vegetarian Vietnamese dipping sauce

As I mentioned in a previous post, I wanted to post more vegetarian alternatives to Vietnamese dishes, and you can’t have Vietnamese food without nuoc cham. The original recipe calls for fish sauce, and honestly, there’s no taste like fish sauce since it’s so unique. But I did find a good alternative in soy sauce. It still gives you that umami flavor and is animal friendly.


Ingredients, Substitutions & Adjustments

  • Soy sauce – Soy sauce serves as a substitute for the fish sauce. It doesn’t taste the same, but it does give the sauce an umami flavor. To make the sauce gluten free, use tamari instead.
  • Lime – Adds brightness to the sauce. Lemon also works for this sauce.
  • Garlic – Adds more flavor to the sauce.
  • Granulated sugar – Adds sweetness to the sauce. For a healthier option, you can substitute coconut sugar for granulated sugar.
vegetarian Vietnamese dipping sauce

Making my vegetarian Vietnamese dipping sauce

This is literally the easiest sauce recipe ever and takes less than 5 minutes. Combine all the ingredients into a bowl or jar. Mix and serve! Make sure to taste the sauce for seasoning and adjust to your tastes. Add more sugar for more sweetness and soy sauce for more salty/umami flavor.

dipping the cucumber

What can you eat vegetarian Vietnamese dipping sauce with?

This dipping sauce is the perfect vegetarian substitute for traditional Vietnamese dipping sauce, so you can use it in the same way. You can use it as a dipping sauce for dishes like vegetarian Vietnamese spring rolls or vegetarian banh cuon. You can also use it as a dressing for salads and noodle bowls like goi ga or bun thit nuong.

dipping the cucumber

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vegetarian Vietnamese dipping sauce

Get the Recipe:
Vegetarian Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

A vegetarian alternative to the traditional Vietnamese dipping sauce or nuoc cham.
5 from 18 ratings



  • Combine all the ingredients in a jar or bowl.
  • Mix until combined and serve.


Make sure to taste the sauce for seasoning. Add sugar to make it sweeter and soy sauce for more salty/umami flavor.
Calories: 24kcal, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 540mg, Potassium: 29mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 3mg, Iron: 1mg
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