Basic Chinese Sauce for Stir Fry

Total Time
Prep 5 mins
Cook 2 mins

After an emergency involving an out of date sauce & relatives coming round for dinner, I spent the next few minutes investigating the contents of my mum's cupboards & then every chinese cookbook we had to find a sauce that I could make in a couple of minutes. In the end, I found that the following ingredients were common to most recipes. If I hadn't been feeding my dad as well, I would have added something from the following - garlic, ginger, spring onion or chili pepper. As it was, I added the sugar instead to richen the sauce. I used the medium-dry sherry that my mum "cooks" with - although the recommended alternative for rice wine appears to be dry sherry.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Mix cornflour and water together to form a smooth paste.
  2. Add everything else to the paste and mix well- it will take a little while for the sugar to dissolve.
  3. Add to meat and/or veg after stir-frying& heat until the sauce has thickened.
  4. Serve immediately with rice or noodles.
Most Helpful

Not sure if I did right Rice wine Dark soy scause Honey Rice wine And ground ginger Its all I had so fingers crossed

Joanne B. June 11, 2015

I didn't have any rice wine or sherry, or dark brown sugar, so I just used soy sauce, cornstarch, and some water, and added several cloves of garlic, powdered ginger and some red pepper flakes, and it came out great. Thanks!

aspiringteacher December 11, 2008

I really didn't have the amount of ingredients to do other Stir Fry sauces, so when I found this one I added a couple of drops of sesame oil and a clove of minced garlic. I did use water instead of stock but found that this was very tasty. Thanks for a posting this recipe.

Eldeevee November 06, 2008