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How to Make Vegan ‘Fish’ Sauce

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So, why make vegan fish sauce? Well, if you like to make your own vegan Thai or Vietnamese food, fish sauce is a very common ingredient and gives these cuisines a nice flavor. I used this vegan fish sauce recipe in Nuoc Cham (the sauce used for Bun Chay aka vermercelli salad bowls) and you can also use it to season fresh Thai papaya salad (it’s made with green unripe papaya and is more like a raw squash).

How to Make Vegan 'Fish' Sauce


  • 1/2 cups shredded wakame (see notes)
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
  • 1/3 cup mushroom-flavored dark soy sauce, regular soy sauce, or gluten-free tamari
  • 1 teaspoon of genmai miso (it’s already pretty salty so this is optional)


  1. Combine wakame, garlic, peppercorns, and water in a large sauce pan and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer about 20 minutes. Strain and return the liquid back to the pot. Add soy sauce, bring back to a boil, and cook until mixture is reduced and almost unbearable salty. Remove from heat and stir in miso.
  2. Decant into a bottle and keep in the refrigerator. Use one-for-one to replace fish sauce in vegan recipes.

Nutritional Information

Total Calories: 183 | Total Carbs: 43 g | Total Fat: 0 g | Total Protein: 5 g | Total Sodium: 12893 mg | Total Sugar: 20 g


Wakame is the seaweed used often in seaweed salad in Japanese restaurants. It’s shredded into little strips. So if you’ve ever tried seaweed salad, you’ll be familiar with it.





Veronica Grace is a self-taught “chef” and food enthusiast who focuses on promoting a low fat vegan approach to a whole foods diet and lifestyle. She teaches and encourages people to eat fresh plant-based foods as much as possible and stays up to date on current research in the natural health and plant based diet world. So follow along on her inventive food journey and enjoy a simple, tasty healthy lifestyle. Find her at LowFatVeganChef.



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10 comments on “How to Make Vegan ‘Fish’ Sauce”

Click to add comment
9 Months Ago

Would tamari soy work instead of mushroom soy? Also, how long will this keep in the fridge?

11 Months Ago

Can nori sheet be used instead of wakame?

1 Years Ago

Wow! This is taken (i.e. stolent) almost word for word (although the ingredient amounts are a third, the ratios are more or less identical) to this article posted three years earlier on The Kitchn\'s website.


kristina caputo
10 Jun 2017

Yes, you're right! I thought it sounded familiar. I do like that the ratio is smaller though, because The Kitchn's recipe yields way too much sauce. After a few months green mold begins to grow.

Beth Hopkins Heeschen
4 Years Ago

Fish sauce and plain greek yogurt, are my last nemesis....

Kerith Earlix
4 Years Ago

Can't wait to try it!

Kelly Hutchy McMahon
4 Years Ago

Looks great!! I have a cold and this would make me feel better!!!

Methuzulah Gem
4 Years Ago

Jamie Cooley

Meria Lacy
4 Years Ago

on guam we make finedeni best stuff in the world.... better then fish sauce.

Melike Sayman
4 Years Ago

i really do not miss the smell of fish :O

Jacquie Miller
4 Years Ago

You guys are amazing!


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