dips & sauces, recipes

Thai Inspired Peanut Sauce (5 Minute Recipe)

This incredibly creamy Thai inspired peanut sauce is made in less than five minutes. But beware, this dip truly addictive due to its creamy texture and salty tangy flavor with hints of sweetness and acidity. 

With just a handful of ingredients, which are all available in any local grocery store, you can whip up a delicious companion for Asian-inspired recipes. You can serve it as a dip for summer rolls, as a sauce for noodles and rice bowls or as a dressing or marinade.

If you love easy and healthy dips and sauces, also check out my vegan queso recipe or my avocado basil pesto!

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A creamy, Thai inspired peanut sauce served in a small, green bowl with dried chili flakes as a garnish.

About this Recipe

A creamy peanut sauce is almost a staple for me. It’s so quick to prepare, keeps for a week in the fridge, and goes well with a variety of dishes and recipes. 

Unlike so many other sauces, especially the store-bought ones, this Thai inspired sauce is also really wholesome.

Peanuts, which technically are legumes rather than nuts, are full of healthy fatty acids, proteins, vitamin E, magnesium and calcium. They provide long-lasting satiety, protect our cells from free radicals, ensure strong bones, support the body in regeneration processes and lower cholesterol levels.

And since this sauce can be prepared in less than five minutes and will keep for a whole week in the fridge, this simple recipe is a must-have for any meal prep fan

Ingredients for a Thai inspired peanut sauce.
All you need are a handful of staple ingredients.

Ingredients 

  • a creamy (all-natural) peanut butter – Depending on what you have on hand, you can either go with a classic creamy peanut butter or an all-natural one. The second consists of 100% peanuts while the classic ones usually also contain some oil, sugar and salt (about 5%).
  • soy sauce – for a salty, tangy, typical Asian taste
  • lime – for a fresh, acidic note
  • a pinch of coconut blossom sugar – to counteract the saltiness of the soy sauce and the sourness of the lime
  • (Optional) a small clove of garlic – since garlic makes everything taste better, even this delicious peanut sauce. Alternatively, you can also add some garlic powder, or an oven roasted garlic clove – more on that in a second.
  • some water – depending on the consistency you aim for and as a calorie friendly substitute for coconut milk which is often used in Thai peanut sauce recipes
  • a pinch each of ground cumin and coriander – Both are optional, but if you have them on hand, I highly recommend them.
  • optionally some chili flakes for a slight spiciness 

The quantities in this recipe make approximately nine to twelve servings. But if you want to make more or less of it, you can simply halve or double the quantities.

Please note, I always base portion sizes on my personal dietary needs (presumably those of the average woman). However, you or perhaps one of your fellow eaters may need more or less than I do. So, feel free to adjust.

Three different brands of peanut butter on a wooden table.
I used the Jif creamy peanut butter for this recipe, but a all-natural peanut butter works great here as well.

Substitutions and Variations 

  • For a gluten-free peanut sauce, you can substitute soy sauce with tamari or coconut aminos. Both taste almost identical, but unlike soy sauce, they are gluten-free. Tamari sauce, which is slightly thicker than soy sauce, can be found in all Asian markets. Coconut aminos, which is not only gluten-free but also low in sodium and less salty than soy sauce, can be ordered online or found in major, well-stocked grocery stores. 
  • Instead of fresh lime, you can use store-bought lime juice or rice vinegar.
  • As an alternative to coconut blossom sugar, you can also use brown or white sugar. Maple syrup or honey would also work if needed.
  • For a nut-free sauce, you can use tahini, which is sesame paste, or a seed butter like sunflower seed butter.
  • If you don’t digest raw garlic very well, you can either omit it or roast it in the oven beforehand. To do this, grab a whole garlic bulb, cut off the head, drizzle the surface with a little olive oil and wrap it in some aluminum foil. Put the whole thing in the oven at 400°F or 200°C for about 30 minutes, until the garlic cloves are nicely soft. The remaining garlic cloves can be packed in a container, stored in the refrigerator, and used otherwise within the next few days. 

How to Make this Recipe

Now that we’ve figured out all the ingredients and substitutions, I want to show you how to make this super simple sauce.

Step 1: Put the peanut butter in a bowl, along with the soy sauce, coconut blossom sugar and lime juice. Now whisk the ingredients together until you have a creamy sauce.

