16 Best Plum Sauce Substitute For Duck Or Pork

Plum sauce is often used for dipping, coating pork, basting meat, and stir frying. It adds color and texture to duck, moo shu, dumplings, noodles, and other dishes.

Running out of plum sauce may not be cause for concern since there are other colorful replacements available:

  1. Hoisin sauce
  2. Duck sauce
  3. Garlic teriyaki sauce
  4. Sweet and sour sauce
  5. Ponzu Sauce
  6. Soy sauce
  7. Oyster sauce
  8. Char Siu Sauce
  9. XO Sauce

Learn more about these 16 plum sauce alternatives.

16 Best Substitute For Plum Sauce 

Plum sauce has a distinct taste that is sweet, sour, and tangy. This taste explosion is created by combining plums, vinegar, sugar, and chillies.

Plum sauce has a more mild taste than typical sweet and sour sauce and the thickness of a jam. In terms of flavor, some of the greatest plum sauce substitutes are hoisin sauce and producing your own plum sauce at home.

Hoisin Sauce


Hoisin sauce is a common ingredient in Asian cooking. Its distinctive dark brown hue, thick viscosity, and sweet and salty taste make it a popular duck and pho sauce. For all of these reasons, hoisin sauce is a good alternative for plum sauce.

Hoisin sauce gets its taste and scent from a unique combination of soybeans, garlic, fennel, vinegar, and sugar. Hoisin is more nuanced and acidic than plum sauce, which is sweet and sour. It has an umami bite that adds a new depth to meats and soups.

Nonetheless, plum sauce and hoisin sauce have comparable flavor profiles and may be used as dipping sauces and condiments for Asian foods.

Duck Sauce

Many people consider duck sauce to be the Chinese-American equivalent of plum sauce. That accurately describes duck sauce since it has the same components as plum sauce, including plums.

Duck sauce has a distinctive hue (orange) with a distinct sweet and sour flavor. It is not plum-colored since duck sauce may incorporate American fruits such as apples and apricots. As a result, duck sauce may taste somewhat sweeter than its original equivalent.

It is used as a seasoning for deep-fried dumplings and roasted meats. The flavor is still reminiscent of plum sauce (particularly when sampled with your eyes closed). Duck sauce is a common condiment found in Chinese restaurant takeaway boxes. When looking for duck sauce at the grocery store, you may need to be more patient.

Garlic Teriyaki Sauce


Garlic teriyaki sauce is a popular Japanese meat sauce, marinade, and dip. It is most often used as a cooking sauce, but who says it can’t also be used as a condiment?

Soy sauce, sake, garlic, ginger, and sugar are among the ingredients in garlic teriyaki sauce. It tastes like a sweetened soy sauce with a punch from sake and ginger that may enhance the flavor of meats and shellfish.

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Teriyaki sauce is a fantastic substitute for plum sauce when used as a marinade or glaze. The color is almost same, but the taste has a saltier balance. While it cannot be drizzled for aesthetic plating, it may be used as a dipping sauce.

Sweet and Sour Sauce

Another popular condiment for nearly everything that requires a dip is sweet and sour sauce. The sauce is a versatile dipping sauce, marinade, and stir-fry ingredient that balances sweet (sugar) and sour (rice vinegar).

Sweet and sour sauce is a good substitute for plum sauce due to its (nearly) thick consistency and umami balance. It may not taste quite like plum sauce, but what it lacks in subtlety it makes up for in availability in American stores.

Ponzu Sauce


Ponzu sauce (Japanese Citrus dipping sauce) is a delectable citrus-flavored Japanese condiment. It differs somewhat from the sweet and viscous plum sauce. It does, however, add a citrus note to the simple sweet and sour.

Ponzu sauce is a unique substitute for plum sauce for dumplings, noodles, shellfish, and meats provided you don’t mind the reduced sweetness. Because of its diverse taste and thin consistency, it may also be used as a salad dressing and shabu-shabu condiment.

Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is a popular and ubiquitous condiment in Asian households because it complements sushi, noodles, and anything fried and crunchy. Soy sauce has a watery texture that makes it simple to blend and season meals. It is widely used as a cooking and dipping sauce.

