All-Purpose Dumpling Dipping Sauce

No matter your dimsum, this 5-minute dipping sauce will match it with its savory, spicy, and tangy flavors.
½ cup
Prep Time
05 Mins
Active Time
1 Hr

We dare you to find a dumpling that wouldn't work with this all-around dimsum sauce. This extroverted sawsawan has everything—umami, heat, fragrance, and brightness—that just works on whatever you dip in it: siomai, hakaw, kuchay dumplings.

What brand of soy sauce should I use?

We suggest using a premium soy sauce, like Kikkoman and Lee Kum Kee, for its complex, mellow flavor.

Toyo, or local soy sauce, tends to have a sharper saltiness that's better used for cooking. However, we found that Datu Puti has a familiar flavor that brings to mind Chinese hole-in-the-walls. If it's what you have, use it.

What is chili crisp?

Chili crisp is a spicy Chinese condiment made from fried chili peppers, aromatics like garlic and scallions, and crunchy bits like peanuts and soybeans. The crispy stuff gives it a chunkier texture than regular chili oil.

The most popular brand of chili crisp is Lao Gan Ma, which we use in this recipe. You can swap it out, if you prefer, with chili garlic oil.

  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • ¼ cup premium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp cilantro, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp chili crisp, like Lao Gan Ma
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted

Make sauce: Add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Divide between smaller sauce dishes or serve in a communal sauce bowl with dumplings and dim sum.

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