Homemade Chili Garlic Sauce (Huy Fong Brand Copycat)

This homemade chili garlic sauce recipe is just like the famed Huy Fong brand, giving you authentically garlicky and spicy results that are rich and well balanced. Use it to create your own favorite Asian recipes! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Homemade chili garlic sauce close up

If you are a fan of sriracha, you most likely have the iconic bottle with the rooster on it in your fridge. The brand that makes it is called Huy Fong, though it isn’t their only claim to fame. I love their chili garlic sauce, too. It has a special texture and flavor that adds a bright pep and zest to your Asian dishes. 

It’s so easy to make your own chili garlic sauce that tastes just like the stuff you can buy at the store. All you need is a jar and my special recipe for recreating it.

Homemade chili garlic sauce in a bowl

What type of peppers to use

My secret for getting the authentic flavor of Huy Fong is to use red jalapeno peppers. That’s what Huy Fong uses, and they bring out that bright red, hot, peppery hue, and the right level of spiciness. Red jalapeno peppers are quite special and might be hard to find. You are likely to see them at Mexican grocery stores. You might be able to find them in regular grocery stores when they’re in season: March to April and late July to August.

Red jalapeno peppers

If you can’t find them though, you can use other types of chili peppers. The result won’t taste the same as the Huy Fong brand, but it will still be absolutely delicious. We’ve made versions with many different peppers and shared them with friends, and we were surprised to find that everyone had their own favorite version.

NOTE: If you plan to use super spicy peppers (bird’s eye chili, serrano, etc.), it’s important to blend them with less spicy peppers so your sauce won’t be too hot.

Cooking process

Making chili garlic sauce is super easy. I like to think of it as an Asian salsa. It combines those red jalapeno peppers and garlic with sugar, salt, a little vinegar, and a slurry of cornstarch to create the right texture. 

You’ll need a blender, a strainer, and a clean mason jar to preserve your spicy creation. 

  • Blend the peppers with the seasonings until it forms a chunky sauce. 
  • Remove 1/4 cup of blended peppers to add back later for texture.
  • Blend the rest of the ingredients into a smooth sauce.
  • Strain the sauce.
  • Slightly cook the sauce together with the chunky part.
  • Add the cornstarch slurry to thicken it.
Making chili garlic sauce step-by-step

NOTE: bringing the sauce to a gentle boil helps thicken it and brings out the flavor of the peppers. Avoid overcooking the sauce, which will make the bright red-orange color go away.

The sauce will be quite spicy once you make it. But the flavor will become milder and more balanced over time.

You should always keep the sauce in your refrigerator so it stays fresh. Then you can use it on all kinds of dishes. 

Hot sauce in a jar

How to use chili garlic sauce

What can you use it on? As a hot sauce, this chili garlic sauce is amazing with chicken wings. You can also add a spoonful of it to any type of Asian-style noodles, or even jazz up steamed or roasted vegetables with it. It’s also a key ingredient in dishes such as sweet and sour fish and pineapple glazed ham. It’s so versatile, which is why I’m sure it’s going to become your new favorite condiment!

Spoonful of chili garlic sauce

Use your chili garlic sauce in these dishes:

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This homemade chili garlic sauce recipe is just like the famed Huy Fong brand, giving you authentically garlicky and spicy results that are rich and well balanced. Use it to create your favorite Asian recipes! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Homemade Chili Garlic Sauce (Huy Fong Brand Copycat)

This homemade chili garlic sauce recipe is just like the famed Huy Fong brand, giving you authentically garlicky and spicy results that are rich and well balanced. Use it to create your own favorite Asian recipes! {Vegan, Gluten-Free}
4.93 from 13 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Chinese
Keyword: pantry
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 cup
Calories: 21kcal
Author: Maggie Zhu

Ingredients

  • 8 oz (225 g) red jalapeno peppers
  • 2 heads garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup white distilled vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch

Instructions

  • Combine the peppers, garlic, salt, sugar, vinegar, and water in a blender. Blend on medium until chunky. Remove 1/4 of the blended mixture.
  • Turn the blender to high and liquify the remaining contents of the blender.
  • Strain the liquified mixture so that you are left with just the juices.
  • Add the strained juice and reserved chunky bits to a pot.
  • Heat over medium-high heat. Once warm, add the cornstarch slurry and bring to a boil.
  • After reaching a boil, remove from heat and allow to cool completely. The chili garlic sauce is ready to serve.
  • To store, transfer the chili garlic sauce to a clean mason jar and seal it. Store in the fridge for up to 1 month.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 21kcal | Carbohydrates: 4.5g | Protein: 0.8g | Fat: 0.2g | Sodium: 292mg | Potassium: 85mg | Fiber: 0.9g | Sugar: 1.5g | Calcium: 14mg

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and take a picture and tag it @omnivorescookbook on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with.

