Coconut Aminos: The Ultimate Soy Substitute

Published January 3rd, 2022 by Chris Riley
Fact Checked by
Erik Rivera

Coconut aminos 101 | Health Benefits | Substitute for soy | Best recipes

Coconut aminos is a type of soy sauce substitute made from the sap of coconut blossoms.

It has been around for years but has recently become more popular due to its perceived health benefits and due to people having soy allergies.

Coconut aminos is lower in sodium content than traditional soy sauce and slightly sweeter, which is why it makes an excellent addition to many dishes.

While coconut aminos can be used as a substitute for soy sauce or tamari, there are also other substitutes that you may want to consider using over coconut aminos if the taste doesn't appeal to you.

Please continue reading to find out more about coconut aminos, other soy substitutes, and which dishes best incorporate them.

What is coconut aminos?

Coconut aminos, also called coconut liquid aminos or just liquid aminos, is a sauce made from coconut tree sap and sea salt.

It is a good substitute for soy sauce because it has a similar flavor and contains less sodium than soy sauce.

It is originally from coconut palm trees, while soy sauce is made from fermented soybeans.

To make coconut aminos, the coconut sap is collected and then boiled down to a syrup.

The syrup is mixed with sea salt and left to ferment. Coconut aminos taste is described as being a mix of salty, sweet, and sour.

coconut aminos image

What are the health benefits of coconut aminos?

Coconut aminos is a good source of amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein.

Amino acids are used by the body for muscle growth, tissue repair, and other functions.

The coconut aminos amino acid content is similar to soy sauce but it contains less sodium per serving and it also has a lower glycemic index than table sugar or maple syrup.

There are many who claim that it contains high amounts of potassium and magnesium, but these are nutrients that are in the coconut palm.

Coconut aminos comes from the coconut palm sap but it is the fermented sap of the tree, so the nutritional value of other parts of the tree, for example the raw coconut, do not necessarily carry over to coconut aminos too.

There has been little to no study of the health benefits of coconut aminos and until peer-reviewed studies are undertaken there is very little veracity to any of these statements.

Is coconut aminos a good substitute for soy?

Coconut aminos is a good replacement in recipes calling for soy sauce.

It has less sodium than regular soy sauce, but the flavor is similar so coconut aminos can be used in place of soy sauce when it is needed.

Soy sauces are generally gluten-free and coconut aminos are too but always be sure to check the labels.

The taste of coconut aminos compared to soy sauce is a little less salty and sweeter, which is preferred by some people.

Due to the fermentation process, coconut aminos does not contain preservatives either.

What are other soy substitutes?

Coconut aminos is not he only soy sauce substitute that can be used in recipes though so let's take a look at a few others.

Tamari is a gluten-free soy sauce alternative made from fermented soybeans and has a slightly different flavor than regular soy sauce.

Braggs Liquid Aminos is also a gluten-free option and contains 16 amino acids. It is made from vegetable protein and has a savory flavor.

Fish sauce is another soy sauce replacement that has a unique flavor and is made from anchovy paste.

Oyster sauce is made from oysters and is sometimes used as a soy substitute and it and fish sauce are not vegetarian or vegan.

Is there any negatives to using coconut aminos?

There are some people who do not like the taste of coconut aminos because it is less salty than soy sauce or tamari and sweeter but this is subjective and based solely on personal preferences.

Other people have reported that their coconut aminos did not ferment properly or had an off-flavor. Fermentation is a crucial step in making coconut aminos and if it does not occur correctly, the end result can be unpleasant.

Finally, coconut aminos is also more expensive than soy sauce and not as widely available in US supermarkets although it is seen more frequently as it becomes more popular.

Where can I get coconut aminos?

Coconut aminos can be found online and in some specialty stores. It is also becoming more available in mainstream supermarkets.

Some brands that sell coconut aminos include Coconut Secret, Braggs, and Primal Palate. Amazon has a wide variety of coconut aminos brands to choose from too.

From around the web: coconut amino substitute, liquid aminos vs soy sauce

Reddit - Coconut Aminos Substitute

Reddit - Liquid Aminos vs Soy Sauce

What are the best recipes for coconut aminos?

Coconut aminos can be used for soy sauce in recipes that call for it. It is excellent as a stir fry sauce and it gives an interesting flavor to coconut rice dishes. Its salty taste makes it good with seafood too.

It can be used as a marinade for chicken, pork, beef, and seafood and is a good dipping sauce for egg rolls or potstickers. It can even be used in salad dressings to make a vinegarette.

There are many recipes that call for coconut aminos on Pinterest and other websites. Try it in your favorite dish to see how you like the flavor.

What is a good coconut aminos marinade recipe?

Now that you know everything about coconut aminos, here is a simple recipe for a coconut aminos marinade for your chicken, beef, pork, or seafood.

Coconut aminos marinade:

  • coconut aminos to taste (start with a tablespoon and add more if needed up to a quarter cup)
  • minced garlic cloves (1 tablespoon) or prepared garlic powder (1 teaspoon)
  • sesame oil for flavor, but not necessary as coconut aminos has a bit of that flavor already from being a soy sauce replacement (you can start with one teaspoon and add more if needed)
  • rice vinegar (2 tablespoons)

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and marinate meat for at least 30 minutes. The coconut aminos will help tenderize the meat or seafood and give it a delicious flavor. Enjoy!

Summary

Coconut aminos is made from coconut tree sap and sea salt that are mixed together and fermented and is often used as a soy sauce substitute.

There are many health claims about its benefits although there are no scientific studies proving them.

Coconut aminos does not contain gluten, preservatives, or additives like regular soy sauce but it costs more than traditional soy sauces and some people do not like its taste compared to other options.

It is more widely available in the USA now than it has ever been but it still may be difficult to find in supermarkets although it is widely available online.

References and Sources:

usda.gov

fdc.nal.usda.gov

healthline.com