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Low FODMAP chilli crisp

I have been eyeing off chilli crisp for a while now. As someone who feels sick after eating onion and garlic, I had never tried it to understand the hype. As I was developing some dumpling and wonton recipes, though, it occurred to me that I should give a low FODMAP chilli crisp a whirl. Oh boy! I’ve been missing out, and if you’re low FODMAP, you have been too.

An image of a saucepan filled with the ingredients used to make a low FODMAP chilli crisp.

Low FODMAP chilli crisp

This low FODMAP chilli crisp uses spring onion greens and a low FODMAP quantity of chilli flakes for the flavour base. The spring onions are slowly fried in an aromatic oil to create crispy, delicious pieces of spring onion.

The aromatic oil relies on star anise, cinnamon sticks and cardamom pods for depth of flavour. The spring onion greens impart their onion taste too.

Extra crisp comes in the form of peanuts and sesame seeds. These are mixed with Sichuan peppercorns, miso paste, asafoetida powder and a bit of mushroom powder. Once the hot oil is poured over the crunchy base, the oil is finished with salt, sugar and some black rice vinegar.

All in all, this low FODMAP chilli crisp is a flavour bomb that goes perfectly on anything. Soup, a bowl of rice, pasta – whatever you like. The possibilities are endless!

A brightly lit aerial image of low FODMAP chilli oil noodles in a white bowl atop a white stone benchtop

FODMAP notes

The main components of this chilli crisp that require discussion are the chillies themselves, along with the nuts.

Whole red chillies are low FODMAP in 28g or approximately 1 medium red chilli per serve. They are lower FODMAP than dried chillies, which is why they are included in this crisp. See the notes in the section below on adding heat while on a low FODMAP diet.

Korean red chilli flakes are low FODMAP in 2g (1 teaspoon) serves. This chilli crisp uses 8-10g and makes a very large batch.

Sesame seeds are low FODMAP in 11g serves or approximately 1 tablespoon per person. In serves of 66g or approximately 6 tablespoons, they contain high amounts of fructans. This suggests there is a bit of wiggle room in what constitutes a low-medium FODMAP serve. Either way, this recipe uses 35g and makes a very large batch.

Finally, the peanuts. Peanuts are low FODMAP in 28g serves or approximately 32 nuts. However, Monash says that they contain only trace amounts of FODMAPs, and can be eaten freely and according to appetite.

FODMAP nitty gritty

This chilli crisp makes around 550g or 2 Australian cups. My estimate for one serve would be 2 or 3 Australian tablespoons (3 tablespoons equal 1/4 Australian cup).

If you use 2 tablespoons, this chilli crisp serves 12.

If you use 3 tablespoons per serve, this chilli crisp serves 8.

For a batch that is serving 12, you could safely use up to 24g of Korean chilli flakes. To be on the safe side (considering the fresh chilli) I would suggest 20g.

For a batch that is serving 8, you could safely use up to 16g of Korean chilli flakes. To be on the safe side (considering the fresh chilli) I would suggest 12gish.

Of course, none of this takes into account the fructose content of what you’re putting the chilli crisp on. Keep that in mind if you malabsorb fructose.

An aerial image of the ingredients used to make low FODMAP chilli crisp arranged on a white marble table in contrasting sunlight

Important safety tips for your low FODMAP chilli oil

Ginger and spring onions in oil are a botulism risk. A small risk, but a risk nonetheless. In order to minimise any risk, the following tips should be adhered to.

  • Ensure the spring onions are cooked until completely crispy (but not burnt). This helps minimise the risk from the spring onion.
  • The ginger is raw, so there’s not much we can do about that. If you’re concerned, you can cook the ginger with the spring onions. I would suggest adding the ginger when the oil is about 3/4 done.
  • Don’t leave the oil on the bench for hours to cool. Cool it quickly and then place it straight into the fridge. Botulism spores can grow at room temperature.
  • To be on the safe side, eat the chilli crisp relatively quickly after using it. Some health authorities suggest 10 days, others suggest only 4 days. Some people on Reddit say the threat is overhyped. Do what you are comfortable with.
  • This batch of chilli crisp makes quite a lot. Don’t panic that you won’t be able to get through it, though, because you can easily freeze it! I recommend freezing it in small containers and serving sizes. This way you can defrost what you need each time. Use the frozen and defrosted batch within the 4-10 day timeframe, then move onto your next container.
A macro close up of low FODMAP chilli crisp

Tips for making your low FODMAP chilli crisp

My first and most important tip is to ensure you read the safety tips above. Chilli crisp is delicious and well worth making, but good food hygiene is important here.

My second tip is to measure out all your ingredients before you get started. It will make the process seamless and speedy. Plus, it negates the risk of burning your spring onions while you frantically measure out peanuts.