Other homemade sauce recipes

Lilja Walter is a part of the Omnivore’s Cookbook team and worked closely with Maggie to develop and test this recipe.

The post was published on March 2, 2015 and updated by March 29, 2020 with complete update on the recipe using a totally different method. Below is the previous version (I created it when I was living in China, only found out that chili garlic sauce means a totally different thing after moving to the US).

Sichuan All Purpose Chili Garlic Sauce - Cook this versatile sauce and you can easily create your favorite Sichuan dishes in under 20 minutes | omnivorescookbook.com

Sichuan All-Purpose Chili Garlic Sauce (previous version)

  • 30 grams (1 cup) whole dried chili peppers
  • 15 grams (1 thumb) minced ginger
  • 60 grams (15 cloves) garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 cup peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorn
  • 4 tablespoons Doubanjiang (spicy fermented bean paste)
  1. Use scissors to cut each chili pepper into 5 to 6 pieces. Prepare ginger and garlic.
  2. Add oil and peppercorn to a wok (or small skillet) and heat over medium heat. When the peppercorns start sizzling, continue cooking for about 2 minutes, until they turn dark brown and you can smell a pungent fragrance. If the oil starts to smoke, turn to lowest heat. Remove the peppercorns with a straining ladle or spatula and discard them.
  3. Add chili peppers and cook over low heat until the color darkens. This will happen very quickly, in less than 1 minute, if you’re using a gas stove.
  4. Add ginger and garlic and give it a quick stir. Add chili bean paste and sugar and continue to cook over low heat until everything is mixed well and you can smell a strong garlicky aroma, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer everything to a large plate to cool off.
  5. When the sauce has cooled, transfer it to a clean jar. You can store the sauce at room temperature for a month or in the fridge for up to 3 months.

Disclosure

Omnivore's Cookbook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
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Hi I'm Maggie Zhu! Welcome to my site about modern Chinese cooking - including street food, family recipes, and restaurant dishes. I take a less labor-intensive approach while maintaining the taste and look of the dish. I am originally from Beijing, and now cook from my New York kitchen.

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Recipe Rating




34 thoughts on “Homemade Chili Garlic Sauce (Huy Fong Brand Copycat)

  1. Shinee

    I truly enjoy the detailed explanations of each recipe you share here, Maggie. Not only do I get inspired, I learn something new each time I visit your blog. So thank you!

    Reply
  2. [email protected] Eats

    5 stars
    Maggie….I literally have chills reading this. That’s how excited I am that you have created this recipe. You are a genius. GENIUS! I am actually speechless. I’m keeping this short because I need to go schedule a zillion pins to share this EVERYWHERE. You are seriously a legend, legend, legend, legend! I can’t WAIT to try this!! 🙂

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hey Nagi, I should thank YOU! It was such a wonderful idea and it is so generous of you to share it! I was quite nervous, because the idea is so great and I don’t want to blow it. This one has became my to go sauce now, and I’ve been using it all the time. Thanks to you, I was able to create a lot yummy AND fast dishes! Many many thanks 🙂

      Reply
  3. Kathleen | HapaNom

    5 stars
    I love the flavors and heat in this sauce! Pantry items are actually one of my favorite recipes because I use them all the time and in all sorts of matters. Thanks for this wonderful sauce, I know I will use it in all sorts of dishes.

    Reply
  4. Susan

    5 stars
    Maggie, I’m delighted that you posted this recipe. I like that it can be used as a base for other sauces. My favorite Sichuan dish is Kung Pao Chicken. I’d love to have a really good recipe for that dish, because I have very fond memories of eating it at a restaurant that introduced me to it. That experience was more than 25 years ago, but I’ve never forgotten it.

