People are very fond of adding spice and taste to their food and lives. Cooking is successful only when the cook can mix salts and herbs in the correct proportions. Tomato ketchup, mayonnaise, schezwan sauce, barbecue sauce, garlic paste, chilly paste, and hot sauces are some of the most famous sauces people use in their daily delicacies.
One of the most taste-adding sauces used in most dishes is oyster sauce. The thick dark-colored sauce adds a salty and savory texture to the food. If a person hails from China or is a daily Chinese food consumer, they must be aware of the oyster sauce. This sauce is used frequently in Chinese delicacies. Oyster sauce is used primarily for cooking delicious meat or beef and vegetables.
Our Top Picks of 2023
1. L.K.K Panda Brand Oyster Sauce – Best Oyster Sauces
The Lee Kum Kee Panda oyster sauce is one of the bestsellers in the world. It adds great taste to the home-cooked food. The sauce is best used for items like beef and broccoli. The shelf life of this sauce is also decent. It comes in the quantity of 18 oz.
These come in different sizes, like 225 grams, 510 grams, 770 grams, 770 grams, and 907 grams. The company claims that they do not add any preservatives to this sauce. It works well with all the traditional and modern South-Asian dishes.
The different ingredients contained in this oyster sauce are:
- Wheat flour
- Modified corn starch
- Oyster extractives (oyster, water, salt)
- Caramel color.
- Monosodium glutamate to improve the taste
2. Lee Kum Kee – Best Premium Flavored Oyster Sauce
This Lee Kum Kee oyster sauce is different from the brand oyster sauce in terms of the balanced taste. This premium brand sauce can be consumed with any dish. This sauce has more flexibility in usage as compared to the above sauce. Because of its label, buyers recognize this oyster sauce as the ‘lady on boat’ oyster sauce.
The most common quantity people buy is 510 grams (18 ounces). The sauce also comes in smaller quantities of 255 grams. People majorly use this sauce in fried rice and red meat. The sauce is ranked high on versatility and has a long shelf life.
This US manufactured sauce has a disadvantage of packaging issues. Sometimes, people receive a damaged product from the supplier. Moreover, the LKK premium oyster sauce is not gluten-free and comes at a slightly higher price than other oyster sauces.
The contents of the sauce are listed as follows:
- Modified Corn Starch
- Oyster Extract (Oysters, Water, Salt),
- Wheat Flour
- Monosodium Glutamate
3. Wan Ja Shan Vegetarian Mushroom Oyster Sauce
Wan Ja Shan oyster sauce is one of the bestselling oyster sauces. This Taiwan-produced sauce is a fantastic option for vegans that comes in a bottle of 958 grams. People use this sauce for adding savory flavor to tofu, soups, noodles, vegetables, stir-fries, and many other Asian dishes.
It can be used as a dip or for frying purposes. The mushrooms used in the processing of sauce are either oyster mushrooms or shiitake mushrooms.
The main ingredients in this sauce are given below.
- Mushroom Powder
- Seasoning Agents such as disodium inosinate and disodium guanylate
- Sodium Benzoate used as a preservative
4. Megashefu Oyster Sauce
The Megashefu oyster sauce gives a royal feel from the bottle. It comes in a beautiful golden-colored glass bottle which provides an exquisite mouth-watering taste to the dishes. It commonly comes in a bottle of 240 grams.
This oyster sauce is clean and free from any synthetic additives. It gives a smoky touch to the dishes. It contains iodine which enhances the growth of children. This Thailand-made oyster sauce falls more on the sweeter side with a solid and rich flavor. It is worth using, especially in chicken dishes.
The primary ingredients of the oyster sauce are provided hereunder.
- Oyster extractives (oysters, water)
- Potassium sorbate
- Purified water
- Corn starch
5. Dynasty Oyster Sauce
This oyster-flavored sauce is perfect for people who do not like the tough and pure oyster sauce. The Dynasty oyster sauce gives a decent, and This sauce is known for its consistency in taste.
People usually use this sauce in dishes like beef, broccoli, and microwave ramen soups. They prefer using this with onions, corn, sardines, and cilantro. If you are looking for a small pack of oyster sauce to know its taste, this brand sauce is the best choice as it comes in a quantity of 9 ounces. This sauce is made in Malaysia. There is an added preservative in this sauce, i.e., Benzoic acid.
The main ingredients found in this one of the best oyster sauces are:
- Oyster extract (water, oyster, salt)
- Guar gum
- Lactic acid
- Yeast extract
- Modified tapioca starch
- Caramel color
- Disodium guanylate
- Soy sauce extract made from salt, soybean, wheat, and water
- Disodium inosinate
- Fish paste
6. Maekrua Thai Oyster Sauce
The Maekrua oyster sauce comes in a 311 grams packet. It is an all-seasoned premium sauce with its most extraordinary blends. The Thai sauce has applications in different Asian stir-fry delicacies.
It does not contain any artificial flavors or colors. People add this sauce in shrimps, fish delicacies, chicken, and meat. With a toasted flavor, it has around 30% oyster. Buyers can modify the effect of the strong taste of this sauce by diluting it in suitable amounts of water.
