Our umami-rich Chinese Garlic Sauce is lightly sweet, lightly spicy, flavourful, and the perfect 5-minutes sauce for your stir-fry and Asian-style dishes.
What is Chinese Garlic Sauce?
Chinese garlic sauce, also known as stir-fry sauce, is a versatile and flavorful addition to any kitchen. Known for its rich taste, this sauce is commonly used in many dishes across China and has gained popularity worldwide. Combining ingredients like soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and rice wine or sherry, Chinese garlic sauce adds a depth of flavor to stir-fries and can even be used as a dipping sauce for appetizers like spring rolls or dumplings.
Making your own Chinese Garlic Sauce is simple, healthier, and definitely tastier than any store-bought sauce you can find. All you need are a couple of staple ingredients in Asian cuisine and 5 minutes of your time.
Our Chinese Stir-fry Sauce is vegan, making it the perfect addition to your stir-fries and other Asian-style dishes.
Our Chinese Stir Fry Sauce is:
- Easy to make
- Made with simple ingredients
- Quick to prepare
- Lightly spicy
How to make Chinese Garlic Sauce
Garlic, ginger, and green chilis. These are the three fresh ingredients you need for this stir-fry sauce. You can use red chilis or chili flakes instead of green chilis.
Light soy sauce. You can use light soy sauce or tamari.
Dark soy sauce. We normally use Kecap Manis, a sweet soy sauce. Thicker than normal soy sauce, almost like syrup, this ingredient gives the rice a lovely brown color and adds umami to the sauce. You can find Kecap Manis in Asian supermarkets, major supermarkets, or online. If you have regular dark soy sauce, you can definitely use it instead.
Rice vinegar. We love adding a little bit of rice wine vinegar as it's umami-rich and adds a lovely punch to the sauce.
Vegetable oyster sauce. We use this sauce for dishes such as Chop Suey and other Chinese recipes that we make often. You can find Vegan or Vegetarian Oyster Sauce in your local Asian Supermarket where you would find the classic hoisin sauce. It is called mushroom sauce as well. If you can't find this ingredient, you can add some mushroom powder or simply skip this ingredient.
Sweetener. You can add sugar, maple syrup, monk fruit, date syrup or any other plant-based sweetener you normally use.
Cornstarch. This ingredient is key for thickening the sauce.
Vegetable stock. We find that adding a little vegetable stock instead of water enhances the flavor of the sauce.
- Mix in a medium size bowl the soy sauce, dark soy sauce, rice vinegar, vegan oyster sauce, sweetener, and vegetable stock. Whisk until all the ingredients are combined. Set aside.
- Heat some vegetable oil in a skillet or frying pan and add finely chopped garlic, ginger, and green chilies. Stir for a few minutes making sure the garlic doesn't burn.
- Add the sauce and stir well. Dilute the cornflour in some water and add to the sauce.
- Bring the garlic sauce to a simmer and let it bubble for a few minutes until it thickens to the desired consistency. Set aside and let it cool for a few minutes before you store it.
When it comes to Chinese Garlic Sauce, there are several ways to tweak the recipe to suit individual tastes and preferences.
- Make it spicier. Add more fresh chilis or chili flakes to make this sauce spicier.
- Make it gluten-free. To make this sauce gluten-free, you can use tamari or coconut aminos instead of light soy sauce and dark soy sauce. Use a gluten-free vegan oyster sauce or add some mushroom powder instead. If you are using vegetable stock, you will need to make sure it is gluten-free as well.
- Use sesame oil. You can use sesame oil when frying the garlic, ginger and chilis to add a nuttier flavor to the sauce.
- Add more aromatics. You can add lemongrass, shallots, leeks, or onions to the stir-fried garlic, ginger, and chili.
Our Chinese Garlic Sauce makes a great addition to your rice, noodle, and vegetable stir-fry dishes. Here you can find some suggestions:
All these three dishes have one thing in common, they are made with our delicious stir-fry sauce. This sauce works beautifully with any stir-fry you want to prepare. It takes just 5 minutes to make so if you have a wok, you can easily prepare a yummy dinner in little time.
To enhance the presentation of your stir-fry dish with Chinese garlic sauce, you can add some toasted sesame seeds, finely sliced green onions or fresh herbs such as fresh cilantro or Thai basil.
Store and Reheat
Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you plan to store the sauce separately from the stir-fry dish, it will last approximately one week.
To reheat the sauce, you can use a small pan or microwave. You may need to add a little bit of water to get the right consistency again, as it thickens up after being in the fridge.
FAQ and Tips
What is the difference between Chinese Garlic Sauce and Brown Sauce?
Chinese Garlic Sauce has a stronger focus on the flavor of garlic, while Chinese Brown Sauce leans more towards a mixture of sweet and savory tones. The base of the brown sauce often consists of soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, and cornstarch, with additional aromatics optional, depending on personal preference.
Can I use a different ingredient to thicken up the sauce instead of Cornflour?
Yes, you can use regular flour, arrowroot powder, potato starch, or tapioca flour.
Can I freeze this Chinese Garlic Sauce?
We don´t recommend freezing the sauce, as it contains cornflour and it will modify the texture of the sauce once thawed.
Can I buy Chinese garlic sauce in stores?
Yes, you can often find pre-made Chinese garlic sauce in Asian grocery stores or the Asian section of larger supermarkets. It is typically sold in jars or bottles. However, many people prefer making their own sauce at home to customize the flavors and ingredients.
Chinese Garlic Sauce
- 5 tablespoon light soy sauce
- 3 tablespoon dark soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoon vegetable oyster sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ cup vegetable stock or water
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 thumb-size piece fresh ginger
- 1 green chilli
- 2 tablespoon cornstarch
- Mix in a medium size bowl the light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, rice vinegar, vegan oyster sauce, sugar, and vegetable stock. Whisk until all the ingredients are combined and set aside.
- Finely chop the garlic cloves, ginger, and green chili (deseeded).
- Heat some vegetable oil in a skillet or frying pan and add garlic, ginger, and green chilies. Stir for a few minutes making sure the garlic doesn't burn.
- Add the sauce and stir well.
- Dilute the cornflour in some water and add to the sauce.
- Bring the garlic sauce to a simmer and let it bubble for a few minutes until it thickens to the desired consistency.
- Set aside and let it cool for a few minutes before you store it, or add to your favorite stir-fry.
If you tried our recipe, please leave a comment or tag us on Instagram @Sixhungryfeet. We are always happy to see your creations!