My Favorite Chili Paste

If you have been buying chili pastes, you should definitely try to make your own. It’s super easy!

This chili paste is so aromatic, thanks to the addition of lemongrass, ginger, and shallots. I have been using it a lot lately in marinades, but it’s also great for soups and delicious mixed with dips like hummus! Making a vegetable stir-fry? Add some of this chili paste to take it to the next level!

My Favorite Chili Paste

This recipe requires just 8 ingredients and about 15 minutes to make. It starts with shallots that are fried until golden brown. Then we have lemongrass that brings a citrusy flavor, ginger for some spiciness, and garlic.

You sauté the aromatics for a few minutes before adding chopped red cayenne peppers, sugar, and salt.

My Favorite Chili Paste

You want to cook it for another 7-10 minutes so the peppers soften and no longer taste raw. Once done, transfer it to a food processor and process until it turns into a paste. Done!

Garlic Morning Glory with Crispy Tofu

If you are looking for a paste that is not only spicy but also flavorful, you should definitely try this recipe. The combination of lemongrass, ginger, and fried shallots is amazing. Combine with some soy sauce and sesame oil for a delicious marinade!

Like spicy stuff? Check out this Homemade Fermented Buffalo Sauce!

Let me know in the comments if you try this recipe!

My Favorite Chili Paste

My Favorite Chili Paste

My Favorite Chili Paste

5 from 2 votes
Author: Thomas Pagot
Homemade chili paste with fried shallots, garlic, lemongrass, and ginger! Super flavorful, this paste is great for marinades but can also be used in dips, soups, and more!
Prep Time : 10 minutes
Cook Time : 10 minutes
Total Time : 20 minutes
Servings 0.75 cup
Calories 47 kcal


  • 3 tbsp oil
  • 8 fresh red cayenne peppers
  • 2 large shallots minced
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 lemongrass finely chopped
  • 1 inch ginger grated
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt


  • Start by preparing the red cayenne peppers. Using gloves, remove the stems and seeds of the cayenne peppers and discard. Finely slice the peppers and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once hot, add the minced shallots, garlic, and lemongrass. Fry for 2-3 minutes, or until shallots are golden brown.
  • Add the ginger and cook for another minute. Next, add the red cayenne peppers, sugar, and salt, and cook for 7-10 minutes, stirring regularly. You want the peppers to become softer, they should no longer have a raw smell.
  • Once peppers are soft, remove from heat and transfer everything to a food processor. Process for 10-20 seconds, or until it forms a slightly chunky paste.
  • Transfer to a clean glass jar, and let cool before storing in the refrigerator. Chili paste will keep for up to two weeks in the refrigerator.
  • Use this paste in marinades, soups, dips, bakes, and more! I like to mix it with some sesame oil, soy sauce, and maple syrup to marinate tofu and tempeh.


Serving: 1 tbsp | Calories: 47 kcal | Carbohydrates: 4.1 g | Protein: 0.5 g | Fat: 3.5 g | Fiber: 0.4 g | Sugar: 2.2 g
Course : Condiment, Sauce
Cuisine : Asian
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  1. I’ll have to make this once my peppers are ready for harvest. Any idea how long it will keep? Hoping for another bumper crop from my little garden again this year.

  2. What level of heat would this paste have? I like just a bit of heat otherwise it’s overwhelming. Thanks Thomas for your terrific recipes.