Home » Condiments » How To Make Peanut Sauce (Thai-Style)

How To Make Peanut Sauce (Thai-Style)

Last Updated on December 4, 2023

Have you wondered how to make peanut sauce at home easily? Peanut sauce is a delectable staple in Thai cuisine, known for its rich nutty flavor and satisfying aftertaste. 

peanut sauce

This mouthwatering blend of creamy peanut butter, coconut milk, lime juice, and spices instantly elevates any dish, from dipping spring rolls, and Asian salad to slippery peanut butter noodles, you name it!

Whether you’re preparing a quick meal or impressing your guests, this sauce is just what you need.

If you’re ready to bring the taste of Thailand to your kitchen like never before, follow along with our step-by-step guide on this easy recipe with a pantry staple – peanut butter.

THAI PEANUT SAUCE RECIPE – WHY YOU’LL LOVE THIS RECIPE

peanut butter sauce
  • Using creamy or crunchy unsalted peanut butter to make peanut sauce is a trick to enhance their nutty flavor and crunchy texture.
  • The consistency and spice level can be adjusted according to personal preferences. Experiment with different chili sauces or add garlic or scallions for extra depth of flavor.
  • It is super easy to make and adds an authentic touch to any dish – from dipping fresh veggies to drizzling on noodles like vegan Pad Thai.

Easy Peanut Sauce Recipe

To make this recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

peanut sauce recipe
  • 1 ¼ cup/315g creamy, unsalted smooth peanut butter (you can use crunchy peanut butter if you like)
  • 1 medium/45g shallot, minced
  • 1 large/4g Thai pepper (bird’s eye chili), minced (*optional: omit it if you prefer mild flavor)
  • 1”/2 tbsp/20g fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • ¾ cup/180ml coconut milk (full fat), plus more as needed
  • 1 tsp/5ml sesame oil
  • 1 tsp/6g coarse salt
  • 2 tbsp/30ml fresh lime juice
  • 2 tsp/10ml neutral oil (vegetable or peanut)

If you like it salty, you can add low-sodium soy sauce, tamari sauce, or coconut aminos (*optional).

By the way, you can print out the recipe by using the recipe card down below.

How To Make Peanut Sauce in Thai Style

how to make easy peanut sauce

1. Peel and mince the shallots and ginger. Cut off the chili stem and mince finely. For a less spicy version, scrape out some seeds first.

2. Heat the neutral oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots, ginger, and chili.

3. Cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring regularly, until soft and fragrant.

4. Add coconut milk and simmer on medium-low for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let it cool for 15-20 minutes.

how to make peanut sauce

5. In a blender, add peanut butter, salt, and sesame oil. Add the coconut mixture, including the cooked aromatics.

6. Blend on medium speed for 2-3 minutes, pausing to scrape down the sides and stirring until smooth. Add lime juice and pulse to blend.

7. If needed, add 2-4 tbsp/30-60ml cold or room temperature coconut milk until the desired consistency is reached.

8. For the most optimal results, allow the sauce to sit for at least 1 hour before serving for the flavors to blend, and serve the sauce slightly warm.

Note: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Can be reheated in the microwave in 10 second bursts.

Do not overheat or the sauce will split. If the sauce splits, add room temperature coconut milk and stir until smooth again.

Variations for Making Thai Peanut Sauce

satay sauce

There are several variations of homemade peanut butter sauce to suit your taste buds.

You could try a spicier version by using chili garlic sauce and sriracha sauce or opt for a creamier texture with more coconut milk.

Sweeten things up with maple syrup, coconut, or palm sugar. Experiment with different sweeteners or add curry paste to elevate the flavor profile further.

How to Use Peanut Sauce

There are so many ways to use this easy and delicious sauce. Some examples are:

As A Dip For Fresh Vegetables

You can use it as a dip for fresh vegetables or sauce for spring rolls. Simply chop some crisp veggies like carrots, cucumbers, celery, and bell peppers into batons.

Arrange them on a platter alongside a ramekin filled with your sauce. It’s perfect for a light snack or appetizer at any gathering or party.

As A Marinade for Tofu

It’s an excellent marinade for tofu with its tangy and nutty flavor profile, giving your protein a subtle Thai twist.

If you’re looking for a spicy kick, add chili sauce or Thai curry paste. The result is an incredibly tasty dish that pairs well with stir-fried vegetables or noodles.

As A Sauce For Noodles

One of the most popular uses for this delicious sauce is for noodle dishes. Its creamy texture and nutty flavor add depth to many noodles, including ramenudon, and soba noodles.

Whether you prefer your noodles hot or cold, spicy or sweet, it can be customized to your liking with a few simple tweaks.

To make a classic peanut noodle dish, cook your choice of noodles according to package instructions and toss them in the prepared sauce until coated evenly.

Top with chopped peanuts, cilantro, and lime wedges for an extra burst of flavor.

You can also add vegetables like bell peppers or broccoli for nutrition and crunch.

As A Dressing For Salads

It’s a fantastic salad dressing that adds flavor and creaminess to any salad.

To use it as a dressing, pour this mixture over your favorite greens or vegetables and toss to combine evenly. For more acidity, add more rice vinegar.

