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This Chinese garlic sauce is lightly sweet and so flavorful. It’s amazing as a stir-fry sauce or it can be used as a dipping sauce.

We love to make vegetable stir-fry with this sauce but it is amazing with beef and chicken. It can also serve as a dipping sauce for eggrolls!

Chinese Garlic Sauce on a spoon

Chinese Garlic Sauce

One of the reasons we often order Chinese takeout is it’s just so darn flavorful.

The variety of sauces, spices, and heat levels are completely satisfying because there’s something to fit every mood.

While today’s Chinese garlic sauce is nothing short of flavorful, it is low on the heat. Feel free to add more chilis if you want it spicier.

Toss the sauce with your choice of vegetables and meat for a hearty stir-fry that can be served with rice.

The sauce is also great as a dip for fried dumplings!

If you enjoy this sauce, you should also try my orange ginger sauce.

Chinese Garlic Sauce mixed with veggies

Chinese Garlic Sauce Ingredients:

To make this Chinese garlic sauce recipe, you will need:

  • Cooking oil: Use either vegetable or canola oil
  • Garlic: Finely minced for the best texture
  • Ginger: Makes the sauce taste brighter
  • Green chilis: The recipe calls for 1 but feel free to add more if you like spicy food
  • Soy Sauce: Or make it gluten-free by using tamari
  • Chicken broth: Make it vegetarian/vegan by using vegetable broth
  • Vinegar: Adds a light sourness that tastes damn good
  • Brown sugar: Sweet, spicy, and sour – is your mouth watering yet?
  • Sesame oil: Because sesame oil is incredible in Asian cuisine
  • Crushed red pepper flakes: For even more spice
  • Cornstarch slurry: Thickens the sauce so it’s not so watery
Chinese Garlic Sauce Overhead

How to Make Chinese Garlic Sauce:

To make this flavorful sauce, simply…

  1. Cook the garlic, ginger, and chili. Cook just until fragrant, about 15 seconds.
  2. Stir in remaining ingredients. Add everything but the cornstarch slurry. Bring to a boil then simmer for 1 minute.
  3. Add cornstarch slurry. Stir in the cornstarch slurry and continue to cook until thickened.
  4. Serve right away or cool before storing for later use.
Chinese Garlic Sauce side view

Chinese Garlic Sauce Variations:

There are quite a few ways you can doctor up this recipe.

  • Add 1-2 more tablespoons of minced garlic: For all you garlic lovers.
  • Add another chili pepper: This will make the sauce extra hot.
  • Add Sriracha sauce: This will add more spice and flavor.
Chinese Garlic Sauce and veggies close up

How to Store Chinese Garlic Sauce:

Refrigerate – Allow the sauce to cool for 1 hour then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.

If you are looking for more Chinese inspired sauce recipe we’ve got you covered!

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Yield: 2 cups

Chinese Garlic Sauce

Chinese Garlic Sauce Recipe image

This Chinese garlic sauce is lightly sweet and so flavorful. It’s amazing as a stir-fry sauce or it can be used as a dipping sauce.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh green chiles
  • ⅔ cup low sodium soy sauce
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • ⅓ cup rice wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the garlic, ginger, and chilis. Cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 15 seconds.
  2. Stir in the soy sauce, chicken broth, vinegar, brown sugar, sesame oil, red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to medium and cook for 1 minute.
  3. Stir the water and cornstarch together until fully dissolved and pour it into the sauce. Cook, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens.

Make ahead tip

  1. Allow the sauce to cool for 1 hour then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Reheat the sauce by warming it over low heat.

Notes

Green chilis: Any fresh green chile will work. We used serranos. If you're in a pinch, canned green chiles will also work.

Red pepper flakes: You can use crushed red pepper flakes or Gochugaru for this recipe.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

¼ cup

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 81Total Fat: 4gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 830mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 2g

Nutritional values here on our recipes should be used as a general guide only. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the values shown are just an estimate.

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23 Comments

  1. We liked it — esp. my husband — but it was a touch sweet. I’ll make it again with half the brown sugar and see how that goes. Thanks!

  2. Best sauce recipe so far. But i’d go easy on the sugar mine came out really sweet ….I was definitely going for a more savory garlic sauce. Great Recipe

  3. Marcy Lauryl Lewis says:

    Is 2/3 cup of soy sauce correct? Seems like a lot?

  4. Robin Smith says:

    I like to make large amounts of sauces and freeze in individual serving containers for quick dinner prep instead of refrigerating for only 4 days. Too much time required for this recipe to only be able to use it for 4 days. So my question is can you freeze it? Is it as good when thawed and reheated?

    1. Because cornstarch is used to thicken the sauce, we don’t recommend freezing it. It’s never the same once thawed.

    2. @Sauce Fanatic, Hi,
      Good recipe, but I have been able to freeze for up to 6 months. It will separate and be lumpy and reheating an whisking will not reincorporate it. My husband suggested using our electric “stick” whipper. it worked perfectly and the sauce was as good as new!

  5. EXCELLENT sauce. Made to use over Chinese style eggplant. Used 3 slit dried Chinese chili’s for heat. YUM. Nice amount left over in jar. Thanks!

  6. sauce to thick, what should I do to thin water or broth?

  7. We made this tonight (with extra garlic!) and it was delicious! Thanks so much for this recipe!

  8. Marlene Sanna says:

    I made this tonight and replaced the brown sugar with Truvia Brown Sugar. It was really good!

  9. This is exactly what I was looking for! I don’t like any spice so I left out the chili and pepper flakes, and the result was still perfect for me! Thanks

  10. Are the green chilis listed in the recipe the canned ones

      1. Elizabeth says:

        Do you use rice vinegar or rice wine?

      2. Rice wine vinegar is the same as rice vinegar. Look for a bottle that has either of those labeled on it. Don’t use rice wine, it’s completely different.

  11. Let me just start off by saying YA’LL NAILED THIS RECIPE!! I’ve tried a few different ones and none of them came close to this one!! It tastes like I ordered this from the restaurant. Thank you so much for sharing, will definitely be make this again, and again, and again!!!

  12. Can I freeze the sauce?

  13. Looking forward to trying this but not sure what type of green chili is used.
    Thanks.

    1. We used 1 serrano pepper but if you want it less spicy you can use a milder pepper like a jalapeno.

  14. I tried the garlic sauce, didn’t have all the ingredients, but it was really really good