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33 Substitutes for Worcestershire Sauce

We’ve all been there: you’re in the middle of cooking and realize you need substitutes for Worcestershire sauce.

That’s where I come in! Below I’ve outlined a list of replacements for the famous condiment that will turn your day around.

Worcestershire Sauce in a White Container

I’m willing to argue that Worcestershire sauce is one of the most underrated ingredients around.

It adds such a great savory bite to any recipe and instantly elevates a dish.

That’s why it’s so tragic to be halfway through a recipe before realizing you’re all out.

So if you’re in this predicament, read on!

What is Worcestershire sauce?

Worcestershire sauce is a flavoring agent that enhances stews, meats, dressings – you name it!

No one really knows what’s in the recipe.

All we know is that the top-secret British staple is a combination of vinegar, sugar, anchovies, garlic, and spices.

While the sauce’s origins are murky, the flavor profile packs a punch.

It’s one of those magical ingredients that tastes salty, sour, sweet, and smoky all at the same time.

Despite the mysterious recipe, this sauce is pretty easy to replicate since you just need to reproduce the flavor profile.

And now, here’s a comprehensive list of substitutes for Worcestershire sauce.

30+ Best Substitutes for Worcestershire Sauce

Ketchup in a Small Dish

1. Ketchup + White Wine Vinegar + Soy Sauce + Hot sauce

I mentioned above that Worcestershire sauce is complex. So, to mimic that, you’ll need more than one ingredient.

I call this “Homemade Worcestershire Sauce”, and it’s surprisingly close to the real thing.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 dash hot sauce (optional)

This unlikely combination creates a fool-proof Worcestershire sauce substitution.

Just mix it in a bowl, then use it in any recipe that needs a flavor boost.

How to Substitute: Swap 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce with 2 tablespoons of ketchup, 2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, and 1 dash of hot sauce.

2. HP Sauce or Henderson’s Relish

In the UK, you’ll see “brown sauce” and “red sauce” in almost every cafe. That’s HP sauce and ketchup, respectively.

And while ketchup needs a bit of tinkering, HP sauce is a terrific swap for Worcestershire sauce.

It contains many of the same ingredients, it’s just thicker.

So while Worcestershire is usually added as a flavor enhancer, HP is used in sandwiches or as a dipper for thick chips (fries).

Henderson’s Relish, meanwhile, is basically the vegan alternative for Worcestershire sauce. It’s a British product that’s made without fermented fish.

Both make excellent substitutions, and, even better, require no work to prepare.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of HP Sauce or Henderson’s Relish.

Maggi Seasoning Sauce in a Bottle

3. Maggi Seasoning Sauce

Maggi Seasoning Sauce tastes like soy sauce, only better. And it’s a great swap for Worcestershire sauce.

One drop of this stuff will leave your palate confused in the best way possible. It’s chock-full of umami flavors with a salty, sweet tang – just like Worcestershire.

The only thing to note is that this stuff is strong! So you don’t need a lot.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of Maggi Seasoning Sauce.

Homemade Tamarind Paste in a Jar

4. Soy Sauce + Tamarind Concentrate + Distilled White Vinegar

You can technically use plain old soy sauce in place of Worcestershire at a 1:1 ratio when cooking.

It doesn’t have the same depth of flavor, but it’ll do if it’s all you have.

But if you want to get those layers of sweetness and tangy, try adding tamarind and vinegar.

Tamarind is a key ingredient in Worcestershire sauce. Meanwhile, the vinegar adds the crisp acidity to balance it out.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of soy sauce + 1 teaspoon of tamarind + 1 teaspoon of white vinegar.

Note: Add a pinch of ground cloves to round out the flavors.

Balsamic Vinegar in a White Dish

5. Balsamic Vinegar + Tamarind

This isn’t my favorite swap, but balsamic vinegar will bring depth, savory notes, tang, and even sweetness to the mix.

So it can’t be overlooked. And if you add tamarind, it should lift the vinegar on your palate.

