Can I use soy sauce instead of tamari?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Can I use soy sauce instead of tamari?” and will discuss the difference between soy sauce and tamari.

Can I use soy sauce instead of tamari?

Yes, you can use soy sauce instead of tamari. The inclusion of tamari in your dish maybe because it was created with gluten-free consumers in mind. Soy sauce and tamari may be used in a 1:1 ratio in place of tamari. Tamari and soy sauce are both salty, however, the saltiness of soy sauce will vary from brand to brand. When in doubt, use 34 of the quantity of soy sauce instead.

What is tamari?

Tamari, a Japanese soy sauce, is a waste product from the miso paste manufacturing process. While traditional soy sauce may include wheat, this version uses a greater proportion of soybeans, which gives it a richer texture and more subtle saltiness than regular soy sauce.

To encourage fermentation, the cooked soybean paste is either supplemented with Aspergillus tamari spores (cultures known as koji) or left to naturally accumulate spores from the surrounding environment. Instead of pressing, the liquid is simply gathered from the miso’s waste stream.

Tamari is free of gluten

In addition to its rich texture and strong umami taste, Tamari’s most distinctive characteristic is that it is a gluten-free soy sauce substitute. However, if you’re strictly following a gluten-free diet, be sure to carefully check the bottle before buying.

Soy Sauce: What Is It and How Does It Work?

If you’re using regular soy sauce, the sauce is made from fermented soybeans and roasted barley. Before pressing the paste into liquid form, it’s steeped in salt brine and allowed to ferment for some time. For the most part, it’s fermented using Aspergillus fungi.

Difference between soy sauce and tamari

Soy sauce and tamari, both of which are made by fermenting soybeans, show how the fermentation process can transform basic components into delectable savory concoctions. However, because tamari contains twice as many soybeans as wheat grains and thus has a richer, deeper soy flavor, whereas soy sauce is thinner, lighter, and more salt-forward, they can be used interchangeably (though not always in a 1:1 ratio due to the overpowering nature of soy sauce in some cooking methods). Although they are members of the same family, tamari, the black soy sauce used in Japanese cuisine, is different from the light soy sauce often found in China.

When it comes to health, is Tamari or Soy Sauce a good choice?

Both tamari and soy sauce include a lot of salt, however, tamari has around 233 mg per tablespoon compared to soy sauce’s 900 mg per tablespoon, making it a healthier option for soy protein incorporation.

Alternatives for tamari

Coconut aminos

Adapting to a soy allergy while working? It’s no issue at all. Coconut aminos are the greatest tamari alternative for those with tamari allergies. Coconut aminos are a soy-free alternative to tamari that tastes remarkably like coconut. Tamari may be replaced by a 1:1 mixture of coconut aminos. To compensate for the less salty flavor of coconut aminos, use a bit extra per serving.

Liquid aminos

Is there a decent tamari alternative I’m missing? Liquid aminos, as opposed to coconut aminos, include soy. If you don’t have a soy allergy, this is a fantastic alternative! You may need to use less than the recipe asks for since it has a similar taste and is saltier than soy sauce.

Fish sauce

Is there still another tamari alternative? Soy sauce for fish. Fishermen in Southeast Asia utilize fish sauce, a condiment produced from fermented fish, in their cooking, particularly in Thai cuisine. As an umami booster, miso paste has the same funky, tart, salty taste as this paste. This is much more potent, on the other hand. 1 tablespoon tamari is equal to 1/2 teaspoon fish sauce.


The only thing that will work in its place is salt, which is the most readily available ingredient. Having it on hand all the time in your pantry eliminates the need to go to the grocery store. When it comes to seasoning, salt is the only seasoning that needs to be used. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the flavored salt options.

Garlic salt, onion salt, chili salt, and a slew of other options are available. Even if you don’t get the umami flavor, it’s still a great seasoning.

Miso paste

Another traditional Japanese food seasoning is miso paste. There’s no mistaking the umami flavor of miso soup when you use miso paste in soups like the one everyone knows and loves, miso. Miso paste is thicker than tamari, so add some water to thin it out before using it in a recipe.


Season your dish with chopped anchovies if salt and other alternatives don’t work. Anchovies have the perfect combination of umami, fish, and salty flavors to lift a bland dish to new heights.

Make sure you don’t add too many anchovies because the dish will become too salty if you do. As an alternative to incorporating it into the dish, this can be served as a garnish.

To check out the recipes with tamari, click here 

Other FAQs about Sauces that you may be interested in.

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In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Can I use soy sauce instead of tamari?” and discussed the difference between soy sauce and tamari.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.