This sweet and spicy halloumi can be ready in just 15 minutes, and it's got incredible flavour - it's sweet and sticky, spicy, and salty, all at once.
If you're a halloumi lover, this one's for you! I think this might just be one of the best halloumi recipes I've ever made. Big chunks of squidgy halloumi in a sticky, sweet and spicy sauce... it's heaven. And it's super, super easy to make.
Squidgy halloumi cheese
The big pieces in the photos may look an awful lot like chicken, but rest assured - halloumi is in fact a type of Cypriot cheese. It doesn't melt, unlike lots of other cheeses, so it's perfect for cooking with, as it holds its shape.
I've written about halloumi cheese plenty of times in the past, but whereas I usually cook halloumi in thin slices until it's nice and crispy, I did something a bit different with it this time.
Instead, I cooked it in the sauce, so it didn't crisp up, but rather it softened and stayed moist. The big chunks of soft, squidgy cheese are an absolute delight.
The liquid that the cheese releases usually cooks off, but this method means that instead, it adds flavour to the sauce, helping to make it creamy and silky.
How to make sweet and spicy halloumi
This dish really couldn't be more simple to make. It's absolutely foolproof.
Step 1: Cook off the aromatics
I started by frying off some spring onions, garlic, and red chilli in a frying pan - all chopped nice and small. They only need a few minutes, just until they are soft and aromatic.
Already, things should be smelling pretty amazing!
Step 2: Add the remaining ingredients
Next, you can add all the remaining ingredients. Told you it was easy!
Along with big chunks of halloumi cheese, you also need to add the sauce ingredients.
Put a lid on the pan, and leave it to simmer for a few minutes. As the cheese softens and releases its liquid, the sauce becomes beautifully glossy.
That's all there is to it!
Sweet and spicy sauce
This sauce is truly delicious. If I didn't know better, I wouldn't believe how few ingredients it has:
- hot sauce
That's pretty much it. Of course, it also gains flavour from the garlic, chilli and spring onions that begin the recipe, not to mention the salty halloumi liquid. But the fact that you only really need to add two ingredients (plus a splash of water) to create the sauce means this truly is an incredibly easy recipe.
The sauce is spicy, sticky, sweet and salty - it's got a bit of everything.
How to serve sweet and spicy halloumi
If you can resist eating the whole lot straight out of the pan, there are all sorts of ways you could serve this saucy halloumi. The flavours are incredible, so any kind of simple carb would be amazing alongside, as well as some extra veg.
I served mine with some rice and salad. Other good options:
- stirring it through pasta
- serving it on toasted bread (halloumi on toast is spectacular!)
- serving alongside some homemade potato wedges
- or just on its own, with some crusty bread to mop up the sauce
Some roasted vegetables would be a great addition too.
Can you reheat halloumi?
Halloumi is always best eaten as soon as it's cooked. That way, it's still soft and delightfully squidgy. If you leave it to sit for any amount of time, it firms up and becomes a bit too chewy and squeaky.
However, if for whatever reason you want to prepare this dish in advance, you can reheat it in the microwave. When the halloumi is warmed up, it does regain its squidginess - but again, it's best eaten as soon as it's reheated, rather than letting it cool again.
Sweet and Spicy Halloumi
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- ½ tablespoon oil
- 2 small spring onions, finely diced
- ½ mild red chilli, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 450 g (~ 1 lb) halloumi cheese, cut into chunky pieces
- 2 tablespoon water
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce
- ½ tablespoon honey
- Heat a dash of oil in a frying pan, and add the chopped spring onions, chilli and garlic. Cook over a medium heat for a few minutes, until soft and aromatic.
- Add the chunks of halloumi, water, hot sauce, and honey. Bring to a gentle simmer, and allow to cook for 5-10 minutes, until the halloumi is soft and squidgy, and the sauce is creamy and slightly sticky.
- Serve immediately.
Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on your exact ingredients. Please calculate your own nutritional values if you require accuracy for health reasons.