I totally love Thai Chili Sauce on so many things, but I don’t like that it is usually made with some not-so-healthy ingredients.
That is NOT the case with this one! Raw honey, chili peppers, himalayan salt, apple cider vinegar, garlic and nutritional yeast mean that it is a super healthy condiment that enhances both your health and your food. You get to choose the spiciness level by what pepper flakes you use. Choose chiltepins for super spicy or milder japones if you have kids.
Just look at those ingredients! There is not one thing that is not helping to build my body, my immune system, and my overall health. Apple cider vinegar gives you some potent probiotics and nutritional yeast provides B vitamins that are difficult for vegetarians to get. The rest of the powerhouse ingredients have their own properties you probably already know about. Look them up if you are interested. I really like Dr. Axe’s website for seeking out good ingredient information.
Recently I discovered what umami was. I’ve known about it for quite a while and definitely heard about it on the Food Network. But I had assumed it was just some ethereal flavor that meant food had depth. Well, I now know that it is really the name for L-glutamate. It is the flavor of fermented things like soy sauce, anchovies, miso, fish sauce, and nutritional yeast. It’s hard to describe, so they used a Japanese word that just means YUMMY. That word is UMAMI. MSG is related to it in that it contains Glutamate, but not the good kind. L-Glutamate is perfectly fine to eat and won’t give you a headache. Here is a great article on NPR all about the history of umami.
When trying to come up with this recipe I was looking at a few authentic thai chili sauce recipes and they contained fish sauce. I wasn’t about to put that in my sauce, but I did have it in my cupboard because my Japanese, Thai, and Vietnamese exchange students love the stuff. So I decided I could sacrifice my moral code for one taste of it just to see what I was missing. BANG! I was umami! Kind of sweet, kind of salty, kind of yeasty. So I tasted my nutritional yeast and it was a pretty good match. Not as strong and definitely not as liquid.
For my first batch of thai chili sauce, I tried just adding the nutritional yeast to and it was a bit pasty. So I thought maybe I could create a liquid by mixing it with a small amount of water and straining it in my coffee strainer. Yep! It worked. It is still an opaque yellow, but it wasn’t pasty at all. When I added it to my other ingredients it definitely was the missing link. Nutritional yeast is super cheap and I love adding it to so many things. Buy it in bulk at stores like Winco and Sprouts if you can.
Keeping it Raw
Most thai chili sauce recipes call for boiling sugar in water and vinegar to reduce it and then adding corn starch to thicken it. If you want to keep your honey raw, however, you need to cook the other ingredients a little to meld their flavors and then cool it before mixing in the raw honey. To make it thicker you can add a tiny amount of xanthan gum, but I think it is fine the way it is. In fact, my favorite Thai restaurant’s dipping sauce is thin like this.
Thai Chili Sauce with Raw Honey
- 1/2 c raw honey
- 1/2 c apple cider vinegar
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp chili flakes choose your own level of heat
- 1 tsp himalayan salt or sea salt
- 3 tbsp nutritional yeast dissolved in 1/4 c water and strained see post above
- Add al the ingredients EXCEPT raw honey and nutritional yeast liquid in a small saucepan and bring to a boil for 2 minutes.
- Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature
- Add the raw honey and nutritional yeast liquid and stir until combined.
- Optional: Use a tiny amount of xanthan gum to thicken. I did not use this and I love the consistency.
Local Raw Honey is the ultimate bioregional food. It’s made locally by local bees from local plant sources. Then local beekeepers harvest it and sell it close to home. Enjoy supporting your community when you choose local honey. For more honey recipes, click HERE.