Yum yum sauce is my favorite condiment for Asian style protein bowls, but traditional yum yum sauce is made with calorie-rich mayo and ketchup. That’s why I use this low calorie yum yum sauce instead. It’s made without any mayo and swaps ketchup for sriracha for an extra kick to its amazing sweet, tangy, savory flavor profile.
A two-tablespoon serving of this light yum yum sauce has 35 calories, 2 grams of protein, 5 grams of carbs, and 1 gram of fat. Compare that to a popular option on shelves with 150 calories, 0 grams of protein, 5 grams of carbs, and 17 grams of fat in the same serving size.
You’ll also recognize every ingredient that goes into this sauce. No funny business!
Low Calorie Yum Yum Sauce Ingredients
Now, let’s take a look at everything you’ll need and some substitutes.
- Fat Free Greek Yogurt – When combined with vinegar, a little dijon mustard, and white pepper, nonfat yogurt makes a very solid mayo replacement. I’m sure you can use a non-dairy yogurt for a vegan yum yum sauce. And for a protein boost, you might try blended cottage cheese like in my high protein queso.
- Sriracha – I tested sugar free and low calorie ketchup options but ultimately decided the unique, spicier flavors of sriracha really elevated the sauce. Chili garlic or another chili paste should work as well, but I’ve not tested them. Add slowly to avoid adding too much spice. And if you’re using a chunky chili sauce, use a food processor for a smooth sauce.
- Honey – Without the sweetness of ketchup, honey balances out the tangy yogurt and sour vinegar flavors. You can try calorie-free liquid sweeteners to make a sugar free yum yum sauce or swap honey for something like the maple syrup in my Japanese BBQ sauce.
- Rice Vinegar – You can probably get away with other types of vinegar like apple cider or white wine.
- Dijon Mustard – I love using coarse whole grain mustard but for a sauce like this, you want it to be as smooth as possible.
- Toasted Sesame Oil – A couple teaspoons of oil works wonders to emulsify the sauce, but sesame oil in particular packs a serious flavor punch. I tested this yum yum sauce with olive oil instead and seriously preferred the toasted sesame oil version.
- Garlic Powder, Kosher Salt, and White Pepper – Always salt to taste. And in this case, you may want to season to taste with other spices if you love a strong garlic flavor or want to add a bit of onion powder or ginger. It’s not classic yum yum, but you’re the one eating it!
In past recipes like my teriyaki beef bowls, I’ve recommended making a quick yum yum sauce with light mayo. That’s always a decent option. And you may even experiment with mixing light mayo and Greek yogurt for a higher volume sauce that still has a bit of the hard-to-replicate mayo flavor.
And with any spicy recipe, I always like to mention that adding sweetness or acidity are both great ways to balance heat after the fact. If your yum yum sauce is too spicy, try adding a bit more honey, vinegar, or both.
What to Serve with Yum Yum Sauce
With origins in Japanese American hibachi restaurants, yum yum sauce goes great with proteins, vegetables, and just about anything. It pairs particularly well with salty, umami flavors in Asian inspired protein bowls like my teriyaki bison fried rice or turkey stir fry and vegetables like air fried honey soy brussels sprouts or a broccoli and mushroom stir fry.
For a few more unconventional ideas, you could combine this sauce with a protein like ground chicken and serve as a dip with baked wonton chips or drizzle it over Tokyo street fries (use homemade baked fries to keep it healthy) or a sushi bake.
Honestly, you can’t go wrong with yum yum sauce. I try to always keep some in the refrigerator and have fun experimenting with new pairings like on pizza (great idea) and nachos (not so great).
I would love to hear how you end up serving this healthy yum yum sauce and your thoughts on the recipe. Let me know in a recipe review or comment below. I hope you enjoy it!
- 1 cup (227g) Nonfat Greek Yogurt
- 1/3 cup (80g) Sriracha
- 1/4 cup (60g) Rice Vinegar
- 3 Tablespoons (63g) Honey
- 1 Tablespoon (15g) Dijon Mustard
- 2 teaspoons (10g) Toasted Sesame Oil
- 1 teaspoon Granulated Garlic or Garlic Powder
- 1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/4 teaspoon White Pepper (optional)
- Whisk everything together in a bowl. You can use a food processor or immersion blender for an ultra smooth sauce.
- Serve when ready or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Stir well before serving.
For a vegan yum yum sauce, you can use a plant-based yogurt or blend of non-dairy mayo and vegan yogurt. You may also want to use a bee-free honey substitute.
You can use ketchup or a reduced sugar ketchup instead of sriracha for a mild yum yum sauce to please the spice sensitive.
For a sugar free yum yum sauce, substitute the honey for a calorie-free liquid sweetener or granulated alternative sweetener dissolved in water.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 15 Serving Size: 2 Tablespoons (30g)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 35Total Fat: 1gSodium: 240mgCarbohydrates: 5gSugar: 4gProtein: 2g