Homemade Spicy Chili Crisp is the best recipe to make this flavorful, crunchy garlic condiment at home. Made from simple ingredients this homemade condiment is perfect for drizzling over eggs, noodles, vegetables and more!
What is chili crisp?
Spicy Chili Crisp is a condiment made from crispy onions, chili peppers and oil. It is similar to chili oil but there is a high ratio of chilies, crispy onions and garlic to give it lots of crunch.
Often called chili crisp, chili crunch, garlic crunch or even chili garlic crunch crisp, there’s well known versions of the flavorful chili oil EVERYWHERE. Like the recipe from David Chang of momofuku. And other chili crisps for sale like the Trader Joe’s brand and the original Chinese Lao Gan Ma.
The Lao Gan Ma chili crisp is the spicy chili oil that started it all and now has a cult-like following because of its flavor and texture. But Lao Gan Ma can be difficult to find at times and there are different varieties that make it even harder to know what you’re getting.
So if you’re looking for a homemade chili crisp substitute for when you get tired of looking for where to buy chili crisp, look no further!
- Canola oil – or peanut oil
- Scallion whites – or substitute shallots, which is more authentic
- Garlic – thinly sliced
- Dried red pepper flakes
- Cashews – or substitute peanuts or almonds
- Fresh ginger
- Brown sugar – light or dark brown sugar
- Ground black pepper
Step by step instructions
- Fry scallions until crispy. Strain, saving the oil, and set the fried onions on a paper towel lined plate to cool.
- Use the same oil to fry garlic until crispy and again, strain, saving the oil, setting the fried garlic on paper towel lined plate to cool.
- Heat oil again to about 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Stir chili flakes, nuts, brown sugar and ginger together in a medium bowl. Then pour hot oil over, stirring to combine.
- Allow the fried scallions and garlic to cool and crisp, ideally overnight, but at least several hours to fully crispen. Then stir into the chili oil.
- Store in a tightly covered container.
How to use
Chili crisp has so many uses! Use over rice, soups, eggs, stir fries and other noodle dishes. Try it drizzled over chicken and vegetable dishes. Or use a dipping sauce for dumplings, and other fried foods like Firecracker Shrimp. You can even eat spicy chili crunch over ice cream.
How to store
Store in an airtight container with a tight fitting lid and use within 3 months. Chili oil does not need to be refrigerated but storing refrigerated adds great contrast to hot dishes.
- 1 ½ cups canola oil or peanut oil
- ½ cup scallions whites only thinly sliced, from about 1 bunch of scallions
- ½ cup garlic thinly sliced, from about 1 large head of garlic
- ½ cup chopped cashews
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- ¼ cup dried red pepper flakes
- 1 tablespoon ginger freshly grated
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons fine salt
- In a large heatproof bowl combine chili flakes, chopped cashews, fresh grated ginger, brown sugar, salt and pepper.½ cup chopped cashews, 2 teaspoons brown sugar, ¼ cup dried red pepper flakes, 1 tablespoon ginger, 2 teaspoons fine salt, ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Set a fine mesh strainer over a second heatproof bowl and line a plate with paper towels.
- In a large shallow frying pan combine cold oil with thinly sliced scallion whites, shake pan so that scallions are in an even layer then turn heat to high. Cook, stirring constantly until light brown and crispy.1 ½ cups canola oil, ½ cup scallions
- Once scallions are browned, carefully pour oil through strainer into bowl, and place crispy fried onions on the paper towel lined plate to cool.
- Return oil to pan and repeat the process with thinly sliced garlic, stirring constantly. As soon as the garlic is evenly light brown immediately remove from heat to prevent burning. Again, use fine mesh strainer over bowl to carefully strain oil. And place fried garlic on the paper towel lined plate and allow to cool and crispen.½ cup garlic
- Return the onion and garlic infused oil to the pan and heat to approximately 375 degrees Fahrenheit. You'll know the oil is to temp if bubbles form vigorously around the base of a wooden spoon if placed in oil. Or if a grain of rice pops to the surface immediately when added to oil.
- Carefully pour hot oil over red pepper flake mixture. Stir to coat all spices with oil and set aside to allow flavors to meld.
- Once garlic and scallions have completely cooled and crisped up as much as possibly, at least 3 hours but ideally overnight, stir into oil and pour into a jar with a tightly fitting lid.