Of course, less is more when it comes to balsamic vinegar. One glug too many will make your dish overly acidic.

So it’s best to start with a little and see if your recipe needs more.

Also, be mindful of any other acidic ingredients in the recipe. You might need to cut back on a few things to keep it balanced.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1/2 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar + 1/2 tablespoon of tamarind.

Barbeque Sauce in a Glass Dish

6. BBQ Sauce

Almost all BBQ sauces include Worcestershire sauce, so it makes sense that this would be on the list.

It’ll bring the sweet smokiness we expect from Worcestershire sauce. And depending on the brand, it’ll even be spicy and umami-rich.

I suggest looking for Korean BBQ sauce, or for a brand that includes miso. Alternatively, add a pinch of miso and mix it well.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of BBQ sauce.

Fish Sauce in a Bottle

7. Fish Sauce + Tamarind Paste

Like soy sauce, you can use fish sauce straight up instead of Worcestershire sauce.

It’s made from fermented fish, just like Worcestershire. And it’ll offer your recipes a deep umami flavor.

But if you want the sweetness of Worcestershire, you’ll need to add tamarind.

That’s been a theme, hasn’t it?

So, if you don’t have tamarind, try brown sugar instead. It won’t be as good, but it’ll be good enough!

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1/2 tablespoon of fish sauce + 1/2 tablespoon of tamarind.

Sherry Vinegar Poured in a Glass Dish

8. Sherry Vinegar

Sherry vinegar is created from sherry wine and is more acidic in flavor.

This high acidity helps transform dishes the same way that Worcestershire sauce does.

Because it’s so strong, you’ll use the same amount of sherry vinegar as you would use Worcestershire sauce in a recipe.

But it won’t bring depth or color to the dish. So remember that before you start cooking.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar.

Apple Juice in a Glass

9. Soy Sauce + Apple Juice

You probably never imagined yourself mixing apple juice with soy sauce. But desperate times call for desperate measures.

The great thing about this substitution is that it creates a neat liquid that dissolves easily into a dish.

Of course, this only works in recipes with a small amount of Worcestershire sauce.

Otherwise, your dinner guests taste apple juice in their steak tartare.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1/2 tablespoon of soy sauce + 1/2 tablespoon of apple juice.

Coconut Aminos in a Small Square Ceramic Dish

10. Coconut Aminos

Coconut aminos is a fantastic seasoning to have on hand no matter what you’re cooking.

It also makes a pretty convincing substitute for Worcestershire sauce.

The plant-based staple is created from fermented sea salt and coconut palm sap.

So it’s full of umami flavors that are salty and savory, with just the right amount of funk.

Oh, and it’s gluten-free and paleo-friendly, too!

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of coconut aminos.

Steak Sauce in a Ceramic White Dish

11. A1 Steak Sauce

A1 Steak Sauce is a condiment renowned for its sweet tanginess. You can also find it in most American fridges, so it’s maybe the easiest swap on the list.

The blend of tomato puree, raisin paste, and vinegar mimics the savory-tangy-sweet finish you get from Worcestershire.

And if you add a splash of water, it’ll work well in pretty much any recipe you need.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of A1 Steak Sauce.

Oyster Sauce in a Round Dish

12. Oyster Sauce

Oyster sauce is a sweet and salty condiment made from, you guessed it, oysters.

You commonly find this sauce used in Asian cuisine since it adds an unparalleled flavor to any dish.

And while it’s much thicker, it also makes the perfect alternative to Worcestershire sauce.

It’s umami-rich and not as salty as soy sauce or fish sauce. That means you can control the flavor of the dish better.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of oyster sauce.

Note: I don’t recommend this for finishes, dressings, or drinks. It’s too think for that, even with a splash of water.

Miso Paste Closeup

13. Miso Paste + Water

If you’re wondering what the secret ingredient is in most Asian dishes, it’s miso paste.

You can attribute all those savory, umami flavors to a simple fermented soybean paste.

And because miso is fermented, it channels some of those sour, salty flavors found in Worcestershire sauce, making it a great substitution.

