Chili Eggs

Indonesian sambal telur, chili eggs

Another fiery egg dish, absolutely my favorite. Our version of chili egg (or infamously known as Sambal Telur) is crusty hard-boiled eggs with chili paste. In my humble opinion, a good dose of chili egg should have coarsely textured red chilies and super oily. It should be sweet and spicy at the same time. There are times when I have a plate of hot steamed rice with just chili eggs. I can eat up the whole batch, with my left hand getting ready grabbing a big glass of ice water. I will be damn sweaty and I will feel as if my tongue is burning in my mouth .. but I will be content.

Chili paste for sambal telur

The first step is to prepare the chili paste (or sambal). The chili paste I used is the red chili paste with tomato. We boiled the chilies, tomato and shallots before grinding them. Whether to have the paste really fine or not is a matter of personal preference. I think coarse chili paste is really pretty, especially when you can still see pieces of the little red devil that would be burning your tongue!

Preparing eggs for sambal telur, chili eggs

Aren’t those the fugliest hard-boiled eggs you have ever seen? I am very ashamed of myself, but I didn’t have enough time to boil new eggs. I love to fry the eggs in hot oil for a few minutes to get the nice brown crust. It really gives the chili egg a nice bite. Also, the crust hid the ugliness of the eggs

Stir-frying chili eggs, sambal telur

Lastly, fry the chili paste in oil till nicely cooked and fragrant, toss in the eggs and the sambal telur will be ready in a couple of minutes! Serve them with steamed rice or coconut rice (nasi lemak, recipe here)


Chilli Eggs (Sambal Goreng Telur)

Makes 4 servings


5 chilies
2 shallots
1 clove garlic
1 tomato
1/2 tsp sugar
1/3 tsp salt
4 tbsp oil, more for frying eggs
3 eggs, hard-boiled and peeled


Boil chilies, shallots, garlic and tomato in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain well and grind them up into a coarse paste

Fry eggs in hot oil and set aside for later use

Heat cooking oil in a wok and fry the chili paste for two minutes. Add the fried eggs and stir-fry for two more minutes. Remove from heat and serve with rice

Remove chili seeds if you don't want it to be too hot
White sugar can be substituted with pam sugar (or gula melaka), but can't be omitted. This dish is meant to be sweet
Another alternative, a more authentic one, is to fry chilies, shallots, garlic and paste in oil over high heat in a wok before grinding. That will result in super oily sambal telur!

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22 Responses to “Chili Eggs”

  1. 1

    Cooking Gallery — October 21, 2010 @ 3:43 pm

    I haven’t had this for a while…This looks great and mouthwatering and as always…I love your photography :) !

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 4:49 am

      Thank you! I find it extremely difficult to take decent picture of sambal dishes. The red color is always too overwhelming – I need to practice more. :)

  2. 2

    Prerna@IndianSimmer — October 21, 2010 @ 4:36 pm

    In Indian cuisine we too have something similar to this n that’s called egg curry. This one really looks fiery :-)

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 4:49 am

      Yes I checked out your egg curry recipe! Those are delicious!

  3. 3

    tigerfish — October 21, 2010 @ 8:39 pm

    I love chili eggs and how easy it is to prepare it. :D

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 4:50 am

      It is very easy!

  4. 4

    noobcook — October 22, 2010 @ 7:18 am

    You always make me so hungry looking at your food, Jun. And so nice to deep fry the eggs before stir frying with the chilli paste… this is good stuff!

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 5:01 am

      Thank you, Wiffy!

  5. 5

    pigpigscorner — October 22, 2010 @ 8:26 am

    I’ve been seeing this a lot! I have some spice paste in the fridge and might just try this. Looks amazing. You mentioned sweet and spicy, is it like sweet Thai chili sauce?

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 5:07 am

      It is more like 75% spicy and 25% sweet :D

  6. 6

    Maya — October 22, 2010 @ 10:13 pm

    My mom used to make this a lot!!!! Sweet memories :)

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 5:12 am

      Mee too!

  7. 7

    Judy — October 23, 2010 @ 4:46 pm

    Yum! I always order this when I want nasi padang. It’s great to be able to make it at home now and not crave it for days =)

    • Jun replied: — October 25th, 2010 @ 5:11 am

      Nasi padang? You lived in Indonesia before? I haven’t met anyone who commented here before who knows nasi padang! :) Yayy to Nasi Padang!

  8. 8

    zen chests — October 27, 2010 @ 3:04 am

    Oh my! This is wonderful! Something really new to me. I think this is really going to be a perfect lunch!

    • Jun replied: — November 5th, 2010 @ 2:13 am

      Keep the iced water close by! :D

  9. 9

    Carolyn Jung — October 28, 2010 @ 4:19 am

    Dare I say that these look like they’d be incredible with ice cold beer? Oooh, spicy egg snacks that are good for you, too. ;)

    • Jun replied: — November 5th, 2010 @ 2:14 am

      You are right!

  10. 10

    Atanid — February 8, 2011 @ 10:22 am

    Owww. My fav. “Sambal Telur”. My first time and i have fallen in love with your blog, You made the cooking easy and the images are soooo tempting.

  11. 11

    erna dyanty — June 2, 2011 @ 11:55 am

    thanks for the recipe, have been trying to find out how to make this one.
    question? why boil all the ingredients? does it do anything to the ingredients?

    love your blog!

    • Jun replied: — June 5th, 2011 @ 6:11 am

      There are two ways of preparing the chili paste. Sometimes we omit the boiling part, but we stir-fry the paste longer on the wok with oil (before adding the eggs). Chili paste should taste pretty rounded, without any hint of raw-ness (or earthy), so one of the ways to ensure that is to deep-fry ingredients before grinding them, or boiling.

  12. 12

    shuhan — May 10, 2012 @ 3:44 am

    ok that’s the dish I meant. I referred to this in my previous comment on your latest post. this is yum! I love your photos!

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