How Best To Use Peanut Sauce? Let Us Count The Ways
Whether you are making your own from scratch at home or you have a jar or bottle kicking around your pantry that you want to put to good use, a quality peanut sauce is a great ingredient to get creative with. The most important thing is that whether you are making it at home or using store bought, you best make sure it's a quality peanut sauce - not all peanut sauces are created equal.
We here at Wozz, are of course a little partial to our Cambodian Coconut Peanut Sauce, it's handmade in small batches by us with all natural peanut butter, fresh lime juice, a medley of Southeast Asian spices, fresh chili and creamy coconut milk. It's layered with intense flavor - rich and creamy with a bite of fresh lime, spice and chili - it's definitely a step above your grocery store brand gluggy peanut sauce. It was named best cooking sauce by the NYC Fancy Food Show and continues to be a best seller here at Wozz.
We use our peanut sauce in a variety of ways because it's pretty versatile - we use it as a dressing, a cooking sauce and a marinade. Here are our favorite ways to incorporate peanut sauce in a number of dishes and recipes at home.
1. Create A Curry Using Peanut Sauce
There are a variety of different curries to make using peanut sauce as a base. From chicken curry to sweet potato and tofu curry to peanut shrimp coconut curry, you simply mix your peanut sauce with coconut milk for your cooking sauce and add whatever protein or vegetables you like. If you want to add even more oomph to your peanut curry sauce, you can add additional curry paste (red or green), you can add in some fresh garlic or fresh ginger, extra lime juice or a little sambal or fresh chili for extra spice. You can make it as simple or complex as you like. Serve the dish with rice or grilled bread to soak up all that delicious peanut sauce. Garnish your dish with fresh herbs, basil or cilantro, crushed peanuts and fresh lime wedges.
Pictured Below: Asian Coconut Peanut Chicken Curry with Butternut Squash Recipe
2. Make Pad Thai Style Noodles Using Peanut Sauce
Cook up some rice noodles, add some shredded cabbage, carrot or bean sprouts, stir in a bottle of peanut sauce and garnish with fresh squeezed lime, crushed peanuts and fresh herbs. A super easy weeknight meal that is a crowd pleaser. Who doesn't love some pad thai? and you can always add some boneless pork strips, chicken, shrimp or tofu if you want some extra protein.
Pictured Below: Pad Thai Style Noodles with Wozz Cambodian Coconut Peanut Sauce
3. Use Peanut Sauce as an Asian Stir Fry Sauce
In a large skillet, add some sesame oil, brown off some diced chicken, stir fry some vegetables - green beans, broccoli, red pepper (whatever you want) and finish it with peanut sauce. Bada bing bada boom, Asian peanut chicken veggie stir fry. Of course, you can expand on this - add a little soy sauce, a little chicken stock or a little coconut milk, fresh herbs, sriracha, fresh garlic, fresh ginger but for a simple no fuss 15 minute dinner then simply brown chicken, stir fry veggies and add some peanut sauce. Another delicious option is to add peanut sauce to a bit of chicken stock and serve over these Chicken Meatballs with Peanut Sauce and Thai Basil (pictured below).
4. Use Peanut Sauce As A Dipping Sauce Or Satay Sauce
Peanut sauce is the classic dipping sauce for chicken satay (grilled chicken skewers) and makes a delicious dipping sauce for rice paper rolls, shrimp, potstickers, tempura and fresh vegetables including cucumber slices, carrot sticks and red pepper strips. Peanut sauce makes a flavorful alternative dip for a veggie party platter.