It’s sold as a paste, so I recommend mixing it with water before adding it to a dish.

And keep in mind, the paste will be cloudy, so this won’t be a good option for cocktails or vinaigrettes.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1/2 tablespoon of miso paste + 1/2 tablespoon of water.

Dried Anchovy

14. Anchovy Paste + Water

Since anchovy paste is already found in Worcestershire sauce, you can see why it would make a nice alternative.

It’s often a blend of oil/salt-cured fish with olive oil, vinegar, and sugar (though the last two can also be left out).

Doesn’t all that sound familiar?

The paste can be quite fragrant and, well, fishy. So it’s best to water it down a little. That makes it an easier swap, too.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1/2 tablespoon of anchovy paste + 1/2 tablespoon of water.

Note: This will not be a smooth liquid, so it’s best for cooked dishes only.

Hoisin Sauce in a Glass Dish

15. Soy Sauce + Hoisin Sauce + Apple Cider Vinegar

Salty soy sauce plus sweet and savory hoisin with tangy and lightly fruity apple cider vinegar sounds complex, right?

And that’s just what we want in a Worcestershire sauce substitute!

Hoisin sauce also brings all the smoky sweetness of BBQ sauce, along with a touch of umami.

This won’t be great in cocktails or salad dressing, but it’s a wonderful option for stir-fries and soups.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of soy sauce + 1 teaspoon of water + 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar.

Opened Marmite Bottle

16. Marmite + Lemon Juice + Hot Water

You either love or hate this British staple, but after reading this, you might buy some to keep on hand.

The polarizing seasoning is a mixture of yeast extract and concentrated spices, which give it such a tongue-tantalizing flavor.

And if you want to use it as a substitute for Worcestershire sauce, simply add a splash of lemon juice (or soy sauce).

Then, add some hot water to dilute it. Simple!

But remember, this is a polarizing product. So maybe ask your guests before using it!

How to Substitute: Swap 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of Marmite + 2 tablespoons of lemon juice + 2 tablespoons of hot water.

Vegemite Bottle

17. Vegemite

Vegemite is Marmite’s Aussie cousin and has a very similar taste. But they are different – just ask any Aussie!

Still, like Marmite, Vegemite is created from brewer’s yeast, which gives it a salty flavor.

It’s not as spreadable, and it’s not as bitter as Marmite. So if you think you don’t like it, try Vegemite. The more mellow flavor may surprise you.

Use a little bit of Vegemite in place of Worcestershire sauce, but stick with cooked dishes. The flavor will quickly take over a dish if used raw.

How to Substitute: Swap 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of Vegemite + 2 tablespoons of lemon juice + 2 tablespoons of hot water.

Tamarind Paste

18. Fish Sauce + Soy Sauce + Tamarind Paste + Ketchup + Apple Cider Vinegar + Allspice

Tamarind paste is the ingredient we’ve talked about the most today.

It’s an Asian and Middle Eastern staple, used to add a slightly sweet and sour flavor to recipes.

The paste is citrusy, smoky, and sweet. But it needs a few other things to make it the right swap for Worcestershire sauce.

This blend is more complicated than just watering down BBQ sauce, but the flavor can’t be beat!

Oh, and since this is more complicated than most, I recommend making a bigger batch and keeping it in the fridge.

From there, use it at a 1:1 ratio for Worcestershire sauce.

How to Substitute: Swap 1/2 cup of Worcestershire sauce with 2 tablespoons each – fish sauce, soy sauce, and tamarind + 1 tablespoon each – ketchup and apple cider vinegar, and a pinch of allspice.

Red Wine Vinegar in a Jug with Fresh Grapes

19. Fish Sauce + Red Wine Vinegar + Salt

We all know that red wine vinegar adds depth and flavor to a dish. But it also makes a great stand-in for Worcestershire sauce.

The vinegar is nicely acidic but also kind of fruity. Add punchy fish sauce and a pinch of salt, and you’re on your way to a tasty dish.

Just remember to cut down on any additional vinegar in the recipe.

