The other day I made homemade sweet and sour sauce. Why? Oh, I have a good reason….
If you haven’t figured out that I love food, I have news for you. And while I tend to cook from scratch at home most of the time, there are days when we eat out or have takeout. Last Saturday when Little Miss’s gymnastics meet stretched for an interminable 5 hours (3 hours longer than anticipated), I had nothing prepped at home by dinnertime, so we ordered Chinese.
Between the six of us (my parents ate with us, too), we had four egg rolls and six crab rangoon. And would you like to know how many packets of sweet and sour sauce my favorite Chinese restaurant sent?
Yes, that was the one lonely packet of sweet and sour. And I let my mom have it, which is why I ended up eating leftover crab rangoon the next day after making my homemade sweet and sour sauce. Some foods simply need that extra kick of flavor, and that’s one of them.
I whipped up a batch that will last us for the next couple times we order Chinese – and I’ve only found one good Chinese restaurant relatively near me unfortunately, so I’m not switching! – although I’m also thinking that I may make my own sweet and sour chicken at home this weekend and thrill the wee ones.
The fact that I know exactly what goes into my sweet and sour sauce is an added benefit. I like knowing what I’m eating, and I had all the ingredients I needed to make my sweet and sour sauce on hand in my pantry. No fancy ingredients but no rationing of sweet and sour sauce because there’s only one packet to share? Sold!
Sweet and Sour Sauce Recipe
The best part is that this recipe took only about ten minutes to make. I ate it while it was still steaming because I was starving for lunch, and it was so good! Depending on your personal preferences, you can change up the ingredient ratios a bit, but this worked perfectly for my tastebuds!
In a saucepan, add your pineapple juice, ketchup (I used organic because I find it has a much purer taste, especially when I’m making sauces), brown sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, and all but one quarter cup of your water. Stir to combine.
Over medium heat, bring to a boil.
While the mixture is cooking, place your remaining quarter cup of cold water in a bowl or measuring cup and add the cornstarch. Use a fork to stir into a slurry.
Once your mixture is boiling, turn the heat down slightly and stir the cornstarch slurry again to ensure that nothing is stuck to the bottom. Pour it into your sweet and sour sauce and stir. You’ll notice that it thickens quickly.
Let it simmer for another two to three minutes, then remove from the heat. It’s amazing how quickly it thickens up and is that perfect texture. Let it cool and store in a tightly sealed container in your fridge for up to a month.
My mouth is watering just thinking about serving this over some chicken and rice, and I think I’ve changed my mind about what’s for dinner tonight! If you like it sweeter, add a bit more pineapple juice. If you want more tang, add a touch more rice vinegar.
- 1/2 c pineapple juice
- 1 c water
- 1/3 c rice vinegar
- 1/3 c brown sugar
- 1/4 ketchup
- 1 T soy sauce
- 2 T cornstarch
- In a saucepan, add pineapple juice, ketchup, brown sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, and all but one quarter cup of your water. Stir to combine and bring to a boil over medium heat.
- While the mixture is cooking, place your remaining quarter cup of cold water in a bowl or measuring cup and add the cornstarch. Use a fork to stir into a slurry.
- Once your mixture is boiling, turn the heat down slightly and stir the cornstarch slurry again to ensure that nothing is stuck to the bottom. Pour it into your sweet and sour sauce and stir.
- Let it simmer for another two to three minutes, then remove from the heat. Let it cool and store in a tightly sealed container in your fridge for up to a month.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 18 Serving Size: 2 tablespoons
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 21 Total Fat: 0g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 53mg Carbohydrates: 5g Fiber: 0g Sugar: 4g Protein: 0g