Soy sauce has a salty flavor with a hint of sweetness. That taste is known as umami, and it adds depth to your sauce. Soy sauce, on the other hand, may be used for almost anything savory. Soy sauce may also be used in lieu of plum sauce in meals that need umami but not the sweetness of plums.

Depending on your culinary needs, numerous varieties of soy sauce are also available at supermarkets. The darker soy sauce will have a deeper, somewhat sweeter flavor than the lighter variant.

Oyster Sauce


Another well-known Asian sauce for stir-fried meals is oyster sauce. Oyster sauce may be used over vegetables, meat, and noodles. Its thicker consistency makes it an excellent dipping sauce and marinade for grilled meat.

With a tinge of sweetness, oyster sauce enhances the umami taste. sauce’s created with oyster juice, sugar, salt, and cornstarch to provide sauce the viscosity needed for a delicious stir-fry. Because of its rich brown color and texture, oyster sauce is an excellent replacement for plum sauce.

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Char Siu Sauce

Char siu sauce, commonly known as Chinese barbecue sauce, is an excellent accompaniment to roast pig. Imagine glazed pork with a deliciously rich sauce. That’s char siu sauce for you.

Char siu sauce, which is sweet, salty, and spicy, would be a good taste substitution for plum sauce. The peculiar taste of Char siu sauce is made composed of Hoisin sauce, sherry, soy sauce, honey, and Chinese five-spice powder.

Although char siu does not have the same jammy texture as plum sauce, it would be a fantastic sauce and marinade in its stead, particularly for pig.

XO Sauce


XO sauce may seem like hugs and kisses, but it really stands for extra-old. This regal sauce, known as the Caviar of the Orient, originated in Hong Kong in the 1980s. While not as spreadable as plum sauce, the sauce’s thick and chunky texture may provide depth to any meal.

The majestic name of XO sauce comes from its exquisite components, which include dried seafood (shrimp, fish, and scallops), ham, chile, garlic, and onions. The marine flavour transforms this into a rich sauce that goes well with meat, tofu, fish, and vegetables.

As a flavoring and dipping sauce, XO sauce has greater depth and flavor than plum sauce.

Garlic and Prunes

When it comes to substituting plum sauce, you won’t have to go far. You may experiment with different flavors to obtain the plum sauce taste. That is precisely what garlic and prunes may be used for.

Although it may seem to be an unusual combination, garlic may contribute spice and flavour, while prune can add sweetness and texture. After all, a prune is nothing more than a dried plum.

Cook the prunes until they are thick, then add the garlic, sherry, and soy sauce. The resultant sauce may replicate the appearance and taste of plum sauce, as well as its hue.

Sha Cha Sauce


Sha Cha sauce is often sold as Chinese barbecue sauce on the label, although its taste goes beyond that. It’s an umami overload with dried baby shrimp, brill fish, shallots, garlic, and soybean oil. This potent combination may provide a burst of flavor to soups, meats, and dips.

Did you know that Sha Cha sauce derives from Southeast Asian satay sauce? Satay sauce emphasizes the peanut taste more, but Taiwan-based Sha Cha replaced it with dried shrimp.

Sha Cha sauce may be used in lieu of plum sauce because of its sweet, salty, and spicy characteristics, which make it a tasty addition to soup bases, dips, and sauces.

Garlic with Miso and Raisins

Miso paste is another Japanese food that has the textural potential to mimic plum sauce. Miso paste is fermented soybean paste with a smooth savory taste and sticky texture that is ready to be diluted.

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Raisins resemble and taste like little dried plums, therefore they span the sweetness spectrum. The combination of softened raisins (soaked in water previously), miso paste, red pepper, mustard, sesame oil, and garlic yields an acidic and sweet mixture similar to plum sauce. This spicy-sweet sauce would complement meats similarly to plum sauce.

Black Beans and Plums


Black beans may seem to be an odd option for plum sauce. When blended with plums, the black bean sauce produces the desired creamy combination.