My third tip pertains to the cooking process. The spring onions can go from crispy to burnt in seconds. Cook the oil on a low and slow temperature and watch it very closely as it finishes cooking.

On the note of the spring onions – ensure they are cooked through and completely crispy but not burnt. They should add cooked onion flavour and crunch, not unpleasant charcoal flavour. Watch them really closely and take a few out of the oil to test. They should be crunchy and taste a bit like fried shallots.

We have discussed botulism safety above, but a note on regular food safety. Ensure the jar you use to store your chilli oil is thoroughly cleaned and dried. If you need advice on sterilising jars, see Cornersmith’s website and post.

An aerial close up image of gluten free wontons topped with low FODMAP dumpling dipping sauce on a bright blue ceramic plate atop a dark grey backdrop

Adjusting the spice level on a low FODMAP diet

Some people love a good hit of chilli, particularly in something like a chilli crisp.

Fresh chillies tend to contain fructans in moderate and high serves, while dried chillies tend to contain fructose. Because the fructose is concentrated during the drying process, dried chillies have very low FODMAP thresholds. This can make it more difficult to achieve the level of spice you are accustomed to.

So, I have found a few ways to get around this during the development of this recipe and also my low FODMAP chilli crisp recipe. Without further ado:

  • Add plenty of fresh finely grated ginger. Ginger has a fieriness to it that can help replicate spice, particularly when paired with some spice.
  • Use more fresh chillies and less dried chillies. Red chillies are low FODMAP in a whole medium chilli (28) per serve. You can add a whole red chilli to your own plate, which will hopefully give you a bit more bang for your buck.
  • Layer chillies. My understanding is that you can have red chilli (whose predominant FODMAP is fructan) with dried chilli flakes (whose predominant FODMAP is fructose, depending on varietal) together. This is provided the other elements of the dish are naturally low FODMAP.
  • Use chilli flakes or a hot variety of chilli powder instead of a milder variety like Korean red chilli powder or Kashmiri chilli. The former are spicier varieties that actually have a lower FODMAP threshold (not by much, but still!). You can add some paprika to try and mimic the vibrant red colour.
  • Add plenty of pepper. Black and white pepper add spiciness in large serves. Monash doesn’t list an upper quantity for a low FODMAP serve of pepper.
  • I haven’t tried this, but pickled chillies (like pickled jalapeños) are lower FODMAP. If you need extra heat, you can experiment with adding some pickled chillies to the mix.
An aerial close up of low FODMAP chilli crisp in a glass bowl atop a white marble table

Non negotiable ingredients for your low FODMAP chilli crisp

Obviously, chilli in some form is at the top of this list. This is the whole point! See the notes above for tips on adding extra heat while on a low FODMAP diet.

Personally, I think Sichuan peppercorns are a non negotiable. They have a numbing quality that is so inherent to good chilli oil. You can buy them cheaply online or in person at Asian grocers and supermarkets with a great spice selection. Worth the time taken to source, I promise!

Spring onion greens are a non-negotiable here. They add the onion flavour, extra crunch and just round out the oil.

Peanuts are a low FODMAP nut that goes perfectly in this chilli oil. Using the same volume of sesame seeds would take this into a higher FODMAP threshold, unfortunately. So at the moment the peanuts are a non-negotiable. If and when I discover a replacement for those with nut allergies, I will update the post. I have seen some recipes use soy nuts but I haven’t managed to track any down.

Personally, I feel that the miso paste is just so good here. When added to the crisp it doesn’t 100% dissolve, which means you get little salty pockets of umami in the crisp.

A close up image of the ingredients used to make chilli crisp in small white bowls atop a white marble table in contrasting sunlight.

Optional ingredients for extra flavour

So, we have been through the non-negotiables. I thought I’d also briefly list the low FODMAP options for adding extra flavour to this delicious crisp.

  • MSG powder. Add it if you want and don’t if you don’t want. Simple.
  • Mushroom powder. I have porcini powder which has lasted me forever. A small amount adds a savoury deliciousness.
  • Makrut lime leaves or lime zest for a South Asian twist. A splash of regular or vegan fish sauce could also round out the oil.
  • I’ve seen recipes online suggest herbs can be added. I haven’t tested this myself and I’m not sure if you’d add them to the oil or the crisp but an interesting idea nonetheless.
  • A few drops of liquid smoke for an extra layer of flavour.
  • Garlic infused oil. Personally, I didn’t find this to be worth the extra effort as there’s so much flavour as is, but it’s an option.
  • Orange zest, lemon zest or lime zest.
  • Black cardamom instead of regular cardamom.
  • I plan to try using my low FODMAP pickled garlic in here ASAP.
An aerial brightly lit image of a white bowl filled with low FODMAP carrot soup. The soup is topped with a swirl of low FODMAP chilli crisp, tofu crumbles and cream and a slice of toast. The bowl sits on a white speckled ceramic plate atop a white marble table.

