Ever wondered how to make homemade Schezwan sauce but didn't know where to start? This easy recipe will have you whipping up a fresh batch in no time!
If you are looking for the best Schezwan sauce recipe, you have come to the right place. This Schezwan sauce recipe requires minimal effort, is healthier, and tastes better than most restaurant and store-bought versions.
It's simple, it's quick and it's tasty. You don't need any exotic ingredients for your own homemade Schezwan (Szechuan) Sauce.
This sauce is tangy, has a fiery kick, and goes great on rice and noodles.
What is Szechuan Sauce
Schezwan sauce recipe (or Szechuan sauce) is a tangy, spicy sauce with a slight sweetness. It starts off tasting a bit sweet, and then you feel the fiery kick!
It’s a delicious combination of spicy red chilies, shallots, garlic, soy sauce, and tomato ketchup.
The sauce is a popular Indo-Chinese recipe. What’s Indo-Chinese cuisine, you ask? It’s a cuisine that originated in the city of Kolkata, India, when Chinese immigrants combined their cooking methods with the local Indian spices, herbs, and veggies.
It brings a fusion of flavors and some of the most delicious recipes we know from it! It’s a fiery version of chili garlic sauce, you could say. It’s also referred to as Schezwan chutney in India.
In many recipes, you might also see some Sichuan peppers, but I’ve simplified this recipe for you to get the same flavor but without any special ingredients that aren’t readily available.
How to Use Schezwan Sauce?
Schezwan sauce has got to be one of the most versatile sauces out there! You can use it as a condiment with snacks such as potato wedges, momos, spring rolls, French fries or you can use it to make stir-fry rice such as Schezwan fried rice or some Chicken Schezwan Noodles.
Regardless of how you use it, it’s bound to become a staple in your pantry!
Is this Sauce Spicy?
This sauce definitely is spicy (or should I say fiery). It’s meant to be dipped slightly while having it with snacks as a condiment or dip, or to be used with different stir-fries.
But let me share a special tip: To reduce the level of heat and spiciness, remove the seeds from the red peppers before making the sauce! This will give the sauce a zing without the extra sting!
So, if you’re worried it’ll be too spicy for your taste buds, try out this tip the first time you make it then next time you can adjust accordingly.
What You Need to Make Schezwan Sauce
Dry red chilis: I think it is a good idea to remove the seeds, especially if you are using Red Chili from Bangladesh.
Oil: We’ll use oil for sauteing. You can use any flavorless oil in this recipe, just try to avoid olive oil.
Ginger and garlic: This adds a delicious balance to the sauce. I’ve used 12 cloves of garlic for this recipe.
Celery: This adds to the flavor and consistency of the sauce.
Soy sauce: It’s best to use low sodium to have control over how much salt to use.
Ketchup: Tomato ketchup gives Szechuan sauce a subtle, sweet flavor that balances out its fieriness well!
Salt: Salt helps to bring everything together.
Water: We’re going to use hot water to soften the chilis so they can be made into a smooth paste easily.
How to Make Schezwan Sauce Recipe
Making this sauce at home is super simple. Let’s see how to make it step by step:
Soak chilies: Remove the red chilis’ stem, deseed them, and soak them in hot water for 30 minutes. After the time is up, remove the chilies from the water, discard the water.
Blend: Next, add the soaked chilies to a blender with 3 tablespoons of water. Blend them until they turn into a smooth paste. Set this paste aside for the time being.
Mix ingredients: In a small bowl, mix ½ cup water, ketchup, salt, and soy sauce. Set this saucy mixture aside as well.
Sauté: In a very hot pan, add oil and then add the ginger, garlic, and celery. Reduce heat to medium and stir for one minute.
Add chili paste: Now add the chili paste we blended earlier to the pan. Stir it on medium heat for a minute, this will remove the raw taste of the chilies. Reduce the heat to the lowest, cover the pan and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
Add saucy mixture: Next, uncover the pan and add the ketchup and soy sauce mixture to it. Stir for one minute, cover, and let it simmer for 15 minutes on the lowest heat.
Check to see if it’s done: Uncover, and stir for a few seconds, if the oil is separated from the sauce, then your schezwan sauce is ready. Turn off the heat.
Store: Wait until the sauce is completely cool then transfer in an airtight container or a jar. Keep in the fridge and use for up to three weeks.
Handy Tips for Making this Recipe
- Keep your hands far away from your face when handling the chilis. Wash your hands, and everything contacted the red chili with soap and cold water.
- You will get around one full cup of this Sauce following this recipe. I think it is a good start; this way, you can find out if you need to make any changes to the recipe.
- In some recipes, vinegar and sugar are added to the recipe, but I like to use this sauce in other recipes (fried rice and noodles), and I want to control how sweet my dish taste.
- One last thing! Do not reduce the amount of oil used in this recipe; the oil works as a preservative and makes the shelf life of this schezwan sauce longer.
- You can use different types of red chilis that are milder to make this sauce.
How Long Can It Be Stored?
Schezwan sauce can be used in an airtight jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months.
Other Recipes You'll Love
Chicken Schezwan Noodles: Looking for ways to utilize this sauce? Then this recipe is the one for you! Make these delicious Schezwan Noodles today; trust me, you won’t be disappointed.
Chicken Manchurian: This is another classic Indo-Chinese recipe that I’m sure you’ll love! This recipe combines are the goodness of this cuisine into one and you have got to try it!
Easy Vegetable Chow Mein: A great tasting Vegetable Chow Mein that’s better than what you order from your favorite restaurant! And what’s great is that it’ll be ready in less than 20 minutes!
Schezwan Sauce Recipe
- 2 cup whole dry red chilis deseeded + 3 tablespoon water
- 1 stick celery minced
- 12 garlic cloves finely chopped
- 2 ½ inch ginger minced
- 2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon ketchup
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 6 tablespoon vegetable oil
- ½ cup water
- Remove the red chilis’ stem, deseed it, and soak in warm water for 30 minutes. After the time is up, remove the red chili form the water, discard the water.
- In a blender add the dry red chilis and 3 tablespoon water, blend until smooth. Keep aside.
- In a small bowl, mix ½ cup water, ketchup, salt, and soy sauce. Keep aside.
- In a very hot pan, add oil and then add the ginger, garlic, and celery. Reduce heat to medium and stir for one minute.
- Add the red chili paste to the garlic and ginger and stir on medium heat for a minute. Reduce the heat to the lowest, cover the pan and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
- Uncover the pan and add the ketchup and soy sauce mixture, stir for one minute, cover, and let it simmer for 15 minutes on the lowest heat.
- Uncover, and stir for few seconds, if the oil is separated from the sauce, then your schezwan sauce is ready. Turn off the heat.
- Wait until the sauce is completely cool then transfer in an air tight container or a jar. Keep in the fridge and use for up to three weeks.
- You can use a combination of different types of red chillies.
- Remove the seeds from the chillies before cooking for a mild flavour.
- Storing methods for refrigerating and freezing are in the post above.
- This post was edited in 2017 and is updated with more information.