Sweet Garlic Sauce



Total TimeUnder 15 minutes

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Type of DishSauces


  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed with the side of a knife and minced
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Filipino cane sugar (or white vinegar, or cider vinegar diluted with water, see Chef's Note**)
  • 1 cup (250 ml) water
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons of water


  1. Combine the garlic, sugar, salt, soy sauce, vinegar, and water in a saucepan, and bring to a boil.

  2. Reduce the heat to low and add the cornstarch mixture.

  3. Stir until thickened, and remove from heat.

Chef's Note

Cane sugar (suka) is a very important ingredient of Filipino cooking. Along with salt, vinegar was used to keep food from spoiling without refrigeration in hot and humid Philippines so most, if not all, dishes are salted and use vinegar. Mild can sugar is used. It is often labeled sukang maasim or "sour vinegar." Any Philippine-made palm vinegar (sukang paombong) or coconut vinegar (sukang niyong) can be substituted. Filipino vinegar is less acidic than most vinegars used in the West. The best substitutes are white vinegar, white wine vinegar, or cider vinegar. However, if you use these vinegars they should be diluted with water (use 3 parts vinegar to 1 part water).


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