The Peanut Sauce

Preparation info

  • Makes approximately

    2 cups

    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Savory Way

The Savory Way

By Deborah Madison

Published 1990

  • About

Using commercially prepared peanut butter instead of frying and grinding peanuts shortens the number of steps, but be sure to use a pure, unsweetened variety, usually found in natural foods stores. Arrowhead Mills makes a good peanut butter, and Loriva makes an excellent blend of peanut and sesame butter.


  • 6 large garlic cloves
  • 1 large bunch of cilantro, leaves and upper stems only
  • -ounce piece fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 1 tablespoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon hot chili oil
  • ½ cup peanut butter or sesame-peanut butter
  • ½ to ⅔ cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar or to taste
  • hot water, if necessary


Put the garlic, cilantro, and ginger in the work bowl of a food processor and work until they are finely chopped. Add the oils, peanut butter, ½ cup soy sauce, and sugar; process again until well combined with the seasonings. Stop and scrape down the sides once or twice. Add the vinegar and season to taste with the additional soy sauce, if necessary. If the sauce is thicker than you wish, thin it with hot water. Store the sauce in an airtight jar and keep it refrigerated. Thin it again with hot water as needed before using. This sauce will keep for months.