The Difference Between Tamari & Soy Sauce: And Why You Should Have Both

Ingredient Spotlight

When out of soy sauce, do you reach for tamari? Similar in color and flavor, these two actually differ in a few ways. We keep both on hand — here's why. Both soy sauce and tamari are made from fermented soybeans, with the amount of wheat being the main difference between the two. When it comes right down to it, tamari is really a broad class of soy sauce that's made with no (or little) wheat and a greater concentration of soybeans.

Because of this, the flavor differs as well. You'll notice that Japanese tamari is thicker, richer, and less salty than most soy sauce. I think the flavor tends to be smoother and because of that, we've started to use it in dipping sauces instead of soy sauce.

How about you: which do you reach for?

A Few Favorite Tamari Recipes:
Tamari Roasted Chickpeas - Dreena's Vegan Recipes
Sesame Tamari Vinaigrette - Eating Well
Shredded Kale Salad with Tamari and Sesame Seeds - NPR
String Beans with Wasabi and Tamari Dip - New York Times

Related: Soy Sauce: To Refrigerate or Not to Refrigerate?

(Image: Megan Gordon)