Wondering about the vegan status of hoisin sauce? Let's find out...
Is Hoisin Sauce Vegan?
Yes! Hoisin sauce is actually almost always vegan. While you never truly know what goes into sauce at restaurants, there's a 99.9% chance that any hoisin sauce you get doesn't contain any animal products.
Hoisin Sauce Ingredients
First, let's take a look at a commercial hoisin sauce (Dynasty) which is available in the Asian section pretty much anywhere...
Ingredients: Water, Sugar, White Distilled Vinegar, Soybeans, Rice, Garlic, Salt, Sesame Oil, Caramel Color, Onions, Red Chili Peppers, Xanthan Gum, Spices, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Star Anise, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Ginger, Licorice Root
As you can see, it's mainly water, sugar, vinegar and spices - there's no animal products to be found...
Next, let's take a random recipe (link for full recipe and measurements) that I found and break down what's in it...
- Soy Sauce
- Peanut Butter
- Rice Wine Vinegar
- Sesame Seed Oil
- Black Pepper
- Hot Sauce
Again, no animal products.
Pretty much every recipe I found was the same or very similar. Some sort of legume base and flavor agents.
What is Hoisin Sauce?
Hoisin, which comes from the Chinese word for seafood, can actually be used on anything. It's actually pretty rare to see it used on seafood. It goes great with rice and veggies and I love to get it on the side when I order take out.
Traditionally, it's made from fermented soybean paste and a combination of sweeteners, vinegar, sesame oil, garlic and other spices.
Many people describe it as a saltier version of BBQ sauce.