Best Soy Sauce: Top 7 Brands Recommended by Experts

Best Soy Sauce: Top 7 Brands Recommended by Experts

Most of us have a bottle of soy sauce in the refrigerator or pantry. This versatile condiment is used in marinades, stir-fries, and sauces — or as a dipping sauce for foods like sushi. A wide range of uses makes the best soy sauces a must-have ingredient, providing a quick and easy way to add taste to dishes.

While many people turn to what’s in their refrigerator over and over again, there are actually different types of soy sauces that can bring new flavors to your taste buds. Types of soy sauce vary depending on the region and cuisine, but the most common are:

  1. Light soy sauce (shoyu) – This is the most widely used type and is versatile for cooking, seasoning and as a dipping sauce. It is commonly used in Japanese dishes and has a subtler, saltier flavour.
  2. Dark soy sauce – More common in Chinese cuisine to add color and flavor to dishes. It tends to be less salty than light soy sauce.
  3. Tamari – Tamari is thicker and richer than most other soy sauces. It is often made without wheat, making it a popular gluten-free option.
  4. Sweet soy sauce – This thick Indonesian soy sauce is sweeter than traditional soy sauce.
  5. Low-sodium soy sauce – Low-sodium versions are gaining popularity as more and more consumers want a health-conscious alternative.

In addition to using soy sauce in our cuisine to add flavor, many Asian dishes require monosodium glutamate (MSG). It is the sodium salt of glutamic acid, an amino acid produced by our body. MSG is an ingredient that has gained notoriety over the years after studies suggested the substance was neurotoxic, linked to obesity, and promoted metabolic dysfunction. However, a recent report suggests that many of those studies did not use appropriate control groups, had small sample sizes, and were flawed in methodology. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) now says MSG is generally safe and poses no risk to those who consume it in moderation. However, some people are allergic to MSG, which can cause headaches and other symptoms.

Now that that’s settled, let’s get back to the soy sauce aisle, which can be intimidating. With all the bottles lined up, it’s hard to choose the best option. We’ve taken some of the guesswork out of shopping for soy sauce with our list of the best options according to foodies. These brands will bring your dishes to new heights. Did we miss one you use in your kitchen? Let us know in the comments below.

Someone pours soy sauce for sushi
Someone pours soy sauce for sushi (Photo by GoodEats YQR on Unsplash)

List: The best soy sauces, according to foodies

1. I am a sauce

It’s a brand that most of us know and probably use. Taste of Home says, “If you only keep one brand of soy sauce in your refrigerator door, let it be Kikkoman. This sauce is available in almost every supermarket and supermarket, so you’ll never be far from one of the best soy sauce options. Our test kitchen praised it for Kikkoman for how well it blends sweetness, saltiness, and a bit of citrusy vinegar flavour.

Kikkoman i sauce
Kikkoman – I’m Sauce (kikkomanusa.com)

According to Mashad, “Kikkoman has consistently rated highly in articles and kitchen taste tests where it is praised for its accessibility and balanced flavor between salty and sweet.”

While it’s brewed in the US, Chef’s Pencil says: “We consider it top of our choices because of its all-purpose use. It’s made from a traditional recipe, of soybeans, wheat, water and salt and is a kosher soy sauce. It can be used for both Asian-inspired dishes and Western recipes.” Works great in marinades, basting, stir-frying, and dipping.

2. Lee Kum Kee Premium Soy Sauce

Taste of Home loves this brand of french fries. “Once our testers sampled Lee Kum Kee’s premium soy sauce, they thought: Frying. The soy sauce was not overly salty and had a sweet citrus flavor and coffee-like acidity. Besides the right level of sodium and plenty of umami flavor, our testers were coming back for second samples of this sauce with images of homemade French fries dancing in their heads, including the top-rated Stir-Fry Chicken Lo Mein.

    Lee Kum Kee Premium Soy Sauce
Lee Kum Kee Premium Soy Sauce

According to Mashad, a Reddit thread about soy sauce says: “Lee Kum Kee tastes very similar to high-quality Chinese cuisine, creating an authentic cooking experience at home.”

Food Shark Marfa wrote: “This balanced dark sauce made in China has a caramel note that makes it ideal for caramelized dishes, although it is suitable for a variety of cooking requirements like most soy sauces.”

3. Kichibori shoyu pure soy sauce

According to Mashad, “Kishibori, a Japanese-style soy sauce, has been praised by Epicurious for being a handcrafted soy sauce that outperforms mass-market brands. It uses toasted wheat and is fermented for a year in 100-year-old cider barrels to bring out the flavors Complex, rich and smooth umami.Kishibori has long been a choice for making ice cream, Sam Mason said in an interview with Epicurious, saying that premium soy sauce is less like a salt bomb, more earthy and somewhat funky with a natural sweetness.

Kishibori Shoyu Pure Artisanal Soy Sauce
Kishibori Shoyu Pure Artisanal Soy Sauce

Chef’s Pencil wrote: “The great thing about this sauce is that it has no additives or preservatives at all. Just whole soybeans, wheat, and dried sea salt. Very interesting, isn’t it? And here’s more: The ingredients are fermented for one year in barrels Old apple juice. While it can be used in cooking, we can say that this sauce is at its best when eaten raw.

“It’s pure, contains no preservatives, and delivers the taste of authentic soy sauce without leaving you to worry about your health,” says Pepperfool. Although they are not gluten-free, they come in beautiful packaging and are made with high-quality wheat and soybeans for the best soy sauce.

