Are you vegan or allergic to anchovies? Or did you run out of Worcestershire sauce at the least convenient time? Whatever the case may be, you may need a replacement ASAP! Luckily, there are many Worcestershire sauce substitutes, and we’ll list some of them in this article.
Read ahead to find the substitute you can use to enjoy your recipe without delay!
What Is Worcestershire Sauce?
Worcestershire sauce can be described as the soy sauce of English cuisine. It seems like a mouthful, but it’s pronounced “woo-ster-shirr,” in case you didn’t know.
Worcestershire sauce originated in Worcester, England, in the mid-1800s. This condiment is made by fermenting several ingredients that give it a tangy, umami, funky and sweet taste – all at the same time!
Mostly used as a salad dressing or in soups and stews, you can also use the sauce for marinating a juicy steak or a hearty meatloaf.
We’re also loving the depth of flavor it adds to this smoked pumpking bourbon BBQ sauce. It’s amazing on pretty much any grilled meat!
Without further ado, let’s move on to the substitutes.
How To Make Worcestershire Sauce Substitutes
With the ingredients in your pantry right now, you can make endless combinations for a Worcestershire sauce substitute.
You may choose one mixture over the other based on your taste and what you have on hand. In this list, we’ll include the alternatives that have a similar flavor to the original sauce.
To mimic the authentic taste, let’s first break down all the flavors in Worcestershire sauce:
● Anchovies, salt, and garlic add a savory flavor.
● Vinegar, tamarind, and citrus peel give it a sour taste.
● Sugar and molasses provide a sweet note.
● Chili peppers and cloves make it spicy.
● The pickles and the fermentation process of the sauce add some funk to it.
You can use most substitutes in place of the original Worcestershire sauce in a 1:1 ratio.
This makes the top of our list because it’s commonly found in many kitchens. Compared to Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce is more watery.
Yet, it’s packed with umami, salty, tangy, and sweet flavors, just like Worcestershire.
Soy sauce can really make almost anything taste better. Try it in this honey teriyaki chicken recipe, as a marinade ingredient for a yummy grilled ranch steak, or as a sauce on on a quick garlic broccoli stir fry.
You can use soy sauce as a substitute in most recipes and it works even better combined with other ingredients.
Here are some combos that bring your substitute closer to the original Worcestershire sauce.
Soy Sauce + Apple Juice
The first substitute above may be ok, but it lacks a little sweetness. Adding apple juice to soy sauce makes it sweeter and tangier, a little closer to Worcestershire sauce.
If you have some apple juice in your fridge, you can add it in equal parts to soy sauce.
You can use this concoction in place of Worcestershire sauce in cooked recipes.
Soy Sauce + Ketchup + White Vinegar
These three ingredients are very common in most households. The ketchup will add some consistency and sweetness to the mixture. Vinegar will make it a little sour.
This variation is perfect for marinades, but it’s too thick for a salad dressing.
Apple Cider Vinegar + Soy Sauce + Red Pepper Flakes
If you’re really in the mood for something hot, you can add red pepper flakes to your
Worcestershire sauce substitute.
Apple cider vinegar is sour and sweet since it’s made by fermenting apples. Meanwhile, the soy sauce will provide the umami depth, and the pepper flakes will give you the spicy kick.
To make this one, add one part apple cider vinegar to two parts soy sauce and just a pinch of pepper flakes.
Then, flavor your meatloaf or soup with this mixture. Due to the pepper flakes,
this substitute will be grainy, so it won’t be suitable for sauces or salads.
We love using vinegar because you can pull out small little cubes after freezing vinegar.
Fish sauce is made by fermenting krill or fish in salt, similar to how anchovies get cured for Worcestershire sauce.
It can be a good Worcestershire sauce replacement if you’re making soup or chili. However, it’ll be too intense to use in a salad.
Fish Sauce + Tamarind Sauce
If you want to stay in the Asian food section, adding tamarind concentrate to the fish sauce will bring lots of tanginess and savoriness to your dish.
To make this sauce, mix equal parts of each sauce and use it in cooked recipes.
Fish Sauce + Molasses + Lime Juice
If you’re making a stew, you may want to bring some sweet taste to your sauce substitute.
In this case, add a little molasses. If you don’t have lime juice, that’s fine because you can use lemon juice instead.
The result will be dark and potent, so it’s better to conceal it in cooked dishes rather than salad dressings.
Fish Sauce + Soy Sauce + Ketchup + Tamarind Extract + Allspice
It’s mind-blowing how a few sprinkles of a special powder, like allspice, can turn a bland dish into something delicious.
Allspice is a mixture of many herbs, some of which are in Worcestershire sauce, like coriander and cloves.
When Allspice is added to fish sauce, soy sauce, ketchup, and tamarind extract, it gives a kick, and the result is a striking similarity to Worcestershire sauce.
