Schezwan Sauce Without Onion And Garlic

Schezwan Sauce Without Onion And Garlic

Last week, I went to my friend’s home to wish her little son a belated birthday. When she introduced me to her mother in law and told her that I specialize in sattvic food, the lady did not hesitate to tell me upfront “ is not my kind of food! I like tasty food with a lot of masalas in it.”

As I entered the elevator, I remembered a follower writing to me about an argument with her friend. When her friend claimed that sattvic food cannot have variety and is not interesting, she only had to direct him here to dispel his notion.

That made me happy but at the same time sad. Sattvic food has its roots in Ayurveda, the oldest science of medicine for the body and mind, known to have originated in India, thousands of years ago. There was a time, when Ayurvedic tips and tricks were known and followed in every household in India. Unfortunately over a period of time this was lost and most of us became unaware of this precious art of healing.

And its quite unfortunate when others across the globe are realizing the benefits of this age old system, while many of us look at it with a degree of skepticism.

My whole endeavor here is to showcase the wide variety of pure vegetarian (sattvic) food that one can make for oneself and the family. And yes, sattvic food is far from boring! And sattvic food, literally feeds your body, mind and soul. The many people I have fed from so many walk of life, eminent film makers, artists, scientists, doctors, engineers and others have not been able to detect any missing element in my food.

You can also make great Indo Chinese food without onions and garlic. When I started to cook, my Indo Chinese food was one of the most loved amongst my friends and family members. I mostly cooked Cantonese style of dishes, (relatively less spicier than Schezwan or Sichuan food) which unfortunately haven’t made their way in here, as yet.

I intend to correct this lapse and promise to feature many Chinese and Indo-Chinese dishes in the near future. Let’s start with this lip smacking Schezwan sauce. You can use this sauce to make any Schezwan style Indo Chinese recipes. And you can also use it to make a dip to serve with chips and any other snacks that need a dip with a punch.

This sauce is very easy to make and you can always have a batch of it frozen in the refrigerator to cook dishes with fresh vegetables and other ingredients.

I used this Schezwan sauce to cook a delicious wholewheat and noodle dish when I freshly made it. I see myself using this sauce to make Schezwan fried rice and also mixing it into soups and stir fries.

Make this sauce with your favourite chilies or a mix of many different chilies which will give the right balance of colour and pungency. Since I had only Guntur chilies on hand, I used them. Next time around, I plan to use a mix of Kashmiri and Byadgi chilies too. I usually have a stock of these chilies along with Salem Gundu chilies, but it was one of those very rare days, when I had only Guntur chilies on hand and there was no way, I was going to stop my experiment for the lack of a certain variety of ingredient (I’m quite rigid when it comes to ingredients, but this time around the desire to make this sauce was so strong, that I just couldn’t wait!).

This sauce is so good, that it can perk up many meals. You can use this to cook Indo Chinese dishes and also find other ways to add zest to your food. And once, you try it, you will be assured that food without onion and garlic is not dull and boring and can infact taste as good or even better since there are no overpowering flavours and one actually gets to taste the real flavor of the vegetables and spices used in the dish.


Schezwan Sauce Without Onion And Garlic

A spicy sauce with chilies. Can be used as a dip or mixed into several dishes. Use a mix of different chilies for an interesting mix of flavours.



20 dry red chilies*

3 tbsp oil

1 tbsp finely chopped celery sticks

1 tbsp freshly grated ginger

½ tsp asafetida* (optional)

1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1 tsp salt or to taste

For a dipping sauce:

2 tbsp tomato ketchup or puree

2 tsp soy sauce

1 tsp sugar



Remove the stem from the chilies and soak them in water for 2 hours. Drain the water, reserving a little water to grind the chilies.

Blend the soaked chilies to a smooth paste, using a little water.

In a wok, heat the oil and put in the chopped celery and ginger. Stir fry for a minute, add in the optional asafetida if using and then stir the red chili paste.

Cook until the chili paste is nicely cooked and oil begins to ooze out.

Stir in the apple cider vinegar and salt. Cook for a couple of minutes more and turn off the heat.

You can use this sauce for cooking any Schezwan dish. To use as a dipping sauce, add tomato ketchup, soy sauce and a little sugar to balance the hot flavours.


  • You can use an assortment of chilies to get your desired colour and heat.
  • Since there is no onion or garlic in the recipe, a little asafetida helps to improve the taste and flavor and you wont even be able to detect it once it blends into the spices.
  • Use regular Vinegar, if apple cider vinegar is not available.



