There are not many sauces as rich and highly nutritious as tahini sauce, and it is very popular in the Mediterranean, Middle East, and North Africa. It is a tangy and flavorful sauce made by blending rich, nutty tahini paste with citrus, fresh garlic, and a little bit of water.
Tahini itself is a paste or butter made from ground sesame seeds. It is a key ingredient in hummus and baba ghanoush, an aubergine dip. It is highly rich in protein, fat, sugar, fiber, carbohydrates, and other minerals. Sesame seeds – which Tahini is made of, contain phytosterols – a compound that is very vital for lowering cholesterol levels and its cancer blocking effects. Not only that, it is a rich source of B vitamins that boost energy and brain function, vitamin E, which is protective against heart disease and stroke.
However, Tahini contains a large amount of fat, and it’s so high in calories. Also, Tahini is very rich in omega-6 fatty acids, and it could cause an adverse reaction in those who are allergic to sesame seeds. Therefore, it is imperative to know of close substitutes that offer similar tastes, flavors, and nutrients for these reasons.
What is Tahini Sauce?
Known as Tahina in some countries, Tahini has a peanut butter-ish appearance, but it doesn’t taste like it. Instead, it has a strong, nutty, and earthy flavor, which complements Sharwama, Falafel, Sandwiches, and the likes.
Tahini sauce isn’t difficult to make as well – if you’re a lover of homemade recipes. All you have to do is whisk the Tahini, lemon juice, garlic, salt, and water together in a bowl until they create a luscious, smooth sauce, the water aids with consistency. When you add the water and lemon juice to the Tahini, it looks sticky and gummy; continue whisking until the ingredients combine to form a smooth, creamy sauce.
Tahini Sauce Nutrition Facts
Tahini Sauce Uses in Recipes
Tahini sauce is incredibly versatile, and it is delicious and shines well on Sharwama, Falafel, Sandwiches, soups, and many more. It can also be used on snacks in place of ranch dressing with pepper for additional flavor.
The good thing is that you can also add other ingredients to the recipe, depending on your taste, desires, and what you’re preparing. For example, you can add a little honey if you’re using it with toast or add another hot sauce if you’re dipping veggies in it. So let’s look at some other things it shines well on.
- Lamb with Spinach
- Sour Cream
- Onion Hummus
- Green Herb Hummus
- Gouda Grilled Cheese
- Broccoli Sprout Salad
- Pretzel Pork
- Chickpea Salad
- Morrocan Burritos
- Baked Falafel Sandwiches
- Whipped Cream
- Baked Coconut Shrimp
- Cold Soba Noodles
- Chicken Marinades
Tahini Sauce Substitutes
Finding a substitute for tahini sauce is pertinent, especially if you’re allergic to sesame seeds or trying to avoid the high-fat contents. It could even be that you run out of it, and you need some replacement to flavor your dishes and desserts. So let’s take a look at some close substitutes.
This, alongside cashew butter, is most like the best substitute for tahini sauce. They are both kinds of butter with similar nutty flavor and consistency. Almond butter tastes great on toast with banana or even by the spoonful straight from the jar. It is also rich in monounsaturated, which help to lower cholesterol and improve general health.
They have similar nutritional benefits and flavors. Although they both lack the mildly bitter taste of Tahini, they still make perfect substitutes nonetheless. It can also be used in the same proportion as tahini sauce.
Sunflower Seed Butter
If you’re using this as a substitute, adding some sesame seed oil will make the outcome a carbon copy of tahini sauce, both in taste and texture. This can shine well in most recipes you would use tahini sauce on. They have similar nutritional properties and health benefits. And since they are both similar in texture, they can be used in recipes in ratio 1:1, that is, in the same proportion.
Peanut butter provides a silky smooth texture in Tahini’s stead, and it should also be blended with sesame oil to get the same flavor as tahini sauce. It should be noted that peanut butter’s flavor is much stronger than that of Tahini, so using a lesser amount – a little over half of the same amount you’d use if it were Tahini would be perfect for your dishes and desserts.
That is also known as coconut butter or toasted coconut paste. Kerisik is pounded dry toasted shredded coconut, an essential ingredient in Malaysian, Indonesian, and Singaporean cooking. It has a sweet, caramel flavor and a nutty aftertaste, making it an excellent substitute for tahini sauce.
Chinese Sesame Paste
Chinese sesame paste is a popular condiment used in noodles, salad, hot-pot dipping sauce, etc. It is a thick, brown paste with a strong, distinctive nutty aroma. However, they have different tastes and textures; Chinese paste is very thick, much thicker than Tahini, so you might want to thin it by whisking with water till it gets smooth and gets thinner in texture.
Because sesame seeds are toasted until browned before making the paste, it makes it result in a significantly different flavor, but it gets lower in fat concentration. So, if fatty acids aren’t healthy for your diet, this is for you. So as long as you’ve thinned it to a Tahini-like texture, it can be used in the same proportion.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I substitute yogurt for tahini sauce?
Yes, but depending on the recipe. This option isn’t great for recipes where Tahini is used to offset sweetness—like when it’s drizzled on sweet potatoes or spread on toast with jam.
What is tahini sauce made of?
Tahini sauce is blended with rich, nutty tahini paste with citrus, fresh garlic, and water.
Does Tahini taste like peanut butter?
No. It sure looks like peanut butter, but they have different tastes. Tahini sauce has a strong, earthy flavor, and it isn’t very pleasant. Peanut butter has a sweet taste with a milder flavor compared to tahini sauce.
Tahini sauce is a highly nutritious and flavorful sauce with several health benefits. It shines well on dishes and desserts; Sharwama, veggies, sandwiches, salads, etc., are some dishes it goes well with. However, due to allergies or expenses, there might be reasons why you need replacements as there are several close substitutes with similar properties and functions.