Pictured Below: Grilled Chicken Satay with Coconut Peanut Dipping Sauce Recipe
5. Use Peanut Sauce as A Dressing For Lettuce Wraps or Tacos
Skipping out on bread or cutting carbs? Peanut sauce makes a delicious dressing for a variety of Asian lettuce wraps. Simply use the leaves from either iceburg, bibb or butter lettuce, add whatever filling you like and top with a drizzle of peanut sauce. Some ideas for lettuce wraps include:
lettuce wrap with grilled chicken + fresh sliced mango + shredded cabbage + a little fresh basil + drizzle with peanut sauce
lettuce wraps with stir fried tofu cooked with peanut sauce + brown rice + topped with cilantro + crushed peanuts + scallions + chili sambal
lettuce wraps with sautéed ground chicken cooked in sesame oil with fresh garlic, ginger, a splash of soy sauce and hoisin sauce + top with pickled carrots + chopped scallions + a squeeze of fresh lime + drizzle with peanut sauce
You can also dress up a variety of tacos with peanut sauce from ground pork, mint and chili tacos to stir fried cauliflower tacos with cabbage and cilantro.
6. Make Buddha Bowls with Peanut Dressing
Create a variety of different healthy buddha bowls and top with peanut dressing. You can either use straight up peanut sauce for your dressing or you can mix the peanut sauce with a little rice wine vinegar to lighten it up. Ingredients in your buddha bowls that go well with peanut dressing include: baked tofu, lentils or roasted chickpeas, sliced avocado, pickled carrot or cabbage, fresh cucumber and red pepper, roasted veggies such as sweet potato or butternut squash, fresh salad greens, lightly sautéed kale and broccoli.
7. Use Peanut Sauce As A Base For Soup or Stew
We use our Cambodian Coconut Peanut Sauce as a base for a Fall inspired butternut squash, lentil and wild rice soup. We mix the peanut sauce with vegetable broth and add coconut milk to make the broth. If you don't want to add squash, lentils and rice, you could give it a more Asian flair and add shitake mushrooms and ramen noodles or rice noodles and broccoli. You can also add some vegetable broth, tomato paste and crushed tomatoes to the peanut sauce and slow cook with stewed beef (or boneless diced chicken thighs) and vegetables (sweet potatoes, rutabagas, onion, garlic) to make an African inspired stew, commonly referred to as Mafé.
8. Peanut Sauce Makes A Simple Delicious Salad Dressing
Whether you are dressing simple salad greens or making a grilled chicken salad with fresh veggies and garden herbs, a peanut dressing is a nice way to switch things up from your traditional Ranch or balsamic vinegar. Simply add a splash of rice wine vinegar or squeeze of fresh lime to your salad with a of drizzle peanut sauce for a creamy rich delicious dressing. I love a peanut dressing over a chopped Asian salad of kale, shredded cabbage, peppers and some cashews or crushed peanuts for added crunch. I often use it on a Thai style chicken salad with fresh mint and chili. Another option is to toss your peanut dressing in a Thai noodle salad - simply cook up some rice noodles and cool over running water in colander, add some shredded cabbage, cilantro or Thai basil and shredded carrot and toss with your peanut sauce. Serve with fresh squeeze of lime.
Pictured Below: Thai Chicken, Cucumber and Mint Salad with Peanut Sauce Dressing
9. Use Peanut Sauce As A Sauce For Chicken Wings or Vegetarian Cauliflower "Wings"
You can batter up some chicken wings, fry them and then toss with your peanut sauce or you can toss the chicken wings with the sauce and bake them, basting occasionally (a healthier option), or you can go super healthy and make some baked battered cauliflower bites (sometimes referred to as "cauliflower wings") and after they are done baking, toss them with the peanut sauce.
10. Use Peanut Sauce in an Asian broth for Mussels
We use our Cambodian Coconut Peanut Sauce to make a broth for Asian inspired mussels which is a nice change from the traditional white wine, tomato based broth. We serve the mussels with a side of rice and grilled bread to soak up all the coconut peanut broth. Garnish with fresh lime and cilantro or basil. So easy and so good.
There you have it, our favorite ways to use peanut sauce beyond satay - from curry to tacos to salad to mussels! It's a pretty versatile sauce once you start to get creative with it and it's a good one to have on hand in the pantry so you don't have to always make it from scratch.