Substitute For Miso Paste

Miso is made from fermented soybeans utilized for Japanese cooking since  1200 BC. Miso paste is used in many recipes, from marinades to salads and soups. Despite its growing popularity, it’s not readily available in many regions throughout the United States and can be a bit expensive to buy online but you can also buy it from local stores or use some of the Substitute For Miso Paste if budget seems to be a issue or its finished in you pantry to prepare tasty recipes easily.

Miso is a type of paste made from fermented soybeans. It is a product of Japan where the locals utilize it to enhance the umami taste of vegetarian meals. It has a strong taste and a thick, smooth texture, making it an exceptional and flexible ingredient. you can add some amount of chili paste or its alternatives in it if you like hot and spicy miso paste for making tasty and spicy recipes at home.

miso paste image

Alternatives and Substitutes For Miso Paste

The problem with finding an alternative to miso paste is to find an ingredient that can produce the taste and texture. Miso has a robust salty umami flavor and a smooth consistency. While it is difficult to find an appropriate substitute, we’ve got some products which can aid you in your dishes and offer an identical taste similar to miso paste.

Soy sauce

The first item that is widely used and readily located is soy sauce. Like miso paste, the soy sauce comes from fermented foods, making it quite like miso paste. Also, it has a very similar nutritional value and flavor. In reality, soy sauce could be similar to the kick miso gives. It’s got the same salty umami and savory flavors that miso paste offers. It’s vegan, so you can use them as an ingredient in various vegan recipes. Use soy sauce for dressings, soups, or other Miso paste dishes.

The most challenging thing to overcome when replacing miso with soy sauce is consistency. Miso is smooth, whereas Soy Sauce has a thin and watery texture. Keep in mind that soy sauce is saltier than miso. Therefore, start with less than you’ll need. After that, you can increase the amount of the recipe as you need to. Soy sauce is among the best miso substitutes because of its similar flavor. Remember that many kinds of miso and soy sauce could be more similar. For instance, soy sauce tastes closer to white miso than red.

Red miso, just like soy sauce, is fermented and salty. However, white miso isn’t fermented for long and has a sweeter flavor. Soy sauce is an ideal substitute for red miso. Soy sauce lets you retain the same flavor in your dishes, but be aware that its texture can be different.

home made soy sauce image

Fish Sauce

Fish Sauce is a thin sauce made from fermented fish widely used in Southeast Asian cuisine. The sauce is a different top replacement for miso, as it has a robust fermented flavor that imparts umami to your dishes, and its flavor is more pungent than miso. So, when you make this substitution, reduce the quantity in half. It is suggested to use half a teaspoon of fish sauce, where you would use one teaspoon of miso paste.

It is also the best alternative to red miso over white miso. This is because it has the same fermented and salty flavor similar to the red miso paste. You can fish sauce readily available in the local market. If you incorporate it in your recipes, it will impart a similar flavor to the miso paste. It has a salty, umami-like, and savory flavor; however, it contains gluten. When replacing it, you should add less to alter the flavor accordingly.

You may initially doubt this particular fermented condiment; however, the seafood sauce was a mainstay in Vietnamese cuisine for over a thousand years. In contrast to miso paste, you can’t age the sauce before using it (though it’s still worth using when you keep it in the fridge immediately after opening). 

Using this Fish Sauce, you can make a huge soup pot. This product is ideal for vegetarians, and you can use it as a replacement for miso paste to make your favorite recipes. There are many applications for the Fish Sauce alternative, so make sure to stock up on it.

fish sauce image

Tamari Sauce

Tamari is the Japanese term for soy sauce. This unique, delicious product is an excellent substitute for miso-paste dishes. It is excellent to use in pasta dishes as a substitute for miso paste. Additionally, it’s an excellent marinade for meats or a dipping sauce to serve steamed vegetables. 

This is another product that shares the same characteristics as miso paste. There are many things they have in common. Add Tamari to your food; it will offer the same umami and saltiness flavor as miso paste. It’s very similar to soy sauce, making the three ingredients a suitable alternative. They are similar in texture, and Tamari can perform perfectly in recipes that require miso paste.

Tamari is the thin liquid formed due to the fermentation of soybeans, and it is a byproduct of miso. So, while it is not a paste, it’s a great ingredient to use in Japanese cooking. The texture is softer than miso paste. 

substitute for tamari

Vegetable stock

An extremely beneficial ingredient that could serve as a fantastic substitute for soups is vegetable stock. It is light in color and adds flavor to soups. However, in making Miso Paste soup, you can add additional ingredients and herbs to create an authentic flavor. Vegetable stock can be a great alternative to miso paste or a great white miso replacement. It is similar to umami, such as soy sauce or fish sauce. However, manufacturers create it using vegetables instead of proteins.

Vegetable stock can be a great method to replicate the umami taste. But, it’s extremely liquid and thin, which makes it not an ideal alternative for adding bulk to an appetizer or creating consistency. Vegetable stock is also extremely salted, often more than miso. Be careful when substituting and put in a small amount at one time until you get the flavor you’re looking for. If you don’t, your dish could end up being too salty. 

