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Flavorful Alternatives: Discover the Top 5 Substitutes for Sweet Soy Glaze

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Have you ever ventured into the realm of Asian stir-fries, only to find yourself comfortably ensconced in a world of complex flavors?

Sweet soy glaze is a characteristic condiment of oriental cuisine that has gained popularity over the past few years.

It’s become almost synonymous with easily preparing exotic dishes.

But what happens if you don’t have it at home, or worse yet, don’t know how to use it?

Don’t worry—you can substitute sweet soy glaze with other syrupy sweeteners like hoisin sauce or honey.

With a little creativity and culinary know-how, you can create the same magical flavors without leaving your kitchen.

Here are five alternatives to explore that will certainly tantalize your taste buds.

What’s Sweet Soy Glaze?

Sweet Soy Glaze, also known as Sweet Soysauce, is a type of Asian condiment made from fermented soybeans.

It has a rich, sweet flavor that can add depth and complexity to any dish.

Generally used as a marinade for meat or fish dishes, it can also be used as an alternative to traditional sauces and dressings for salads or stir-fries.

The fragrance of sweet soy glaze is often described as umami—a Japanese term meaning “savory.

” This makes it ideal for using in dishes that require intense flavor with a light touch.

Sweet Soy Glaze has long been used in many Chinese and other East Asian cuisines, but its popularity is growing beyond those regions due to its versatility and the ability to customize it by adding other ingredients or flavors.

When buying sweet soy glaze, it’s important to understand what you’re buying—there are many variations available on the market, so read the label carefully before making your purchase.

Traditional sweet soy glazes are made with fermented soybeans, sugar, mirin (or sake) and yuzu juice (a citrus-like fruit).

Some brands may contain additives such as MSG (monosodium glutamate), coloring agents or food starches; be sure to check the label if you want to avoid these ingredients.

Sweet Soy Glaze adds an intense umami flavor that can transform any dish it touches into something special.

Whether you’re looking for an easy marinade for meats or vegetables that will give them incredible flavor without overpowering them with spices, or just searching for a new salad dressing option—sweet soy glaze has you covered.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Sweet Soy Glaze

Sweet soy glaze can sometimes be hard to find or difficult to find the right consistency for your recipe.

Here are 5 substitutes for sweet soy glaze that bring out the traditional flavor without compromising your cooking.

1 – Tianmian Sauce, AKA Sweet Bean Sauce

Tianmian sauce, also known as sweet bean sauce, is a dark brown sauce made from fermented yellow and black soybeans.

It has a very strong flavor and is a great alternative for the traditional sweet soy glaze.

It can be used in stir-fries, marinades, dressings, and dipping sauces.

To add more sweetness to the dish, you can stir in honey or sugar to the sauce when preparing it.

Additionally, tianmian sauce usually contains wheat flour as an ingredient so if you have gluten intolerance then you should be aware of this fact before using this substitute.

2 – Soy Sauce and Honey

Soy sauce and honey is one of the most popular and widely used substitutes for sweet soy glaze.

This substitution is perfect for recipes that call for a bit of sweetness, but doesn’t require a deep caramel flavor or texture.

To make this substitution, simply mix equal parts of light soy sauce with honey in a bowl.

For example, if your recipe calls for ¼ cup of sweet soy glaze, use 2 tablespoons each of light soy sauce and honey.

The result will be a slightly sweeter version than the original glaze, so adjust it according to your taste preference.

3 – Oyster Sauce

Oyster sauce is a flavorful condiment made from fermented oysters, salt, sugar and other spices.

Its chestnut color and unique flavor makes it an ideal substitute for sweet soy glaze.

To use oyster sauce as a replacement, simply substitute the amount of soy glaze with equal amounts of oyster sauce.

It imparts a delicious umami flavor that works well with roasted and steamed dishes as well as stir-fries.

Combine equal parts dark soy sauce and oyster sauce to make your own substitution, ensuring that you get just the right balance of sweet and savory flavor.

4 – Hoisin Sauce

Hoisin sauce is a thick and sweet Chinese-style sauce made of soybeans, vinegar, chilies, garlic, and sugar.

It has a strong savory flavor that can help to create complex dishes with balanced sweetness.

It’s perfect for adding an extra depth of flavor to grilled or roasted meat or even as a condiment for dumplings.

To use hoisin sauce as a substitute for sweet soy glaze, simply mix it with honey at a ratio of 1:1 until you get your desired sweetness.

Keep in mind that hoisin does have quite a salty flavor so if you’re looking for something milder then you might want to reduce the amount of added salt.

5 – Ponzu with Honey

Ponzu is a light and flavorful citrus-based sauce commonly used as a marinade or glaze in Asian cooking.

To make an effective substitute for sweet soy glaze, mix equal parts ponzu with honey.

The tartness of the ponzu will be offset by the sweetness of the honey, creating a well-balanced flavor.

The result is a light, sweet-tangy glaze that will add brightness to any dish.

This combination can be used to quickly and easily add flavor to grilled meats or stir-fry vegetables.


At the end of the day, there are plenty of options to replace sweet soy glaze in your recipes.

Whether it’s Asian sauces, other store-bought marinades and glazes, homemade marinades and glazes or even something entirely unexpected like peanut butter or BBQ sauce, you can find a suitable substitute for sweet soy glaze.

Try out a few to see which one works best for you and your recipes.

The 5 BEST Substitutes for Sweet Soy Glaze

Recipe by Kimberly Baxter Course: Substitutes

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  • Tianmian Sauce AKA Sweet Bean Sauce

  • Soy Sauce and Honey

  • Oyster Sauce

  • Hoisin Sauce

  • Ponzu with Honey


  • Choose your preferred substitute from the list of options.
  • Organize all of your ingredients.
  • Use the proper substitute to cook your recipes.

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