Pairing Suggestions With Other Thai Dishes

One of our favorite pairing suggestions is serving it with Pad Thai – the tangy and nutty flavor perfectly complements Pad Thai’s sweet, savory flavors.

slippery noodles

Additionally, it goes excellently with green papaya salad (Som Tam), grilled satay tofu skewers, or any spicy curry dish like tofu green curry or Massaman curry.

Tips And Tricks For Best Peanut Sauce

To take your sauce to the next level, add some herbs and spices for an extra flavor.

Adding garlic, for example, can add a subtle warmth while also boosting the sauce’s anti-inflammatory properties.

Other popular options include lemongrass, which can provide a fresh and fragrant touch to the peanut butter base. 

Experimenting With Different Sweeteners

To add a touch of sweetness to your sauce, you can experiment with different sweeteners.

Coconut sugar is the most commonly used sweetener in Thai cuisine, but you can also try using maple syrup or palm sugar for a unique taste.

Agave nectar or coconut sugar are great alternatives to traditional sugars. It’s important not to add too much sweetness as it can overpower the flavors in the sauce.

Start by adding small amounts and adjust accordingly until you find the perfect balance for your taste buds.

Storing And Reheating

Leftover sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

If you’re making a larger batch, it can also be frozen and then thawed before reheating.

When reheating, use low heat on the stove or microwave at short intervals to prevent scorching or overheating.

To enhance the flavor of your leftover sauce, add a little bit of coconut milk or lime juice when heating it up.

This will help refresh any flavors that may have dulled during storage and give new life to your sauce.

If you find that your sauce has become too thick after refrigeration, simply stir in some warm water to thin out the sauce until it reaches your desired consistency.

FAQS:

Q: What makes Thai peanut sauce unique?


It typically includes ingredients such as coconut elements, fish sauce, and lime juice which give it a distinct sweet-sour-salty flavor profile that pairs well with spicy or savory dishes.Asian aromatics

Q: How do I make sure my sauce is smooth and creamy?


To achieve a smooth consistency, it’s important to use high-quality natural peanut butter rather than low-fat or hydrogenated varieties which may separate.

Q: Can I adjust the spiciness level?


Yes! You can easily increase or decrease the spice level by adjusting the amount of Thai chili peppers used in the recipe or adding hot pepper flakes according to taste preference.

Q: What are some common uses for peanut sauce?


It’s highly versatile and commonly used as dips for vegetables and spring rolls, drizzled over salads or noodles, paired with grilled tofu satay skewers.

peanut dipping sauce

Making your own Thai peanut sauce is easier than you might think! With just a few simple ingredients and some basic kitchen equipment, anyone can whip up their own batch of this delicious condiment.

Don’t be afraid to get creative with your variations, whether adding more spice or experimenting with different sweeteners.

And remember to store any extra sauce properly so that it stays fresh and tasty for as long as possible.

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More Vegan Recipes (Thai)

peanut sauce

Easy Thai Peanut Sauce (with Peanut Butter)

Looking for a delicious, easy-to-make Thai peanut sauce recipe? This recipe uses just a few simple ingredients and can be made in minutes. Perfect for dipping, stir-fries, or as a condiment, this sauce is sure to please.
5 from 4 votes
Print Rate
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 1 pint (475ml)
Calories: 2397kcal
Author: SHU-CHUN

Ingredients

  • cup unsalted peanut butter 315g, creamy or crunchy
  • 1 pc shallot 45g, minced
  • 1 pc bird's eye chili (optional) 4g,minced
  • 2 tbsp minced ginger 1"or 20g, peeled and minced
  • ¾ cup coconut milk (full-fat) 180ml, plus more as needed
  • 1 tsp sesame oil 5ml
  • 1 tsp salt 6g
  • 2 tbsp lime juice 30ml
  • 2 tsp neutral-flavored oil 10ml, grapeseed or peanut oil

Instructions

  • 1. Peel and mince the shallots and ginger. Cut off the chili stem and mince finely. For a less spicy version, scrape out some seeds first.
  • 2. Heat the neutral oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallots, ginger, and chili.
  • 3. Cook for 3-5 minutes, stirring regularly, until soft and fragrant.
  • 4. Add coconut milk and simmer on medium low for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let it cool for 15-20 minutes.
  • 5. In a blender, add peanut butter, salt, and sesame oil. Add the coconut mixture, including the cooked aromatics.
  • 6. Blend on medium speed for 2-3 minutes, pausing to scrape down the sides and stirring as needed until smooth. Add lime juice and pulse to blend.
  • 7. If needed, add 2-4 tbsp/30-60ml cold or room temperature coconut milk until desired consistency is reached.
  • 8. For the most optimal results, allow the sauce to sit for at least 1 hour before serving for the flavours to blend and serve the sauce slightly warm. (note)

Notes

Note: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. Can be reheated in the microwave in 10 second bursts.
Do not overheat or the sauce will split. If the sauce splits, add room temperature coconut milk and stir until smooth again.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pint (475ml) | Calories: 2397kcal | Carbohydrates: 79g | Protein: 75g | Fat: 214g | Saturated Fat: 66g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 45g | Monounsaturated Fat: 92g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 2413mg | Potassium: 2215mg | Fiber: 16g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 27IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Calcium: 195mg | Iron: 11mg

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