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  • Nicola

Chiu Chow Chili Oil

Updated: Apr 21, 2021

Chiu Chow or Teochew or Chaozhou chili oil is a condiment that you will put on everything. From dumplings to even steak. This isn't your standard chili oil that is composed of just chili and oil, this one is packed with umami flavour from the shit tons of garlic and soy sauce. I always noticed this chili oil sitting on the shelves at the grocery store but never paid much attention to it, until I noticed it was the one they used at the cart noodle place I go to in Richmond (Wo Fung Noodle). Although it's super easy to make, they opt to use the commercially produced Lee Kum Kee ones. I highly recommend making it yourself!! This recipe is adapted from Xia Chu Fang Recipe


Chiu Chow Chili Oil

Makes 1.5 litres


1/2lb fresh chili pepper (see notes)

5 teaspoon sea salt

1/2lb garlic (about 5 heads of garlic)

1 1/2 cups grapeseed oil

2 1/ cups grapeseed oil

280g sichuan chili flakes (see notes)

1/2 tablespoon sugar

75ml soy sauce


  1. Grind the chili peppers in a food processor until small bits. Place the grinded chili peppers into a bowl and then mix with salt then set aside.

  2. Next mince the garlic in a food processor, then set aside.

  3. In a large wok, heat up the 1 1/2 cups of oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the garlic and gently fry until the garlic turns golden in colour, but not crisp. This took me about 10 minutes cause I used medium-high heat, but it might take longer with medium heat. Do not walk away from the stove, keep an eye to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn.

  4. Next add the salted chilies and then stir fry on medium heat for another 5 minutes.

  5. Next add the remaining 2 1/4 cups of oil to heat through. Using less oil in the beginning makes it easier to fry the initial ingredients.

  6. Once the oil is heated, remove from the heat, and then add the chili flakes and sugar. Stir to combine. Once combined, place back on the heat until a slow simmer and add the soy sauce, stir to combine and then your done!

  7. Transfer to a clean jar. The sauce usually lasts about 3 months, just make sure to always use a clean dry spoon to scoop it out.



  1. I used a half-half mix of habaneros and birds eye chili to get the spice level I prefer. Feel free to change it all the birds eye

  2. I use sichuan chili flakes that I purchase from the asian grocer. Make sure to look at the Chinese character description rather than the English translation. As there are two kinds of chili flakes, but the Chinese description is different. 四川辣椒油.

You can order the chili flakes off amazon from the following link - click here

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