Peanut satay sauce is used for dipping and marinating grilled meats, topping vegetables and tossing with noodles throughout much of Southeast Asia and parts of Africa. But people with peanut allergies have to avoid this rich, complex sauce. Use alternative ingredients to create a similarly flavored sauce that still packs the same punch.
Peanut Satay Sauce Basics
The main ingredient of satay sauce is peanuts and it is typically made from roasted ground peanuts or peanut butter. The sauce varies by region, but common ingredients in peanut satay sauce include garlic, coriander, cumin, galangal, soy sauce and coconut milk. Depending the preparation, chilies may also be added to make a spicy satay sauce. A good satay sauce should not be thick or watery, but somewhere in between so it is able to coat foods well.
Nut Butter Substitutes
The easiest way to make a peanut satay sauce substitute is to do so using another nut butter. Cashew butter, almond butter and sesame butter are all viable options for creating a quick peanut-free satay sauce if you do not have other nut allergies. Substitute any of these butters in equal proportions for peanut butter in a recipe. Buy cashew butter, almond butter and sesame butter from health food stores, specialty retailers or online if you can't find them at the grocery store.
Whole Nut Substitutes
Cashews are the closest in texture and taste to peanuts and are an easy substitute for peanuts in a satay recipe. Dry roast whole cashew nuts in a skillet over medium heat for two to three minutes until they become golden in color. Grind the cashews coarsely in a blender, food processor or using a mortar and pestle. Use the cashews in your satay recipe as you would peanuts and substitute them in equal quantities.
Nut-Free Satay Sauces
If nuts are out of the question altogether, use a sunflower seed spread to make a completely nut-free satay sauce. Similar in consistency to peanut and almond butter, sunflower seed butter spreads are completely tree-nut and peanut free, making them a good choice for those with nut allergies. Use this substitute in equal quantities to peanut butter in a recipe. Health food stores, specialty stores and online retailers sell sunflower seed spreads.