Homemade Peanut Sauce

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This homemade peanut sauce is easy to make, full of authentic flavor, and tastes good on anything! It's made with pantry ingredients including peanut butter, soy sauce, and rice vinegar for quick, tasty homemade sauce.

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Rich, creamy, savory, flavorful—this Peanut Sauce recipe has everything you could ask for in a homemade sauce. Serve it alongside spring rolls, grilled meats, Thai quinoa bowls, or raw veggies for a mouthwatering meal or snack guaranteed to impress your family and friends.

This flavorful sauce covers all my bases. It’s easy to make, versatile, cost-effective, and seriously delicious. I have paired it with so many different types of dishes – cold, hot, appetizer, entree – and it’s been the perfect accompaniment every time. If you’ve been looking for a healthy and satisfying sauce you can use throughout the week in a ton of totally different ways, then look no further. This is the one.

When it comes to healthy eating, it can be difficult to find condiments at the store that aren’t loaded with unhealthy fats, preservatives, and artificial ingredients. Making your sauces from scratch may seem a bit daunting at first, but it’s actually incredibly easy! If you’ve browsed through the Condiments section of my website, then you probably have a pretty good idea of just how much I love making my own sauces and spreads.

This delicious sauce can be whipped up in just a few minutes and saves you a ton of money in the long run. Serve this sauce alongside veggies as an appetizer at your next brunch with friends or over noodles as a main course at your next family gathering. I guarantee your guests will be dying to know where you got your peanut sauce!

Ingredients for peanut sauce including peanut butter, limes, soy sauce, ground ginger, maple syrup, and Asian hot sauce,

Key Ingredients

You will probably need to hit your local grocery store for some of these ingredients, but the final product is well worth the trip. The key ingredients you will need for this dish include:

  • Peanut butter: This creamy and nutty spread brings a ton of flavor and an incredible texture to our sauce. You can also use PB2 mixed with water if you prefer that instead.
  • Soy sauce: I use low-sodium soy sauce in this recipe, but you can sub this out for tamari if you’re gluten-free.
  • Maple syrup: This brings a beautiful sweetness to balance out the rich and savory flavors. If you don’t have any available to you, this can be subbed out for honey.
  • Rice vinegar: This is used to enhance the rest of the flavors in the dish.
  • Garlic chili paste: Also called sambal oelek, this flavorful paste made from chilies and garlic adds a ton of flavor to the dish, as well as some heat.
  • Lime juice: The acidity in the lime juice brightens up the rest of the ingredients in the dish, rounding them out and making them pop.

Origins of Peanut Sauce

Peanut sauce is most often associated with Thai cuisine, but many believe that it actually originated in Indonesia. It’s hard to say for sure, but what we do know is that the delicious sauce has been used in Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and China for centuries.

Also called satay sauce, peanut sauce is made from a base of soy sauce and peanuts or peanut butter. Common ingredients also include rice vinegar, spices like ginger, and some type of sweetener.

Recipe Tips

Here are some of my top tips to help you make this dish:

  • For a bright pop of flavor and color, try adding fresh cilantro just before serving the dish.
  • For some added texture, try topping the sauce with finely chopped peanuts just before serving the dish.
  • If you like more heat in your sauces, feel free to add more chili paste until it’s spicy enough for you.
  • If you find that the sauce is too thick for your liking, whisk in water in small amounts until you’ve reached your desired consistency.
  • To make this sauce gluten-free, you can use tamari instead of soy sauce.
  • If you don’t have maple syrup at home, feel free to substitute this ingredient for honey.

How to Serve This Dish

Peanut sauce is also referred to as satay sauce because it was traditionally used to accompany a dish called satay, which is a dish made of skewered and grilled meats. Today, we use peanut sauce to add flavor to a wide variety of dishes. Some of my favorite dishes to serve with this rich and flavorful sauce include:

  • Steamed or roasted vegetables
  • Mixed into soba noodles, potatoes, or rice
  • As a marinade for grilled chicken or tofu
  • On the side with spring or summer rolls
  • As a salad dressing
  • Drizzled on top of lettuce wraps
  • As a dip with raw vegetables and crackers

There are also lots of recipes that use peanut sauce. Here are some favorites:

Creamy homemade peanut sauce in a small bowl with peppers, cucumbers, limes, and ginger on the side.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below you will find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this delicious sauce:

How do I store this dish?

To store this sauce, simply transfer it to an airtight jar or container. It will keep in the fridge for up to one week. What can I use peanut sauce for?

You can use peanut sauce for a wide variety of snacks, appetizers, and main courses. My favorite foods to pair this sauce with are grilled meats, noodles, lettuce wraps, spring rolls, and raw vegetables.

What is peanut sauce made of?

Peanut sauce is most commonly made from a base of peanuts or peanut butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, and some type of sweetener. Other ingredients that are often added to the sauce include chilies, red pepper flakes, sesame oil, and garlic.

Can I freeze this dish?

Yes! To freeze this dish, I recommend carefully pouring it into an ice cube tray and first freezing it into cubes. Once you’ve done this, you can transfer the frozen sauce cubes into an airtight bag and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Whenever you’re ready to eat the sauce, simply let it thaw overnight or heat it up in a pan if serving it warm.

Homemade Asian peanut sauce in a white bowl with crushed peanuts on top and a spoon

More Homemade Sauce Recipes

The Recipe
Peanut sauce made with peanut butter, soy sauce, maple syrup, ginger, hot sauce, and rice vinegar in a small bowl.

Homemade Peanut Sauce

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  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (or PB2 combined with water)
  • 3 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp Asian garlic chili paste (sambal olek)
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 3 tbsp warm water (more if needed)

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Warm the peanut butter in the microwave until slightly melted. This step can be skipped but makes it a bit easier to stir.

Melted peanut butter in a small white bowl with a spoon.

Add the soy sauce, maple syrup, lime juice, rice vinegar, garlic chili paste, and ground ginger to a small bowl. Whisk together, adding water a little at a time until it reaches a smooth consistency. It should be thick but still pourable.

Peanut sauce being stirred by a small whisk.

Taste and adjust seasoning as needed - more soy sauce for salt, more lime juice for tang, more chili paste for heat, etc.

Creamy peanut sauce in a bowl with a spoon.
Nutritional Facts
Serving Size: 1 tbsp
Amount Per Serving
Calories 57
Calories from Fat 37
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 4g
Saturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 128mg
Total Carbohydrate 4g
Dietary Fiber 1g
Sugars 2g
Protein 2g

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.

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About the author Meet Kristen McCaffrey
Hi, I’m the cookbook author, recipe developer, and food enthusiast behind Slender Kitchen. I am obsessed with making healthy food that is easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. Meal planning is my secret weapon and I hope I can make meal time easier for you with our tried and tested recipes and foolproof meal plans. Learn More
† We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
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