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      I’m glad you like this one Susan! Yep, Kung Pao chicken is one of the most popular dishes in Sichuan cuisine, and I like it very much. I posted about it long time ago (you can find the recipe here =>http://104.236.198.25/recipes/perfect-kung-pao-chicken-recipe/). But I’d love to use this all purpose sauce to create an easier version of the Kung Pao chicken soon. Thanks for your suggestion!

      Reply
  5. Emily P.

    5 stars
    I’ve made the chili garlic sauce a number of times now and it fills the house with such amazing fragrant smells!! We ordered pizza for the kids and the pizza guy smelled the sauce from the front door and said he’d like to stay and have what we were having! After you get the hang of this, it is not time consuming and it really adds depth to any dish you use it with. I prefer fresh garlic and ginger but I’m sure you could use the pre-minced stuff as well.

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      I’m so agree with you, I can use this sauce in almost any dish. If you want a milder flavor, simply add less. It makes the room smelling so nice 🙂
      Oh yeah, I’m pretty sure you can use the pre-minced stuff too. I guess I’m already used to dealing fresh herbs, so it never occurs to my to use pre-minced ones. It’s a great idea for busy people! Thanks for sharing this Emily 🙂

      Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Maura, you won’t need the peppercorns after making the sauce. In fact, you can save them, ground them into powder, and use it in other dishes that call for peppercorn powder. But if I won’t use them soon, I usually just threw them away after cooking them in the oil.

      Reply
  6. Sayed M Al-Haddad

    5 stars
    Hi Maggi,
    Thanks for this recipe. Where i come from, Kenya, getting some Oriental ingredients can be a problem. Is there a substitute for fermented bean paste. I love to make Chinese dishes. My favourite is Beef in black bean sauce. A friend got me the fermented black beans from one of his foreign visits.

    Take care and keep us informed.

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Sayed, I cannot think of a great substitution of fermented bean paste. But if you have fermented black beans and love the flavor, you can use them in this recipe instead of fermented bean paste. It changes the flavor profile of the sauce but it is super tasty too.

      Reply
  7. Blake

    Thanks for sharing your techniques and recipes. I’m a little confused as to how to handle the chili peppers. The pictures make it appear that the peppers have been chopped up and fried with the seeds; however, the directions say to use whole chili peppers. Are suggesting to simply test the hotness of the pepper by breaking it, otherwise to leave them whole? thanks for the clarification

    Reply
  8. Greg

    5 stars
    Outstanding. I’ve made three batches, the last two doubles. Good in stir-fry, steamed veg, or just stirred into rice. The chilis are calmed by the toasting and are spicy/tasty…not volcanic. Thanks for the recipe.

    Reply
  9. Marijke Schellenbach

    5 stars
    Your sauces are so, so good Maggie. I hope you never stop sharing your knowledge. I love the way you explain and the uses for your sauces. It is so helpful when you are a novice but want to learn. Thank you.

    Reply
  10. Marijke Schellenbach

    Maggie, have you ever thought about having a cooking show, on PBS maybe. I love watching cooking shows (real cooking shows like Ina Garten’s, and not like those crazy challenge shows!) Saturday is always my day for watching and learning on PBS, because they have the good ones.

    Reply
  11. Kacper

    5 stars
    Perfect, now i’m addicted to this sauce.
    I eat it straight from the jar few times a day.
    I add fine powder made from roasted chilli seeds and peppercorns.
    Thank you for this recipe 🙂

    Reply
  12. Jonathan Savell

    Haven’t tried the recipe yet but looks great.

    In the Washington DC area a famous restaurant serves “Szechuan Beef Proper”. Do you have a recipe for this and is it different from the usual szechuan beef?

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Jonathan, I have a Sichuan beef recipe using this sauce: https://omnivorescookbook.com/recipes/spicy-beef-stir-fry-with-pepper
      I also have two other beef recipes that use Szechuan beef flavor profile:
      http://omnivorescookbook.com/sichuan-crispy-beef/ (spicy & crispy, dry stir fry)
      https://omnivorescookbook.com/szechuan-beef-stir-fry/ (sweet, spicy, lightly spicy, lots of sauce)
      The first recipe is somewhere in between.
      I’ve ever had the dish you mentioned, so it’s hard to tell which version is closer. The last recipe is quite similar to American Chinese Szechuan beef, with more sauce and it tastes sweeter. The second one is very authentic, numbing, spicy, and savory.

