Jessica Nguyen's Homemade Chilli Oil

Makes: 1 litre
Ingredients: 8
Cooking Time: 25 mins
Skill Level: Easy AF


  • 1 litre of neutral oil (vegetable, canola or peanut oil works best)
  • 10 bay leaves
  • 1 large piece of ginger, roughly sliced
  • 6 cardamom pods, crushed with the side of your knife
  • 6 pieces of star anise
  • 4 stalks of spring onions, roughly chopped into 5cm stems
  • 1 red onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups of dried chilli flakes

Watch the process


  1. Heat 1 litre of oil in pan and once hot, add the dry aromatics: 10 bay leaves, 6 star anise and 6 crushed cardamom pods.
  2. After 2 minutes, add your fresh aromatics: 1 large piece of sliced ginger, 4 stalks of spring onions and 1 red onion, roughly chopped.
  3. Cook for 5 minutes on medium/low so that all the flavours can infuse into the oil. If the oil is too hot and furiously boiling, you will burn the aromatics versus allowing them to slowly infuse into the oil.
  4. Turn off the stove and remove from the heat, allowing to cool down for 5 minutes. Once the oil has cooled down, strain the mixture into a bowl using a sieve to separate the aromatics from the oil.
  5. Now slowly add 2 cups of dried chilli flakes into the oil, mixing to combine and allowing to infuse and impart red colour into the oil.
  6. Once the chilli oil has cooled down, spoon into sterilised glass jars and seal. You can sterilise glass jars by thoroughly cleaning and then boiling them on high heat fully covered in a pot for 5 minutes. Remove from the boiling water and allow to dry and return back to room temp before using.
  7. Store in your pantry and spoon over any food or dish that your heart desires.

What to do with your leftover aromatics?

Make my Cheats Vietnamese Chicken Pho recipe, using all of the leftover aromatics!

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