Hot Pot Broth

Infusing chicken stock with fresh herbs and aromatics, as well as classic condiments like hot chile-sesame oil and chile bean sauce, quickly adds layers of flavor. Keep the additional salt light—the broth will become saltier as you cook ingredients in it. Use this broth for our Steak-and-Shrimp Hot Pot recipe.

Total Time:
50 mins
8 cups


  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons Chiu Chow–style chile oil (such as Lee Kum Kee) or hot chile-sesame oil

  • 9 garlic cloves, smashed

  • 1 (3-inch) piece fresh ginger, thinly sliced (about 1/4 cup)

  • 1 (5-ounces) bunch scallions, quartered

  • 6 whole star anise

  • 3 black cardamom pods

  • 2 tablespoons toban djan or chile bean sauce (such as Lee Kum Kee)

  • 3 quarts best-quality lower-sodium chicken broth (such as Imagine)

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, plus more to taste


  1. Heat sesame oil and chile oil in a large saucepan over medium; add garlic, ginger, and scallions. Cook, stirring often, until scallion mixture is wilted and ginger is caramelized in spots, 5 to 7 minutes. Add star anise and cardamom; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add chile bean sauce, and stir to coat. Add chicken broth, and bring to a boil over high.

  2. Reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring and scraping bottom of pan occasionally, until broth is spicy, aromatic, and has a slight smokiness from the cardamom, about 20 minutes. Strain broth; discard solids. Stir in soy sauce, adding more to taste.

Make Ahead

Broth can be made 2 days in advance, or frozen up to 3 months.


Chile oil, black cardamom, and toban djan can be found at your local Asian grocery store.

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