The Ultimate Miso Paste Substitutes List: We Found 13

Many individuals store simply the essentials on their spice rack, such as salt, garlic powder, pepper, and sometimes paprika. Just a few people have a backup bottle of miso paste on hand.

Miso paste is now utilized in a variety of cuisines, ranging from salads to soups to marinades. Despite its rising popularity, it is still unavailable in many regions of the US, and purchasing online may be expensive. Here are some options to think about.

  1. Sauce de Soja
  2. Tamari
  3. Dashi
  4. Stock of Vegetables
  5. Sauce de Pêche
  6. Tahini Dressing
  7. Fermented Chinese Black Beans
  8. Dashi
  9. Paste of Chickpeas

Before you give up on that tasty dish you’ve been admiring, remember that whether your selections are limited or broad, you’ll be able to locate a suitable substitute.

What Is Miso Paste?

Miso is a fermented soybean, rice, and other grain paste, such as barley or buckwheat. It is often found in a variety of Japanese foods, notably soups and sauces. It tastes umami, which is Japanese meaning savory.


Miso is manufactured with the aid of a fungus known as koji. This fungus is used to make a wide range of fermented meals.

Miso paste comes in at least 1,000 varieties, each with its own color, taste, and texture.

Miso paste is now readily accessible in stores throughout the globe and is regularly used in Western cuisine. It is high in nutrients, which is why millions of people love it.

13 Best Substitute For Miso Paste 

When it is difficult to get high-quality miso paste from respected manufacturers, it is normal to look for substitutions that will work in your culinary recipes. Soy sauce and tamari are good alternatives since they have the closest taste to miso paste.

You may also look at the entire list of miso paste replacements and their efficacy below.

Soy Sauce

Soy sauce smoothly combines the subtle taste of soy and saltiness into your dishes since miso is made by fermenting soybeans.

If you’ve just recently discovered this incredible sauce, you should add it to your list of must-have items. Soy sauce is so popular in Asian cuisines that it may be used with practically any savory meal. It is quite flexible and may be used to improve the taste of soups, sauces, and marinades.

Keep in mind that this sauce is thin and watery, while miso is creamy and colorful. When used in soups or dressings, this texture change may be undetectable. Use one tablespoon of soy sauce instead of the two teaspoons called for in the recipe.



Tamari is another option for imparting a similar flavor and taste to sauces or ramen.

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Tamari is the Japanese word for soy sauce. As a consequence, it tastes similar to soy sauce. The alternative is darker and saltier than miso paste, but it has a stronger umami flavor.

So, despite their differing forms, tamari and miso may be used interchangeably. If you learn the right ratio between the two, you can swap miso for tamari and vice versa.

When using this in place of miso for the first time, start with half the quantity stated in the recipe, then taste and adjust as required.

Since tamari is not a paste, the texture is the most visible difference between miso pastes and tamari. It refers to a liquid material. While choosing this method, keep an eye on the leftover components.



Dashi, a Japanese stock produced from boiling water, bonito fish flakes, and dried kelp, is another miso paste substitute. As a consequence, this stock is salty and distinctly fishy. Vegetarians cannot use this alternative.

Dashi is sometimes used as the foundation for miso soup and is good in the form of miso paste for ramen, sauces, and stews. It is used to provide umami taste to a variety of foods.

Dashi is less salty than miso alternatives like tamari or soy sauce, so you may use the same quantity of dashi in your culinary recipes instead of miso. Since the texture differs from miso paste, it is ideal for tasty and delectable meals that need more liquid.

Vegetable Stock

Vegetable stocks are a popular replacement for mild white miso. Because of its light hue, the stock is great for mashed potato dishes and vegetable soups.

The healthiest alternative to miso paste is vegetable stocks created from umami flavors, a variety of vegetables, and herbs. It is appropriate for use in liquid vegetarian recipes because to its tanginess, which is equivalent to miso paste.

Since vegetable stocks are a versatile ingredient, you may use them to flavor a variety of vegan foods.

Fish Sauce


Another great miso substitution is fish sauce. It’s a thin, fermented fish sauce used in Southeast Asian cooking.

Since it adds a powerful fermented taste to your food, fish sauce is an ideal replacement. It is, however, considerably thinner than miso and more akin to soy sauce.

Another downside of fish sauce is that it has a much stronger taste than miso. As a consequence, when replacing, use a much less quantity. Instead of a tablespoon of miso paste, use half a teaspoon of fish sauce.

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Miso paste, like soy sauce, may be substituted for fish sauce when it is a flavor component rather than a textural component in a dish. Similarly, it is a better substitute for red miso than white miso.

Fish sauce has a strong fermented, salty taste that is similar to red miso paste.

Tahini Sauce


Tahini paste, created from crushed sesame seeds, is another useful miso paste replacement.

It has a buttery texture and a somewhat bitter taste, but it has the same color as miso paste and may be used in lieu of miso paste.

Tahini paste, like miso paste, may be used to produce dressings, sauces, and marinades. But, keep in mind that this alternative is denser and may lend harshness to your food. When using this substitute, be sure to check to see whether the tahini has gone bad.

Chinese Fermented Black Beans

This popular component is fermented using black beans rather than soybeans. Nonetheless, the variation in bean type is not a major disadvantage since the saltiness hides the beans’ unique taste after fermented.

This condiment’s salty and sweet taste makes it a perfect substitution for red miso paste in savory dishes like marinades, mapo tofu, and stir-fries.

The texture of this miso soup substitute, however, is more abrasive than that of soybeans, which are normally used to season sauces and foods rather than ingested raw.