To receive recipes, tips and inspiration that feeds your body, mind and soul subscribe to Divine Taste newsletter

21 thoughts on “Schezwan Sauce Without Onion And Garlic

  1. Dear Anushruti,

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe. I'll surely be trying it out with maybe half or even less amount of chillies though:))
    I'm a big fan of your cooking style and enjoy your blog. I just wanted to say that according to Bhagavad Gita, food that is cooked with lots of chilies that is pungent is considered to be Rajasic (in the mode of passion) and not sattvic (mode of goodness).
    Of course, since onions and garlic are excluded, at least it's not Tamasic(mode of ignorance).
    Just sharing my realizations, please do not take it personally.

  2. Hi there,
    Hailing from an orthodox family and increasing becoming so myself, the one thing I've been feeling morose about is the lack of sattvic/jain Indo Chinese food outside. I used to love Schezwan fried rice before, so can't wait to try this! Thanks a ton!

  3. Dear Anusruthi,

    I always admire your recipes and pics. Good to see a blog full of recipes without onion and garlic. But unfortunately, like many people, even you did not understand the meaning of "Saatvic". Just eliminating Onion/Garlic doesnt make a dish, Saatvic. The food should not be dominating in any taste. It should have all 6 tastes but nothing dominating, like this schezwan sauce. Also leftover food, canned food, packaged food, restaurant food- all these are considered "Non Saatvic". Even vinegar, pickles ,sauces, ketchup stimulate your senses and hence considered Rajaasic. Mushrooms are considered Tamasic. Many food blogger who feel proud that they cook Saatvic food actually have only limited knowledge about saatvic,rajaasic & tamaasic.
    So, please try to understand that "Saatvic" MEANS A LOT. This comment is not to hurt anyone and its just a suggestion. Nowadays people learn a lot of things from blogs. So, information posted should be reliable and true.

    Best Wishes,

  4. 1. Usha: My pleasure!

    2. Sundaripriya Devi Dasi: Glad to know that you enjoy my recipes. Apart from excess chilies, there are lot of ingredients that are considered rajasic or tamasic. Please do keep in mind that we would be using this sauce in a dish, like we would use chilli powder. You can use it as little or as much as you want. Also, I'm sure you are aware that when food is offered to the Supreme Lord, it transcends the 3 modes or gunas.

    3. Divya Srinivas:Hope you will find the missing flavours with this sauce. It is truly delectable, can be used in a variety of dishes and I'm quite proud about this recipe.

    4. Vir- No, it doesnt contain alcohol. I wouldnt use anything with alcohol in this space.

    5. Divya- Nice to know you enjoy my recipes. I don't know what you mean by referring to other food bloggers, but let me point out to you that you are talking to someone who has dedicated her life to propagate the beneficial aspects of sattvic food.

    I actually live the philosophy I believe in. When I was referring to sattvic food in the above post, I was referring to the innumerable dishes that are on this site. You are right when you say that just eliminating onion garlic from a diet does not make it sattvic. But, it is not easy to categorize individual foods as sattvic, rajasic or tamasic because any food can be cooked and eaten under conditions where the gunas can change. For example, fruits are considered sattvic, but when made into a cake with eggs, the apples are no longer sattvic. Likewise, vinegar is generally considered tamasic, but a little amount of naturally made apple cider vinegar is considered very good for digestion, according to Ayurveda (from where the concept of sattvic food arises). Many similar examples can be given. It is important to also consider the subtle aspects of food, while deciding what to eat.

    As a general rule, I do not use meat, fish, eggs, alcohol, onions and garlic in all my recipes. I would definitely use the above recipe if I were teaching a pure vegetarian workshop, as it is important for me to showcase the wide variety of vegetarian food.

    But, if I were teaching a pure sattvic cooking workshop, I would not include this recipe.
    Also, when you offer food to the Supreme creator, food transcends the three modes and acquires a spiritual quality.

    6. Tanisha- You are most welcome.

  5. Thank you so much for this recipe! I will be eagerly waiting for more of your Indo Chinese recipes. I'm not good at cooking this cuisine so I have it when we dine out. However I try my best not to think about the preservatives, MSG and whatnots that are in the sauces.

  6. Hare krsna !! Thank you for this beautiful post and recipe I've been following Your blogs and videos and I truly admire how you explain sattvic/Vedic foods and food habits ! Like you rightly said the world is acknowledging Ayurveda and I hope all of us also realize what a great treasure we have in india in the form of our vedas that promote a healthy and natural lifestyle!

  7. Hare Krishna mataji. Thanks a tonne, for your no onion no garlic recipes. It helped me a lot. Can I know how to make tomato ketch up at home, because I don't believe outside food won't contain onion garlic. Kindly help me out.
    Thanks a lot again.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *