What Is Thick Soy Sauce? + Other Common FAQs

Soy sauce is a very popular ingredient in many cultures, which is why there are a variety of soy sauces available.

However, you may be wondering about thick soy sauce and how to use thick soy sauce. Luckily, I looked up the facts, and here’s what I learned!

What Is Thick Soy Sauce?

Thick soy sauce is soy sauce with a thick consistency, and the thickness can vary from syrupy to an almost paste-like texture. Moreover, there is more wheat in thick soy sauce than regular soy sauce. Normally, thick soy sauce has a sweeter taste because manufacturers add sugar into thick soy sauce.

Do you want to learn more about thick soy sauce, its uses, and more? Keep on reading the article to find out!

What Is Thick Soy Sauce?

Thick soy sauce is a type of soy sauce that has a much thicker consistency. What thick soy sauce tastes and looks like will depend on what kind of thick soy sauce you are getting.

For instance, thick soy sauces like sweet soy sauces are thick due to the addition of sugar and a thickener.

What Does Thick Soy Sauce Taste Like?

Normally, thick soy sauce tastes very sweet since most thick soy sauces are created with a sweeter flavor.

Manufacturers add a lot of sugar (either brown sugar or palm sugar) and/or molasses into the soy sauce, along with a thickening agent such as cornstarch.

In fact, most thick soy sauces that are sweet contain up to 50% sugar in them, and sugar is often the first ingredient listed on the nutritional facts.

Is Thick Soy Sauce The Same As Soy Sauce?

Thick soy sauce is still soy sauce with the main difference being that thick soy sauce has a thicker and heavier consistency than regular soy sauce.

Moreover, thick soy sauce has fewer uses than regular soy sauce because of its consistency, meaning thick soy sauce is not as versatile as regular soy sauce.

Therefore, thick soy sauce is technically soy sauce, but you cannot use thick soy sauce the same way you would use regular soy sauce.

How Is Thick Soy Sauce Made?

Thick soy sauce typically has a similar fermentation process to regular soy sauce where crushed roasted wheat and steamed soybeans get seasoned with salt then fermented with a fungus.

However, thick soy sauce usually contains more wheat than regular soy sauce in the ingredients to create a sweeter flavor.

Depending on the brand, thick soy sauce usually gets fermented for 3-6 months, but some brands may age their soy sauce for several years.

Once the soy sauce is made, manufacturers usually add a thickening agent, such as cornstarch, and sugar to create the thick soy sauce’s consistency.

How Do You Use Thick Soy Sauce?

How Do You Use Thick Soy Sauce?

Typically, thick soy sauce is used in stir-fries because thick soy sauce helps add a lot of flavor and color while creating a slightly thick sauce, which is great for stir-fries.

However, you can use thick soy sauce in other recipes, such as dips if you want the flavor of sweet soy sauce and the thicker consistency to better cover foods.

Moreover, other cuisines such as Taiwanese cuisine use thick soy sauce in braised pork rice and stews since thick soy sauce adds a nice dark color and flavor.

Is Thick Soy Sauce Better Than Regular Soy Sauce?

Technically, thick soy sauce is not better than regular soy sauce because soy sauce is more versatile in cooking than thick soy sauce.

Thick soy sauce has fewer ways it can be used because of the thickness and sweet flavor whereas soy sauce has a more liquid consistency and a salty and savory flavor that goes well with most recipes.

However, that does not mean you should not get thick soy sauce if you want to make certain recipes like a stir-fry because a thick soy sauce can be a huge flavor boost for your recipe.

Moreover, it may be unfair to compare the two sauces to each other since they both can shine their best in various ways in the kitchen.

Can I Substitute Thick Soy Sauce For Regular Soy Sauce?

You can use thick soy sauce in place of regular soy sauce because thick soy sauce will still have salty and savory notes with a dark color like a regular soy sauce.

However, thick soy sauce will not be a perfect replacement for regular soy sauce because thick soy sauce is sweet and has a thick consistency.

Sweet soy sauce can be a substitute in dips, marinades, and stir-fries, but you may need to add a bit of salt and other savory and sour notes to balance out how sweet thick soy sauce normally is.

Moreover, thick soy sauce will not work as a soy sauce replacement if you want to add thick soy sauce to a watery recipe, such as a soup, because the thickness may not blend into the soup well.

Can I Substitute Regular Soy Sauce For Thick Soy Sauce?

You can use regular soy sauce instead of thick soy sauce if you need a way to color and flavor your recipe.

Since most thick soy sauces are sweet, you may need to add some sugar or honey into your soy sauce and mix it well to give it a sweeter flavor.

Additionally, you can make your soy sauce thicker by mixing a little cornstarch into your soy sauce before you add the soy sauce into your recipe.

However, you may not get the same taste as store-bought and traditionally made thick soy sauce, but this substitute recipe can work in a pinch if you want to replicate thick soy sauce.

Check out our related articles to learn about sweet soy sauce substitutes, how to use soy sauce in Thai cooking, and thick soy sauce substitutes.


Thick soy sauce is a soy sauce with a thicker consistency and a normally sweeter taste than regular soy sauce, making it a popular addition to braised stews, stir-fries, and more.

You can use regular soy sauce with sugar and cornstarch to replace thick soy sauce if you do not have any thick soy sauce.

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