Homemade easy sweet & sour sauce looks superb, tastes great – much better than take-away or jarred sauces – and takes only a few minutes to make. It’s so versatile: use it with vegetable and meat dishes for a winning fakeaway meal.
We have made this dish with peppers, but it is just as easy to use meat or other vegetables.
Why Make Easy Sweet and Sour Sauce
Sweet and sour dishes are a classic and favourite takeout choice, but rather than pick up the phone, I love to make it myself. Why? Well:
- This dish is quick and easy to make and can be ready faster than a takeout will arrive.
- It’s so versatile! See below for some serving ideas.
- The basic sauce is vegan
- This sweet and sour sauce is easily gluten free
- It has no nasties such as artificial colours, flavours, preservatives or MSG. This means the sauce isn’t a lurid orange colour but I’d rather only have the natural ingredients.
How Can I Use Easy Sweet and Sour Sauce?
All sorts of ways! Here are a few of my favourite ideas. We made this dish with mixed peppers, as that is what we had to hand, but mix it up!
- As the basis for a veg-based side dish. I’m always looking to add extra vegetable to my meals; as shown here, a dish like this easy sweet and sour sauce with peppers and pineapple is a great way to do this.
- As a dipping sauce for home made pot stickers/goyza, chicken bites or spring rolls. Perfect for a night enjoying a box set on the TV.
- To make my own sweet and sour prawns, pork or chicken, exactly tailored to how I like it? Extra sour? A dash more chili heat? Easy!
- Use it as a glaze when barbecuing.
- What are your favourite uses for sweet and sour sauce? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
How to Make Easy Sweet and Sour Sauce from Scratch
First – Measure out your ingredients.
Second – Cut the onion, peppers, and garlic. Cut the peppers into strips.
Third – Pour the pineapple juice from the can into a jug, cut the pineapple up into bite sized chunks.
Mix in the white wine vinegar, soy sauce and brown sugar to the juice. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
Fourth – Put the cornstarch in a small bowl and add a spoon of the pineapple liquid. Stir well and set to one side.
Our top tip for thickening sauces with cornstarch – cornflour is an amazing thickener but you need to use it correctly to avoid lumps. Always add the liquid to the cornflour, stir to make a paste, then add the paste to the dish.
As it is cooked the cloudy liquid will thicken and turn clear.
Fourth – Fry the onion, garlic, peppers in a frying pan in a little oil. When they’ve started to soften, add the pineapple juice.
Fifth – Then add the cornstarch paste and cook some more stirring all the time. The sauce should quickly thicken.
Sixth – When the peppers have cooked a little more, add the pineapple chunks and chili sauce.
Finally – When the pineapple has warmed through, it’s ready to serve.
Easy Chinese style sweet and sour sauce fakeaway! If you have another can of pineapple then try my easy pineapple upside-down cake – only four ingredients and vegan and fat free!
Easy Sweet and Sour Sauce with Pepper and Pineapple.
- 1 can pineapple in juice ((rings or chunks))
- 1 tsp vegetable oil
- 1 onion
- 1 red pepper
- 1 yellow pepper
- 1 green pepper
- 4 tbs white wine vinegar
- 3 tbs soft brown sugar
- 1 tbs soy sauce ((tamari to be gluten free))
- 2 tbs cornflour
- 1 tbsp chili sauce ((to taste))
- Peel the onion and garlic and chop.
- Cut the peppers into strips, discard the seeds and membranes.
- Pour the pineapple juice from the can into a jug. Mix in the white wine vinegar, soy sauce and brown sugar to the juice. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
- If using pineapple rings cut into bite sized chunks.
- Put the cornstarch in a small bowl and add a spoon of the pineapple liquid. Stir well and set to one side.
- Fry the onions, garlic and peppers in a frying pan in a little oil. When they’ve started to soften, add the pineapple juice mixture.
- Then add the cornstarch paste and cook some more stirring all the time. The sauce should quickly thicken to that characteristic takeout gloopiness.
- Add the pineapple chunks and chilli sauce and gently simmer until warmed through.
- This recipe is 8 Weight Watchers Smart Points
Brilliant! I just love all the colors in this recipe. Thanks for sharing.
Peppers always add that lovely splash of colour.
I’ve always wanted to try a “cleaner” Chinese style sweet and sour sauce. Yours looks great and must taste delicious. I love the addition of pineapples and can’t wait to give it a try soon. Pinned!
So nice to know exactly what is going in to your food.
This sauce sounds so delicious and such a great upgrade to just about anything!
So many different ways of enjoying it.
I love sweet and sour sauce, usually have it with chicken and rice. Great to find such an easy recipe.
Perfect with chicken.
Your sweet and sour sauce looks amazing. So nice to see such a natural coloured version, I’m not sure what my local takeaway puts in theirs but it almost looks day-glow!
It is nice to have natural ingredients.
Lisa | Garlic & Zest
I don’t think I’ve made sweet and sour in years — and I have no idea why because it used to be one of our go-tos. Love that your sweet and sour sauce is all natural and homemade.
So easy to make and so versatile.
Great recipe for a basic sauce. So many different uses and so easy to make. I much prefer fakeaway to takeaway these days.
It can be just as nice to make your own food at home.
I have a dirty confession, I would make this to dip chicken nuggets in. So good together.
I imagine this works rather well.
Love sweet and sour sauce. It’s great with veggies or with chicken. This looks so much better than any bought stuff. Yummy.
So easy to make and so versatile.
Really good to see a nice recipe for this sauce. I don’t like jarred types and much prefer to make my own without additives.
I much prefer making my own sauces.
Eden | Sweet Tea and Thyme
I LOVE homemade takeout recipes. It’s so great that you didn’t use any of those scary ingredients and everything is so wholesome and flavorful!
thank you. I find the colour of the commercial ones is so scary!
I gave up buying takeaways around January time, but still enjoy having a variety of fakeaways at home. So much nicer to make your own.
So good to have a much more natural and tasty homemade sauce than anything you’d buy from a shop or take-away.
Such a wonderful looking meal with all those colours and tasty ingredients. Much rather have this than anything shop bought.
Sweet and sour is a great go to sauce for something tasty and easy. Perfect with chicken and pork.