sambal cumi

Sambal Cumi: a Great Baby Squid Sambal

Welcome to another great sambal recipe! Sambal cumi is a sambal that uses fried baby squid as its main ingredient, really amazing in taste! Try it out if you’re into a spicy, squid recipe.

To make sambal cumi, simply fry some baby squid. Chop and grind chillies, garlic and onion, fry the mixture and add the baby squid! That’s it, simple and delicious.

What is sambal cumi?

Sambal cumi is where tradition meets innovation, creating an unforgettable taste experience. Literally translated to ‘squid sambal’, it’s a celebration of Indonesia’s rich culinary landscape, bringing together tender baby squid and a vibrant mix of spices in a dance of flavors.

This dish isn’t just food; it’s a story of culture, flavor, and passion served on a plate. Let’s get started!

Step 1: Collect the ingredients

sambal cumi

Sambal cumi

Sambal cumi! This amazing baby squid sambal you definitely want to try if you're into a fish sambal, this one is one of my absolute favorites! Enjoy.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Sambal
Cuisine Indonesian
Servings 4
Calories 88.8 kcal


  • Food processor


  • 500 g fresh baby squid
  • 4 large chillies of mixed color
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 garlic cloves


  • 1 tsp paprika powder
  • 1 tsp palm sugar
  • 2 kaffir lime leaves
  • salt to taste


  • Collect the ingredients
  • Fry the baby squid
  • Chop and grind the ingredients
  • Fry sambal cumi
  • Serve and conserve sambal cumi
Keyword Sambal cumi

Note: the given kcal count is based on an online calculator and should be taken with a grain of salt. Your caloric content might deviate from it!

Step 2: Fry the baby squid

First fry the baby squid until crispy, set a pan with a generous amount of oil on high heat. Once hot, check the temperature of the oil with a single squid before adding the rest.

frying baby squid beginning
frying baby squid

Fry for a few minutes, they should start to curl up and become more sturdy. Make sure they are crispy when removed from the oil.

fried baby squid
fried baby squid with paprika powder

Next, add the paprika powder for color and flavor, enhancing the sambal overall taste.

Step 3: Chop and grind the ingredients

Next, wash the chillies and chop them roughly. Peel the onion and garlic and chop roughly as well. Alternatively, chop them finely if you plan on using a mortar and pestle. Otherwise, let the food processor do the work for you!

ground ingredients

Grind the chopped ingredients using your method of choice, find out about the best food processors if you are interested!

Step 4: Fry sambal cumi

Reuse the pan from before, remove most of the oil and set it back to medium-high heat. Add the ground ingredients, palm sugar and lime leaves and stir-fry for a minute or 2.

frying ground ingredients
fried ground ingredients

Once the ingredients start to become glossy, add the baby squid and stir-fry for another minute or 2. That’s it!

adding squid to pan
fried sambal cumi

Step 5: Serve and conserve sambal cumi

Congratulations on making sambal cumi! Serve it immediately for the best experience. I recommend serving it with the following:

sambal cumi served

There you have it, I hope you’ve enjoyed this recipe as much as I did! Let me know in the comments below what you think and for now, selamat makan!

Consider trying out some of my other sambal recipes:

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