Homemade Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce)

4.13 from 16 votes

This Homemade Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce) is hot, spicy, fiery red, and much more delicious than the store-bought sauce. Make this super versatile sauce at home using a few basic pantry ingredients (vegan, can be easily made gluten-free).

Homemade Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce) served in a bowl.
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About Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce)

Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce, Schezwan Chutney) is a super spicy, fiery red, and pungent Chinese condiment made with dry red chilies, ginger, garlic, and a few more simple ingredients.

It is a super versatile sauce. It can be used to make noodles or fried rice, added to Asian curries for that perfect heat, or slathered onto rolls and parathas; the options are endless.

Schezwan sauce is widely available in stores, but making it at home is always recommended. You may ask why?

  1. The homemade sauce tastes much better than the store-bought one.
  2. You can control the quality of the ingredients.
  3. There are no preservatives, artificial colors, or flavors added to it.
  4. Homemade sauce is much more economical than store-bought one.
  5. This recipe keeps well for a long time, so you can easily double or triple the recipe and keep using the sauce for a very long time.

Szechuan sauce recipe is vegan and can be easily made gluten-free. You can easily double or triple the recipe.

Here are a few more homemade sauce recipes

Ingredients

Schezwan sauce ingredients 1
Schezwan sauce ingredients 2

Dry Red Chilies – Dried red chillies make the base of this spicy sauce. I used Kashmiri red chilies as they are bright red in color and mild in taste, making the sauce not very hot.

You can choose the dried chilies that are easily available to you.

If you live in the US, you can order Chinese Szechuan Chillies (Sichuan peppers) from Amazon to make this recipe. They will give a very authentic taste to this homemade Szechuan sauce.

You can also check your local Asian store to source the Szechuan Chillies.

Fresh Ingredients – You will need fresh ginger, garlic, celery, and onions. These ingredients make this sauce very aromatic.

Soy Sauce – Dark soy sauce adds an umami flavor to the Sichuan sauce. Replace it with tamari or coconut aminos to make the Schezwan sauce recipe gluten-free.

Ajinomoto – Ajinomoto (MSG) gives a nice umami taste to the sauce. Adding it is optional. It is also available in the name of Chinese salt or Chinese tastemaker.

Although this ingredient has gotten a bad name for itself, multiple studies have shown that it is not harmful to the body. Unless you are allergic to it, it is totally fine to have it in limited quantity.

But if you still don’t want to use it, feel free to skip it. That’s the beauty of home cooking.

Others – You will also need oil (use sesame oil for a very traditional flavor), white vinegar, tomato ketchup (skip for gluten-free), granulated white sugar, white pepper powder, and salt.

Some people also add white sesame seed powder to their sauce. You can try adding 1 teaspoon of it too.

A splash of Sake will also greatly enhance the taste of this Szechuan sauce.

Add a teaspoon of crushed Szechuan peppercorns for a nice kick.

How To Make Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce)

Prepare The Chilies

Remove the stalk from 60 g (2 oz) Kashmiri red chilies (or any other chilies you prefer).

Cut the chilies lengthwise using a pair of scissors and remove their seeds.

Cutting the red chili lengthwise.
Removing the seeds from the chili.

Soak the chilies in boiling hot water for 30 minutes.

Deseeded chilies soaked in hot water.

Blend The Chilies

Drain the water and add the soaked chilies to a blender or a food processor along with ¼ cup of water and blend to make a smooth paste.

Soaked chilies added to a blender.
Smooth paste made.

Make The Sauce

Heat ¾ cup of oil in a pan over high heat.

Oil heating in a pan.

Once the oil is hot, add

  • ½ cup finely chopped ginger
  • ¼ cup finely chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup finely chopped celery stalk
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onions

and fry for 2-3 minutes.

Ginger, garlic, celery and onions added to the pan.

Reduce the heat to medium.

Add the chili paste with ½ cup of water to the pan and cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring frequently.

Chili paste and water added to the pan.

Add

  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 cup tomato ketchup
  • 2 tablespoon granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper powder
  • 1 teaspoon Ajinomoto (optional)
  • 2 teaspoon salt

and cook for 5-6 minutes.

Soy sauce, vinegar, ketchup, sugar, pepper, ajinomoto and salt added to the pan.

Remove the pan from the heat and let the sauce cool down to room temperature.

Store the Schezwan sauce in a clean airtight container for up to 1 month in the refrigerator or for up to 6 months in the freezer. Use as desired.

Ready Schezwan sauce.

Pro Tips By Neha

Using regular dried red chilies instead of Kashmiri chilies will significantly increase the sauce’s spiciness. If you like a spicier sauce, replace some Kashmiri chilies with regular red chilies.