Step 2: Peel and finely dice the garlic. If available, you can also use a garlic press. Add it to the sauce along with a pinch of cumin and coriander and mix well. 

Step 3: Now add the water little by little until the peanut sauce has reached your desired consistency. If you want to serve the sauce as a dip, I would use the amount listed in the recipe, and for a dressing just use a little more. 

Tip: Be sure to use a fresh lime, not a leftover one that has been sitting in the fridge for a few days. Otherwise, the lime will develop a strong, unpleasant flavor that will ruin the whole sauce.

How to Serve or Use It

If you’re still wondering how to use this delicious, creamy sauce and what to serve it with, here are a few inspiration ideas for you. 

  • As a creamy dip for summer rolls or vegetable sticks
  • As a sauce for Asian noodle dishes or rice stir-fries – like this delicious Vegan Udon stir-fry
  • Served as a topping on poke and nourishing bowls.
  • As a dressing for salads, bowls or roasted vegetables like these roasted potatoes and vegetables.
  • For marinating tofu, fish, or meat, and as a sauce for shrimp, meat skewers or the like.

Here’s How to Save this Recipe or Make It in Advance

To save the leftover sauce, simply transfer it to an airtight container. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week. 

The peanut sauce may become a little thicker over time. To make it more liquid again, you can either microwave it briefly at a low temperature or simply thin it with a bit of water.

Your Common Questions Answered

In case there are any questions left, I hope these FAQ will help you. If not, feel free to drop your question in the comments below.

My sauce has an unpleasant vinegar taste – What is the reason?

This can only be due to a lime that is not so fresh or a rice vinegar of poor quality. So make sure to use a fresh lime that hasn’t been cut yet or a quality rice vinegar. And under no circumstances use a simple white or red wine vinegar! 

Can I also use a crunchy peanut butter?

Sure, you can. You can also chop some roasted peanuts and mix them into the sauce. This gives it a little bit of crunch, too.

Save for later

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I hope you like this easy Thai-inspired peanut sauce and that you give it a try soon. If you have any further questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments, or send me a massage via email at contact@julesbalancedrecipes.com or Instagram (@julesbalancedrecipes). 

In case, you’ve tried this recipe, I’d appreciate your comment and rating for this recipe. It’s easy to do via the comments section below this post and it would mean the world to me.

And if you loved this recipe, you may also like some of my other healthy dips and sauces like …

Have fun trying it out and bon appétit,
Jules

A creamy, Thai inspired peanut sauce served in a small, green bowl with dried chili flakes as a garnish.

Thai Inspired Peanut Sauce

Julia Schmitt
This creamy peanut sauce is made in less than 5 minutes by just a few staple ingredients. With its tangy, salty note it goes perfectly with summer rolls, Asian noodle dishes, stir fries, and more. Thinned with a little more water it also a delicious dressing or marinate for tofu, meat, or seafood.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 0 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course sauce
Cuisine Asian
Servings 12 servings
Calories 74 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 120 g peanut butter (≈ ½ cup or 4.2 ounces)
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce alternatively tamari or coconut aminos (gluten free)
  • 2 tsp coconut blossom sugar alternatively brown or white sugar, maple syrup or honey
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 1 small clove of garlic *
  • 6 tbsp water a little more or less depending on the desired consistency
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp ground coriander
  • chili flaked to taste

Instructions
 

  • Add the peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, and the sugar in a bowl and whisk until you have a creamy sauce.
    A bowl with peanut butter, soy sauce and sugar and a citrus press next to it.
  • Peel the garlic clove and finely mince it or press through a garlic press. Add it to the sauce along with the spices. Gradually stir the water into the sauce until the desired consistency is reached. Season to taste with chili flakes.
    Process shot showing that finely diced garlic, spices and water is mixed into the sauce.

Notes

* If you don’t like raw garlic, you can either omit it or roast it in the oven beforehand. To do this, grab a whole garlic bulb, cut off the head, drizzle the surface with a little olive oil and wrap it in some tin foil. Put it in the oven for about 30 minutes, until the garlic cloves are nicely soft.
Nutritional values per serving 
  • calories: 74 kcal
  • fat: 4.6 g
    • saturated fatty acids: 1.1 g
  • carbohydrates: 4.4 g
    • sugar: 1.9 g
    • dietary fiber: 0 g
  • protein: 3.7 g

Nutrition

Calories: 74kcal
Keyword peanut butter, soy sauce, thai
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