      Reply
  13. Jo

    5 stars
    Just try it recently and taste even better than store bought! Tagged you for the result on ig for sure. I’ll surely try your other recipe. Thanks a lot Maggie.

    Reply
  14. Jed

    Hi Maggie, could you please repost the old recipe? It’s a real favourite, and I’d hate to see it disappear! Thanks so much for all your recipes!

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Jed, I’m glad to hear you like the old recipe! It’s a recipe I developed while I was still living in China. After moving to the US, I realized the chili garlic sauce means a totally different thing, that’s why I changed the recipe. Anyhow, please see the old recipe below:

      30 grams (1 cup) whole dried chili peppers
      15 grams (1 thumb) minced ginger
      60 grams (15 cloves) garlic, crushed
      1/2 cup peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
      2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorn
      4 tablespoons spicy fermented bean paste

      (1) Use scissors to cut each chili pepper into 5 to 6 pieces. Prepare ginger and garlic.
      (2) Add oil and peppercorn to a wok (or small skillet) and heat over medium heat. When the peppercorns start sizzling, continue cooking for about 2 minutes, until they turn dark brown and you can smell a pungent fragrance. If the oil starts to smoke, turn to lowest heat. Remove the peppercorns with a straining ladle or spatula and discard them.
      (3) Add chili peppers and cook over low heat until the color darkens. This will happen very quickly, in less than 1 minute, if you’re using a gas stove.
      (4) Add ginger and garlic and give it a quick stir. Add chili bean paste and sugar and continue to cook over low heat until everything is mixed well and you can smell a strong garlicky aroma, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer everything to a large plate to cool off.
      (5) When the sauce has cooled, transfer it to a clean jar. You can store the sauce at room temperature for a month or in the fridge for up to 3 months.

      Reply
      1. Jed MacKay

        Thanks so much! It’s just the best thing for Kung Pao, I’ve been making it every couple weeks for years now!

  15. Caitlin

    5 stars
    Is the old recipe for the Sichuan all purpose chili-garlic master sauce available anywhere now that this recipe has been changed? I love the other sauce with the Sichuan peppercorns!

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Caitlin,

      I’m glad to hear you like the old recipe!

      Here it’s the old one:

      30 grams (1 cup) whole dried chili peppers
      15 grams (1 thumb) minced ginger
      60 grams (15 cloves) garlic, crushed
      1/2 cup peanut oil (or vegetable oil)
      2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorn
      4 tablespoons spicy fermented bean paste

      (1) Use scissors to cut each chili pepper into 5 to 6 pieces. Prepare ginger and garlic.
      (2) Add oil and peppercorn to a wok (or small skillet) and heat over medium heat. When the peppercorns start sizzling, continue cooking for about 2 minutes, until they turn dark brown and you can smell a pungent fragrance. If the oil starts to smoke, turn to lowest heat. Remove the peppercorns with a straining ladle or spatula and discard them.
      (3) Add chili peppers and cook over low heat until the color darkens. This will happen very quickly, in less than 1 minute, if you’re using a gas stove.
      (4) Add ginger and garlic and give it a quick stir. Add chili bean paste and sugar and continue to cook over low heat until everything is mixed well and you can smell a strong garlicky aroma, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off heat and transfer everything to a large plate to cool off.
      (5) When the sauce has cooled, transfer it to a clean jar. You can store the sauce at room temperature for a month or in the fridge for up to 3 months.

      Reply
  16. Sara

    Hi Maggie! I just came across this recipe online and I would love to give it a try. I have one question, can I keep this in a sterile jar and keep it in room temperature (2-3 weeks) until I open it? I would like to send it to a family member by post. I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Reply
  17. Steve

    Hi Maggie
    Is there any way you also link to the old bean paste version as I love that one? I will try this one of course!
    Thank you also for all the wonderful recipes that you provide.
    You are my go to for this cuisine.
    Steve

    Reply
    1. Maggie Post author

      Hi Steve, I just added the previous recipe at the bottom of the post (under the new recipe). Glad to hear you like it!

      Reply