Sweet Chili Sauce

23 Comments 5

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Jump to Recipe

This Sweet Chili Sauce recipe is truly the perfect sweet, sour, and spicy dipping sauce. It’s easy to assemble and perfect for serving with egg rolls, Lumpia, chicken and so many other foods.

I love Thai Sweet Chili Sauce for dipping all kinds of things, but none of the store-bought varieties I’ve tried were quite right on their own. Until recently, I’ve been buying three different bottled varieties and mixing them together to get the taste I wanted.

That was when I realized that I could make my own Sweet Chili Sauce for the same amount of effort and less money. I looked at numerous recipes and they are all so different. I tried a few, made some adjustments and came up with this delicious Sweet Chili Sauce Recipe.

I am so very happy to tell you that this recipe is PERFECT. I wouldn’t change a single thing about this sauce.

Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

After we had this with dinner last night, both of my older boys were grinning like crazy and they informed me it was even better than store-bought sweet chili sauce.

The boys have asked me to make lumpia (Filipino Egg Rolls) again, just so we can use this Lumpia Sauce with it. I agree, this sweet chili sauce is definitely better than anything I’ve bought from a store.

It’s even better than many restaurant chili sauces I’ve tasted. This sauce is fantastic!

Thai Sweet Chili Sauce

If you enjoy Asian food, chances are good you’ve come across sweet chili sauce before. Called “nam chim kai” in Thailand,  this sauce is sweet, tangy, garlicky and spicy with a thick texture that makes it perfect for dipping.

I’m a garlic lover so my recipe includes plenty of crushed garlic. Instead of chopping or mincing the garlic, I leave the crushed glove in whole so the sauce soaks up the wonderful garlic flavor without being overpowered by it. This allows the chili flavor to really shine through.

Thai Sweet Chili sauce is delicious with  Baked Spring Rolls, Vietnamese Summer Rolls and crispy Chinese egg rolls. We also love to dip Bacon Wrapped Chicken Bites into this perfect sauce. Pop a toothpick in each chicken bite and serve on a platter with a bowl full of Sweet Chili Sauce for a great party snack or appetizer.

As I mentioned before, this recipe also makes a perfect Lumpia Sauce.

Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce recipe by Barefeet In The Kitchen

Chili Sauce Ingredients

A flavorful chili paste creates the base for this easy chili sauce recipe. I use Sambal Oelek when I make chili sauce. Be sure to get a chili paste that doesn’t have additional sweeteners or garlic added as this will affect the flavor of the finished sauce.

Simple table sugar and white vinegar combine to bring the sweet and sour taste to the sauce. The whole garlic clove is boiled with the sugar, vinegar, chili paste and water to impart lots of garlic flavor before being discarded.

All of these ingredients are pretty standard in most chili sauce recipes I’ve found. The secret to next level chili sauce is the addition of a very finely grated carrot.

I use a microplane grater to get the carrot into teeny tiny shreds so as not to disrupt the smooth thick texture of the sauce. The carrot adds a lovely color to the sauce along with a little extra flavor. This sauce definitely doesn’t taste carrot-y and most people will never know you snuck a vegetable into their dipping sauce! 

Finally, the thick and smooth texture is achieved by adding cornstarch or arrowroot powder into the boiling sauce. 

Now that I’ve found this sauce recipe my days of mixing together three different grocery store dipping sauces are over. Once you’ve made your own Sweet Chili Sauce, I bet you’ll never go back to store-bought!

Sweet Chili Sauce Recipe

  1. Combine all ingredients, except the cornstarch, in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Allow it to boil on high heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. While this is boiling, whisk or stir together the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water.
  2. After 3 minutes, slowly pour the cornstarch mixture into the boiling mixture on the stove. Stir to combine and reduce heat to a low boil. Allow it to boil, stirring frequently, for 2 more minutes.
  3. Taste and add more chili paste if desired. Remove and discard the garlic. Serve warm or allow to cool and refrigerate until needed. Sauce can be served hot or cold. Enjoy!

