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I love pot stickers. I love them steamed, but even better deep fried. I've tried different brands and they all have a similar dipping sauce. It's hard to describe, but I'm sure a lot of you out there have tried it. I would guess its mostly soy sauce, but I don't taste a lot of salt, so I assume its balance out with something. There is a great tang, so I assume it's got vinegar. Probably rice vinegar or shaoxing. I can almost drink the stuff.

Sadly, there is never enough included in the frozen packages and I've recently decided to start making my own pot stickers. I've seen and tried a few youtube.com recipes for the dipping sauces, but I can't ever find one that's like the Ling Ling dipping sauce or any of the others. They're perfectly adequate, but not what I'm looking for.

My question is, does anyone have a recipe or know what the main ingredients are to make a dipping sauce like these? I don't know what I'm missing. They used to just sell bottles of the sauce for dipping or marinating. They seem to have discontinued it. I even went so far as to get the ingredient list off the bottle which gives me a head start, but doesn't convey amounts or preparation methods. I've seen some sauces where you boil some of the liquid with corn starch before adding other ingredients. I've added the Ling Ling pot sticker ingredients below if anyone has a recipe that gets very close to one of these sauces or can help me replicate it, I'd appreciate it. Thank you.

SOY SAUCE (WATER, SALT, HYDROLYZED SOY PROTEIN, MOLASSES, CARAMEL COLOR) SUGAR, VINEGAR, CHILI SAUCE (JALAPENO PUREE, CHILI FLAKE, CRUSHED GARLIC, VEGETABLE OIL, SUGAR, VINEGAR, MODIFIED FOOD STARCH) COTTONSEED OIL, SESAME SEED OIL, SODIUM BENZOATE (PRESERVATIVE). CONTAINS: SOY

*On the ingredients list, I assume the ingredients in parenthesis are supposed to be the components of the one ingredient that preceeds it. So the water to caramel color are ingredients for the soy sauce. I also know that some ingredients are used commercially and aren't needed for home cooking. Such as the sodium benzoate for preserving. I don't know if that affects the taste or not, though. Again, even though there is a list of ingredients, they can vary wildly in flavor and there may be a prep step I don't know about. Thanks for the help.

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I haven't had that specific sauce before, but I've had similar sauces (FYI, if you want to buy the sauce without buying the potstickers, you can buy them in small bottles in Asian food stores).

I don't know the exact ratios, but you can always start with a ratio of 1:1:1 of soy sauce (Kikkoman would do just fine here), rice vinegar (not shaoxing, that's a wine and not a vinegar; I would recommend Chinkiang/Zhenjiang black rice vinegar, but any rice vinegar should do fine), and sugar. Start from there, and adjust as you see fit. You may want to dilute it also; I just made it and it tasted quite strong to me, may want a bit more sugar than 1:1:1.

I would skip the cottonseed oil and just use sesame seed oil - a few drops of good quality sesame seed oil (Kadoya brand, for example) is good enough. Chili oil/sauce - that depends, even Sriracha would work well if you like that flavor; a few drops of that would do.

Have you thought about possibly using a bit of chopped garlic/garlic powder? I've seen it in some of the ingredient lists of the bottled dipping sauces. Just a minor thought if you happen to like garlic - it's perfectly fine to use some in dipping.

Hope that helps!

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    That ratio seems a little high to me on the vinegar especially; I'd personally start with about half that and ratchet up as needed, since brands can vary in their pungency. I can't remember where I learned this, but for the garlic using a microplane grater works very well; you wind up with very small bits of garlic that integrate well into the sauce and really infuse the flavor well. Much easier than super fine chopping. You can use ginger similarly too if you like the flavor. – logophobe Apr 29 '16 at 15:54
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    @logophobe Equal amounts of rice vinegar and soy sauce is perfect. The tricky part is figuring out what other ingredients to add to make it like the Ling Ling brand. I usually use 1 part soy sauce, 1 part rice vinegar, a small amount of ginger, and a tiny pinch of onion powder. It doesn't taste exactly like what the OP wants, but it's very good. – mrog Mar 17 '18 at 4:33
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Having spent a number of years living in Tokyo as a university student and trying to live and eat as cheaply as possible, one spends an inordinate amount of time in "chukka ryooriya" (Chinese food restaurants) which are not the nice fancy ones with white table cloths, but are more like small, hole-in-the-wall mom-and-pop shops (which are on practically every corner in a college town) whose menus are usually stir-frys and ramens and a variety of sides like fried rice and gyoozas (potstickers). Without exception, gyooza is always served with a little tray of soy sauce, vinegar and chili oil. I've never seen bottled or pre-mixed sauces ever. Mind you these are Japanese-style Chinese fast-food shops.

Anyway, the way it's done in Japan is you start with a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce in a small dish, a splash of vinegar and a few drops of chili oil. The ratio of soy sauce to vinegar is never more than 2:1 because vinegar is rather over-powering, so start with a splash. So the ratios are a matter of personal preference. And of course, some may prefer to pass on the vinegar and/or chili oil altogether.

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I had the same problem...Never enough sauce packets so I make my own now. I use:

1 cup of Yashida's Marinade & Cooking sauce 1/2 cup water 1/4 cup rice vinegar. (Add more if you like) 1 T fresh grated ginger. (Optional) A pinch of red pepper flakes A drop or 2 of sesame oil. (A little goes a long way)

I put all ingredients in a jar and shake to combine. This will last in the fridge for months. Excellent with Potstickers and tempura vegetables. Enjoy!

  • I'll have to give that a try. Do you think this tastes like the potsticker sauce packets that come with them or is this just a version that you like? Thanks. – Dalton Jan 3 '17 at 14:07
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Just did this and it's about spot on for Ling Lings sauce. This is for about one serving:

  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp chili garlic sauce
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At work we just do a very straight forward, soy sauce, sugar (good bit of it), chili flake/chilly sauce that is toasted or sautéed.

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