Where to use your low FODMAP chilli crisp

Once you make a batch of chilli crisp, you will quickly realise that there’s no point me answering this question. Chilli crisp goes on everything. It legitimately even goes on vanilla ice cream. However, a few recipes and dishes that I think would be perfect:

An aerial close up of low FODMAP chilli crisp in a glass bowl atop a white marble table

Low FODMAP chilli crisp

This chilli crisp is more of a condiment than a spicy oil. See the body of the post for making it extra spicy.
*Cups and measures are in Australian cups and measures. Use gram and ml for international accuracy.
Be the first to rate this recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Course Condiment, Dressing, Seasoning
Cuisine Food Intolerance Friendly
Servings 2 cups (550g)

Ingredients
  

For the infused oil:

  • 375 ml (1 1/2 cups)* vegetable oil
  • 100-125g (1 large bunch) spring onion greens washed, thoroughly dried and finely sliced
  • 20-50 g fresh ginger match-sticked or grated
  • 4 star anise
  • 5-10 cardamom pods crushed
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1-3 whole red chilli finely sliced
  • 1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns 5g

For the crisp:

  • 100 g (3/4 cup)* toasted and chopped peanuts
  • 35 g (1/4 cup)* toasted sesame seeds or extra peanuts
  • 8-10 g (1 – 1 1/4 tablespoons)* Korean red chilli flakes
  • 1 tablespoon miso paste gluten free if it needs to be
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 -1/2 teaspoon asafoetida powder to your tastes (optional)

To finish:

  • 2 teaspoons sugar to taste
  • 1 teaspoon salt to taste
  • 2 teaspoons black rice vinegar optional and to your tastes

Instructions
 

  • Combine the ingredients for the infused oil in a medium pot. Stir, then place them over a low medium heat on your smallest burner. Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring intermittently. Assess the heat, turning it down if need be. Continue to cook until the spring onions are a deep brown (but not burnt!) and shrivelled. If you take a few out of the oil (and allow to cool before touching) they should feel super crispy. This is as important for taste as it is for food safety, so don’t rush this step (see notes).
  • Combine the ingredients for the crisp in a heatproof bowl and set aside.
  • Once the spring onion in the infused oil is fully cooked and crispy, carefully strain the hot oil into the crisp mixture. It should sizzle nicely and turn the oil to a beautiful red colour.
  • Stir to combine and allow to cool slightly before adding the finishing ingredients to your tastes.
  • Make sure you cool the oil quickly and transfer to a sterilised jar in the fridge.
  • Consume within 4-10 days and freeze the remainder in small batches to be defrosted at your leisure.

Notes

  • Read the post for FODMAP notes, tips and tricks. Worth your time, I promise.
  • Ensure the spring onions are cooked until completely crispy (but not burnt). This helps minimise the risk from the spring onion.
  • The ginger is raw, so there’s not much we can do about that. If you’re concerned, you can cook the ginger with the spring onions. I would suggest adding the ginger when the oil is about 3/4 done.
  • Don’t leave the oil on the bench for hours to cool. Cool it quickly and then place it straight into the fridge. Botulism spores can grow at room temperature.
  • To be on the safe side, eat the chilli crisp relatively quickly after using it. Some health authorities suggest 10 days, others suggest only 4 days. Some people on Reddit say the threat is overhyped. Do what you are comfortable with.
  • This batch of chilli crisp makes quite a lot. Don’t panic that you won’t be able to get through it, though, because you can easily freeze it! I recommend freezing it in small containers and serving sizes. This way you can defrost what you need each time. Use the frozen and defrosted batch within the 4-10 day timeframe, then move onto your next container
Keyword Chilli crisp, Low FODMAP chilli crisp, Low FODMAP chilli oil, low fodmap vegan
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2 Comments

  1. Hi Goergia,
    I am really into Korean food, fermenting my own kimchi and traditional bean and chilli pastes. Their chilli flakes (coarsely ground) come in a variety of “spiciness”. The English translations on the packets is quite often non-existent, poor or ineffective. I have been learning Hangeul to deal with it. Korean chilli flakes are known as Gochugaru (고추가루). Mild is (deol-maewoon gochu-garu 덜매운 고춧가루) and hot (maewoon gochu-garu 매운 고춧가루), or also botongmat (보통맛), meaning medium spicy, or maeunmat (매운맛), meaning extra spicy. There is also chilli powder (finely ground) in different heat levels, but that is usually used for making gochujang (a fermented chilli paste). If any of you take the Hangeul lettering I’ve provided when shopping it should help to buy chilli flakes that suit your heat tolerances.

    1. This is incredible information, thanks Nic! I always seem to end up with a fairly mild bag of chilli flakes so I will definitely write this down next time I need some!

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