Hoisin Sauce Substitute

The original hoisin sauce, which is also known as duck sauce or Peking sauce is made with fermented soy beans, vinegar, chilies and garlic. It has a thick pungent flavor in a complex mix of sweet, salty and spicy. You can usually find it in an asian market. I just can't find this in a bottle in the stores here and so I have had to make my own hoisin substitute. There are actually many different ways to make it and I am just listing a couple to get the idea. The use of 5 chinese herbs - a mixture of the herbs usually used in chinese cooking that are blended together and sold as a single spice - adds a lot of flavor at one time. Other recipes use red pepper, garlic or miso to add flavor. It should have a sweet component, molasses or fruit or jam. Hoisin is a great thing to use to add a special flavor to asian dishes like Tofu and Spring Peas.


Servings: varies
Duration: from 5 minutes to 1 hour
Utensils: hand mixer, blender or food processor

Version #1 Hoisin Substitute


3/4 cup barbecue sauce, 

3 Tab molasses

1 Tab soy sauce

1/2 Tab chinese five spice powder



Mix barbecue sauce, soy sauce, molasses and Chinese five spice powder together in a small bowl or a glass jar. Add a bit of water if the mixture is too thick.


Version #2 Hoisin Substitute


2 cloves garlic, minced

1 1/4 cup water

1 cup raisins

1 Tab sesame oil

1 teas miso paste

1 teas mustard paste

1 teas crushed red pepper



Soak the raisins in the water for an hour until they are soft. Blend all the other ingredients with the raisins together until it is smooth.


Version #3 Hoisin Substitute


2 cloves garlic

1 small knob fresh ginger, grated

2 Tab plum jam

1 Tab Teriaki sauce

1/2 teas crushed red pepper



In a small bowl, mix together the plum jam and teriyaki sauce until they are well blended. Add the crushed red pepper, grated ginger and grated garlic to this mixture.


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