Vegan fish sauce

Traditional fish sauce is made with anchovies and salt. The more modern brands include ingredients like MSG, caramel, and other food additives. None of these are good for someone who suffers from gout.

Korean foods like kimchi use fish sauce. A lot of traditional Thai and Vietnamese also use fish sauce to add umami.

Today’s recipe is an alternative with no fish or MSG. But it is still high in salt, and the brand that I used has high fructose corn syrup. So I can use it but need to use it sparingly.

Our ingredients: Soy sauce (I used a Korean brand), four ounces of mushrooms, four cloves of garlic, and one ounce of wakame seaweed. I used brown mushrooms but feel free to experiment; shiitakes would work great. I used wakame, but kombu would also work.

To a pot, add the soy sauce, garlic, and mushrooms. Turn the heat to high and bring the pot to a boil. When it starts to boil, turn the heat down to achieve a slow boil. Reduce by one third. Turn off the heat and strain out the garlic and mushrooms.

While the mixture is still hot, add the seaweed. Cover with a lid and let it cool. I am not a fan of boiling seaweed; sometimes, it gets slimy when you do that.

After it has cooled down, strain out the seaweed. Then filter the “Fish Sauce” into a bottle. I used a coffee filter, but it was prolonged. Next time I will use a paper towel or cheesecloth.

Vegan Fish Sauce

A vegan alternative to fish sauce
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Course: condiment
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: fish sauce, soy sauce, soysauce
Servings: 50 servings
Calories: 12kcal
Author: James Strange


  • 930 ml soy sauce
  • 4 oz mushrooms
  • 1 oz wakame seaweed
  • 4 cloves garlic


  • Place the soy sauce, mushrooms and garlic in a pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to medium and reduce the liquid by 30 percent.
  • Turn off the heat and strain out the mushrooms
  • While the soy sauce is still hot add the wakame seaweed. Cover with a lid and let it sit until cool.
  • Strain the liquid and store in the refrigerator.


Calories: 12kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1044mg | Potassium: 48mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 5IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 0.5mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @james_strange_eats or tag #james_strange_eats
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