Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce

Unlock the secret to irresistible flavors with our Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce recipe! Whether you’re craving a tangy dip for your appetizers or a flavorful sauce to drizzle over your favorite dishes, this recipe has got you covered. With simple ingredients and easy-to-follow steps, you’ll be enjoying the delicious taste of homemade sweet and sour sauce in no time.


  • 1 (6 ounces) can pineapple juice
  • ¼ cup rice vinegar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons water


  1. Combine Flavorful Ingredients: In a saucepan over medium-high heat, whisk together pineapple juice, rice vinegar, brown sugar, ketchup, and soy sauce until well combined.
  2. Create Thickening Agent: In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and water to create a slurry.
  3. Thicken the Sauce: Add the cornstarch slurry to the saucepan, whisking it into the sauce mixture. Bring the sauce to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Allow the sauce to simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until it thickens to your desired consistency, about 10 minutes.
  4. Cool and Serve: Once the sauce has thickened, remove it from the heat and let it cool slightly before serving.
  5. Enjoy Versatile Usage: Use the Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce as a dip for appetizers, a topping for meats or vegetables, or as a sauce for stir-fries. The possibilities are endless!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 16

Serving and Storage Tips:

  1. Serve Fresh: For the best taste and texture, serve the sweet and sour sauce fresh, right after preparing it.
  2. Refrigeration: If you have leftovers, store the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
  3. Reheat Before Use: When ready to use again, gently reheat the sauce on the stovetop over low heat or in the microwave, stirring occasionally until warmed through.
  4. Customize Portions: Adjust the serving size according to your needs. This recipe yields approximately 16 servings, but you can easily double or halve the ingredients to suit your preferences.
  5. Dipping Delight: Serve the sweet and sour sauce alongside your favorite appetizers such as chicken nuggets, spring rolls, or vegetable tempura for a flavorful dipping experience.
  6. Versatile Topping: Drizzle the sauce over cooked meats like chicken, pork, or shrimp to add a burst of tangy sweetness to your main dishes.
  7. Stir-Fry Sauce: Use the sweet and sour sauce as a base for stir-fries by tossing it with vegetables, protein, and cooked noodles or rice for a quick and tasty meal.
  8. Creative Condiment: Get creative and use the sauce as a condiment for sandwiches, wraps, or burgers to add a unique flavor twist.
  9. Party Pleaser: Prepare a batch of sweet and sour sauce for your next gathering or party to impress your guests with homemade goodness.
  10. Gift Idea: Consider gifting jars of homemade sweet and sour sauce to friends or family members who appreciate homemade condiments. Simply package it in decorative jars with labels for a thoughtful and delicious present.


  1. Spicy Kick: Add a pinch of red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce to the sauce mixture for a spicy twist.
  2. Fruity Fusion: Enhance the fruity flavor by adding diced fresh pineapple or mango chunks to the sauce for a tropical touch.
  3. Ginger Infusion: Incorporate freshly grated ginger or ginger paste to the sauce for a zesty and aromatic flavor boost.
  4. Garlic Lover’s Delight: Stir in minced garlic or garlic powder to add depth and savory notes to the sauce.
  5. Honey Sweetness: Substitute part of the brown sugar with honey for a richer and more complex sweetness.
  6. Citrus Zest: Add a splash of fresh lime or lemon juice to brighten the flavors and add a hint of citrus freshness.
  7. Sesame Sensation: Drizzle toasted sesame oil over the finished sauce for a nutty flavor and aromatic finish.
  8. Vinegar Variation: Experiment with different types of vinegar such as apple cider vinegar or balsamic vinegar to customize the tanginess of the sauce.
  9. Herbaceous Twist: Stir in chopped fresh herbs like cilantro, parsley, or basil for a burst of freshness and color.
  10. Soy Sauce Substitute: Swap soy sauce with tamari or coconut aminos for a gluten-free alternative with a slightly different flavor profile.
  11. Apricot Twist: Substitute pineapple juice with apricot nectar for a slightly different fruity flavor profile.
  12. Maple Infusion: Replace brown sugar with maple syrup for a unique sweetness and depth of flavor.
  13. Chili Mango Fusion: Add diced mango and a touch of chili powder for a sweet and spicy mango-infused version of the sauce.
  14. Coconut Creamy Delight: Stir in coconut milk for a creamy and tropical twist to the sauce.
  15. Orange Blossom: Enhance the citrus notes by adding orange zest or a splash of orange juice to the sauce.
  16. Asian-Inspired Upgrade: Mix in a tablespoon of hoisin sauce and a dash of sesame oil for an authentic Asian-inspired flavor.
  17. Sriracha Heat: Amp up the heat by incorporating a teaspoon of sriracha or chili garlic sauce for a spicy kick.
  18. Peachy Keen: Swap pineapple juice with peach nectar and add diced peaches for a peachy variation of the sauce.
  19. Cilantro Lime: Stir in chopped fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice for a refreshing and herbaceous twist.
  20. Smoky Barbecue: Infuse the sauce with smoky flavor by adding a teaspoon of liquid smoke or smoked paprika.


  1. Can I adjust the sweetness of the sauce?
    • Absolutely! Feel free to adjust the amount of brown sugar or add other sweeteners like honey to achieve your desired level of sweetness.
  2. Is this sauce gluten-free?
    • The sauce contains soy sauce, which typically contains gluten. However, you can use a gluten-free soy sauce or tamari to make the sauce gluten-free.
  3. Can I make the sauce ahead of time?
    • Yes, you can prepare the sauce ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator for up to a week. Just reheat it gently before serving.
  4. How can I make the sauce thicker?
    • If you prefer a thicker sauce, you can increase the amount of cornstarch or simmer the sauce for a longer period until it reaches your desired consistency.
  5. Can I use fresh pineapple instead of pineapple juice?
    • Yes, you can substitute fresh pineapple for pineapple juice. Simply blend fresh pineapple chunks and strain the juice before using it in the recipe.
  6. Is this sauce vegan-friendly?
    • The sauce contains soy sauce, which is typically not vegan due to the inclusion of wheat and sometimes added preservatives. However, you can use a vegan-friendly soy sauce or tamari to make the sauce vegan.
  7. Can I freeze the sauce?
    • Yes, you can freeze the sauce in an airtight container for up to three months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before reheating.
  8. What dishes can I serve with this sauce?
    • This versatile sauce pairs well with a variety of dishes, including chicken stir-fry, sweet and sour tofu, vegetable spring rolls, and shrimp skewers.
  9. Can I adjust the acidity of the sauce?
    • Yes, you can adjust the acidity by varying the amount of rice vinegar or adding a splash of citrus juice such as lemon or lime.
  10. Is this sauce suitable for children?
    • Yes, this sweet and sour sauce is generally kid-friendly. However, you may want to adjust the sweetness or spiciness according to your child’s taste preferences.

With this Homemade Sweet and Sour Sauce recipe, you can elevate any dish with the perfect balance of tangy and sweet flavors. Say goodbye to store-bought sauces and hello to homemade goodness!