once the oil cools down, you can add in chili slices as well to preserve them. You can also substitute MSG for salt if you want more of an umami flavor. 

Sweet BBQ Chili Oil

bbq-chili-oil

Ok, so this one might surprise you since this is more of a sauce than an oil. But trust us, it’s one of the best aromatic toppings you can add to food.

It’s a versatile condiment that you can use to marinate meat and vegetables before grilling, just like Char Siu sauce, which has a somewhat similar flavor profile. 

This oil/sauce is great because you can adjust the sauce-to-oil ratio according to how you like it. Plus, it goes really well on top of our Spicy Beef flavored immi ramen

Ingredients

Peanut or Avocado Oil: ½ cup

Red Chili Flakes: ½ teaspoon

Sichuan Peppercorn Flakes: ½ teaspoon

Thai Bird’s Eye Chili: 4-5 (finely chopped)

Honey or Maple Syrup: 1 tablespoon

Garlic: 2-3 cloves (finely chopped)

Shallot: 1 (medium, finely chopped) 

MSG: ½ teaspoon

Preparation

  1. Add the red chili flakes, Sichuan flakes, and bird’s eye chili to the oil 
  2. Heat the oil to 200-220 degrees
  3. Simmer the chilies in the oil for 30 minutes
  4. In a bowl, mix the honey/maple syrup and MSG 
  5. Add the garlic and shallot to the oil and simmer for another 15 minutes
  6. Take off the heat and cool for 5 minutes
  7. Slowly pour over the sweet mixture while mixing constantly
  8. Allow to cool down completely before using

If you want a spicier oil, add a quarter teaspoon of additional red chili flakes.

Sambal Oil

sambal-chili-oil

Sambal is another condiment that’s used more as a flavoring base and sauce. However, there is a way to prepare the ingredients in a way that’s more suitable for chili oil. 

This is another super-simple recipe that only involves a few additional steps on top of the sambal prep. However, the result is an oil that can be used in so many more ways than regular chili oil. 

Despite the ease of preparation, you need to be careful with the cooking temperatures in this one. This is because sambal changes its flavor profile when cooked and we don’t want it to change or caramelize too much. 

Ingredients

Sambal Paste: 2 tablespoons

Peanut Oil: 1 cup

Preparation

  1. In a pan, simmer the sambal in the oil at medium heat for 5 minutes
  2. Turn the heat to low and simmer for another 10 minutes
  3. Take the oil off the heat and allow to cool before using

In case you have pre-cooked sambal (that’s already been stir-fried to add directly to dishes), omit step one. 

Ghost Pepper Oil

ghost-chili-oil

Indian Ghost pepper is one of the hottest peppers in the world, albeit with an intense fruity sweetness that’s typical of the bigger pepper varieties.

It’s famous for holding the world record before some even hotter varieties came along. However, the flavor of ghost pepper is still world-class, especially when simmered in oil and drizzled over chicken ramen. 

Despite the flavor, you’ll need to be careful with this oil, it’s not for the faint of heart! Luckily, we all love a bit of heat in our bite, don’t we!

Ingredients

Dried Ghost Pepper: 2-3 (freshly crushed)

Peanut Oil: 1 cup

Garlic: 3-4 cloves (finely chopped)

Fenugreek Seeds: 1 teaspoon (crushed)

Preparation

  1. Heat the oil to 220-230 degrees 
  2. Simmer the ghost pepper flakes and fenugreek seeds for 10 minutes
  3. Turn the heat down to ~200 degrees and add the garlic
  4. Simmer for a further 15 minutes
  5. Take off the heat and let it cool completely before using

If you want an even more aromatic oil, add one star anise with the garlic.

Tianjin Chili Oil

tianjin-chili-oil

Tianjin chili peppers are a traditional part of Hunan and Sichuan regional cuisine. The oil they make has a deeper flavor due to their dried nature. 

Technically, Tianjin chili oil is a combination of Sichuan peppercorns, Tianjin chilies, and standard red peppers. However, the Tianjin chilies are in the highest amount and lend the most flavor to the final product. 

This chili oil is among the top must-have Asian food ingredients for anybody who wants to upgrade their home-cooking. 

Ingredients

Tianjin Chili Peppers: 6-8 (freshly crushed)

Sichuan Peppercorns: 1 teaspoon

Red Pepper Flakes: 1 teaspoon 

Peanut Oil: 1 cup

Shallot: 1 (finely chopped)

Preparation

  1. Heat the oil to 220-230 degrees
  2. Simmer the chilies for 30 minutes
  3. Add the shallot and simmer for another 15 minutes
  4. Take off the heat and allow to cool completely before using

You can substitute the shallot for red onion if you want a more pungent flavor.