How to Make Wontons in Sichuan Chili Oil (Chao Shou)

By CiCi Li, NTD Television
March 15, 2016 5:10 pm Last Updated: March 16, 2016 4:40 pm

Sichuan people call wontons “chao shou,” and a classic Sichuan dish is wontons in Sichuan chili oil (in Chinese, “hong you chao shou”). Chao shou is translated as “crossed arms.”

(Courtesy of CiCi Li)
(Courtesy of CiCi Li)

Back in ancient times, Sichuan people liked to eat wontons in Sichuan chili oil in winter. The weather was cold, so people would cross their arms to keep warm. And if you can visualize it, it’s also looks like how the two lower corners of the wontons are folded over one another. 

Today, we’re going to make wontons in Sichuan chili oil.

(Courtesy of CiCi Li)
(Courtesy of CiCi Li)

Wontons in Sichuan Chili Oil

Prep and Cook Time

1 hour

Number Serves



  • 24 square wonton wrappers
  • 8 ounces minced pork
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of pepper
  • A pinch of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch mixed with 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil 
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, minced
  • 2 tablespoons carrots, minced (Fun fact: Carrots are exceptionally rich source of carotenes and vitamin A. Studies have found that flavonoid compounds in carrots may offer protection from skin, lung, and oral cavity cancers.)
  • 1 stalk scallions, chopped
  • A pinch of sesame seeds for garnish 

For the Sauce:

  • 6 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons chili oil
  • 1 tablespoon black vinegar 
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder 
  • 1/2 teaspoon of sugar
  • A pinch Chinese pepper powder


To make the sauce, mix the soy sauce, chili oil, black vinegar, sesame oil, 1 chili powder, sugar, Chinese pepper powder in small bowl.

To make the filling, combine in a big bowl the minced pork, soy sauce, salt, pepper, sugar, cornstarch water mix, beaten egg, sesame oil, minced cilantro, and minced carrots. Stir in a circular motion until everything is well mixed.

Dampen the edges of the wrapper with water. Place a teaspoon of filling in the center of a wonton wrapper. Fold the wrapper in half to create a rectangular shape. Fold the sides inward so that they overlap. Wet the portion where the sides meet. Pinch to close and seal.

Boil water in a big pot, then add a pinch of salt and a drizzle of oil to the hot water (the salt will make the wontons soup nice and clear later, and the oil will prevent the dumplings from sticking together). Then add the wontons  and stir slowly with the back of a ladle. Cover with a lid. Once the water is boiled, add 1/4 cup cold water. Repeat this step three more times. Transfer the wontons out immediately with a strainer. Add the desired amount of the sauce to the wontons and toss them to coat evenly. Garnish with some chopped scallions and sesame seeds and serve.

CiCi Li is the host of “CiCi’s Food Paradise” on NTD Television. Join her and discover quick and healthy recipes at