Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce

Everyone loves a good dipping sauce, right? Well, this Asian-inspired dipping sauce is as good as they come.

We love the combination of a little heat matched against a little sweet. The sauce can be made up to 48 hours in advance and can be served warm or at room temperature. It’s the perfect sauce for our Vegetarian Steamed Dumplings, or grilled fish or meat!

A small colorful Asian bowl filled with hot and sweet dipping sauce next to several scallions.

How To Make Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce

This sauce couldn’t be easier to prepare.

As mentioned, you make the sauce up to 48 hours in advance of serving.

 

The Ingredients You Will Need

Nowadays, most (if not all) of the ingredients for this dipping sauce can be found in the Asian-section of most well-stocked supermarkets. If not, you can certainly find them at your favorite Asian food market. Or, you can get them online (see link below):

Now you may be wondering what in the world is fish sauce, and is it fishy tasting? All we can say is it takes many dishes, often Asian-themed, to amazing umami heights. Trust us on this one!

Here are the ingredients for Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce:

  • Soy Sauce (reduced-sodium or regular)
  • Corn Starch
  • Fish Sauce
  • Chili Sauce (we love Sambal Oelek)
  • Green Onions (aka: Scallions)
  • Lime Juice (Preferably fresh)
  • Brown Sugar (Light or dark)

Bottles and various ingredients for Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce all sitting next to each other.

How To Slightly Thicken the Sauce

This sauce is excellent because it’s that Asian syrupy texture that is so delicious.

It also allows the sauce to really stick to dumplings after they’ve been dunked into the sauce.

EXPERT TIP: Cornstarch acts as a thickening agent and is used in many types of Asian cuisine, especially Chinese. Simply mix ½ teaspoon of the cornstarch into a small bowl containing a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce. Stir until the cornstarch has dissolved. Once added to the simmering sauce, it will thicken just enough to be the ideal consistency.

A person holding a quarter-teaspoon filled with cornstarch over a small white bowl filled with soy sauce.

After you have brought all of the ingredients to a boil and then a steady simmer in a small saucepan, it’s time to add the soy/cornstarch mixture.

The smell is amazing and classic Asian.

Be careful as you pour the soy mixture into the hot skillet.

A person pouring a soy sauce and cornstarch mixture from a small bowl into a small skillet with a simmering dark-colored sauce in it.

Now, all you need to do is simmer the sauce for about 2 to 3 minutes.

Stir the sauce with a wooden spoon. Once the sauce begins to stick to the back of the spoon, it’s ready.

EXPERT TIP: The sauce can be made up to 48 hours in advance. Simply store it in an air-tight container and keep it in the fridge. If you want to serve the sauce warm, then gently reheat in a pan over medium heat on the stove. If not warm, we recommend serving the sauce at room temperature and not chilled. Simply leave the sauce out on the counter for an hour or two before serving.

A small silver skillet filled with hot and sweet dipping sauce that is simmering and being stirred by a wooden spoon.

When To Serve Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce

This sauce is the perfect accompaniment for our Vegetarian Steamed Dumplings, but it’s also really good with our Asian Fried Shrimp Balls.

It’s also fantastic served with grilled meats or broiled fish…but with dumplings? Oh, man.

Just wait until you dunk that first dumpling into this amazing sauce and take that first bite. Incredible!

A person using two chopsticks to dunk a steamed dumpling into a small Asian bowl filled with hot and sweet dipping sauce.

Ready to make the best dipping sauce this side of Shanghai? Go for it!

And when you do, be sure to take a photo of it, post it on Instagram, and tag @HowToFeedaLoon and hashtag #HowToFeedaLoon!

A small colorful Asian bowl filled with hot and sweet dipping sauce next to several scallions.

Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce

This Hot and Sweet Dipping Sauce has just enough heat to make it feel good. If you want it extra spicy, add another tsp of the chili sauce. If less spice, then go with just ½ tsp of the chili sauce. This is a perfect sauce for dumplings, fried shrimp balls, and grilled meats and fish.
Print Pin Rate
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: asian
Keyword: Asian dipping sauce, dipping sauce for dumplings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 11 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 20kcal

Equipment

  • Small saucepan/skillet

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • ½ tsp corn starch
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp chili sauce of more, for added heat
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced
  • 1 lime squeezed, about 1 tbsp
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar light or dark

Instructions

  • Place the soy sauce in a small bowl and stir in the cornstarch until dissolved. Set aside.
  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil then reduce the heat so the sauce is simmering.
  • Transfer the soy/cornstarch mixture into the pan, stirring frequently. Cook until slightly thickened, about 2 more minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Video

Notes

Low-sodium soy sauce is a perfectly good substitute for regular soy sauce.
Fish sauce can be found in the Asian section of many well-stocked supermarkets or definitely at Asian markets.  It can also be ordered online (see blog post for the link).  The fish sauce adds a wonderful depth to the sauce and we don't recommend skipping, if possible!
The sauce can be made up to 48 hours in advance.  If serving warm, reheat gently over medium heat.  We don't recommend serving it chilled.  Room temp is great, just let it sit out for an hour or two before serving. 
Great with dumplings!

Nutrition

Calories: 20kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 467mg | Potassium: 39mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 54IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe? Take a Picture!Mention @HowToFeedALoon or tag #HowToFeedALoon!

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