Best Substitute For Chili Garlic Sauce

Are you looking for a spicy alternative to your go-to chili garlic sauce? Are you tired of the same flavor with every meal and want something new and unique? Today, we’re bringing you some delicious new options that will instantly add some zing to all of your dishes – as a delectable Substitute For Chili Garlic Sauce.

What Is The Best Substitute For Chili Garlic Sauce

16 Best Substitutes For Chili Garlic Sauce

Chili garlic sauce, a popular condiment in Asian-inspired recipes, is renowned for its spicy kick and pungent flavor. However, in situations when you can’t find chili garlic sauce, knowing its substitutes can be a lifesaver.

Here are 16 of The Best Chili Garlic Sauce Substitutes:

1. Sriracha Sauce

Sriracha Chili Sauce, slightly milder than most chili garlic sauces, is a suitable chili garlic sauce substitute. It features red Jalapeno Peppers and garlic flavor, adding a spicy taste to your stir-fries or grilled chicken.

This versatile sauce is not just for Asian dishes; it can be used in Soups, pastas, Pizzas, or even as a Dipping sauce. Its unique blend of VinegarSugar, and salt provides a balanced flavor profile that complements a wide array of foods.

From enhancing the flavor of your scrambled eggs to spicing up your seafood, sriracha sauce is an excellent chili garlic sauce substitute worth having in your pantry.

Sriracha Sauce In A Bowl

2. Sambal Oelek

Sambal Oelek, hotter than Sriracha, is a chili paste made from coarsely ground red chiles. This Asian chili sauce can replace chili garlic sauce, especially in spicy dishes.

Its simple composition of chilies, salt, and vinegar gives it a clean, straightforward heat that makes it a versatile ingredient in the kitchen. Whether you’re stir-frying veggies, grilling meats, or simmering a stew, Sambal Oelek brings a fiery punch to your creations.

It’s also fantastic as a condiment, adding a blast of heat to anything from Eggs to Tacos. Plus, its chunkier texture compared to other sauces adds a delightful crunch.

Sambal Oelek In A Bowl

3. Harissa Sauce

Harissa sauce is a smoky, spicy sauce made from hot chili peppers, including Fresno peppers. Unlike chili garlic sauce, Harissa offers a tangy flavor that works well with Salad Dressings and grilled meats.

This North African sauce is packed with flavors of coriander, caraway, and sometimes cumin, giving it a unique depth and complexity. It’s not just a heat provider; it’s a flavor enhancer that can elevate your dishes to new levels.

You can use it as a substitute for chili garlic sauce in marinades, and stews, or even as a spread on sandwiches for a fiery kick. Its rich, smoky undertones make it a fantastic addition to Roasted Vegetables or mixed into couscous.

Harissa Sauce In A Bowl

4. Chili Paste

Chili paste can be homemade or store-bought. When made with fresh chili peppers, it’s a spicy condiment that can substitute chili garlic sauce.

It brings the heat and flavor of whole chilies in a convenient form that can be used directly in cooking. Its intensity varies depending on the type of chilies used, so you can choose a version that matches your heat preference.

Chili paste is a good substitute for chili garlic sauce for adding depth to soups, stews, and curries. It also works well as a marinade for meats, providing a robust and spicy flavor that permeates throughout.

You can even mix it into dips or salad dressings for a spicy kick. Plus, if you’re adventurous, you can make your own chili paste at home, allowing you to control the ingredients and heat level.

5. Red Pepper Flakes

Red pepper flakes can be used together with fresh garlic or garlic paste to mimic the flavor of chili garlic sauce. They add a spicy kick to your dishes. This simple yet effective combination brings both heat and garlic’s aromatic flavor, which closely mimics the taste profile of chili garlic sauce.

Red pepper flakes are a common pantry staple, making them an accessible substitute when you’re in a pinch. They’re excellent for sprinkling over pizzas, pastas, and Salads for an instant heat boost.

Additionally, you can use them in marinades or dry rubs to infuse meats with a spicy, garlicky flavor. The great thing about using red pepper flakes and garlic is the flexibility – you can adjust the proportions based on your preference for heat and garlic intensity.

Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

6. Sweet Chili Sauce

Sweet chili sauce, made from red bell peppers and distilled vinegar, provides a tangy flavor. Although sweeter than chili garlic sauce, it can still be used as a substitute in certain recipes.

The sweetness of the sauce brings a different dimension to dishes, balancing out the heat with a delightful touch of sugar. Its vibrant flavor profile makes it an ideal substitute for chili garlic sauce for use in stir-fries, as a dipping sauce, or even as a glaze for grilled meats.

The subtle heat from the bell peppers is not as intense as that of chili garlic sauce, making it a great option for those who prefer milder spice levels.

Sweet Chili Sauce In A Bowl

7. Black Bean Sauce

Black bean sauce, unlike chili garlic sauce, offers a unique flavor profile. It’s a popular condiment in Asian cuisine and can be used in stir-fry dishes. Made from fermented black beans, this sauce has a deep, umami-rich flavor that adds depth to any dish.

Though it doesn’t have the same heat as chili garlic sauce, it compensates with its complex and savory taste. It’s perfect for enhancing flavors in meat, seafood, and vegetable dishes. The sauce’s dense texture also makes it great for thickening up sauces and gravy.

