The 5 Greatest Black Soy Sauce Substitutes

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Dark soy sauce, often known as black soy sauce in Chinese cookery, is a thick black soy sauce prepared from fermented soybeans.

Black Soy Sauce is most often found in Cantonese cuisine, where it is the go-to sauce for roast duck and char siu dishes.

It’s also a marinade for grilled pork.

Many black soy sauces are aged for anything between six months and many years.

This technique darkens the sauce and provides a new layer of taste.

The longer the sauce is aged, the darker and more viscous it gets.

It is a necessary element in Chinese cookery.

Sadly, it is not usually accessible outside of Asia.

As a consequence, many individuals are obliged to produce their own substitutions or find other sources of black soy sauce.

So what are the best alternatives? And which ones should you stay away from? You may be surprised by the answers.

What exactly is Black Soy Sauce?

Black soy sauce, or lo chu in Chinese, is created by gradually boiling soybeans until they attain the required amount of blackness.

As a consequence, a salty condiment with global appeal has emerged.

Black soy sauce is a Chinese condiment that is used in mapo tofu, black vinegar chicken, and pork belly.

It has a richer, smokier taste than lighter soy sauces.

The condiment is popular in Chinese, Korean, and Japanese cuisine.

The presence of molasses in black soy sauce distinguishes it.

This gives the sauce a thicker consistency than lighter soy sauce variations.

What are some popular applications for black soy sauce?

Because of its deep, smokey taste, Black Soy Sauce has gained popularity across the globe.

It is widely available in supermarkets and is used in a variety of recipes.

Some typical applications for black soy sauce include:

  • Stir fry vegetables.
  • Braised meat (e.g., pork belly).
  • Cooked fish.
  • Stir fry noodles.
  • Szechuan cuisine.
  • Mapo tofu.

The 5 Greatest Black Soy Sauce Substitutes

If you can’t obtain black soy sauce in your region, there are plenty of other options.

1 Aminos de Coco

Coconut aminos is a plant-based replacement that you may use instead.

It will not only lower your salt consumption, but it will also eliminate the gluten and soy contained in normal soy sauce.

Because of its various health advantages, this condiment has recently gained popularity.

It naturally includes 17 amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Coconut aminos may be used in almost any meal that calls for soy sauce.

This condiment is perfect if you want to cut down on salt or avoid the gluten and soy present in traditional soy sauce.

It’s created from coconut sap combined with sea salt.

It may be used in practically any recipe in place of traditional soy sauce.

Tamari 2

Tamari is becoming popular in many families throughout the globe owing to its potential to minimize salt consumption.

It is also becoming more popular among individuals who follow gluten-free diets.

This condiment is often seen in Japanese foods.

It is prepared from fermented soybeans and includes less wheat than other soy sauce kinds.

Tamari may be used in place of black soy sauce in practically any recipe.

It is also high in antioxidants and minerals including calcium, copper, iron, and magnesium.

Moreover, tamari contains anti-inflammatory effects.

3 tbsp. light soy sauce

Another fantastic option is light soy sauce.

Soy sauce is commonly manufactured from fermented soybeans and includes less wheat than other soy sauce variants, such as dark or light soy sauce.

The difference between light and dark soy sauce is that the latter contains molasses, which gives it a deeper color and a sweeter taste.

If you like a bolder, saltier flavor, light soy sauce is an excellent substitute.

Light soy sauce may be used in cooking as well as in dipping sauces.

The taste of light soy sauce complements meats, seafood, veggies, and fowl.

Teriyaki Sauce 4

Teriyaki sauce is another excellent and simple option for black soy sauce.

Teriyaki sauce may be used in almost any meal that calls for black soy sauce.

It’s created with mushrooms, soy sauce, mirin (rice cooking wine), sugar, and garlic.

These ingredients are then blended and cooked until the sauce thickens.

During this procedure, the sauce may caramelize even further.

As a consequence, the sauce is somewhat sweet with flavors of garlic, ginger, and rice wine.

This sauce is quite flexible and may be used in cooking or as a marinade.

Teriyaki sauce goes well with meats, veggies, and seafood.

Oyster Sauce 5

Oyster sauce has more umami than black soy sauce because of the monosodium glutamate.

As a consequence, it is quite flavorful and may be utilized in a variety of cuisines.

When it comes to seafood, oyster sauce is a popular addition.

It provides just the right amount of flavor without being overpowering or too salty.

If your recipe requires an umami-rich flavor, you may replace oyster sauce.

This item is also ideal for stir-fry meals, noodles, fried rice, and veggies.

This sauce is usually created using oyster extract, mushrooms, sugar, and soy sauce.

As a consequence, the flavor is robust and rich, but not overbearing or salty.


In Chinese, Japanese, and Korean cuisines, black soy sauce is often used.

Yet, there are several alternatives to black soy sauce that you may use in your cuisine.

These soy sauce replacements have a distinct taste and may be used in a variety of cuisines.

Also, just because you’re eliminating gluten or soy doesn’t mean the food has to be boring.

Several of these sauces lend a distinctive flavor to your favorite meals.

If you have any additional options for substituting black soy sauce, please provide them in the comments section below.

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