Soy sauces have long been a staple condiment in east Asia. For over 2000 years now, you can find them on the tables of the elite citizens and upper-level students. Today, the delightful sauce is available in several forms, produced by hundreds of different brands, each with their unique production processes.
The unique savoury taste and flavour of the sauce cannot just be ignored. Its primary ingredient is the soybeans from where the sauce gets its name. When fermented, the intensity of the umami flavour increases, mixed with processed wheat and brine, the mixture is left to ferment often for over a year, all the while developing in flavour and taste.
This review brings you the best of this magnificent sauce, to help you in selecting the best soy sauce America’s Test Kitchen, with the best qualities.
Reviews of the Best Soy Sauce in the World
Here are top rated soy sauce 2020
#1 – Yamaroku Shoku Pure Artisan Dark Sweet “Tsuru Bishio” best japanese soy sauce
The Yamaroku SShoku “Tsuru Bishio” is a long-existing brand of soy sauce, carefully packaged and sealed in an 18 oz glass bottle. The dispenser on the bottle makes it easy to measure out precise amounts of the sauce.
It is a Japanese soy sauce, prepared with ancient methods. Using premium gourmet barrels, each one over a hundred-year-old. The sauce is left to ferment for a minimum of 3 years – this can be extended to up to 5 years, just so that the sauce can develop the perfect flavour.
The sauce has the peculiar deep, full rounded savoury flavour, with the tingling associated with soy sauces. The brand also has a unique, rich, mellow flavour.
– Rich and full rounded flavour
– Incredible packaging with a dispenser
– Impressive versatility
– Contains gluten
#2 – Kishibori Shoyu (Pure Artisan Soy Sauce) Premium Imported Soy
From the Japanese island of Honshu, comes this premium soy sauce, described as artisanal; it is packaged in the old ways in a 12.2 fl oz container, wrapped only in a white piece of fabric paper.
It is made from high-quality soybeans, together with toasted wheat and brine made with sun-dried salt. The mixture is then left to ferment for a year within old cider barrels. The barrels are no stranger to the process as they have been employed for over a hundred year, producing great flavours over several generations.
The sauce has a deep, strong and complex savoury flavour, that is guaranteed to elevate the overall experience of your meal. The taste can best be described as smooth and balanced with a fuller flavour.
– Great taste and flavour
– Meticulous and perfected processing
– Unadulterated flavour and taste
– Paper cover can sometimes loosen, leaving the sauce exposed
#3 – Kikkoman Japan Made Soy Sauce
The Kikkoman is a known brand name to soy sauce shoppers, adept at making quality soy sauces at affordable prices. Their Japan made Sauce goes back to using traditional methods to give us a high quality, super flavour soy sauce.
It is packed as a 33.8 ounce dark liquid in a plastic bottle with its own dispenser. The soy sauce has a highly consistent flavour, capable of transforming your meals from ordinary to a head-turner. It is made using the ancient processes employed by traditional brands. With fermented soybeans, mixed with roasted grain, brine and aspergillus oryzae.
All ingredients are made from naturally grown and sourced base. Brewed naturally and packaged for your consumption and satisfaction.
– Made from natural and organic ingredients
– Tasty with a great flavour
– Container with a dispenser
– No inorganic preservatives
– Very affordable
– Might be too salty
#4 – Bragg Liquid Aminos
Bragg’s Liquid Aminos is not technically a soy sauce; however, it offers a very similar savoury taste. It is packed in two 16 oz plastic bottle packs.
The liquid sauce is made from unfermented sauce and does not include the wheat, which is excellent news for users with celiac disease or allergic to gluten. The savoury flavour though not as complex as regular soy sauce is often stronger and less salty.
Many users have found it tastier. It is an excellent replacement for traditionally processed soy sauces, and if you want to experiment a little without giving up the umami taste in your sauce, then giving Bragg’s a try might make it worthwhile. The sauce while it does not contain gluten, it actually has more sodium content and some other inorganic elements as preservatives.
– Stronger umami flavour
– Does not contain allergens
– Very affordable
– Versatile Usage
– Contains more sodium
– Flimsy packaging
#5 – Organic Coconut Aminos Soy Sauce by BetterBody Foods
This is another alternative soy sauce that is also much cheaper than traditionally processed soy sauces. It comes in a compact bottle with a volume of 16.9 ounces.
BetterBody’s Organic Coconut Aminos Sauce is made from natural coconut blossom nectar and Himalayan salt. It has a robust and unique flavour that it easily lends to a wide range of foods. You can use it to marinate, season, add flavour and taste to your cooking.