Fish Sauce + Cranberry Juice + Lemon Juice
This mixture will have many of the desirable traits of the original sauce. The cranberry juice will bring some sweetness and tartness to the mix, the fish sauce is salty and savory, and the lemon juice will be refreshing.
Mix fish sauce, cranberry juice, and lemon juice in equal amounts to achieve a faux Worcestershire sauce.
This delicious sauce is made with caramelized oyster juice that’s thickened with cornstarch.
It’s always easier to substitute with a standalone condiment, which is the case with oyster sauce.
Unfortunately, the thickness of oyster sauce makes it only fit for use in marinades and stews.
This one can be tricky and we have a full blown list of oyster sauce substitutes too!
Anchovy Paste + Water
Anchovies are used for making Worcestershire sauce, so it makes sense to use their paste as a substitute.
It’s worth noting that anchovies are a type of seafood, which means this swap won’t be suitable for vegans.
Anchovy paste is made of cured anchovies, olive oil, vinegar, salt, and sugar.
Since anchovy paste is pungent and salty, it’s a good Worcestershire sauce replacement for cooked recipes only.
As weird as this may sound, you can totally use pickle juice in place of Worcestershire sauce.
To begin with, both liquids are salty, vinegary, slightly sweet, a little hot, fermented, and spiced with dill and coriander.
Use pickle juice in place of the original condiment in sauces, dressings, and cooked dishes, but not as a garnish.
Maggi Seasoning Sauce
This multipurpose sauce can be used in place of Worcestershire sauce with just a quarter of the amount that your recipe calls for.
This is because it’s heavily salty and concentrated.
Marmite + Vinegar + Hot Water
Just like Worcestershire sauce, marmite is also an English fermented condiment. It’s made with yeast extract, spices, and a ton of salt.
This ingredient gives the umami factor to our sauce. Just add one part marmite and two parts vinegar to two parts hot water.
Next, stir the mixture until everything has dissolved.
BBQ sauce is a common pantry item that can easily be swapped with Worcestershire sauce.
It has some similar ingredients and can be used in the same amount as Worcestershire sauce in soups and marinades.
Just note that barbeque sauce is sweeter than Worcestershire sauce, so add just a little at first and adjust as needed.
This Worcestershire sauce swap is another great option for vegans. Coconut aminos are a brown liquid, similar to soy sauce, made of fermented coconut sap and sea salt.
Besides the savory nature of coconut aminos, you’ll have a slight hint of sweetness and coconut flavor.
Miso Paste + Water
Miso paste has several common characteristics with Worcestershire sauce. For example, it’s savory, fermented, and has a bold taste.
Miso paste is made with fermented soybeans, salt, a fungus called koji, barley, rice, and seaweed.
To make this substitute, add equal parts miso paste and water and stir them until uniform. Check out the Red vs White Miso comparisons.
A1 Steak Sauce
This sauce is made with a lot of ingredients, including raisin paste and corn syrup, which are somewhat uncommon.
It also contains orange and tomato puree, along with basic ingredients like vinegar and salt.
While A1 sauce has a similar flavor to Worcestershire sauce, it lacks the heat of the latter.
You can swap A1 sauce for the original condiment 1:1 in cooked foods and marinades, but keep in mind that it may leave a spicy aftertaste.
All of your substitutes needs all in one handy reference spot! Comprehensive list substitutes here or to print off for your own menu binder. You to find an ingredient option that will allow you to not run out to the store or you may find a flavor combination you love even better than the original. Garlic Powder Substitute, Cojita Cheese Substitute, Parsley Substitute, Green Chilis Substitute, Italian Seasoning Substitute, Mustard Seed Substitute, Cilantro Substitute, Sriracha Substitute, White Pepper Substitute, Onion Powder Substitute, Five Spice Substitute, Turmeric Substitutes, White Wine Vinegar, Cardamon Substitute, Parsley Substitute, Cremini Mushroom Substitute, Egg Yolk, Leeks, Egg Wash, Coconut Cream, Tomato, Stewed Tomatoes, Coconut Sugar, Palm Sugar, Hoisin, Adobo, Chili Sauce, Oyster Sauce, Escarole, Watercress, Rice Wine Vinegar, Ketchup, Tomato Puree, Tomato Paste, Lemongrass, Chervil, Cheesecloth, Worcestershire Sauce, Fennel, Dark Soy Sauce.
Once you know the components used to build the complex flavor profile of Worcestershire sauce, you can mimic the taste of other substitutes.
To imitate the umami or savory taste, you can use condiments like oyster sauce, fish sauce, anchovy paste, or soy sauce for a vegan alternative.
For sweetness, molasses and brown sugar will do. As for the tanginess, vinegar, tamarind concentrate, or fresh lime juice are suitable additions.
To spice up the Worcestershire sauce substitute, you may add red chili flakes and allspice.
Now, if you’re kitchen savvy and would like to turn this Worcestershire sauce substitute into the main thing, here’s a recipe to make ahead a big batch (just one bottle) of the sauce store it for months in the fridge.
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