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Fish sauce is a flavorful and popular condiment produced from fermented anchovies or fish for up to two years. Fish sauce is typically utilized in south Asian cuisines since it tends to provide umami, rich, savory, and earthy taste to a variety of foods including stir-fries, salads, and others.

We’re all aware that fish sauce is one of those substances that sounds and smells horrible, but when added to foods, tastes great and you can’t get enough of it.

Unfortunately, there may be times when you need fish sauce in a recipe but do not have access to it. In such cases, you can’t simply leave the food unfinished, which is what this essay is about.

You may always use soy sauce, rice vinegar, anchovies, oyster sauce, coconut aminos, Worcestershire sauce, rice vinegar, tamari, and other alternatives for fish sauce.

We hope you’ll join us as we go through these fish sauce choices to discover your match!

Best Substitutes For Fish Sauce

1. Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is created from fermented soybeans, water, salt, and wheat and is a great replacement for fish sauce.

This alternative is excellent since, unlike fish sauce, it does not include any animal-based components, making it appropriate for vegans.

Soybeans contain amino acids, which give them a distinct umami taste with a sweet undertone.

You may use soy sauce instead of fish sauce in a 1:1 ratio, and you can also experiment with additional ingredients like chopped anchovies and rice vinegar for added taste.

2. Tamari

Tamari is similar to current soy sauce in that it is made using components such as miso, salt, and water, and some may add a sort of brine called as moromi.

Traditional soy sauce includes wheat, however tamari does not, making it a good alternative for persons who are gluten sensitive; nevertheless, to be assured, check the label carefully before buying.

Tamari has a stronger and richer taste than fish sauce due to its greater soybean protein level. You may use tamari water in lieu of sea sauce in a 1:1 ratio, or gradually add the tamari until you reach the required consistency.

3. Oyster Sauce

Oyster sauce has a comparable savory taste to fish sauce, making it a simple substitute in dishes that call for fish sauce, such as stir-fry.

Since oyster sauce is thicker than fish sauce, it will not work in recipes that ask for a thin consistency of fish sauce.

If you have no other choice than to use oyster sauce, you may thin it down with a little water. You may use oyster sauce in lieu of fish sauce in marinades, stir-fries, and even rice dishes in a 1:1 ratio, but be prepared for a sweeter meal.

4. Vegan Fish Sauce

There are several vegan fish sauces available if you are vegan or have seafood allergies. For a thin consistency, these vegan fish sauces are often created from shiitake mushrooms, soy sauce, and liquid aminos.

Free amino acids derived from fermented coconut sap or hydrolyzed soybeans are known as liquid aminos. Since mushrooms contain amino acids, they are responsible for the umami taste.

You can replace vegan fish sauce for fish sauce in a 1:1 ratio, and you shouldn’t be concerned about its availability since it’s accessible in most grocery shops and internet retailers.

5. Sea Weed

Seaweed is a name for plants and algae that thrive in water. Contrary to its name, seaweed is very nutritious and abundant in amino acids.

Because of its strong umami taste, seaweed is used in broths and soups in nations such as Korea and Japan.

High glutamate seaweeds include rishiri, Hidaka, naga, ma, and cause, and if you want to tone down the umami taste, wakame seaweed is a good choice.

While fresh seaweeds work best in recipes such as broths, sauces, and salads, dried seaweed works well in most foods such as fried rice.

For best results, replace the seaweed in a 1:1 ratio.

6. Coconut Aminos

Coconut aminos are made from fermented coconut sap and are simple to include into most meals. Coconut aminos have a high umami content and a dark hue, making them somewhat sweeter than soy sauce and fish sauce.

The coconut aminos are also lower in calcium as the fish sauce has roughly 320-600mg of salt per 5ml teaspoon while the coconut amino comprises about 90-130mg at the same quantity.

Coconut amino is one of the greatest vegan alternatives since, in addition to being vegan, it is gluten-free, soy-free, and wheat-free, making it a wonderful sweet substitute for vegetarians and gluten-intolerant individuals.

7. Worcestershire Sauce

Because of its robust flavor character, Worcestershire sauce is popular in England and other neighboring nations.

Worcestershire sauce is produced using a variety of components, including molasses, tamarind, anchovies, onion, cloves, vinegar, and numerous other flavors, and is a tasty replacement for fish sauce.

8. Mushroom And Soy Sauce

If you want to replace fish sauce in your soups and broth, a combination of mushroom and soy sauce is an excellent alternative since it blends the flavors of both mushrooms and soy sauce.

Cook for approximately 15 minutes, or until the broth has been reduced by half, with three to four cups of water, an ounce of dried or sliced shiitake mushrooms, and three teaspoons of normal or reduced-sodium soy sauce.

