7 Best Substitute For Steak Sauce

Steak Sauce Substitute

A sumptuous steak dinner is a time-honored tradition for many, an epitome of culinary indulgence. At the heart of this gastronomic experience is not just the quality of the steak itself, but also the complementary accompaniment – the steak sauce. This condiment, with its tangy, savory, and slightly sweet flavor profile, enhances the meat’s natural flavors, adding depth and complexity that can transform a good steak into a great one. Yet, the world of steak sauces extends beyond the conventional bottled varieties, opening up a plethora of delectable possibilities.

This guide presents a selection of the best substitutes for traditional steak sauce. These alternatives have been handpicked for their ability to enhance and elevate the flavors of your steak, while offering a unique and diverse taste experience. The chosen substitutes range from the rich and robust to the tangy and vibrant, catering to different palates and preferences. Whether you’re a seasoned steak connoisseur seeking to diversify your culinary exploits, or you’re facing dietary restrictions that demand innovative solutions, these steak sauce substitutes stand ready to redefine your steak dining experience. Each substitute brings its unique charm to the table, promising a flavor journey that respects the steak’s inherent deliciousness while introducing novel taste dimensions.

What is Steak Sauce?

Before delving into the substitutes, it’s important to understand what constitutes a typical steak sauce. Steak sauce is a condiment, usually brown or orange in color, often served with beef dishes, particularly steaks. It is known for its tangy, slightly sweet flavor profile, with notes of vinegar, tomatoes, spices, and sometimes raisins or anchovies. A well-known example is A1 steak sauce, but variations exist worldwide, including HP sauce in the UK and salsa golf in Argentina.

At A Glance: Saucy Solutions for Steak

  1. Red Wine Reduction
  2. Chimichurri
  3. Bearnaise Sauce
  4. Homemade BBQ Sauce
  5. Salsa Verde
  6. Mushroom Gravy
  7. Herb Butter

Best Substitutes For Steak Sauce

Here’s a deep-dive into the world of steak sauce substitutes. Each of these alternatives brings its unique flavor profile to the table, but they all have one thing in common: their ability to make a steak sing. Let’s start with a classic, the Red Wine Reduction.

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Red Wine Reduction

A Red Wine Reduction is a versatile sauce that boasts a rich and robust flavor, making it a fantastic alternative to steak sauce. It’s a simple yet decadent sauce, prepared by reducing red wine with aromatics until it reaches a syrup-like consistency.

The process starts with sautéing onions and garlic until they’re fragrant. Red wine and a touch of balsamic vinegar are then added, providing the sauce’s characteristic depth and acidity. As the sauce simmers, the wine’s alcohol content evaporates, leaving behind a concentrated flavor that pairs exquisitely with steak. A touch of brown sugar can also be added to counterbalance the acidity and deepen the flavor.

The beauty of this sauce lies in its simplicity and adaptability. Depending on the red wine you choose, you can drastically alter the sauce’s flavor, allowing you to personalize it to your liking. A hearty Cabernet Sauvignon imparts a deep, rich flavor, while a lighter Pinot Noir creates a smoother, subtler sauce.


Chimichurri, a staple of Argentinean cuisine, is a vibrant and tangy sauce that’s an excellent alternative to traditional steak sauce. It’s a raw, herbal sauce, typically made with finely chopped parsley, minced garlic, vinegar, and oil.

This sauce is all about freshness. The parsley brings a grassy brightness, while the garlic adds a robust, earthy complexity. The vinegar and oil marry these flavors together, resulting in a sauce that’s zesty, bold, and brimming with life. Chimichurri doesn’t require any cooking, making it a quick and easy sauce to whip up when you’re short on time.

Its bright and tangy flavor profile makes chimichurri an excellent accompaniment to rich, fatty cuts of steak. It acts as a counterbalance, cutting through the steak’s richness with its herbaceous acidity. So the next time you’re grilling up a ribeye, consider reaching for chimichurri instead of your standard steak sauce.

Bearnaise Sauce

Bearnaise sauce is a classic French sauce made from emulsified butter and egg yolks flavored with tarragon and vinegar. It’s silky, creamy, and rich, with a delightful hint of anise from the tarragon.