The Thai sauce consists of the following ingredients:
- Oyster extract
- Preservative (Sodium benzoate)
- Corn Starch
- Wheat flour
7. Mama Sita’s Oyster Sauce
The Philippines oyster sauce gives everyday fish and meat dishes an excellent zesty taste. The ideal size of Mama Sita’s oyster sauce is 765 grams. More than the non-vegetarian dishes, this sauce is used in preparing steamed vegetables.
This must be one of the most demanding oyster sauces if you cannot compromise on the authenticity of the sauce. This 765 grams bottle must be stored well in cool and dry places.
The Mama Sita’s sauce consists of the following ingredients:
- Soy protein
- Caramel color
- Real oysters
- Monosodium glutamate
- Modified starch
- Cane sugar
- Hydrolyzed corn
- Negligible amount of sodium benzoate
Buyer’s Guide For Buying Best Oyster Sauce
There are a variety of oyster sauces available in the market. Various local vendors on the street also sell oyster sauces at low rates. But these sauces are not authentic and give a bad texture to dishes. It is crucial to keep certain factors in mind before buying oyster sauce. These factors are listed below.
Usage & Purpose of the Sauce
Consumers must consider what their needs are. They must be clear about the uses for which they require the oyster sauce. Many people use it as a thickener for soups & gravies, while others use it as an addition to stir fry.
If a person wants the sauce for the former, they should do deep research on the features of the sauce. The selection must be consistent with the taste. If the buyer needs it for stir-frying purposes, they should not be much concerned about the syrupy or the consistency of the sauce.
Read the Label & Ingredients
A buyer must read the contents of the oyster sauce before buying one. Many ingredients are not healthy or are restricted to specific categories of people. For example, many oyster sauces have soy and gluten, which does not suit people.
This factor becomes more critical for people who are very health-conscious or are aged. Adding to it, many oyster sauces contain oyster extract, whereas some sauces contain pure oyster. Buyers must purchase one that suits their taste.
A general tip for the consumers is that they should also check the manufacturing and expiry date. The expiry dates of different oyster sauces vary on the basis of the quantity purchased, contents, etc.
As an extension of the above factor, people with severe diseases must avoid certain oyster sauces. People should avoid buying oyster sauce which contains ingredients such as sodium in excessive amounts.
People with high cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, etc., should consume oyster sauce with low sodium levels. If people want to cut on such contents, they should go for rich and thick textured oyster sauce.
Budget is the most crucial factor when buying any item. If a person wants to buy an oyster sauce bottle of a reputable brand, it will cost more. However, it is better to buy them in bulk to avail offers from online stores like Amazon.
The budget to buy this sauce must contain the regularity and frequency of the usage of the sauce. If the oyster sauce is your daily food requirement, the budget must be set high. Moreover, in this case, the buyer must purchase expensive sauce.
There are various oyster sauces that do not taste alike. This is because of the ingredients used to make it. If a person likes a more fishy taste, the sauce with more fish protein extract is the best choice. Different brand options must be tried if they want a more salty or sweet taste.
How Oyster Sauce Is Used In Dishes
Oyster sauces can be used in various ways. Some of these ways are shown below.
- These sauces are used as the final touch or sprinkle for presentation. At seas and beaches, steamed veggies or fried Chinese delicacies have the oyster sauce as a finishing touch.
- Chefs use oyster sauce in dishes that have a very hard, strong, and deeply layered taste. They add sweetness to counterbalance the overall taste. In other words, it is applied to these dishes as a flavor enhancer.
- People add oyster sauce to marinade shrimps, fish, tofu, tempeh, etc. They give an excellent barbeque taste to the cooked food.
- In China, the sauce is an all-time favorite sprinkler to their noodles. Oyster sauce provides a decent texture and flavor to them.
- The sauce acts as a thick layering agent. They add layers to the glazes.
- It is also used in stir-frying. People can get the Asian touch in stir-fries if they use oyster sauce.
How should oyster sauce be used & dissolved; in water or directly in the food?
There is not a fixed rule to use oyster sauce in the food. It depends on the taste requirement of the person. If you want a robust taste of the oyster sauce, people should directly empty it in the dish or mix it with desired water quantities.
What are different things to keep in mind while storing & using oyster sauce?
A consumer must store the oyster sauce in a cool and dry place. You must be well aware of the loss in the taste of the sauce and its expiry date. Once you open the bottle, you must store it in an airtight container/bottle. It is advisable to consume the sauce as soon as possible to keep it fresher and edible.
Can we heat oyster sauce regularly?
Yes, you can heat oyster sauce but keep in mind the duration of heating. If you heat the sauce in excess, it will turn the food into an unpleasant taste. It will give a bitter taste to the dish.
Can we use the oyster sauce even if it is expired?
It is recommended to use oyster sauce as soon as possible or before its expiry date. They are ideally fit for use for six months. But, if you store the sauce in a perfectly tightened container, you can use it beyond its specific shelf life.
Today, oyster sauces are famous worldwide. It is used not only in South Asian delicacies but also as a flavor enhancer in various dishes. Buyers need to consider every factor before buying an oyster sauce. Proper market research about the product and the seller will aid the buyers in getting the right sauce for their cooking purposes.