The biggest issue with substituting miso made from vegetable stock, aside from the differences in inconsistency, is that it doesn’t have the fermented taste that red miso has. It is nevertheless a great choice to substitute for umami and saltiness.

If you’re unable to find a supply of yellow or white miso paste, try veggie stocks. They are delicious, and flavor and are also salty. You can buy vegetable stock from the local supermarket or make it yourself at home by using your favorite veggies like carrots, leeks, parsley, onions, celery etc. The advantage of making this at home is that you can alter the flavor to suit your preferences by using specific vegetables and spices. Vegetable stock is also considered one of the most healthy ways to substitute miso.

vegetable stock

Nutritional Yeast

This tasty condiment is perfect for those looking for a soy sauce or miso paste substitute. Nutritional yeast is packaged, but not in an oily, salty liquid but powder instead. There’s no need to get your hands dirty because it’s incredibly easy to mix with any recipe that requires one tablespoon of soy sauce or ten tablespoons of miso paste.

We’re also obsessed with food and improving it, and it doesn’t matter if it’s an ingredient in a protein, grain, or dessert. Nutritional yeast is among the most loved ingredients since it’s rich in vitamin B-12 and D. They also have an umami-like taste profile, a great alternative to miso paste.

Nutritional yeast


Many of you might not have heard about this ingredient. Dashi is a popular stock used as the base for various Japanese recipes. It is created by soaking ingredients like bonito flakes, kelp, or mushrooms in warm or cold water. Dashi is a fantastic alternative to miso since it comes from Japanese origins.

It offers that unique umami-like, oceanic taste that is the hallmark of numerous East Asian dishes showcased. Made from pale broth with Kombu, Dashi is ideal for dishes with a savory flavor that requires more liquid because its texture isn’t like miso paste.


Soybeans paste

Another paste that you can use in place of miso paste. It is generally used to flavor stews, soups, and other dip sauces. This is a paste of fermented bean paste, just like miso paste. When substituting, be sure to lower the amount as it’s extremely salty. You could always increase the amount if you feel it isn’t enough. 

The main distinction between soybean paste and miso is in color. It is a great ingredient to use in various recipes; however, be aware of the saltiness. Soybean paste, also called Doenjang, is typically used to flavor sauces and soups in Korean cuisine. It’s ideal for replacing red miso paste.

soybean paste


Tahini is a different popular substitute for miso paste. It’s due to its similar flavor and an identical texture as with miso. Tahini paste is used to add consistency to foods. It is made of ground sesame seeds and is useful for giving body to dishes. Tahini can be a fantastic alternative to miso paste when the intention is to add bulk to a dish and give it a bit of consistency. However, unlike soya sauce and even fish sauce, it isn’t like miso. If you intend to use miso paste as a base in the dish, you’ll have to add other ingredients to make up for it.

Tahini is made of sesame seeds, making it smooth and almost nutty. It doesn’t have the umami flavour similar to miso paste. There is a possibility of using a mixture of soy sauce and tahini or fish sauce to attain the consistency and the umami flavor of miso. Tahini is a superior substitute for white miso than red because it’s more fermented and with a milder taste.

The difference lies in the taste. Tahini has a more rich and creamy taste; therefore, don’t use it if recipes require a lot of miso. If you do, you’ll not get the taste you’re hoping for. You can use it in a variety of dishes. 



While salt might not impart the same rich flavor as miso or other Japanese ingredients, it is still the most easily accessible seasoning available. Salt is hidden and is a great complement to the other ingredients you’re using to add depth and delicious taste to your dishes. Sometimes, you can get the same flavor as miso by using the appropriate amount of salt in your dish. But there are a few caveats to this. 

Miso paste and salt are as distinct in their consistency as two different ingredients could be. In addition, salt cannot recreate the unique fermented, umami-like flavor that miso has. So, even though salt is among our top five alternatives for miso, it shouldn’t be the last choice.

However, it can be used in a pinch. It is best to use salt as a substitute for miso paste for recipes containing only a tiny amount of miso and a variety of other ingredients. Making sure to add salt only in the required instances is a sure way not to affect the flavor or consistency of the dish. It might be a shock. Salt is indeed the one ingredient that can be found easily everywhere. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I make use of miso powder instead of miso paste?

Yes, you can, but sticking to the paste in all recipes is advised. This is particularly true for miso soup since the powder is difficult to break down and will not leave any taste.

What types of miso exist?

There are three different miso types available in grocery stores. The white or Shiro miso is mildest and is also referred to as sweet or sweet miso. Red, also known as miso, fermented for the longest time, is the sourest. Yellow miso, also known as Shinshu miso, is somewhere in between and, to some people, the most adaptable.

Where is the miso paste available?

There are several markets where you can search for miso paste. They typically come in tubes. it is found in herbs and paste sections where sauces and rubs are kept. it comes in various sizes from 100 grams to more. you can buy as per your requirement and usage in house.

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