Creating a Bearnaise sauce is a delicate process. The vinegar, pepper, shallots, and tarragon are reduced together first. Egg yolks are then whisked in, followed by clarified butter. The result is a smooth, glossy sauce that is luxurious in every sense of the word.

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Bearnaise sauce is a perfect companion to lean cuts of steak, like filet mignon. Its rich and creamy texture adds a decadent touch to the steak, while the anise notes from the tarragon give it a unique flavor twist. It’s a more indulgent alternative to steak sauce, but one that is worth the extra effort.

Homemade BBQ Sauce

A tangy and sweet homemade BBQ sauce is a versatile substitute for steak sauce. The fundamental ingredients include tomato ketchup, vinegar, brown sugar, and Worcestershire sauce, but from there, you can customize to your heart’s content.

The process of making a homemade BBQ sauce involves simmering all the ingredients until they meld together into a thick, flavorful sauce. The ketchup provides the base, the vinegar gives the tang, and the brown sugar adds sweetness. The Worcestershire sauce contributes umami and depth, rounding out the flavor profile.

BBQ sauce works particularly well with grilled or smoked steak, providing a sweet and tangy contrast to the smoky, charred flavor. Plus, the act of brushing the sauce onto the steak as it cooks lends an extra layer of caramelization that is truly irresistible.

Salsa Verde

Salsa Verde, or “green sauce,” is a zingy, vibrant sauce that’s packed with fresh flavors. Made primarily from green herbs, capers, and mustard, this Italian classic offers a moreish tang that’s a great complement to steak.

The beauty of Salsa Verde lies in its balance of flavors. The herbs provide a fresh, grassy note; the capers offer a salty tang, and the mustard gives a gentle heat. All these elements come together to form a sauce that’s greater than the sum of its parts.

Salsa Verde pairs particularly well with grilled steaks, its bright and tangy flavor profile cutting through the charred, smoky taste of the meat. It’s also very easy to make, requiring only a good chopping board and a sharp knife, making it an excellent last-minute alternative to steak sauce.

Mushroom Gravy

Mushroom gravy is a hearty and comforting sauce that serves as a fantastic alternative to steak sauce. It’s a savory, earthy gravy made by simmering mushrooms, beef broth, and a splash of red wine.

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Making mushroom gravy involves sautéing the mushrooms until they’re golden and caramelized. Flour is then added to create a roux, which gives the gravy its thickness. Beef broth and red wine are then added, and the gravy is simmered until it reaches the desired consistency.

The deep, earthy flavor of the mushrooms, combined with the savory beef broth and the robust red wine, creates a sauce that’s rich and full-bodied. This hearty gravy is a perfect match for robust cuts of steak, making every bite a warm, comforting delight.

Herb Butter

Herb butter, or compound butter, is an indulgent yet straightforward alternative to steak sauce. It’s made by combining softened butter with herbs and seasonings, then chilling it until firm.

Herb butter can be tailored to your personal tastes, but a classic combination includes parsley, garlic, and a squeeze of lemon juice. The butter carries the flavors of the herbs and spices, melting over the hot steak to create a mouthwateringly rich and buttery sauce.

This is an ideal choice for purists who want to savor the flavor of the steak itself. The herb butter provides a simple, but flavorful, backdrop that lets the steak shine. Plus, its melt-in-your-mouth texture adds a luxurious touch that takes your steak to the next level.

Substitutes for Steak Sauce: Nutritional Profile

SauceGluten (g)CaloriesFat (g)Carbs (g)Fiber (g)Protein (g)
Red Wine Reduction0700200
Bearnaise Sauce026028102
Homemade BBQ Sauce07001811
Salsa Verde0807511
Mushroom Gravy4703713
Herb Butter010011000


In the realm of steak sauces, there’s an exciting world beyond the traditional bottled varieties. Whether you’re seeking an alternative due to dietary restrictions, or simply looking to experiment with new flavors, there’s a substitute out there that’s sure to delight your palate. From the robust Red Wine Reduction to the vibrant Chimichurri, the indulgent Bearnaise Sauce to the tangy Homemade BBQ Sauce, and the zingy Salsa Verde to the hearty Mushroom Gravy or the luxurious Herb Butter, these substitutes not only hold their own against traditional steak sauce but can bring a unique twist to your steak dishes. So step out of your comfort zone, embrace the unexpected, and allow your taste buds to embark on a culinary adventure.

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