The recipe is straightforward: soften plums and brown sugar in water. To liven up the sweet and thick mixture, add the black beans, soy sauce, and spices.

What you get is a pasty, purple sauce that may be used in lieu of plum sauce and has a high protein level thanks to the black beans.

Plum Jam with Ginger

Another flavor combination to try is plum jam and ginger. If you have some plum jam on hand, you can make a sauce alternative that is bursting with spicy flavor.

What should go into this delectable sauce? Combine plum jam, teriyaki sauce, ginger, garlic, and ground red pepper in a mixing bowl. The ingredient list alone indicates that this combination will have a rich taste, jammy texture, and color similar to plum sauce. It’s also really simple to create!

Caramelized Onion Chutney

Caramelized onion chutney is a plum sauce substitute that does not include any plums (or other fruits). It’s also healthful and delicious. The sweet, spicy, and tart flavors combine to create a delicious sauce or condiment for meats and vegetables.

Caramelizing onions also results in a sticky consistency that is practically spreadable. The rich brown hue is caused by red onions, vinegar, brown sugar, and spices, which provide a blast of powerful tastes.

Make Your Own Plum Sauce


The other numbers have previously highlighted plum sauce substitutes that you can make at home. These are substitutes that have the same taste characteristic as plum sauce.

Let’s try making our own plum sauce using things we have on hand.

  1. In a skillet, combine and cook 15 sliced plums with soy sauce, onion, garlic, ginger, and chili sauce.
  2. For the next 20 minutes, stir periodically. If you want a thinner consistency, add more water to the mixture.
  3. Refrigerate or freeze the plum sauce. This sauce has a longer shelf life as well.

The handmade version is adaptable to your taste preferences, so feel free to experiment with different flavors and spices.


What sauce is comparable to plum sauce?

If you can’t locate plum sauce, use duck sauce instead. You may also use pickled plums to produce our own homemade duck sauce, which has a similar taste (seen on the left below).

Can hoisin sauce be used instead of plum sauce?

While they have similar flavors, hoisin sauce and plum sauce are not the same thing. Hoisin sauce is usually spicier and has stronger tastes, whilst plum sauce is more of a jammy sauce created from plums. The good news is that they are similar enough in taste that they may be exchanged for each other in a hurry.

What is a good substitute for plum jam?

If you’re fortunate enough to obtain ripe apricots, use them in any jam recipe that calls for plums. Use more apricots than your plum recipes ask for since this sister fruit might be half the size, or make apricot preserves instead.

Can I use hoisin sauce instead of duck sauce?

They are two distinct types of sauces. Hoisin contains soy sauce, while duck sauce has a fruit blend. However, they both taste sweet and may be substituted for one another. Hoisin sauce is a little saltier than duck sauce, but it’s just as tasty.

Does America have plum sauce?

Detroit-style plum sauce is a popular variation on Chinese-American plum sauce, which can be found at most Chinese restaurants in southeastern Michigan.

What tastes similar to plum?

Many fruits, including peaches, nectarines, pluots, dates, apricots, and even cherries, resemble and taste like plums. Several of these may be substituted for plums in recipes or eaten in lieu of plums.

Is sweet and sour sauce and plum sauce the same?

It lacks the sweetness and tartness of sweet and sour sauce. Plum sauce, on the other hand, has a softer sweetness and acidity. It’s also a richer, jammy sauce that’s great for basting and spreading.

Is duck sauce similar to plum sauce?

Some believe they’re the same thing, or that plum sauce is the foundation for duck sauce, which also includes apricots (and occasionally peaches).

Is Chinese duck sauce the same as plum sauce?

Plum sauce is created from sour plums blended with sugar and seasoned with ginger, chili pepper flakes, and vinegar, while Duck sauce is made from plums, apricots, vinegar, sugar, ginger, and chili pepper flakes. Duck sauce has a thicker texture than plum sauce and both have a sweet and tangy taste profile.

How do you get the bitter taste out of plum jam?

Add some vinegar or lemon juice.

To somewhat neutralize the taste of bitter meals, squeeze some fresh lemon juice or add a teaspoon of vinegar.

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