Sweet Chili Sauce

Divided water
2 cups wine vinegar
2 cups sugar
4 tablespoons red jalapeño, red Fresno, or red serrano pepper, stem removed, finely chopped
6 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Clear Gel cleanser (see below)
Prepare Clear Gel Cleanser:
Before you begin making the sweet chili sauce, ensure you have clear gel cleanser ready. This ingredient helps to thicken the sauce and achieve the desired consistency. You can find clear gel cleanser in the baking aisle of most grocery stores.
Combine Ingredients:

In a medium saucepan, combine water, wine vinegar, and sugar over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is fully dissolved.
Add Flavorings:
Stir in the chopped red peppers and minced garlic. Adjust the amount of peppers based on your desired level of spiciness. For a milder sauce, remove the seeds from the peppers before chopping.
Thicken the Sauce:
Gradually sprinkle the clear gel cleanser into the sauce while whisking continuously to prevent lumps from forming. Continue to whisk until the sauce thickens to your desired consistency.
Reduce the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together and the sauce to further thicken.
Cool and Store:
Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the sweet chili sauce cool to room temperature. Once cooled, transfer the sauce to sterilized glass jars or bottles for storage.
Your homemade Sweet Chili Sauce is now ready to use! Serve it alongside spring rolls, chicken wings, grilled shrimp, or use it as a glaze for meats and vegetables.

Cook’s Notes and Variations:
Adjusting Spiciness:
Customize the heat level of the sauce by varying the amount of red peppers used. You can also experiment with different types of chili peppers to achieve your preferred level of spiciness.
Adding Depth of Flavor:
Enhance the flavor profile of the sauce by incorporating additional ingredients such as ginger, lemongrass, or lime zest. These aromatic ingredients can take the sauce to the next level.
Making it Vegan:
To make this Sweet Chili Sauce vegan-friendly, substitute the sugar with a plant-based sweetener such as agave nectar or maple syrup.

Keto and Low-Carb Version:
Sugar-Free Sweetener:
For a keto-friendly version of this sauce, replace the sugar with a sugar-free sweetener such as erythritol or stevia. Be sure to adjust the quantity to taste, as sugar substitutes can vary in sweetness.
Reduced Vinegar:
To reduce the carb content further, you can decrease the amount of wine vinegar used in the recipe. Alternatively, you can use apple cider vinegar, which has a lower carbohydrate content.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
Q: How long does homemade Sweet Chili Sauce last? A: When stored properly in an airtight container in the refrigerator, homemade Sweet Chili Sauce can last for several weeks to a few months. Be sure to check for any signs of spoilage before using.

Q: Can I freeze Sweet Chili Sauce? A: Yes, Sweet Chili Sauce can be frozen for longer storage. Transfer it to freezer-safe containers or ice cube trays for portioning. Thaw the sauce in the refrigerator overnight before using.

Q: Is Clear Gel Cleanser necessary for this recipe? A: Clear Gel Cleanser helps to thicken the sauce and achieve the desired consistency. If you prefer a thinner sauce, you can omit this ingredient or use a cornstarch slurry as an alternative thickening agent.

Add a touch of sweetness and heat to your culinary creations with homemade Sweet Chili Sauce. Whether you’re spicing up a stir-fry, glazing grilled meats, or simply dipping spring rolls, this versatile condiment is sure to impress. With its customizable flavor and easy preparation, you’ll wonder why you ever bought store-bought sauce. Get ready to elevate your dishes and delight your taste buds with this irresistible Sweet Chili Sauce recipe!

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