The Spruce Eats says this soy sauce is brewed on the warm, dry island of Shodo in southern Japan. “This soy sauce is more expensive than your favorite version from the grocery store, but it’s not that expensive if you want to upgrade for a special occasion recipe. The cost is also equal and since it’s an 18-ounce bottle, you’ll have plenty to work with, even if you’re cooking for a number of Large individuals or family We love that the bottle has a large, clear “best by” date below the nutritional information, so you know exactly how long it will be good to use.

Yamaruko 4 Year Old Kiko Biseiho Soy Sauce
Yamaruko 4 Year Old Kiko Biseiho Soy Sauce

Recipes.net says: “This particular one comes with a hefty price because it’s considered one of the best types of Japanese soy sauce in the world. Save this luxurious condiment for special occasions, or use it to make the most delicious shoyu ramen. Its full umami flavor makes it the best type for sushi, too!”

Chef Pen can’t speak highly enough about this sauce. “It’s a complex sauce that’s rich in flavor yet light. It’s one of the best bottled soy sauces, and it’s no wonder it’s aged in 100-year-old barrels for four years. It doesn’t overpower dishes and it’s not expensive.”

4. San-ji tamari soy sauce

“Tamari may resemble soy sauce, but it has a milder flavor that makes it distinctive,” according to Sporked. “They’re even made differently (tamari is a byproduct of miso paste, while soy sauce is fermented and fermented on its own).” This was one of two tamari bars we tried, and I really liked it. It has a really bold flavor that gives it a teriyaki vibe, and it seems like it can coat food well. “It’s not a huge departure from the soy sauce I’m used to, but it’s a nice change.”

San-ji tamari soy sauce
San-ji tamari soy sauce

The Spruce Eats agrees, adding: “This tamari is made a little differently than soy sauce and is fermented for six months. It also tends to be a little thicker, making it perfect as a dipping sauce, and comes in a 10-ounce bottle. It has a higher concentration Of soy protein, so you won’t miss the wheat at all.

Pepperfool wrote: “This non-GMO soy sauce is also gluten-free and is made with more soybeans than regular soy sauce. This ensures a smooth, rich and complex product.”

5. Best of Thailand Lite Soy Sauce

There are a lot of great things to say about this brand. “This soy sauce, MSG-free, is very low in sodium and is certified kosher and vegan,” says Chef’s Pencil. “Works great for seasoning fish and meat.”

The best lite soy sauce from Thailand
The best lite soy sauce from Thailand

Pepperfool wrote: “Best of Thailand has a light version of soy sauce that is lower in sodium than most other soy sauce brands. A tablespoon of this sauce typically contains 270 mg per serving and 13 calories. You won’t have to sacrifice your taste for Your health now.

“Light and dark, this Thai soy sauce is the perfect accompaniment to your favorite Thai recipes,” according to Recipes.net. “Since this is a low-sodium version, you can actually expect this condiment to not be too salty. It also contains additional ingredients like vinegar which lend a welcome tangy quality. These ‘Best of Thailand’ sauces are best for marinades because they are more viscous Of the normal type.

6. Bluegrass soy sauce

This is no ordinary soy sauce, as it is fermented in bourbon barrels. “Bluegrass soy sauce had a flavor unlike any other brand we tested,” Taste of Home wrote. “In addition to the salty, savory flavor you’d expect from soy sauce, this brand also has some molasses and fruity flavors that come through making for complex flavors.” And satisfying. It may not be a typical soy sauce you’d see on the table at your favorite sushi restaurant, but this brand was delicious and satisfying.

Bluegrass soy sauce
Bluegrass soy sauce

“This adorable little bottle of soy sauce is packaged almost like a bottle of whiskey at your local liquor store, and that’s definitely by design,” says Sporked. “Made in Louisville and fermented and aged in bourbon barrels, Bluegrass Soy Sauce has a fruity flavor. It’s definitely special.” “And definitely delicious. This would make a great gift (even for yourself).”

“It goes well with sushi, in a steak marinade or vegetable marinade, or as a savory side,” says Masshed.

7. Pearl River Bridge Premium Dark Soy Sauce

Recipes.Net wrote, “If you’re looking for the best mild variety for stir-fries and other recipes, you need to go no further than this product from Pearl River Bridge. This condiment is naturally produced in the southern part of China, and contains no colorings.” It is artificial and contains only a small amount of preservatives.As a result, it has a deep delicious flavour, with intense saltiness and a sweet finish.

Pearl River Bridge - Premium Dark Soy Sauce
Pearl River Bridge – Premium Dark Soy Sauce

According to Mashad, “What really stood out about this brand was the loyalty that people shared with the brand. In a Reddit thread about the best soy sauces, many people echoed that Pearl River Bridge is a premium Chinese light soy sauce, one that holds itself to the same high standards as Japanese brand Kikkoman. One person talked about how he prefers it over Symbio when looking for light or dark soy sauce.

“With its delicious, natural taste, this is the perfect sauce to add some flavor but no color to your food,” says Chef’s Pencil. “It’s fermented outdoors. Great for dipping and cooking as well.” Pearl River Bridge is one of the most appreciated sauces in China.

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Note: This article was not paid for or sponsored. StudyFinds is not affiliated or partnered with any of the brands mentioned and does not receive any compensation for its recommendations. This page contains affiliate links.

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