Use a food processor or hand chopper to chop the ginger and garlic finely.

If you prefer a thinner sauce consistency, add more water to it.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to make gluten-free Szechuan sauce?

All the ingredients in this recipe except soy sauce and tomato ketchup are gluten-free.
To make a gluten-free version, replace soy sauce with Tamari and tomato ketchup with gluten-free tomato paste, and you will have a gluten-free version of this sauce.

How to make a keto Szechuan sauce recipe?

The store-bought version of this sauce might have some added carbs, but the one we traditionally make at home has no carbs, so it is totally Keto friendly.

Usage Suggestions

As a sauce – This versatile condiment can be used to make Indo-Chinese dishes like Schezwan Dosa, Schezwan Egg Fried Rice, Veg Schezwan Noodles, and Schezwan Fried Rice.

Stir fry your vegetables like beans, eggplant, peppers, etc., and add a teaspoon of this Szechuan sauce for added flavor.

Stir fry rice and noodles using this Sichuan sauce.

Coat Manchurian balls in this fiery sauce.

Add Szechuan sauce in soups or stews for a spicy kick.

As a dip – You can also use this as an accompaniment or dipping sauce for various dishes.

It will go great with chicken nuggets, french fries, chicken lollipops, momos, dumplings, wonton, crab rangoon, spring rolls, fries, and potato wedges.

As a salad dressing – Add a little sauce to yogurt and make a healthy salad dressing.

As a marinade – You can use it to marinade grilled chicken, fish, or shrimp to add a spicy kick to your simple meal.

Storage Suggestions

Schezwan sauce will easily last a month in the refrigerator when stored in an air-tight container. Use a clean and dry spoon for every use, ensuring the sauce lasts longer.

To increase the shelf life, you can freeze it for up to a year in a freezer-safe container or ziplock bag.

You can also freeze schezwan sauce in an ice cube tray. This way, you can take out just one cube and use it in your recipe, and you don’t have to thaw the entire batch.

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This Homemade Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce) is hot, spicy, fiery red, and much more delicious than the store-bought sauce. Make this super versatile sauce at home using a few basic pantry ingredients (vegan, can be easily made gluten-free).
4.13 from 16 votes

Homemade Schezwan Sauce Recipe (Szechuan Sauce)

This Homemade Schezwan Sauce (Szechuan Sauce) is hot, spicy, fiery red, and much more delicious than the store-bought sauce. Make this super versatile sauce at home using a few basic pantry ingredients.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Soaking Time: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 10 servings

Ingredients 

  • 2 ounces dry Kashmiri red chilies (60 g, or any other dry chilies that you prefer)
  • ¾ cup oil (use sesame oil for a very authentic taste)
  • ½ cup finely chopped ginger
  • ¼ cup finely chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup finely chopped celery stock
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onions
  • 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce (replace with tamari or coconut aminos for gluten-free)
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 cup tomato ketchup (skip for gluten-free)
  • 2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper powder
  • 1 teaspoon MSG (Ajinomoto) (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
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Instructions 

Prepare The Chilies

  • Remove the stalk from the dry red chilies.
  • Cut the chilies lengthwise using a pair of scissors and remove their seeds.
  • Soak the chilies in boiling hot water for 30 minutes.

Blend The Chilies

  • Drain the water and add the soaked chilies to a blender along with ¼ cup of water and blend to make a smooth paste.

Make The Sauce

  • Heat oil in a pan over high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot, add ginger, garlic, celery stalk, and onions and fry for 2-3 minutes.
  • Reduce the heat to medium.
  • Add the chili paste along with ½ cup of water to the pan and cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add soy sauce, vinegar, tomato ketchup, sugar, pepper powder, Ajinomoto, and salt, and cook for 5-6 minutes.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and let the sauce cool down to room temperature.
  • Store the Schezwan sauce in a clean airtight container for upto 1 month in the refrigerator or for upto 6 months in the freezer.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

Some people also add white sesame seed powder to their sauce. You can try adding 1 teaspoon of it too.
A splash of Sake will also enhance the taste of this Szechuan sauce a lot.
Add a teaspoon of crushed Szechuan peppercorns for a nice kick.
Using regular dried red chilies instead of Kashmiri chilies will significantly increase the sauce’s spiciness. If you like a spicier sauce, replace some Kashmiri chilies with regular red chilies.
Use a food processor or hand chopper to chop the ginger and garlic finely.
If you prefer a thinner sauce consistency, add more water to it.

Nutrition

Calories: 117kcal, Carbohydrates: 27g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 0.1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g, Sodium: 734mg, Potassium: 688mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 17g, Vitamin A: 1837IU, Vitamin C: 261mg, Calcium: 38mg, Iron: 2mg
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