The following excerpt and recipe is from James Park's new cookbook "Chili Crisp: 50+ Recipes to Satisfy Your Spicy, Crunchy, Garlicky Cravings," available now on Amazon.

This chili crisp gets down to basics with only three components: oil, chili flakes, and crunch. Unlike Everyday Savory Chili Crisp (page 18), which is packed with complex, garlicky, umami flavors, Very Nutty Chili Crisp lets the texture of chopped nuts costar alongside the spice of chili flakes. It tastes super clean, with a pleasant amount of spice at the end, and the oil smells aromatic and deliciously nutty thanks to a blend of chopped nuts. After testing Lao Gan Ma, one of my favorite chili crisps, in my dessert recipes with unpleasant results, I came up with this chili crisp specifically to complement desserts. It has a little bit of umami from fried chili flakes, so a dollop of this will really elevate the taste of sweets. I honestly swear by using Very Nutty Chili Crisp whenever I make desserts. You can, of course, use this for savory dishes, such as biscuits or noodles.

Very Nutty Chili Crisp

  • Prep Time:10 mins
  • Cook Time:3 mins
  • Total Time:13 mins
  • Servings:2
  • Easy


  • 5 tbsp 40 g gochugaru
  • 5 tbsp 40 g Sichuan chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp Aleppo pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup 140 g coarsely chopped nuts see Notes
  • 1½ cups 360 ml neutral oil such as vegetable or canola
Photo by Heami Lee
  • Step 1

    In a heatproof medium bowl, combine the gochugaru, Sichuan chili flakes, Aleppo pepper flakes, sugar, and salt. Set aside. In a dry small saucepan over medium heat, toast the chopped nuts for 3 to 5 minutes, or until lightly browned but not completely dark. Add the toasted nuts to the bowl with the spices.

  • Step 2

    In the same small saucepan over high heat, add the oil and heat for 3 minutes, or until lightly smoking. Carefully drizzle the hot oil into the bowl of nuts and spices. Let the hot oil sizzle for the flavors to bloom. If it doesn’t sizzle, heat the oil in 30-second intervals. Let it sit for 5 minutes, then mix everything together. Let the mixture come to room temperature, then transfer it to an airtight container. It can be stored in the fridge about 3 months. You can store it at room temperature, but for longer storage, keep it in the refrigerator.