Roasted Red Chili Paste (Nam Prik Pao) From 'Everyday Thai Cooking'

Everyday Thai Cooking cookbook cover

This earthy, spicy chili paste is from Katie Chin's Everyday Thai Cooking.

Reprinted with permission from Everyday Thai Cooking: Quick and Easy Family Style Recipes by Katie Chin. Copyright 2013. Published by Tuttle Publishing. All rights reserved. Available wherever books are sold.

Recipe Details

Roasted Red Chili Paste (Nam Prik Pao) From 'Everyday Thai Cooking'

Active 20 mins
Total 20 mins
Makes 1/2 cup


  • 4 tablespoons high-heat cooking oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 6 tablespoons finely chopped shallots
  • 1 tablespoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
  • 4 teaspoons fermented shrimp paste
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce (nam pla)
  • 3 tablespoons palm or brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind concentrate
  • 1 tablespoon water


  1. Heat the oil in a wok or skillet at medium high heat. Add the garlic and shallots and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Transfer garlic and shallots to a small bowl with a slotted spoon. Set aside. Leave the remaining oil in the pan.

  2. Combine the ground red pepper, shrimp paste, fish sauce, brown sugar, lime juice, tamarind concentrate, water, and reserved garlic and shallots in a small food processor. Pulse until a thick paste forms.

  3. Return the paste to the wok or skillet and stir it into the oil over low heat. Simmer gently and continue stirring until the mixture is a smooth, oily, and shimmering paste.