Chicken Rice Chilli Sauce

This is the recipe for the garlic chilli sauce that accompanies Hainanese chicken rice. It’s hot, tangy and garlicky. To me, a plate of Hainanese chicken rice is simply incomplete without this chilli sauce as well as ginger sauce, the other important condiment.

Related Recipes:

Apart from Hainanese chicken rice, this chilli sauce goes well with many dishes and steamed chicken in general.

Chicken Rice Chilli Recipe

A food processor (pic above) greatly speeds up the process of making this recipe. If you don’t have one, you can use a traditional mortar and pestle to pound the dry ingredients first. The chilli sauce keeps in the fridge for about a week.

Chicken Rice Chilli Recipe

Hainanese Chicken Rice Chilli Sauce Recipe

Use finger-length red chillis (seeds removed) for the colour, and red chilli padi (seeds on) for the heat. Cut the ingredients to uniform small chunks to ensure even blending.


  • 5 finger-length red chilli de-seeded
  • 2 chilli padi (bird’s eye chili) no need to de-seed, for the heat; omit or adjust to taste
  • 8 cloves garlic peeled
  • 3 slices ginger
  • 2 tbsp chicken stock
  • 1-2 tsp chicken seasoning powder optional; handy when the chicken stock is not rich enough; to taste
  • 1/8 tsp salt to taste
  • 1/2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp sugar to taste
  • juice from 2 limes


In a food processor, blend everything to a smooth paste. Season to taste with sugar, salt or chicken seasoning powder, if needed. Keeps for about a week in the fridge.