You'll love this sugar-free and low carb sweet and sour sauce! Serve it with meat or fish, or as a dipping sauce!
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Since starting low-carbing in 2008, I've pretty much given up Chinese food. The sugar content is usually sky-high, and of course there often isn't any way to avoid the rice and noodles. So when I started to crave a sweet and sour sauce, I knew I had to develop a low carb version. When I started to look at the standard ingredients of this sauce, I was horrified to discover that it is often made up of 50% sugar – and with pineapple juice as well! I knew I could do better than that.
I figured out the flavors quite quickly, but knew that I want to get that “gloopy” texture to the sauce. Here are two thickener options for you to try:
Xanthan Gum: This is a zero carb stabilizer and thickener that is commonly used in many commercial products. Always start with a small amount when working with xanthan gum.
LC Thick'n Saucy: a zero carb product from LC Foods that can thicken hot and cold liquids – no heat required! The ingredients are listed as “Proprietary/patent pending blend of natural vegetable and natural plant and natural tree gums.” It is gluten free, sugar free, and doesn't contain preservatives.
How to Make Low Carb Sweet and Sour Sauce
To make the sauce, combine the following in a jug or tall container: apple cider vinegar, water, low carb ketchup, and low carb simple syrup. Now, I know you're going to have questions. So first – the ketchup. There are three products that I like to use: Heinz Reduced Sugar Ketchup (1g net carbs per tbs), Walden Farms Ketchup (0g net carbs per tbs) and G Hughes ketchup (which is 1g net carbs per tbs). Find one that you like – any of them will work fine in this recipe.
For the syrup, I recommend my homemade simple syrup, but you could also use Da Vinci Sugar Free Sweetening Syrup. It's zero carb and although it is available in many flavors, I use the plain one as it is so versatile. Also, by using ingredients that are all liquid, this is a no-cook recipe! I've given a range of measurements in the recipe card – start with the lowest amount and add more as necessary. Actually, the ingredients are all so low in carbs that you can feel free to add more of anything so that you get the required balance!
Add a small amount of your preferred thickener, and use an immersion blender (stick blender or hand blender) to blend until fully combined.
Immediately you'll get that thick texture that really makes the sauce! If you prefer a thicker sauce, add quarter teaspoons at a time, blend, and check. It is easy to add too much!
You can use this low carb sweet and sour sauce for dipping (it would be great with shrimp!), or combine it with pork or chicken and serve it with some cauliflower rice!
This sauce keeps really well in the fridge, by the way – it doesn't separate or anything!Low Carb Sweet and Sour Sauce #lowcarb #sugarfree Click To Tweet
Check out all my low carb sauces!
- Mix the first four ingredients together in a jug or high sided bowl. Test for flavor and add more syrup, ketchup, or vinegar to taste.
- Add a small amount of your preferred thickener to the sauce and use an immersion blender (stick blender) to blend the sauce until fully combined.
- Test for consistency and add more thickener if preferred.
- Transfer to an airtight container and store in the fridge.
0.7g net carb per serving (four tablespoons)
This recipe makes approx. 12 fl oz / 1½ cups.
Nutritional data is based on using Heinz Reduced Sugar Ketchup.
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Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 4 tbs
Amount Per Serving Calories 11Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gSodium 126mgCarbohydrates 0.7gNet Carbohydrates 0.7gFiber 0gSugar 0.7gProtein 0g