It has a much lesser sodium content than regular soy sauce (about 45 percent less). The product is also free from gluten as no wheat is involved in processing Coconut Aminos. It is often much sweeter, which some users have found disconcerting. Depending on your purposes, this might be a great alternative to soy sauces or something you’d never touch.
– Unique, strong flavour and taste
– Quite affordable
– Low sodium content
– Organic, natural, non-GMO
– Product is quite sugary
#6 – Kikkoman Soy Sauce, 64-ounce Bottle
Packed in a whopping size of 64 ounces, this soy sauce bottle is designed specifically for you if you cook frequently and require a lot of the sauce. And if you are not, then it is still fine, since soy sauce rarely goes wrong.
The soy sauce is dark, just the preferable colour of sauce for most users. It gives a strong flavour that is guaranteed to improve the taste and aroma of your meal. The usual ingredient of fermented soybeans, wheat, water, and water is present. Sodium benzoate is also present to preserve the quality of the sauce.
For half a gallon of soy sauce, you get the Kikkoman 64 ounce bottle for a steal.
– Good quality and flavor
– Large and affordable quantity
– Contains an inorganic preservative
#7 – Kikkoman Sweet Soy Sauce – best soy sauce for fried rice
This is another great product from Kikkoman that just had to make the list. It is a soy sauce that is sweetened with palm sugar, made specifically to bring great flavour to your rice meals.
Unlike traditional Japanese or Chinese soy sauces, the Kikkoman sweet soy sauce follows the Indonesian method of preparing soy, using fermented soybeans, wheat, and brine. Still, sugar from the natural palm is added to give it a special flavour, that stands out in meals of steamed rice and skewered grilled chicken.
The sauce has a thicker texture than Japanese regular soy sauce, that is consistent and gives it a greater viscosity. The sauce is smooth on the tongue and can be employed for flavouring fish, salads, grilled meat, and vegetables in addition to rice.
Unlike many products from Kikkoman, their sweet sauce is only 10 ounce, and it is bottled in a stout glass container and adequately sealed to preserve its flavour and quality.
– Sweetened, consistent flavour
– Impressive quality and viscosity
– Incredible bottling
– Not very versatile
– Quite expensive
How to Choose the Right Soy Sauce Brand
Soy sauce comes in a variety of different complex flavours, each made with unique processing methods. The flavour and taste of the sauce are determined by a number of different factors including the ingredients used, the duration of fermentation and so on. Here, we will discuss some of these factors to aid you in making a better-informed buying choice.
Chinese vs Japanese Soy sauce
The two giant east Asian nations have the most influence on the way the modern soy sauces are produced. Japanese or Chinese soy sauces are the most likely that you will find in stores.
Chinese sauces are often sweetened with molasses, giving it a different taste entirely, with the same pleasant umami flavour. Because of the extra ingredient, they are usually thicker than Japanese soy sauces. Japanese soy sauces often give a rounder, saltier flavour than the Chinese counterparts and can be used for a wider variety of meals. They are made in traditional barrels that are specially made to hold the sauce while it is in its fermentation process.
Colour: Light or Dark
The colour of your soy sauce largely depends on the duration of its fermentation. Dark coloured soy sauces are the most prevalent as they have been fermented for the longest periods; they have a richer ting as they are often saltier. However, light-coloured ones are usually fermented under a year, bringing out a lighter colour, with full, round flavouring.
A more consistent ingredient in the production of soy sauces is wheat. Which is known far and wide as a significant sauce of the protein ‘gluten’. To a majority of the population, this is not a problem. However, about 10 percent of our population suffers from gluten allergies or celiac diseases, which are adverse reactions to the consumption of gluten.
Depending on who you cook for and your own personal allergies, you might want to avoid using products with gluten. However, that does not restrict you from enjoying the savour of soy sauces as there are plenty of alternatives in the market. A popular one is “Tamari” a Japanese soy sauce that is made without the inclusion of wheat in its processing. They are generally costlier than the regular types.
Other soy sauce styles are usually available as well, like the Indonesian soy sauce, characterized by a sweet taste and a thick dark texture. They are usually produced with the usual ingredients with the addition of palm sugar, which increases its viscosity and sweetens it.
For great flavouring and a unique taste, a soy sauce is a go-to sauce. It is readily available and easy to procure. The confusion that comes with choosing a new brand of soy sauce is mediated with our review and buying guide, carefully selected to help you make the best of your budget while enhancing the taste and quality of your meals.
It is useful to note that soy sauces don’t easily go bad, and they don’t require being refrigerated. They can retain their quality and taste for well over a year when properly maintained.