Skip to Content

Sweet and Savory: What Does Duck Sauce Taste Like?

Duck sauce is a condiment that is used in many cultures.

It can be found on top of a variety of dishes, such as dumplings and noodles.

It’s also used as an ingredient in Chinese cuisine. Duck sauce is made from soy sauce, ginger, garlic, apricots, and plum vinegar.

Duck sauce is a condiment that has become famous in the United States.

You can find it at many restaurant chains around the country.

If you are looking for international cuisine, try it out at Panda Express, offering chicken salad with mandarin oranges and topped off with duck sauce dressing.

So what does duck sauce taste like? This blog post will explore what the different flavors are in this tasty sauce.

What is Duck Sauce?

what is duck sauce

Duck sauce is a condiment that is typically paired with a dish containing duck meat.

The sauce can be spread on the surface of the food or served as a dipping sauce.

The sauce has been used as a dipping sauce for fried wontons, dumplings, or even French fries when the diner seeks more of an Asian-style flavor.

When Chinese immigrants in the United States created Peking duck, they found themselves without a sauce for their delicacy.

They improvised and added sweet bean paste to soy sauce, which produced an early version of what we know today as duck sauce.

Original duck sauce was made of plums, apricots, pineapples, or peaches with sugar and vinegar.

You can flavor up the sauce with ginger and chili peppers.

There are several brands of duck sauce available on the market.

The most popular commercial brand for this type of sauce would be Dai Day.

What Is Similar To Duck Sauce?

Duck sauce shares many similarities with other seasonings, but it also has many unique qualities that make it stand out.

If you’re looking for an alternative sauce, then try teriyaki sauce, which has many similarities in taste with duck sauce and will give your food the same sweet-tangy type of profile. 

But if you want something completely different from what’s typically served at Chinese restaurants, then go ahead and use barbecue sauce instead.

This tangier version will provide your dish with a new flavor without compromising on authenticity or traditional flavors.

Sweet and sour chicken can be prepared using either sweetened condensed milk or pineapple juice to provide the “sweet,” along with vinegar for the “sour.”

So does this mean that it’s possible to substitute one ingredient for another? In some cases, yes.

The taste of duck sauce is so unique that it is difficult to find something that could substitute for its flavor.

Is Duck Sauce Vegetarian?

The answer is yes. Duck sauce, despite its name, does not typically contain ducks or any other animal-based ingredients.

Instead, it’s an apricot-based sweet sauce that can be used on almost anything.

What Does Duck Sauce Taste Like? Does Duck Sauce Taste Good?

what does duck sauce taste like

Duck sauce is a rich and sweet apricot-based sauce that can be found in Chinese restaurants.

You’ll often taste sweetness, fruitiness from the apricots it contains, and some vinegar zest to balance out its flavor with something sour.

The most common variety of duck sauces has all these qualities at once: they’re tangy but not tart, fruity yet full-bodied enough to act as more than just “dressing.” It smells sweet and pleasantly floral.

Duck sauces are usually sweet with the same thickness and consistency as orange marmalade but without any peel’s bitterness from oranges.

The majority of duck sauces that you’ll find on the market are smooth, but some come with whole pieces and bits of fruit.

How Do You Use Duck Sauce?

As mentioned above, most people use duck sauce as a dipping condiment for their fries or other fried foods.

Different popular ways to consume it are, in fact, on top of your eggs and even over some pan-fried pasta dishes like lasagna.

You can use duck sauce as an ingredient in a marinade or mix it with soy sauce for variation.

Brush some onto pork chops before grilling them, and then brush more on when they are ready to be served.

Many restaurants will have specific bottles available to provide this tasty sauce with food orders, but you can also find it at most big grocery stores these days.

How To Make Duck Sauce Without Apricots?

how to make duck sauce without apricots

Traditional duck sauce is often made with the addition of apricots.

The fruit provides a sweet and tart flavor to balance out the salty meat in this dish, but not everyone likes adding it.

If you’re looking for an alternative that doesn’t use apricots, there are some things you can do instead.

Use apples instead; they’re another fruit that works well with the salty-sweet taste of duck sauce. And add some ginger to the sauce for a bit of kick.

You can also use fruit juice in place of apricots. Just mix up your favorite kind with sugar and vinegar, then pour it all over that delicious duck meat.

The final way to make this tasty sauce is by using oranges instead of apricots.

Slice them thinly, so they’re easy to coat on the chicken or duck.

And if you want more flavor, squeeze some fresh lemon into the mixture as well.

Try substituting honey or brown sugar for the sweetness provided by apricots.


Duck sauce is rich in fruitiness with an apricot base and can be found at Chinese restaurants.

It tastes sweet but not tart, fruity yet full-bodied enough to act as dressing on your food. If you have never tried it before, try it today.

what does duck sauce taste like

What Does Duck Sauce Taste Like? Does Duck Sauce Taste Good?

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Food Taste
Servings 1 Serving


  • Duck sauce
  • Ingredients from your favorite recipes


  • Depending on the recipes you choose, the taste can vastly differ.
  • For authentic results, it is important to choose a recipe that will highlight the original flavor.
  • Have fun experimenting with different recipes and taste tests!
Did you make this recipe?Mention @EatDelights or tag #eatdelights!

About The Author

Sharing is caring!

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)
Recipe Rating