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Paleo Fish Sauce?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created August 22, 2011 at 10:08 PM

I'm trying to find a decent Paleo fish sauce. There's a brand called Red Boat Fish Sauce but it retails for $15 online + $10 shipping and handling...is there any Paleo substitutes out there? Or other less expensive brands? My Thai food needs it!

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 09, 2012
at 04:47 AM

Ok, thanks for your input Shari.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on February 09, 2012
at 03:31 AM

I have to say I never tasted any of them straight out of the bottle so i honestly don't see much difference in them. I definitely think you should try the Tra Change though just to say you did. Live a little Richard! :)

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 09, 2012
at 03:25 AM

Shari, how would you compare Tra Change to Golden Boy? I'm just about to finish my first bottle of Golden Boy and I thought it was quite good. The place I shop carries Tra Chang and I wanted to know if it was worth trying. Both of them are about 1.99 for a large bottle. I wish they carried Red Boat but they don't.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 29, 2011
at 01:14 AM

I don't think there are instructions on the bottle but I refrigerate mine since tamari and coconut aminos and the like are all supposed to be refrigerated after opening.

Medium avatar

(12379)

on August 29, 2011
at 12:54 AM

Hey Shari - i just recently found squid brand at an asian grocery store, but the bottle is completely in thai. Can you tell me what the storage recommendation is after opening? thanks!!

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on August 23, 2011
at 03:40 AM

Hey Alex - the below will be helpful :) You don't always have to use fish sauce in Asian dishes, even a small hit can add depth and complexity to food items that need that something extra. It's salty as hell and stinks beyond belief but is pretty much heaven in a bottle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish_sauce and also: http://thaifood.about.com/od/introtothaicooking/p/aboutfishsauce.htm

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on August 23, 2011
at 02:16 AM

It adds umami (a savory flavor, kind of a fermented kick) - but good fish sauce like Red Boat is particularly pungent/strong, so you only need trace amounts to enhance the overall flavor of a sauce. See the Everyday Paleo Thai No-Peanut sauce here: http://everydaypaleo.com/2011/06/30/everyday-paleo-thai-no-peanut-sauce/

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 23, 2011
at 12:41 AM

If it helps that pricing is for a bottle of 2. Still pricey though I know.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 23, 2011
at 12:40 AM

If you're looking at Amazon that's for a pack of 2.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on August 22, 2011
at 10:27 PM

Oh, man, Red Boat is the jam (err...sauce?). I offset the cost of mine by asking for it from my brother as a birthday gift. Free fish sauce for me, and he reaps the benefit of the foods that I prepare with it. :)

Medium avatar

(12379)

on August 22, 2011
at 10:18 PM

great question - i was going to splurge and buy the red boat sauce; but no shipping to canada :(

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5 Answers

2
91219405abedbfd400ce00dea242a00f

(1044)

on August 23, 2011
at 02:12 AM

Not to hijack the thread or anything, but can someone tell me what one actually does with fish sauce? I see it mentioned all the time, but not it's actual use. Is it used as a condiment? What kind of meals does it accompany?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on August 23, 2011
at 02:16 AM

It adds umami (a savory flavor, kind of a fermented kick) - but good fish sauce like Red Boat is particularly pungent/strong, so you only need trace amounts to enhance the overall flavor of a sauce. See the Everyday Paleo Thai No-Peanut sauce here: http://everydaypaleo.com/2011/06/30/everyday-paleo-thai-no-peanut-sauce/

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on August 23, 2011
at 03:40 AM

Hey Alex - the below will be helpful :) You don't always have to use fish sauce in Asian dishes, even a small hit can add depth and complexity to food items that need that something extra. It's salty as hell and stinks beyond belief but is pretty much heaven in a bottle. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish_sauce and also: http://thaifood.about.com/od/introtothaicooking/p/aboutfishsauce.htm

2
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on August 22, 2011
at 10:35 PM

I researched this pretty big and there aren't any others outside of Red Boat - all it is is anchovy and sea salt, all others that I was interested in had other junk added in. Literally tromped through most of the Asian groceries here in NY, including specialty stores, and no luck getting anything close.

I order it direct from Red Boat so I'm not sure who is charging you that price as a 2pk is about $12 and shipping was around $5 which breaks down to around $8.50 a bottle. You don't need a ton to season your food so I say go for it if you can.

Truly, it's such delicious funk - do it! :)

1
98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

on August 23, 2011
at 12:52 AM

Tra Chang, Squid and Golden Boy brands are paleo if you're o.k. with a little sugar. No hydrolyzed wheat so not gluten anyway. Just anchovies, water, salt, and sugar. I'd pick Tra Chang and Golden Boy over Squid.

Medium avatar

(12379)

on August 29, 2011
at 12:54 AM

Hey Shari - i just recently found squid brand at an asian grocery store, but the bottle is completely in thai. Can you tell me what the storage recommendation is after opening? thanks!!

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on August 29, 2011
at 01:14 AM

I don't think there are instructions on the bottle but I refrigerate mine since tamari and coconut aminos and the like are all supposed to be refrigerated after opening.

98bf2ca7f8778c79cd3f6c962011cfdc

(24286)

on February 09, 2012
at 03:31 AM

I have to say I never tasted any of them straight out of the bottle so i honestly don't see much difference in them. I definitely think you should try the Tra Change though just to say you did. Live a little Richard! :)

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 09, 2012
at 04:47 AM

Ok, thanks for your input Shari.

6714718e2245e5190017d643a7614157

on February 09, 2012
at 03:25 AM

Shari, how would you compare Tra Change to Golden Boy? I'm just about to finish my first bottle of Golden Boy and I thought it was quite good. The place I shop carries Tra Chang and I wanted to know if it was worth trying. Both of them are about 1.99 for a large bottle. I wish they carried Red Boat but they don't.

1
16e617676c5ac710e5235e0b773edc0b

on August 22, 2011
at 10:40 PM

I haven't made it yet but Cheeseslave put up an amazing looking recipe for fish sauce if you're interested in making your own: Homemade Thai Fish Sauce

Homemade Thai Fish Sauce

Makes about 2 cups Ingredients

Fish, small, including heads (1 1/2 pounds)

Sea salt (3 TBS) ??? where to buy sea salt

Filtered water (2 cups)

Garlic (2 cloves)

Bay leaves (2)

Peppercorns, whole (1 teaspoon)

Lemon rind, organic if possible (from 1/2 lemon)

Whey, or Caldwell???s vegetable starter mixed with water (2 TBS) ??? where to buy culture starters Equipment

Mason jar

Wooden pounder or meat hammer

Mesh strainer

Directions

  1. Cut up fish into small pieces and place in wide-mouth mason jar.
  2. Cut up the lemon rind into small pieces.
  3. Add sea salt and press down with a wooden pounder or meat hammer.
  4. Add remaining ingredients to jar and stir together.
  5. Add additional water to cover fish if needed ??? water should cover fish but be sure to leave at least an inch from the top of the jar.
  6. Cover and leave at room temperature for about 3 days.
  7. Transfer to refrigerator and let sit for several weeks.
  8. Strain liquid through a strainer (you may use cheesecloth if you like) and bottle the liquid (old soy sauce bottles are great for this). Discard the solids.
  9. Store fish sauce in the fridge. It will keep for several months.

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