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Sweet Chili Shrimp recipe

Sweet Chili Shrimp

Sweet chili shrimp is a delightful blend of sweet, savory, and spicy flavors, making it a crowd-pleaser. It’s a popular dish in many Asian cuisines, particularly Thai and Vietnamese.

Sweet Chili Shrimp

What does sweet chili taste like?

Sweet chili sauce has a unique flavor profile that combines sweetness, tanginess, and a mild to moderate level of spiciness. Here’s a breakdown of its taste:

  1. Sweetness: Sweet chili sauce is, as the name suggests, sweet. It typically contains sugar or a sweetener like corn syrup, which gives it a pleasant and syrupy sweetness. The sweetness is often balanced by other flavors in the sauce.
  2. Tanginess: Sweet chili sauce also has a tangy quality. This comes from ingredients like vinegar or rice vinegar, which provide a mild acidity. The tanginess complements the sweetness and adds a bright note to the sauce.
  3. Spiciness: Sweet chili sauce can vary in spiciness depending on the brand and recipe. It usually contains red chili peppers or chili flakes, which contribute a gentle to moderate level of heat. The spiciness is usually not overpowering and is well-balanced by the sweetness.
  4. Umami: Some sweet chili sauces incorporate ingredients like garlic and soy sauce, which contribute to an umami depth of flavor. This savory aspect enhances the overall taste of the sauce.
  5. Garlicky and Savory Notes: Many sweet chili sauces also feature garlic, which adds a pleasant garlicky aroma and flavor. This complements the overall profile of the sauce.

Overall, sweet chili sauce is a versatile condiment that combines sweet, tangy, and mildly spicy elements, making it a popular choice for dipping, glazing, and flavoring a wide range of dishes, including sweet chili shrimp. Its unique combination of flavors adds a delightful complexity to various culinary creations.

What is sweet chili shrimp made of?

Certainly! Here’s a description of each ingredient typically used in sweet chili shrimp:

  1. Large Shrimp: Shrimp are tender and flavorful shellfish. When peeled and deveined, they are the star protein of this dish. While the amount of calories in shrimp is low, the number of key nutrients is high. These nutrients include vitamin B12, which helps form red blood cells and maintain nervous system function, and selenium, a mineral that helps protect cells from damage.
  2. Vegetable Oil: Vegetable oil is used for cooking and sautéing the ingredients in the skillet or wok.
  3. Garlic: Garlic is a pungent and aromatic ingredient that adds a savory depth of flavor to the dish.
  4. Bell Peppers: Bell pepper is a sweet and colorful vegetable that adds a vibrant touch to the dish. It’s typically sliced thinly.
  5. Red Onions (Optional): Red onions are a versatile ingredient that can be added for additional flavor and texture to your sweet chili shrimp. Thinly slice the red onions and sauté them along with the minced garlic and bell peppers. They will add a slightly sweet and pungent bite to the dish.
  6. Sweet Chili Sauce: Sweet chili sauce is the primary flavor component of the dish. It’s a sweet and slightly spicy condiment made from red chili peppers, sugar, vinegar, and garlic.
  7. Soy Sauce: Soy sauce adds a savory, umami flavor to the dish and complements the sweetness of the chili sauce.
  8. Honey or Brown Sugar: Honey or brown sugar is used to enhance the sweetness of the sauce. The amount can be adjusted to achieve the desired level of sweetness.
  9. Red Pepper Flakes: Red pepper flakes can be added if you desire extra heat in your sweet chili shrimp. Adjust the amount to your spice preference.
  10. Salt and Black Pepper: These seasonings are used to enhance the overall flavor of the dish.
  11. Cooked Rice or Noodles: Cooked rice or noodles serve as the base for serving the sweet chili shrimp.

Each ingredient contributes to the flavor, texture, and overall appeal of the dish. The combination of sweet, savory, and spicy elements makes sweet chili shrimp a delicious and well-balanced meal.

Sweet Chili Shrimp ingredients

How to make sweet chili shrimp?

Begin by preparing the sweet chili sauce. In a bowl, combine the sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey or brown sugar, and red pepper flakes. Stir until all the ingredients are well blended, and then set this mixture aside.

Now, let’s move on to cooking the dish. Heat a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat and add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the minced garlic and sauté it for about 30 seconds or until it becomes fragrant.

Next, introduce the sliced bell peppers and onions into the skillet. Continue to stir-fry them for approximately 2-3 minutes, allowing them to soften and develop a slight char on their edges.

stir-fry bell peppers and onion

To make space for the shrimp, push the sautéed peppers and onions to one side of the skillet. On the other side, add the peeled and deveined shrimp. Season the shrimp with a small pinch of salt and black pepper. Cook them for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until they turn pink and opaque.

Once the shrimp are perfectly cooked, bring the sweet chili sauce mixture into the skillet. Combine it with the shrimp and vegetables, ensuring everything is evenly coated. Allow the mixture to simmer for an additional 2-3 minutes until the sauce thickens slightly and coats the shrimp to perfection.

Sweet Chili Shrimp

Taste the sauce, and if you desire more sweetness or spiciness, adjust it by adding additional honey or red pepper flakes according to your preferences.

When the dish is complete, remove the skillet from the heat. To serve, spoon the sweet chili shrimp over a bed of cooked rice or noodles. If you like, you can garnish the dish with sesame seeds for added texture and flavor. Now, it’s time to enjoy your flavorful creation!

Sweet Chili Shrimp

If you like shrimp, check out these recipes:

Sweet Chili Shrimp

Sweet Chili Shrimp

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Thai, Vietnamese
Servings 1 serving


  • ½ lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup red onion, sliced
  • ¼ cup sweet chili sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp honey
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • Salt and black pepper, to tasteF
  • Cooked rice or noodles for serving


  • In a bowl, combine the sweet chili sauce, soy sauce, honey, and red pepper flakes. Mix well and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the minced garlic and sauté for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the sliced bell peppers and onions to the skillet and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes until they begin to soften and slightly char at the edges.
  • Push the peppers to one side of the skillet and add the peeled and deveined shrimp to the other side. Season the shrimp with a pinch of salt and black pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes on each side or until they turn pink and opaque.
  • Pour the sweet chili sauce mixture over the cooked shrimp and peppers. Stir everything together and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes until the sauce thickens slightly and coats the shrimp.
  • Taste the sauce and adjust the sweetness or spiciness by adding more honey or red pepper flakes if needed. Once the shrimp are fully coated in the sauce and cooked through, remove the skillet from heat.
  • Serve the sweet chili shrimp over cooked rice or noodles. Garnish with sesame seeds if desired. Enjoy!

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