Chickpeas Paste(Hummus)


You may also use chickpea paste or hummus for miso paste since they have a similar taste.

Chickpea paste’s taste is enhanced with sesame, garlic, lemon juice, and salt, giving it the same umami flavor as miso paste. Moreover, the texture of hummus is as complicated as that of miso paste.

Hummus is also as healthy as miso paste since it is produced from chickpeas. It is high in nutrients, including vitamins, fiber, phosphorus, and iron, yet low in calories.

As a consequence, chickpea paste is quite adaptable when it comes to flavoring your food.

Soybean Paste


Soybean paste, commonly known as Doenjang, is similar to miso paste in that it is prepared by fermenting soybeans. Soybean paste is often used as a condiment in Korean sauces and soups.

When substituting soybean paste for miso paste, use care since it has a strong salty taste that may dominate the other components of your cuisine. It works well when substituted with red miso paste.

Anchovy Paste

Anchovies have the umami taste associated with miso paste and may be used as a miso paste alternative. This substitution has an unique fishy flavor and may be used in soups and sauces in place of miso paste.

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Anchovy paste is made from crushed anchovy fillets. It is widely available in a variety of grocery stores and specialized shops, usually in little tubes.


If you can’t locate a miso paste-like alternative, try anything with a taste or texture that approaches a distinct miso trait.

As a result, if you need to add umami taste to your recipes, mushrooms provide various possibilities. Mushrooms, especially dried shiitake mushrooms, have a strong umami taste; the darker the mushrooms, the more powerful the umami flavor.

Tomato Paste


Tomato puree, sometimes known as paste, is commonly accessible and possesses the acidic, deep, savory qualities of miso paste.

It may somewhat change the color and taste of your food, so use minimally, but it will add a degree of richness equivalent to red miso.


Depending on how much miso paste your recipe asks for, you may just only something to enhance the overall taste profile of your meal, and salt may be the answer.

If your recipe calls for one teaspoon of miso paste, start with half a teaspoon of salt and modify as needed.

Miso Paste Substitute Related FAQs

What can miso paste be used for?

To prepare ramen broth, combine with other essential flavors and ingredients. This is most likely the most popular use for miso paste.

Miso butter is typically served with grilled steak, fish, and roast ham. It provides flavor to vegetarian soups and stews due to its great umami taste without meat. [Source]

Miso paste also contributes to the taste of marinades. You may improve the texture and flavor of the meat by marinating it in miso paste before cooking.

Is miso paste healthy?

Miso paste is not only delicious, but it is also good for your health.

It has a lot of protein, copper, and vitamins including B, E, K, and folic acid.

Miso paste aids digestion and nutrient absorption by boosting beneficial bacteria in miso paste throughout the fermentation process.

Consuming fermented foods like miso on a regular basis may reduce your requirement for antibiotic medication while combating illness. [Source]

How to properly store miso paste?

The preservation of miso paste is fairly similar to that of tomato paste. The most frequent approach is to keep it in a cold, dark place, such as the refrigerator. For three months, store the paste in an airtight jar.


What is the best substitute for miso paste?

What is the best miso paste substitute?

Soy sauce. In a pinch, soy sauce may stand in for the salty and savory taste of miso. Keep in mind, however, that miso paste has a creamy texture, while soy sauce is extremely thin, nearly like water. Use the following ratio: 12 tablespoon soy sauce may be used for 1 tablespoon miso paste.

What is the secret ingredient in miso paste?

The secret component is Aspergillus oryzae, a grain-loving fungus that appears like a delicate flower on a stalk under the microscope. Miso paste, a mainstay of Japanese cuisine, is made by fermenting soybeans, grain, and salt.

What kind of miso paste do Japanese restaurants use?

Red miso, also known as ‘aka miso’ in Japanese, is fermented for a longer period of time than white and yellow miso, giving it a more powerful taste. It also has a larger amount of soybeans than other types of miso. Red miso is often used in the preparation of miso soup, particularly in Japanese restaurants.

What are the different options of miso?

At well-stocked supermarkets, you’ll find three types of miso: White miso, also known as shiro miso, is the mildest and is also known as sweet or mellow miso. The most pungent miso is red miso, which has fermented the longest. Yellow miso, or shinshu miso, is in the center and, according to some, the most adaptable.

Does miso paste go bad?

So, how long do I have miso? Miso is a “preservative food” that, owing to its salt content, may be stored for an extended length of time. Miso does not spoil if stored in the refrigerator. Miso’s flavor quality should be generally constant for up to a year.

Is there a miso paste without soy?

Chickpea Miso Master® Organic Miso paste is made using garbanzo beans (chickpeas) rather than soybeans. Since it is soy-free, folks on limited diets owing to soy allergies may enjoy the numerous health advantages of miso.

How do you mimic miso flavor?

SOY SAUCE CAN BE SUBSTITUTED WITH THE BEST MISO PASTE. Soy sauce is arguably the most frequent and widely available miso alternative. Fish sauce, which has the same salty, umami taste profile as miso paste, is another acceptable replacement.
Oct 12, 2021

What are the 2 main ingredients in miso?

Miso (or) is a popular Japanese spice. It is a thick paste made by fermenting soybeans with salt and kji (the fungus Aspergillus oryzae), as well as sometimes rice, barley, seaweed, or other ingredients.

What are the white specks in miso paste?

What if I see white spots on my Soy Sauce or Miso? A. They are natural yeasts that may grow under very heated temperatures on occasion. Rather than indicating low quality, they suggest that the dish was created organically with full components.

What is the most used miso paste?

Miso, please. Kome miso is a kind of miso paste that is created using white rice and comes in a range of hues. It’s the most popular miso in Japan.

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