Following that, pour the remaining liquid into a pot and use it as a 2:1 alternative for your fish sauce. If you aren’t intending to use the broth right away, you may keep it in the fridge for up to a week and in the freezer for many months.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Leave Fish Sauce Out of a Recipe?

You may exclude fish sauce from your dish if it isn’t a prominent ingredient, but keep in mind that fish sauce adds a unique umami flavor to salads and broths that you won’t find in many other recipes.

Can I Use Anchovy Paste Instead of Fish Sauce?

You may use fish sauce in place of anchovy paste in your dishes, but the anchovy paste will have a fishier flavor.

Is Worcestershire Sauce the Same as Fish Sauce?

These two sauces are not the same, even though they may be used interchangeably in meals. Worcestershire sauce is related to fish sauce and soy sauce in that it adds umami taste to your cuisine.

Worcestershire sauce is not as popular as fish sauce, even though it is more widely accessible, so if you require either fish or soy sauce for a recipe and don’t have any on hand, you may substitute Worcestershire sauce.

Which Is Better, Fish Sauce or Soy Sauce?

These two sauces work well in their respective recipes, but many people prefer to use fish sauce since it is more widely available.

Is Soy Sauce Made with Fish?

Soy sauce does not include any fish, meat, or eggs. The only sauces that include all of these ingredients are fish sauce and oyster sauce.


Fish sauce is an excellent addition to your soup, but it is not widely available in many parts of the globe. The beautiful thing is that there is always a suitable replacement nearby.

The nice thing about the alternatives is that most of them can be substituted for the fish sauce in a one-to-one ratio, making substitution much simpler.

Most of the replacements may change somewhat in taste and texture from fish sauce, although the variations are minor.


What can I use instead of fish sauce?

Soy sauce. Anybody looking for a fish sauce alternative may combine soy sauce with vinegar or chopped anchovies to obtain a flavor similar to fish sauce. Individuals may also prepare broth using soy sauce, either alone or with mushrooms.

Can I skip fish sauce in a recipe?

Fish sauce is sometimes used as a supplemental ingredient to provide a quirky twist to the taste of a meal. Since it is often utilized in little amounts, it is frequently omitted. We use it to add umami to our Coconut Shrimp Curry and Best Fried Rice, but it’s optional.

Can hoisin sauce replace fish sauce?

Because of its somewhat sweet taste, it is often likened to American-style barbecue sauce. Due of its umami taste, hoisin sauce may be used in place of fish sauce. To replace fish sauce with hoisin sauce, combine hoisin sauce and soy sauce in a 1:1 ratio. This balances out the richness of the hoisin sauce.

Can I use vinegar instead of fish sauce?

2 tablespoons rice vinegar (or other vinegar). This will provide a salty sour freshness. 2 soy sauce and 1For a closer match, substitute the fish sauce with 1

How important is fish sauce in a recipe?

When tossed into marinades, stir-fries, and salad dressings, it offers you a little bit of everything, and it’s just as beneficial in non-Asian cuisine. A dash of fish sauce may add salty, savory flavor to sautéed vegetables, pastas, roast chicken, and broths.

Is fish sauce and Worcestershire the same?

The sauce made from fish

Since both fish sauce and Worcestershire are created from fermented anchovies, the flavors are similar. Worcestershire has a lot more sweetness as well as additional flavors from the spices onion and garlic. Begin with half the quantity of fish sauce and add a pinch of brown sugar or molasses to taste.

Can you sub fish sauce for Worcestershire sauce?

Sauce de Pêche

This salty, flavorful sauce made from fermented anchovies is a perfect alternative for Worcestershire. It’s not as sweet, but it may be made into a Worcestershire sauce by combining equal amounts soy sauce, fish sauce, and tamarind concentrate.

How important is fish sauce?

Fish sauce is essential in many cuisines. Fish sauce’s salinity and umami-lifting undertones may change meals, delivering the appropriate punch of flavor to veggies or enhancing the savory notes found in the mouthwatering meats and grilled fish that are always featured on a typical dinner buffet.

Can you replace fish sauce with salt?

If you want to limit your salt consumption, fish sauce might be a good substitute. According to new study, this condiment may be used as a partial replacement component for salt to decrease sodium level in cuisine without reducing palatability.

What’s the difference between fish sauce and hoisin?

Fish sauce is sometimes used in place of hoisin sauce. This is due to the fact that fish sauce is equally harsh and salty as hoisin sauce, but without the sweetness. To best recreate the flavor of hoisin sauce, combine with some sugar or honey.

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