This homemade hoisin sauce is loaded with flavor and has the perfect balance of sweet, salty, and tangy! Hoisin sauce is a must-have in Asian cuisine, perfect for stir-fries, marinades, and glazes. This version is naturally sweetened, vegan, and ready in less than 10 minutes!
I love Hoisin sauce. The thing is, most sauces available at the store are loaded with white sugar, preservatives, and colorings. So I decided to make my own version, and let me tell you: it tastes even better!
📘 What is Hoisin Sauce
Hoisin sauce (海鲜酱) is a thick black sauce used in Asian cuisine, and more particularly Chinese dishes. It is used as a glaze, in stir-fries, or even as a dipping sauce.
This sweet, salty, and slightly tangy sauce could be described as the Chinese version of barbecue sauce.
⭐️ Why this is the Best Hoisin Sauce Recipe
- It tastes like the original: If you are familiar with the store-bought version, this recipe tastes incredibly similar to it! Plus it has the same thick consistency.
- Healthier: This hoisin sauce recipe is refined sugar-free and doesn't contain any additives, as opposed to the store-bought one.
- Quick and easy: It takes just 10 minutes from start to finish to prepare, and requires only 7 ingredients + a few spices.
- It keeps well: This recipe only makes use of shelf-stable ingredients, meaning you will be able to keep the sauce at room temperature for up to 1 month!
- The reviews speak for themselves: Emilia said "I will NEVER buy hoisin sauce again - trust me. This recipe is AWESOME".
This sauce is so good you will want to use it everywhere! Let's do it!
🥣 How to Make Hoisin Sauce
This recipe requires only 7 ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. Here are the ingredients you will need:
- Maple syrup - To keep the sauce refined sugar-free.
- Soybean paste - Also called Doenjang, this dark paste is prepared from fermented soybeans. As opposed to miso, it doesn't contain rice, and has a more pungent flavor. It's a key ingredient in hoisin sauce. It can be found in almost every Asian store, or you can get Doenjang online.
- Soy sauce - For extra umami and saltiness.
- Rice vinegar - For acidity and to create the perfect balance of sweet/salty/tangy. Use regular rice vinegar, not the seasoned kind.
- Dates - In addition of bringing sweetness, dates help thicken the sauce.
- Garlic - While you could use garlic powder, I recommend going with fresh garlic.
- Spices - Ground anise, cinnamon, and coriander. If you have five-spice powder on hand, feel free to substitute the spices with ¼ teaspoon of five-spice powder.
- Toasted sesame oil - Just a drizzle, to finish the sauce with a delicious nutty flavor.
- Chili sauce - Or sriracha, for a hint of spiciness.
Making the sauce couldn't be easier:
- Add all the ingredients to a food processor or blender.
- Process for 20-30 seconds, or until smooth.
- Transfer to a clean jar. Your hoisin sauce is now ready to use!
🍜 Where to Use It
Hoisin sauce is incredibly versatile! It can be used:
- In stir-fries: Stir in a tablespoon of hoisin sauce at the end of cooking. It also makes a great base for noodle sauces.
- As a glaze: For seitan, tempeh, or tofu.
- As a dipping sauce: For tofu nuggets, roasted vegetables, spring rolls, egg rolls, and more!
- Added to soups: Hoisin sauce is sometimes stirred in Vietnamese Phở.
- To make a marinade: Dilute with soy sauce, and add lime juice, oil, ginger, and scallions for a fresh and flavorful marinade!
If you are looking to use this sauce right away, check out these Sesame Crusted Hoisin Tofu Bowls!
- Should I use a blender or a food processor? It's up to you! If you prefer a slightly chunkier sauce, use a food processor. However, if you want a very smooth sauce, use a blender.
- Can I substitute the soybean paste for miso? You can use light brown miso, but the flavor will be different. Soybean paste really works best here.
- Is there peanut butter in hoisin sauce? No, there is no peanut butter used in authentic hoisin sauce.
- How to store homemade hoisin sauce? This sauce keeps perfectly at room temperature, stored in a clean jar.
- How long does hoisin sauce keep? Since this recipe only contains shelf-stable ingredients, it will keep for up to 1 month at room temperature, or 2 months in the refrigerator!
This easy homemade hoisin sauce is simply said, amazing! It's quick to prepare and flavor-packed. You will never want to buy it at the store again!
Let me know in the comments, and feel free to leave a rating if you try this recipe!
Easy Hoisin Sauce
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 2 medjool dates, pitted (or 5 small dates)
- ⅓ cup soybean paste (or brown miso)
- 2 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon white rice vinegar
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1/16 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/16 teaspoon ground anise
- 1/16 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- ⅛ teaspoon chili paste (sambal oelek or hot sauce, to taste) optional
- Combine all the ingredients in the bowl of a food processor, or blender. Process for 10-15 seconds, or until smooth.
- Transfer to a jar and store in the refrigerator. Hoisin sauce will keep for up to 2 months in the refrigerator.