Oyster sauce is a very common Asian condiment and can usually be found in every Asian household. It is a thick, dark brown sauce made with oyster extract and has a salty-sweet briny flavor.
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On its own, oyster sauce is very salty, but it also has a touch of sweetness to it. It is a great flavor enhancer and is used in place of salt in cooking and in marinades.
It is most commonly used to give marinades and sauces a bit of umami flavor and to provide some salt. It can also be used as a dipping sauce for Chinese vegetables and meats and used as a flavor enhancer in stir-fries as well.
There is also a vegetarian version of oyster sauce made of mushrooms for anyone looking for a vegetarian alternative.
Where Do I Find Oyster Sauce?
This is a very common condiment that can be found at every Asian grocery store. I have also seen these at my local grocery store in the International aisle as well. If you have a hard time finding it locally, you can find this online as well.
Oyster Sauce Substitute
If you can find abalone sauce, this sauce also makes a good substitute for oyster sauce. It's usually slightly more expensive and it comes in smaller bottles but they have a great seafood flavor to them.
How Do I Store Oyster Sauce?
Once the bottle of oyster sauce has been opened, it should be kept in the fridge. Personally, I have kept it longer than the expiry date. The high salt content keeps it preserved very well.
It can also be bought in a large can if you want to buy it in bulk (although it is more convenient to buy it in a bottle). If you buy it in from a can, transfer it out of the can as soon as it is opened to either a glass or plastic container and store it in the fridge.
Recipes That Use Oyster Sauce
- Crispy Cantonese Beef Chow Mein
- Stir Fried Bitter Melon with Beef and Black Bean Sauce
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- Sweet and Sticky Char Siu (Chinese BBQ Pork)
- Grilled Thai Coconut Chicken Skewers
- Simple Beef Marinade for Stir Fry
- Chicken Manchurian
- Pad Woon Sen (Thai Glass Noodle Stir Fry)
- Ultimate Chinese Hot Pot Guide on How to Hot Pot at Home
- Wonton Noodle Soup
- Chinese BBQ Pork (Char Siu) Gyoza Dumplings Recipe
- Chinese Stuffed Peppers (Dim Sum Style - 2 ways!)
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- Thai Basil Turkey Fried Rice
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- Asian Chilli Garlic Prawns with Snow Peas
- Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow Gai)
- Steamed Spare Ribs with Black Bean Sauce
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