Sambal Belacan

Sambal Belacan Recipe

Check Out: Sambal Tumis Recipe

A bottle of homemade sambal belacan (belachan) – a handy condiment to have. I am a self confessed sambal belachan addict. Now that I started making my own sambal belachan chilli, there is no turning back for me. It is such a handy condiment to keep in the fridge – you can add a little to any dish for some heat and it’s a nice chilli condiment for almost any Asian dish such as fried bee hoon and fried rice.

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You can use it for stir-fries (pictured above), or fry it with some dried shrimps, garlic and shallots for a more Chinese version of spicy dried shrimps, or more commonly known locally as hae bee hiam. Making your sambal belachan is really easy since there is no cooking involved (except for toasting the belacan beforehand). Mine is the simple version where there is no prolonged frying of the paste involved. It stores in the fridge for slightly more than a week. Sambal Belacan Recipe

Sambal Belacan Recipe

A little warning though - your kitchen will smell kind of pungent when you make sambal or when you cook with sambal - but to me, a small price to pay for something so delicious.

Serves: a small bottle

Prep Time: 10 mins


  • 5 finger length chilli deseeded
  • 3 chilli padi aka bird's eye chilli (no need to deseed - for the heat; to taste)
  • 30g belachan toasted in a dry pan
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3/4 tbsp lime juice from small limes (calamansi)
  • 1/8 tsp salt

Tools Needed

  • A mini blender/food processor OR mortar & pestle


  1. In a blender, grind chillis and belachan. You can also pound the ingredients using a mortar & pestle.
  2. Transfer blended paste to a small bowl. Add sugar, lime juice and salt to taste. Stir to mix well. You can store the chilli in refrigerator for one week or so. It can be used as a chilli condiment or in stir fries.

Noob Cook Tips

  1. Wear disposable plastic gloves when de-seeding chilli to prevent chilli burn.
  2. If you do not have calamansi, you can substitute with larger lime or lemon (though I think calamansi gives it the best taste).