How to Substitute: Swap 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of fish sauce + 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar + a pinch of salt.

cooking wine

20. Shaoxing Cooking Wine

This rice wine is a staple in Chinese cooking. It adds a salty sweetness to stir-fries, soups, marinades, and more.

And one of the magical things about Shaoxing cooking wine is that it tastes similar to Worcestershire sauce.

It’s made from fermented rice, not fish. But it’s still salty with an acidic finish.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing Cooking Wine.

Liquid Smoke Poured in a Small Dish

21. Liquid Smoke

If you haven’t discovered the amazing powers of liquid smoke, this is your sign to grab a bottle next time you’re at the grocery store.

As the name suggests, this secret ingredient adds a touch of smokiness to every dish.

It’s not sweet and umami-rich. But all you need is a few drops to create a sensational smoky flavor.

It’s also pretty earthy and is best used in cooked dishes.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with a dash of liquid smoke.

Dry Sherry in a Wine Glass

22. Dry Sherry + Salt

If you want to up your cooking game, you should keep a bottle of dry sherry around your kitchen.

Not only does it make a good alternative to Worcestershire sauce, but it also enhances any cooking with a single splash.

Depending on the brand, it can be sweet, earthy, funky, and even yeasty.

So while it’s not salty or smoky, it will bring life to your recipe in lieu of Worcestershire sauce. And you’ll add salt to balance it out.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of dry sherry + a pinch of salt.

Pickle Juice on a Small Glass

23. Pickle Juice

You might think twice about dousing your New York sirloin with pickle juice.

But if you need a substitution for Worcestershire sauce, this salty brine works wonders.

It’s sharp and acidic, salty and sweet, and even a little spicy if you get the right pickles.

Sure, it’s not deep and dark, but it will add a fun finish to dressings and sauces.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of pickle juice.

Salt on a Wooden Table

24. Salt + Sugar

Want the easiest way to bring salty-sweet flavor to your meals? Add extra salt and sugar, of course.

It’s not umami-rich or fishy or deep and complex, but it’ll do the trick in a pinch.

And if you really want smoky flavor, look out for Maldon Smoked Salt. It’s my go-to for cooking steaks!

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of salt + 1 teaspoon of sugar. Add more as needed.

25. Pickapeppa Sauce

Also known as Jamaican ketchup, if you can find (or order) Pickapeppa Sauce, I highly recommend it.

Its blend of salt, peppers, raisins, mango, ginger, cloves, garlic, and black pepper isn’t a perfect match for Worcestershire sauce.

But it’s got a lot going on, which is kind of why we love Worcestershire so much, right? Plus, the color is amazing!

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of Pickapeppa Sauce.

Note: This one has a little more spice. So if you don’t want too much, just use 1/2 the amount at first and go from there.

26. Fish Sauce + Lemon Juice + Cranberry Juice

I’m thinking outside the box here. And this definitely won’t work in every recipe you have.

But cranberry juice is sweet and tart. And if you add salty fish sauce and citrussy lemon, it should make a sauce or stir-fry pop.

You could also use pomegranate molasses instead of cranberry. But that’s not as easy to find.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of fish sauce + 1 teaspoon of lemon juice + 1 teaspoon of cranberry juice.

Apple Cider Vinegar in a Square Glass Bottle

27. Soy Sauce, Apple Cider Vinegar, And Red Pepper Flakes

This trio makes a suburb swap to the British staple sauce.

It’s salty, tangy, spicy, and acidic. What more could you ask for? Better yet, you can easily adjust the spice in this depending on what you’re making.

Of course, it won’t work too well in cocktails or dressings since the pepper flakes don’t dissolve.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 2 teaspoons of soy sauce + 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar + a pinch of red pepper flakes.

Molasses in a Glass Dish

28. Malt Vinegar + Molasses + Tamarind Paste

All you need are three equal measures of the above ingredients to make the perfect Worcestershire replacement.

Acid + dark sweetness + tangy sourness = flavor perfection!

