Whether you prefer your sauce spicy, sweet or kissed with citrus, whipping up a homemade sauce to accompany pot stickers requires just a few ingredients and minimal effort. Begin with a soy sauce and rice vinegar base, then add ingredients of your choosing to build the flavor to suit your tastes. This pot sticker sauce yields a spicy variation, calling for both hot chili oil and red pepper flakes to add two dimensions of heat that is balanced with freshly grated ginger and a touch of sugar.
Start to Finish: 5 minutes
Servings: 3 to 4
Difficulty Level: Beginner
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/2 to 1 teaspoon chili oil
1/2 to 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
- Finely chopped scallions, for garnish
Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine them, until the sugar has dissolved. Sprinkle finely chopped scallions on top of the pot sticker sauce to garnish.
Substitutions and Variations
Leave out the red pepper flakes and replace the hot chili oil with another oil if you don’t like heat; go for a neutral oil like extra-virgin olive oil to let the salty tartness of the sauce shine, or try using sesame oil to add nuttiness. Instead of hot chili oil, use a favorite hot sauce, such as Sriracha, or a chili paste to add heat.
Replace the rice vinegar with mirin, which is a sweet rice wine, to give the sauce a sweeter flavor. You can also use brown sugar instead of granulated sugar to add a sweetness with a hint of molasses. Leave the hot chili oil and red pepper flakes out when creating sweet variations so that the heat doesn't overwhelm the sweetness. Or, leave the red pepper flakes in to create a sweet and spicy sauce.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of orange zest and replace the chili oil with orange juice to add a bright kick of citrus.
Other Flavorful Variations
If you don’t like ginger, replace it with minced garlic to create a spicy garlic sauce or peanut butter to create a spicy peanut dipping sauce.
**Soy sauce contains a lot of sodium**, but you can reduce the amount in your pot sticker sauce by choosing a **low-sodium soy sauce**, replacing it with **liquid aminos** or by making your own [homemade soy sauce](http://www.timescolonist.com/life/it-s-not-hard-to-make-a-substitute-for-soy-sauce-1.3009).
Instead of sugar, use **honey** to **naturally sweeten** the sauce.