Food & Drink
Recipe plum sauce

Recipe plum sauce

If you’re tired of bland, salty condiments, the plum sauce is a great alternative to make your preserved spices go from dull to refreshing and bright. The homemade plum sauce provides fresh, light flavors to many classic Chinese take-away meals.

If you were to eat a pre-made plum sauce from the package, you could be shocked by how excessively sweet or overly salty the sauce could be. Many preservatives are added to plum sauce to make it stay fresher for longer.

Producing your sauce lets you limit the amount of sugar and salt added. I keep the homemade sauce for plums in my refrigerator for about a week if needed. However, the plum sauce only lasts briefly due to its delicious flavor.

Make this sauce for eggs, drizzled on duck, or used as a marinade for your meats, and you’ll love how it pairs with numerous dishes of Asian food.


Naturally, the plums provide lots of flavor to the food, which is why it has its name, “plum sauce.” Due to the intense flavor profiles of the plums, this sauce is typically served with gamey meats, such as pork belly, pheasant, or crisp duck. This is why most Americans refer to it as duck sauce. The surprise is evident if they taste the homemade version of plum sauce (rather than a packaged version of duck sauce). The taste buds are thrilled to taste a more delicious, fresher version of the sauce.

I adore the flavorful and vibrant plums. It is possible to keep their skin on in this recipe due to the skin’s texture. The skin is broken down during the cooking process and effortlessly blends into the other ingredients once you mix it in the blender. The skins of the plum contain antioxidants, fiber, and other minerals and vitamins that are good for your body.

Sweet Potato

The first time the sauce was created, the plum sauce sweet potatoes were pureed into the sauce to add the natural sweetness of sweet plums. Their sweetness is quite different from the added sugars. Sweet potatoes add some more bulk as well as texture.

Lemon Juice

Adding lemon juice to your plum sauce will add complexity by bringing acidity. It balances the flavors and prevents the sauce from appearing excessively sweet. It also gives it a touch of playful tartness.

Yellow Onion

Since plums sauce was not intended as a sweet sauce, including yellow onions and other savory ingredients, gives the flavor a delicious savoriness. It also helps your sauce go well with fried, tasty meats and food items. To increase your onions’ sweet taste, add them to a caramelized sauce before adding the other ingredients. This reduces the heat of the onions, allowing them to blend with different sweet flavors while providing a touch of zing.


Fresh ginger amps the sauce with a bright and spice. Ginger is healthy as well. It’s well-known for its ability to clear sinuses, fight illnesses, and relax the body and mind. It is widely regarded as an essential component of Asian cuisine.

Rice Wine Vinegar

Adding more acidity with rice wine vinegar makes this sauce stand out in a sea of solid flavor. Fried foods require moderate acidity to make them less dense and more pleasant in the mouth.

Other vinegars like apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, and red wine vinegar may be substituted for white wine vinegar. Ensure you use your vinegar only in minimal quantities and test it to ensure the sauce is not too sweet.


The sweetness of plums and sweet potatoes goes in a big way. The addition of honey provides this sauce with the right sweetness and the perfect consistency. It also allows the sauce to stick to other dishes.

Many people use brown sugar instead of or as an alternative to honey. This is an excellent alternative because it caramelizes and gives an identical texture to honey. Other sugars can be used alternatively, including liquid Splenda, molasses, coconut nectar, agave, or regular sugar. Ensure all the sugar is dissolved to avoid the appearance of a grainy texture in your plum sauce.

Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is a great ingredient to impart salty and umami-rich flavors to your food. Soy sauce adds a flavor to this plum sauce and brings out other flavors by bringing out its salty, briny taste.


I envision Mirin as a sake with sugar that imparts acidity and sweetness to Asian food. It’s a wine-like dish that cooks down by bringing flavor molecules forward in other ingredients, making them taste better. The balance between sweetness and acidity in Mirin brings all the elements together, making them more cohesive.

Black pepper and lemon zest (or Szechuan pepper)

Suppose you’re looking to make the traditional plum sauce locate Szechuan peppers at an Asian supermarket or purchase the peppers at Whole Foods. They’re tasty, mildly spicy, and distinct. If you’re unable to use this ingredient, black (or black peppercorns) (toasted as well as ground) together with lemon zest will provide the same earthy, light spice for your plum sauce.


Fennel tastes similar to anise. However, it has an apricot-like flavor. I made a toast of whole fennel seeds, then crushed the seeds. If you have fennel seed powder, it will work equally well.


The plums are delicious when covered in cinnamon, and it’s not surprising that they are so amazing when combined with Asian food. If you have leftover plums left after making the sauce, you can roast them in the oven coated with cloves and cinnamon and then burn them until they are perfect to create a delicious warm dessert with the plum sauce.


Hot, spicy spices like cloves are best used moderately. Taste before adding the ingredient to ensure it does not overwhelm other, less delicate spices. I like cloves’ strong, robust, assertive flavor, particularly as an unexpected ingredient in sauces such as this savory or sweet-plum sauce.

Red Pepper Flakes

I like to add red pepper chips to my Chinese five-spice mix (technically creating an all-spice blend.). A bit of spice can make this sauce more delicious.

Additional Ingredients

For those who love spice, adding peppers can make the sauce into something you serve on pulled meat or other heavy meats for sweetness and spice. Add chili powder or peppers to the sauce for more heat.

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