Why do people love Sweet chilli sauce so much?

Siam Thai sweet chilli sauce
Thai sweet chili sauce makes a superb condiment for many Thai dishes and is excellent with chicken and fish.

Why do people love Thai sweet chilli sauce so much?

There are many different types of Thai chili sauce, but one type that is particularly popular is the sweet chili sauce.
The sauce, commonly known as Nam Jim Kai in Thailand, is a sweet and spicy thick condiment that is often used as a dip or dressing on many dishes, including deep fries, stir-fries, marinades, and starters.
It is probably the most loved dipping sauce in Thailand with its spicy, sweet and just irresistible taste. Any meal can be enhanced with this unique condiment.

Thai sweet chilli sauce
Sweet chilli, a thrill for your tastebuds.

What's so special about Sweet chili sauce?

There are many reasons why people, not only Thais but around the world, love Thai sweet chilli sauce. It is a delicious and refreshing sauce that goes great with rice, noodles, burgers and even tacos.

This sauce is the perfect balance of sweet, sour, and spicy and has an exotic flavor using red chillies and garlic. The sauce is incredibly versatile, as it can be used on its own or as an ingredient to add to your cooking. It is a great way to add some kick to your food without overpowering it. It is called Nam Jim Kai in Thailand which literally translated as ‘a dip sauce for chicken’ because it is usually served with grilled or deep-fried chicken.

But the sauce’s medium spicy and sweetness also make it a perfect partner for so many different dishes, from stir-fries, marinades to salad dressing. However, the most popular dishes are fried and grilled foods such as chicken wings, roasted pork, deep fried or fresh spring rolls, and deep-fried meatballs or crispy pork wontons.

8 ways to add the sauce to your food


Thai sweet chilli sauce


  1. Use as a dip. It goes perfectly with any grilled or deep fried foods such as Chicken Satay, Thai Shrimp Cakes, Spring Rolls, fried chicken or even nachos. Or you can pair it with fresh vegetables like cucumber, celery, or carrots.
  2. Add Thai flavors to your chicken wings by glazing them with the sauce. See how to make easy Sweet Chili Chicken Wings here.
  3. Spread on burger patty to add some tanginess to the burger. See how to create a juicy Panang Burger with sweet chili sauce here.
  4. Use as a marinade for meat like salmon filet to make it taste extra good. Get some ideas on how to cook Thai Sweet Chilli Salmon at home.
  5. Pour over cooked vegetables for the last couple of minutes when stir-frying to add extra spicy flavor.
  6. Add lemon juice to the sauce with olive oil, rice vinegar, and a few basil leaves for a refreshing dip or Summer Salad Dressing.
  7. Spread the sauce on sandwiches or hashbrowns, its tangy and sweet tastes add great flavor to cheese, ham, or chicken.
  8. Add sweet chili sauce with chopped garlic and corianders, tamarind juice, fish sauce or salt, coconut sugar and water. Mix well and bring to a boil. Deep fry the fish until crispy and top it with this extra sweet chili sauce.
    Sweet chilli sauce
    Sweet chilli sauce, perfect for tender grilled chicken.

    What is sweet chilli sauce made of?

    The sweet chilli sace can be prepared using a number of different ingredients, but the basic recipe remains the same.

    It is commonly made with red chili peppers (traditionally, spur chilies or Prik Chee Fa are used), vinegar, garlic, sugar and tapioca starch (to make the sauce thicker).

    Spring Rolls with sweet chilli sauce
    Thai sweet chili sauce is the perfect accompaniment for spring rolls

    Is sweet chili sauce as spicy as sriracha?

    Thai sweet chili sauce is quite mild and sweeter than spicy, it is kid-friendly!

    Thai sweet chili sauce is different from Sriracha sauce in terms of ingredients and flavors.
    Thai sweet chili sauce is made by using red chili flakes and primarily has a sweet taste with sour and spicy notes. While Sriracha is a spicy, bright red chili sauce made with peppers, vinegar, garlic, and a few other ingredients. Generally, Sriracha sauce has a spicier and sourer taste, with a thicker and creamier texture than sweet chilli sauce.

    The sauces have different flavor profiles, so they shouldn't be used interchangeably in recipes.

    Thai chillies
    Health benefits of Chili pepper include improves digestive health and metabolism.

    Is Thai sweet chili sauce healthy?

    Sweet chilli sauce contains a range of health-activating ingredients that are easily detectable by regular consumption.
    Red chilies are rich in antioxidants, have an excellent metabolic activity, and are high in nutritional value. Some benefits of consuming it in moderate amounts are that it may help reduce pain and inflammation, improve blood circulation, regulate blood pressure, and burn calories.

    However, whilst it offers some health benefits, keep in mind that the sweet chili sauce may still contain high volumes of sugar and have a high calory count.