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6 Best Soy Sauce Substitutes For All Your Cooking Needs

Most are gluten- or soy-free too!

Are you ever throwing together a stir fry on a Monday night and right when you want to finish it off with that salty, umami-filled soy sauce, realize you used the final drops last week? Or maybe you're searching for some soy and gluten free alternatives. Well, you've come to the right place. Because there are few things worse in this world than a dry, bland stir fry and we are here to remedy the problem.

But first, what is soy sauce?

When we say soy sauce, we mean shoyu, which is a type of soy sauce made from a paste of fermented soybeans, grains, and brine, and inoculated with koji spores (basically just a type of mold that converts proteins into delicious umami). The traditional kind takes a few months to make—as all the fermentation takes time! At the end, all the liquid is pressed out from the mixture and goes into a bottle. Different regions have different types and consistencies from thick to sweet to dark.

But if you ever find yourself in need of a substitute, here are our recommendations.


Tamari is also a soy sauce, but with a darker color, slightly less salty flavor, and no gluten. Use this when you still want that familiar soy sauce flavor, but are looking for something slightly less strong or gluten-free.

San-J Tamari Gluten Free Soy Sauce, Black Bottle, 10 Ounce (Pack of 2)

Worcestershire Sauce

This condiment has a base of vinegar and umami flavors like anchovies, molasses, tamarind, onion, garlic, and other seasonings, which all get fermented. It's savory, it’s sweet, and it's perfect in dishes that use soy sauce for flavor.

Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce All Natural Kosher - Pack of 2 Bottles - 20oz Each ! Pack of 2
Al Amin Foods

Coconut Aminos

This is the best option if you want something soy-free and gluten-free, because instead of soybeans, these aminos are made from the sap of the coconut plant. So think of it like the maple syrup of soy sauces. The natural sugars in this ferment, lending a salty, savory, and milder flavor.

Coconut Secret Coconut Aminos (3 Pack) - 8 fl oz - Low Sodium Soy Sauce Alternative, Low-Glycemic - Organic, Vegan, Non-GMO, Gluten-Free, Kosher - Keto, Paleo - 144 Total Servings

Liquid Aminos

Also strikingly similar in taste to soy sauce, these aren’t soy-free, as they're made from soybeans. The flavor is milder and a bit sweeter than soy sauce.

Bragg - All Natural Liquid Aminos All Purpose Seasoning - 10 oz.

Fish Sauce

This condiment is strong in flavor because it’s made from salted fish or krill that have been fermented for a few years. Because of its intensity, you won’t want to use a 1:1 ratio when replacing soy sauce in a recipe, but you can still count on it to add a super rich umami flavor to anything you are making.

Lucky Brand Thai Fish Sauce (2) Pack of 4

Maggi Seasoning Sauce

This might not be an Asian condiment (it comes from Switzerland), but it does have all the elements to replace soy sauce in a pinch. It’s made from fermented wheat protein and is very concentrated, so like fish sauce, use carefully. But it will never fail you in adding the most savory layers of umami to your cooking.

Maggi Seasoning (2)

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