Nut-Free “Peanut” Sauce

This quick and easy Nut-Free “Peanut” Sauce is a thick, creamy condiment you’ll want to pour over everything!

It takes just a few pantry ingredients and 5 minutes to whip up this healthy peanut sauce alternative.

Plus it’s gluten-free and soy-free. 

So it’s Paleo, vegan and Whole30 friendly!

This was originally posted on Jan. 8, 2019. The post, photos and recipe were updated on Jan. 6, 2023.

Gluten-free peanut sauce in a white bowl next to bowls of coconut aminos and red pepper flakes and a blue plate with grilled chicken skewers on it.

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Nut-Free Peanut Sauce

"Peanut" sauce drizzled over chicken, broccoli and cauliflower rice on a blue plate, straw placemat and green napkinNut-Free Peanut Sauce

Peanut sauce is something you’ll find various versions of in Indonesian, Vietnamese and other cuisines. 

Obviously, this version is not some authentic recreation of the real deal.

Not everyone can tolerate peanuts or any nuts at all. So we’ll not only make this a peanut sauce without peanut butter, it’ll be a totally nut-free satay sauce!

Just swap out the peanuts/peanut butter for sunbutter, which is made out of sunflower seeds.

And to make it a gluten-free peanut sauce, we’ll make it without soy sauce (which contains wheat) and use coconut aminos instead.

So if you’re looking for a peanut sauce without peanut butter, without gluten and without nuts, this recipe has you covered!

How to make this Nut-Free “Peanut” Sauce

It’s pretty simple! Just blend together:

  • Sunbutter – I prefer this smooth brand with no added sugar. You can use crunchy if you want more texture.
  • Coconut aminos – This soy sauce alternative is made from reducing coconut sap until it’s dark and syrupy. It’s much less salty than regular (or low-sodium) soy sauce. It’s soy-free and gluten-free.
  • Garlic powder
  • Red pepper flakes – These are optional if you don’t want it spicy.
  • Fine sea salt
  • Optional add-ins: honey and/or lime juice – Omit the honey to keep it vegan and Whole30 compliant.

I use my mini food processor, regular blender or stick blender so the red pepper flakes are blended into the sauce as opposed to the whole flakes sticking in your throat. (Does that just happen to me? Cool.)

But if you aren’t using them or don’t care about that, you can just whisk everything together in a medium mixing bowl.

Peanut sauce made without peanut butter in a white bowl next to bowls of coconut aminos and red pepper flakes and a blue plate with grilled chicken skewers on it.

Substitutions

Storing this Paleo peanut sauce

You can store this sauce in the fridge for up to 1 week.

You might have to add more water to loosen it.

Freezing this Paleo peanut sauce

You can freeze this sauce for up to 1 month. Thaw overnight in the fridge.

You might have to add more water to loosen it once it thaws.

 

How to use this Paleo peanut sauce

Basically, put it on everything.

  • Chicken
  • Pork
  • Beef
  • Use it as a dip for this Paleo teriyaki chicken
  • Sautéed or steamed veggies
  • Regular or veggie noodles
  • As a dip with raw veggies
  • A small scoop mixed into my 3-Ingredient Curried Sweet Potato Soup
  • Trying pairing it with different kinds of fruit for a sweet/salty snack, like apples or pineapple
"Peanut" Sauce in a jar and drizzled over a plate of chicken, broccoli and cauliflower rice
Gluten-free peanut sauce in a white bowl next to bowls of coconut aminos and red pepper flakes and a blue plate with grilled chicken skewers on it.
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Nut-Free "Peanut" Sauce

This delicious Thai-inspired Nut-Free "Peanut" Sauce is thick, creamy and so simple to make. With just a few pantry ingredients you'll have a gluten-free, vegan, Paleo and Whole30-friendly sauce ready to go!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time0 mins
Total Time5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indonesian, Southeast Asian, Thai, Vietnamese
Keyword: gluten free peanut sauce, nut free peanut sauce, paleo peanut sauce, peanut sauce without peanut butter
Servings: 1.25 cups
Author: Don Baiocchi

Ingredients

  • cup sunbutter, preferably with no sugar added
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tbsp. coconut aminos (see note)
  • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
  • fine sea salt, to taste
  • 1 tsp. honey optional (omit for Whole30; see note)
  • spritz of lime juice optional (see note)

Instructions

  • Whisk all the sauce ingredients together. You can do this by hand but I prefer using a mini food processor, regular blender or stick blender so the pepper flakes are minced and blended into the sauce as opposed to big whole flakes that can stick in your throat.
  • Taste for seasoning and add more salt if necessary.

Notes

The sodium content in coconut aminos can vary wildly by brand. I made this recipe using Big Tree which has a relatively high sodium content. If using Coconut Secret or another brand with lesser sodium, you can replace part of the water in the sauce with an equal amount of coconut aminos. Or leave the amounts as is but be prepared to add salt at the end if necessary.
I don't find the addition of the honey and lime juice to the sauce to be necessary but some people like it that way.
Storing this peanut sauce
You can store this sauce in the fridge for up to 1 week.
You might have to add more water to loosen it.
Freezing this peanut sauce
You can freeze this sauce for up to 1 month. Thaw overnight in the fridge.
You might have to add more water to loosen it once it thaws.

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Nut Free "Peanut" sauce is a mason jar on a table with red pepper flakes
"Peanut" Sauce drizzled over chicken, broccoli and cauliflower rice on a blue plate and straw placemat with a green napkin


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