This Sweet Chili Sauce recipe is truly the perfect sweet, sour, and spicy dipping sauce!

Get New Recipessent to your inbox!
We never share your information with third parties and will protect it in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

Sweet Chili Sauce

5 from 8 votes
Recipe barely adapted from and with thanks to Andrea The Kitchen Witch
Pin Print Review
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 5 mins
Total Time: 10 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Servings: 10 servings (about 2 cups)

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons chili paste I used Sambal Oelek
  • 3 cloves garlic crushed and left whole
  • 1 carrot very finely grated, I used a microplane grater for this
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon arrowroot or cornstarch

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients, except the cornstarch, in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Allow it to boil on high heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. While this is boiling, whisk or stir together the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water.
  • After 3 minutes, slowly pour the cornstarch mixture into the boiling mixture on the stove. Stir to combine and reduce heat to a low boil. Allow it to boil, stirring frequently, for 2 more minutes. Taste and add more chili paste if desired. Remove and discard the garlic. Serve warm or allow to cool and refrigerate until needed. Sauce can be served hot or cold. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 91kcal · Carbohydrates: 22g · Sodium: 6mg · Potassium: 34mg · Sugar: 20g · Vitamin A: 1025IU · Vitamin C: 1.2mg · Calcium: 5mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

Pin this nowto remember it later
Pin this recipe0

Filed under: , , ,

Related Posts

Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

Reader Interactions

23 Comments Leave a comment or review

    Rate & Comment

    Rating




    You can now include images of your recipes in your comments! You'll need to register or log in to upload images.

  1. Tricia says

    My neighbor and exercise buddy was telling me about a bottle sauce like this that she loves. I was talking about making spring rolls and she recommended a brand from the local Asian grocery. But now that you've made this- I am rethinking the store bought stuff. My daughter would flip for this. Thanks for another great recipe!

    • Mary Younkin says

      I'd be comfortable with keeping it a week or two in the refrigerator. I have a little bit left in my jar and I'm planning to use it this weekend. There is enough vinegar in this sauce that I'm not concerned with it spoiling.

    • Mary says

      Hi Sharon,

      The chili paste is a crucial ingredient, you will not get the same result without out. Here's a link with information on how to make your own chili paste. (However, it's unlikely that you have hot peppers just waiting to be used either!)

      Good luck,
      Mary

    • Anonymous says

      Some people don't like the heat and use tomato paste of ketchup instead. Instead of chili paste you can use a hot sauce like sirachi.

  2. cheryl says

    this looks so yummy! have you tried water-bath or pressure canning it? seems like it would make sweet little presents, and plus it would just be nice to always have on hand!

  3. evelyn1954 says

    Mary, my son-in-law made this for me and it is the best dipping sauce I have ever tasted. We did do the 2 Tablespoons first and it was too hot for us so we just made another batch and omitted the chili past and then mixed it with the first and it was perfect!! I strongly suggest if anyone is trying it for the first time to start with 1 Tablespoon of chili paste.

    We also have canned it we did use clear-jel for the thickener so it would can well. I like being able to go to the pantry and grab a jar 🙂 I absolutely love love it.It will also keep in the fridge for weeks.

    I found my Sambal Oelek chili paste on Amazon really reasonable if anyone can't find it at the store you can get a package of 6 bottles (share with a friend) for less than 17.00 5 stars

  4. Tony Chan says

    Delicious! My wife was already frying our lumpia before we realized we didn’t have any dipping sauce. This is super quick and tastes great as well👍🏼5 stars

  5. Candace says

    Excellent easy tasty recipe. I didn’t have whole garlic so I subbed garlic powder and no carrots so I cut those out. The sauce still tasted authentic, restaurant quality. Highly recommend and will be using again. Made for dipping homemade airfryed coconut shrimp!5 stars