This tasty, so easy to make and extra versatile Thai peanut butter sauce is one of my favorite go-to sauce recipes. It only requires a few simple ingredients and you can then use it as a dipping sauce, drizzle over noodles or vegetables and so much more!
I love peanut butter sauces. I have made my sweet peanut butter sauce many times to spread over baked goods. But what I am talking about here is a good old savory peanut sauce.
And this ultra simple Thai peanut butter sauce saved dinner more times than I can count. It comes together within minutes and goes well over noodles (check out these vegan peanut noodles) and roasted vegetables, but also makes for the best dipping sauce alongside dumplings, spring rolls, satay or simply roasted tofu.
I love the fact that it is pretty high in protein and healthy fats too, which can boost a simple meal with extra calories (amazing if you have younger growing kids!).
It is nicely thick, but you can also thin it out and serve as a salad dressing. There is simply no sauce more versatile than this one. And we absolutely love its Thai flavor.
The peanut butter is obv the predominant flavor, but you get hint of tanginess from the rice vinegar and a little kick from the garlic and ginger. Plus a touch of sweetness to balance out everything.
It is so darn delicious.
Why you'll love this recipe
- Requires only 6 simple ingredients
- No cooking and done within 5 minutes
- Made without coconut milk
- Very versatile and easy to make
- Goes with everything!
- Kids love it
- Ultra flavorful
- Easy to make gluten-free
- Fits many diets as it is dairy-free, fully vegan and free of added oils
Ingredients you'll need
- Peanut butter: I used this smooth peanut butter from the brand Teddie, but chunky PB works too.
- Rice vinegar: definitively the vinegar of choice to give it a Thai flavor. Lime juice would work too. Avoid any other kind of vinegar though as it would give it a flavor that's too strong.
- Soy sauce: adds extra umami flavor, but also saltiness.
- Garlic & fresh ginger: essential for flavor, do NOT swap for powdered spice.
- Sweetener: I used maple syrup, but any other kind of sweetener should work, even coconut sugar.
How to make a Thai peanut butter sauce
This sauce can be done within 5 minutes! Simply combine peanut butter, rice vinegar, maple syrup, garlic, fresh ginger and some water in a blender.
Then, I like to blend this sauce for a little while (about one minute) so it gets nice and silky. If you don't have a high-speed blender, you might need to blend for a little longer. Blending it a little longer creates a texture that's almost whipped, which is absolutely amazing!
You can also make the sauce simply by manually whisking the ingredients together in a bowl, but if you are looking for a super smooth texture, use a blender!
Watch how to make it
- I like to roughly chop the ginger first before adding to the blender to ensure it is well incorporated. Especially important if you do not have a high-speed blender.
- You can easily adjust the amount of water you add to the blender depending on your peanut butter and the way you want to serve it. If you are at the end of a natural peanut butter jar, then the chances are that it is thicker, so you might need to add some more water. Also, if you wanted to drizzle it, then feel free to add a little more water to desired consistency.
- Also, taste the sauce to adjust how tangy/sweet/gingery you want it to be.
- The sauce tends to stick to the walls of the blender. So take 1-2 breaks and scrap the sides using a spatula to bring the back to the blades and then blend again.
- This recipe can easily be doubled! It does make plenty for a meal for 4 people, but it stores so well that you can make more for later in the week.
How to use it
- Drizzle it: Serve it simply over Asian style noodles for a perfect simple meal. I love using soba noodles for this sauce and add carrots, red pepper, mango and cilantro. Also great over brown rice Asian dishes, green salads, steamed broccoli and pairs well with zucchini noodles (zoodles).
- Dip it: Roast sticks of extra firm tofu and dip them in the sauce for a filling snack (my kids would eat a whole block of tofu that way if I don't stop them). It also makes for an amazing dipping sauce for veggie spring rolls or sushi.
- Spread it: Use this sauce instead of mayo and fill your sandwich with tofu and veggies.
Modifications to the recipe
- Make it spicy: Add sriracha or sprinkle with red pepper flakes.
- Make it crunchy: After blending the ingredients together, add a small handful of roughly chopped and unsalted peanuts and stir gently.
- Make it nut-free: Although the flavor will change a lot, you can also make it with pumpkin seed butter or sunflower seeds butter. This can be a good option when packing lunches for nut-free schools.
- Add more flavor: Add a squeeze of lime juice or fresh cilantro to make the sauce feel more fresh. Also, to make the sauce closer to a traditional Thai peanut sauce, you could swap some of the water for coconut milk.
- Use a different butter: I have made a variation of this sauce using tahini and even almond butter and it works great. Also, if you love using almond butter in sauces, then check out my balsamic almond butter dressing!
Keep any leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It stores so well, which makes it a perfect make-ahead sauce if you love to meal prep. I do not recommend freezing this sauce as it might separate while thawing.
It does firm up slightly while chilling in the fridge, so whisk well and add a splash extra of water if needed.
Pairings for this sauce
- Crispy coconut tofu
- Panko avocado sushi
- Portobello poke bowl
- Sweet potato sushi
- Vegan panko tofu nuggets
- Rice paper rolls
More Asian style recipe you might like
- Thai carrot cucumber ribbon salad
- Sticky tofu
- Spicy garlic ramen noodles
- One-pot broccoli curry ramen
- Sesame soy dressing
- Jackfruit curry
- Oven-baked orange cauliflower
- Bean sprout vegan chow mein
- Sweet and sour tofu
- Vegan peanut noodles
I hope you will love this savory peanut butter sauce as much as we do! If you try it, please leave a comment below and rate the recipe to let us know how it was. Your feedback is so helpful!
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Thai Peanut Butter Sauce (Quick and Easy)
- 1 cup unsweetened smooth peanut butter
- ½ cup water - or to taste for desired consistency
- ¼ cup rice vinegar
- ¼ cup soy sauce - or tamari for a gluten-free option
- 2 tbsp maple syrup - or any sweetener
- 1 tsp fresh ginger - grated
- 1 large clove of garlic
- Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until ultra smooth. Add more water if needed to reach desired consistency.
- Keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- I recommend to roughly chop or grate the ginger before adding to the blender to ensure it is well incorporated.
- Taste the sauce and add more vinegar/sweetener/garlic/ginger depending on your taste.
- Serve as a dipping sauce for dumplings, spring rolls, sushi or simply roasted sticks of tofu. Also great to drizzle over noodles (check out these peanut butter noodles!), roasted veggies, steamed broccoli and so much more.