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Sweet and Spicy Peanut Sauce – The Real Deal

By Chef Devan


Published on

This peanut sauce is so good I want to dunk everything in it.

This is meant to go with my chicken satay recipe but you could drizzle this over steamed vegetables, pork chops or fried green beans for a few other tasty options.

Making the sauce is so much fun because the house will smell amazing while you prepare it.

How to Make Peanut Sauce

The sauce requires some ingredients that may be difficult to find. Tamarind and kecap manis are essential for this sauce.

  • Kecap Manis – Essentially a sweetened and flavoured soy sauce that is used extensively in Indonesian cuisine. Kecap Manis is widely available here in the Netherlands but can be difficult to find elsewhere. If you can’t find it then add 1 tsp of palm/white sugar to every tbsp of soy sauce.
  • Palm Sugar – I love this stuff. Slightly less sweet than normal sugar and gives a rich flavour to the dish. You can substitute with brown sugar but add half as much as palm sugar is less sweet.
  • Tamarind – Probably the hardest to find but you can’t omit this one. Tamarind pulp that is de-seeded is exactly what you want. This gives the sauce a nice sour flavour and brown colour.
  • Lemongrass – Sometimes difficult to find but the aroma is second to none.
  • Plain, blanched peanuts – Roasting the peanuts yourself not only smells amazing but also makes the sauce tastier.
Tamarind paste in a bag.

Is There a Quicker Peanut Sauce?

Sometimes you’re in a rush and you don’t have time to make the real deal.

No problem.

This recipe is way faster, requires no cooking and is still 100x better than any store-bought peanut sauce.

Fast Peanut Sauce

  • 150ml roasted and salted peanuts
  • ½ lime, juiced and zested
  • 1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • ½ clove garlic
  • ½ fresh chili
  • ½ tsp ginger
  • 2 tbsp kecap manis (or 2 tbsp soy sauce with 2 tsp sugar)
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • A couple of drops of Worcestershire/fish sauce

Blitz everything together in a food processor. Add salt to taste.  If the sauce is too thick add a bit more coconut milk or water until it’s nice and saucy.

Pouring the coconut milk into the peanut sauce.
Peanut sauce in a bowl with peanuts around.
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5 from 1 vote

Sweet and Spicy Peanut Sauce – The Real Deal

A delicious recipe for peanut sauce that is a must-have with chicken satay. Sweet, tangy, slightly spicy makes and the perfect accompaniment to any steamed vegetable, rice, chicken or pork dish.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 374kcal
Cost $8/6€


For the Spice Paste

  • 8 g garlic, peeled (2 cloves)
  • 7 g ginger, peeled (about the same amount as the garlic)
  • 13 g lemongrass, chopped finely (½ stalk)
  • 1 whole chili
  • 85 g peanut oil, or vegetable oil (¼ cup)

The Rest

  • ½ stalk lemongrass
  • 65 g peanuts, unsalted, not roasted (¼ cup)
  • 16 g kecap manis (1 tbsp)
  • 10 g palm sugar (3 tsp)
  • ¼ piece lime, juiced
  • 87 g coconut milk (¼ cup)
  • 5 g salt (1 tsp)

Tamarind Water

  • 22 g tamarind pulp, de-seeded (1 tbsp)
  • 62 g hot water (¼ cup)


  • Set the oven to 190°C/375°F and roast the nuts on a tray until dark brown, about 7 minutes.
    Roasting the peanuts in the oven until golden brown.
  • Pulse the nuts in the food processor until fine but not a paste.
    The peanuts blitzed into a fine size in a bowl.
  • Add the hot water to the tamarind and let sit for 10 minutes.
    Tamarind pulp in hot water.
  • Blend all the ingredients for the spice paste together.
    Spice paste blended in a food processor.
  • Strain the water from the soaked tamarind pulp. Discard the pulp and set aside the tamarind water.
    Straining the tamarind from the water.
  • Cook the spice paste over low heat for about 5 minutes until it smells aromatic. Add the lemongrass stock.
    Cooking the spice paste with the lemongrass in a pan.
  • Add all of the other ingredients except the peanuts and cook out until slightly thickened. About 5-10 minutes.
    All of the ingredients except the peanuts in the pan.
  • Once slightly thickened, add the peanuts and turn off the heat. Check the seasoning.
    Let cool slightly and serve at room temperature. Enjoy!
    The finished sauce in the pan.


If the sauce is too thick just add 1 or 2 tbsps of hot water and mix. 
This sauce will keep for up to a week in the fridge and freezes well.
You’ll notice that the sauce splits but this is how it’s meant to be served.
This recipe is inspired by Rasa Malaysia‘s authentic peanut sauce which I think is prepared well. 


Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 34g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Monounsaturated Fat: 14g | Sodium: 568mg | Potassium: 247mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 7IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 2mg
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About Chef Devan

With exceptional talent and passion for gastronomy, Chef Devan has over 15 years of experience across the culinary world, bringing a wealth of experience to the table, even from Michelin-starred restaurants. He's here to help you captivate the senses and delight everyone with easy recipes you could cook at home. Learn more about Braised and Deglazed's Editorial Process.

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