You can use black bean sauce as a base for marinades or mix it in soups for an added layer of flavor. And if you still crave some heat, you can always mix in some red pepper flakes or hot sauce.

Black Bean Sauce

8. Chili Oil

Chili oil, including Sambal Oelek chili and Chiu Chow chili oil, is a spicy sauce that can replace chili garlic sauce. It has a sauce-like consistency that works well in various recipes.

This fiery red condiment is made by infusing oil with chili peppers, often along with additional ingredients like garlic and sesame seeds, for a multi-dimensional flavor experience. The heat level of chili oil can vary from mild to very hot, depending on the type of chilies used.

A great alternative to chili garlic sauce for noodles, dumplings, and stir-fries. Also perfect as a spicy dip for Snacks and appetizers.

Chili oil brings a different kind of heat compared to chili garlic sauce – it’s more of a slow burn that builds up, rather than an immediate punch. The oil also gives dishes a glossy, appealing finish.

9. Hot Sauce

Hot sauce, such as Louisiana-style hot sauce or Mexican-style hot sauce, can be used as a substitute for chili garlic sauce. Consider adding minced garlic to achieve the desired garlic flavor.

These hot sauces are typically made with chili peppers, vinegar, and salt, providing a tangy heat that can stand in for the spiciness of chili garlic sauce.

The beauty of using hot sauce as a substitute is its versatility – you can choose from a variety of heat levels and flavor profiles to suit your taste.

Hot Sauce In A Bowl

10. Garlic Sauce

Garlic sauce, made from fresh garlic and soy sauce, can be used as a base. Add chili powder or chili flakes to create your own chili garlic sauce. This homemade alternative allows you to control the level of heat and garlicky flavor according to your preference.

The soy sauce brings a salty and umami-rich depth to the mixture, which enhances the fiery kick of the chili and the pungent, aromatic quality of the garlic. This concoction can easily be adjusted in terms of spiciness, making it a versatile option for various dishes.

Garlic Sauce In A Bowl

11. Chili Crisp

Chili crisp, made from red chili peppers, offers a spicy and slightly sweet taste. It can serve as a good alternative to chili garlic sauce in certain dishes.

Originating from China, this condiment combines the heat of chili peppers with the satisfying crunch of fried garlic and onion. The balance of sweet, savory, and spicy elements in chili crisp makes it a versatile addition to a variety of dishes.

You can use it to add depth to soups and stews, spice up a stir-fry, or even as a topping for pizza or pasta. The crispy texture also adds an unexpected twist to dishes that typically use chili garlic sauce.

12. Garlic Powder

Garlic powder, when combined with chili pepper or chili flakes, can replace chili garlic sauce. However, it lacks the smooth paste texture of a sauce. Despite this, it can be a handy substitute in a pinch, especially if you’re in the middle of cooking and realize you’re out of chili garlic sauce.

This combination can still bring the spicy, garlicky flavor that you’d expect from chili garlic sauce. It’s a quick and easy solution that utilizes pantry staples, so there’s no need for a last-minute run to the store.

To mimic the consistency of the sauce, you could add garlic powder in a mixture of chili with a bit of oil or water. This will create a more paste-like substance that can be used similarly to chili garlic sauce.

Garlic Powder

13. Fresh Peppers

Fresh peppers, especially hot chili peppers, can be used alongside garlic to substitute chili garlic sauce. However, the exact flavor may vary based on the type of peppers used. This method allows you to tailor the heat level to your liking, as different peppers have varying degrees of spiciness.

You can finely chop or blend the peppers and garlic together to create a paste-like consistency similar to chili garlic sauce. This mixture can then be sautéed in a bit of oil to mellow out the flavors and bring them together.

While this substitute might not exactly replicate the taste of store-bought chili garlic sauce, it offers a fresh and vibrant alternative that can be used in a variety of dishes.

14. Harissa Paste

Harissa paste, similar to Harissa sauce, is a spicy and smoky substitute for chili garlic sauce. This paste is often used in North African cuisine.

While Harissa paste may not have the same exact flavor profile as chili garlic sauce, its heat, and robust flavors make it an excellent alternative. The main ingredients of Harissa paste are chili peppers, olive oil, garlic, and spices like coriander and caraway seeds.

Harissa paste can be used in the same quantity as chili garlic sauce in recipes. However, as it tends to be quite spicy, you may want to start with a smaller amount and adjust to taste.

Harissa Paste

15. Chili Garlic Paste

Chili garlic paste is perfect for recipes requiring a stronger flavor. This paste is typically made from the same key ingredients as the sauce – chili peppers and garlic – but in a more concentrated form.

As a substitute for chili garlic sauce, it delivers a potent punch of heat and flavor, making it ideal for dishes that need a bold, spicy kick. However, due to its intense flavor, it should be used sparingly and adjusted according to taste.

Additionally, chili garlic paste is usually thicker than the sauce, so it can also add a bit more texture to your dishes. This makes it particularly suitable for marinades, stews, or any recipe where a thicker consistency is desired.

Chili Garlic Substitute

From fiery Sriracha to robust Sambal Oelek and smoky Harissa, these substitutes offer diverse profiles that can elevate your dishes.

Whether you’re in the mood for a milder kick with sweet chili sauce or prefer the depth of black bean sauce, these options ensure you never miss out on the spice and flavor.

And if you’re feeling creative, why not whip up your very own homemade chili garlic sauce to suit your exact preferences?

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