Try saying “Worcestershire sauce” fast… Was it difficult? If it was, then that makes two of us. But, as difficult as the name may sound, the taste is different and pleasant to the taste buds. So it is no wonder it is incorporated into many dishes, even dishes that originally didn’t contain the sauce.
Whether it’s for delicacies like Oysters Kilpatrick, Welsh rarebit, Caesar salad, or cocktails like the Bloody Mary and Caesar, the Worcestershire sauce does the same job, and that is to elevate the flavor of whatever it is incorporated into.
Well, if you practice vegetarianism, then the Worcestershire sauce may not be an ideal sauce for your meals. So that’s why I’ve pieced together some adequate substitutes for the sauce.
What is Worcestershire Sauce?
Worcestershire sauce is a dark brown condiment containing molasses, tamarind extracts, sugar, salt, anchovies, spirit vinegar, and some other ingredients, including an undisclosed ingredient. It is rich in umami flavor and mainly used to augment the flavor of dishes and drinks.
It gets its unique name because it was created in the city of Worcester in Worcestershire, England. It was created during the first half of the 19th century by two pharmacists named John Wheeley Lea and William Henry Perrins.
John Wheeley Lea and William Henry Perrins went on to form the Lea & Perrins brand, which was commercialized in 1837; they were the first to start selling them now popular Worcestershire sauce.
Worcestershire Sauce Nutrition Facts
Uses of Worcestershire Sauce in Recipes
Worcestershire sauce is popular in Europe and can be found in some European and Oceanic cuisines. It is gradually becoming a worldwide condiment. A version of this umami-rich sauce can be found in Japan.
It is used as a marinade for meat, fish, and poultry to get that desired amount of grilled chicken. It is also used to add flavor to drinks. The Worcestershire sauce packs loads of flavors because of the different ingredients and is spicy, sweet, and sour all at once.
Here are some examples of dishes that use the Worcestershire sauce;
- Grilled Vinegar Turkey with Chiles and Rosemary
- Hanger steak with school
- Collard greens salad with pickled fennel and coconut
- Sticky barbecue chicken
- Scallops with Red Aguachile and pickled onions
- Sheet pan chicken meatballs and charred broccoli
- Chunky Vegetable Soup
- Caesar Salad, Veg Caesar Salad
- Virgin mock cocktail
- Barbecue sauce
- Virgin Mary
- Bloody Mary
- Cheesy cornflakes
- Tom yum soup recipe, Thai soup
Vegan Substitute for Worcestershire Sauce
Worcestershire sauce is used in various dishes because it is loaded with different flavors. Well, it’s no surprise when you take a look at the different ingredients used during manufacturing. For example, it gets a sweet taste from the added molasses and sugar, a sour taste from the vinegar and tamarind, and the fermented anchovies complete the powerful umami flavor.
The flavors are all great, but if you practice vegetarianism, you certainly would be concerned about the anchovies used in manufacturing. This is where the need for a substitute comes in. A decent substitute for the Worcestershire sauce needs to be rich in flavors and animal-free. There is some vegan substitute for Worcestershire sauce, and I’ve listed a few for you.
Suppose you are on a vegetarian diet but still want to enjoy that savory flavor associated with Worcestershire sauce. In that case, your best option has to be coconut aminos. It is made from the fermented coconut palm, which gives it a sweet flavor and some sea salt.
Suppose you also need to control the amount of salt in your food. In that case, coconut aminos is a great option because it isn’t as salty as Worcestershire sauce. It has the same brown color and consistency as Worcestershire sauce. It doesn’t contain any animal extract, making it perfect for vegetarians and vegans.
Since it has the same consistency and almost the same taste, use the same measurements when substituting anywhere you need to use Worcestershire sauce.
If you want a rich umami condiment to replace Worcestershire sauce, then soy sauce would be a good replacement. It has the same consistency and color as Worcestershire sauce and can be used interchangeably. Being vegan-friendly is another great substitute for vegans who want something that closely resembles the Worcestershire sauce without endangering any animal.
The main ingredient in soy sauce is soybeans which are fermented and mixed with other ingredients like wheat and salt. Although it lacks the tartness of Worcestershire sauce because it is fermented for a shorter period and is less spicy, it still works well with many foods. When substituting, use a 1 to 1 ratio.
The original Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies or an anchovy paste, which vegans and vegetarians do not accept. But over the years, the need for savory condiments has grown, and most vegan substitutes can now enjoy the same umami flavor without eating anchovies.
There are a handful of vegan Worcestershire sauces with the same taste and consistency without containing anchovies. You will barely even notice the absence of anchovies since it doesn’t play a big role in the recipe. Popular vegan-friendly Worcestershire sauce brands include The wizard’s Worcestershire sauce and Annie’s Worcestershire sauce.
Use the same measurements when substituting.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can I use Tamari sauce in place of Worcestershire sauce?
Tamari sauce has a strong umami flavor and is less salty when compared to soy sauce. It is made from fermented soybeans and is gluten-free so that it can be a vegan-friendly substitute for Worcestershire sauce.
Is Worcestershire sauce healthy?
Worcestershire sauce isn’t so endowed with nutrients and minerals. Although it contains small amounts of vitamin C, zinc, iron, potassium, and copper, it is significantly low to be a source of nutrients for your body.
How do you pronounce Worcestershire?
The pronunciation is slightly different from the spelling, as it is pronounced “Wooster – Sher.”
Worcestershire sauce is a staple for marinades or sauces. Still, not everyone is comfortable having fermented anchovies in their food, certainly not vegetarians and vegans. You’ll be glad to know that other alternatives for the sauce don’t include anchovies.