Since molasses is kind of a pain to measure, I suggest making a larger batch, and then using it in equal amounts as Worcestershire sauce.

And remember that the blend will have a thicker consistency – but works great in cooked dishes.

How to Substitute: Swap 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce with 2 tablespoons of malt vinegar + 2 tablespoons of molasses + 2 tablespoons of tamarind.

Honey in a Glass

29. Fish Sauce + Honey + Vinegar

This is more or less the same concept as using sugar or tamarind with fish sauce and vinegar.

Salty and sweet with a kick of acidity is what we’re after, right? And this checks every box.

But honey is something more of us likely have on hand.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of fish sauce + 1 teaspoon of honey + 1 teaspoon of vinegar.

Ground Ginger

30. Balsamic Vinegar + Beef Stock + Molasses + Ground Ginger + Pepper + Garlic Powder + Salt

I think this is maybe the best swap on the list. I just left it to the end so you wouldn’t get nervous right at the start!

Don’t be intimidated by the number of ingredients found in this substitution. You might already have a lot of them in your pantry!

The only thing is, you’ll need to mix this blend and bring it to a boil before use. Let it simmer until it’s thickened, then leave it to cool before use.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of the following mixture:

  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups beef stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon molasses
  • A pinch each ground ginger, white pepper, garlic powder, and salt.
Blackstrap Molasses Poured on a Glass Dish

31. Soy Sauce + Lime Juice + Blackstrap Molasses + Vinegar + Garlic Powder + Granulated Sugar + Hot Sauce

I know, I know. This one is just as bad! But the flavor is so on point, you may never buy Worcestershire sauce in a bottle again.

Oh, and this doesn’t need boiling. Simple mix, then use at a 1:1 ratio.

The best part about this blend is that you get all the great tastes of Worcestershire, plus an extra spiciness from the hot sauce.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of the following mixture:

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • A dash of hot sauce

32. Soy Sauce + Apple Cider Vinegar + Water + Brown Sugar + Mustard Powder

Here’s another blend you’ll need to cook before use. But don’t worry, it keeps well in the fridge and can be used in a ton of recipes.

Just mix everything in a pot over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Then let it simmer until thick.

After that, use it at a 1:1 ratio.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of the following mixture:

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder

33. Fish Sauce + Blackstrap Molasses + Lime Juice

Let’s end with a quick but effective Worcestershire sauce substitute, shall we?

I like the use of lime juice here, as opposed to lemon. It’s still acidic and bright, but it’s also a bit sweeter, which plays really well against the fish sauce.

Add some molasses for a sticky and dark finish, and you’ll really enjoy this swap.

How to Substitute: Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of fish sauce + 1 teaspoon of molasses + 1 teaspoon of lime juice.

Best Worcestershire Sauce Substitute

Servings

1

serving
Prep time

5

minutes
Total time

5

minutes

Try these substitutes for Worcestershire sauce when you don’t have any on hand. From soy sauce to coconut aminos, there are plenty of terrific options.

Ingredients

  • Option 1 – (Best Overall) Ketchup + White Wine Vinegar + Soy Sauce + Hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup

  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • 1 dash hot sauce (optional)

  • Option 2 – (Easiest Swap) HP Sauce or Henderson’s Relish
  • 1 tablespoon HP Sauce, or

  • 1 tablespoon Henderson’s Relish

  • Option 3 – (Best for Availability) Maggi Seasoning Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Maggi Seasoning Sauce

Instructions

  • (Best Overall) Ketchup + White Wine Vinegar + Soy Sauce + Hot sauce
  • Mix 2 tablespoons ketchup in a small bowl with 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and a dash of hot sauce.
  • Swap for every 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce.
  • (Easiest Swap) HP Sauce or Henderson’s Relish
  • Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 tablespoon of HP Sauce or Henderson’s Relish.
  • (Best for Availability) Maggi Seasoning Sauce
  • Swap 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce with 1 teaspoon of Maggi Seasoning Sauce.
Substitutes for Worcestershire Sauce

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Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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