You’ve probably heard of horseradish. Most people are familiar with the condiment that is made from horseradish root.
The root itself is brown in color with a firm texture. Vendors sell horseradish in various forms, including dried, powdered, fresh roots, or ready-made condiments.
You can get horseradish roots at the produce section of any grocery store. Pre-made horseradish is usually stocked in the condiment section while dried or powdered horseradish can be found in the spice aisle.
You may need to substitute horseradish with something else for various reasons. Maybe someone in your family is allergic to it, or you simply don’t have any in stock.
Whatever the reason, you are in luck because we will discuss several suitable horseradish substitutes in detail.
Some of the horseradish substitutes we will discuss include; wasabi, fresh ginger, spicy brown mustard, black radish, daikon, horseradish sauce, parsnip, and sauerkraut. Additionally, we will share a simple recipe for homemade horseradish sauce.
Before discussing these substitutes, let’s first talk about horseradish. You can’t substitute an ingredient if you don’t know what it is or what it tastes like, right?
We will discuss the basic things you need to know about horseradish including the flavor, uses, and proper storage. Let’s dive in.
I would describe the taste of horseradish as spicy and pungent. Additionally, it has a somewhat overwhelming peppery taste.
Unlike other peppers whose effect is felt on the tongue, horseradish’s effect is felt on the sinuses. Most people have claimed that horseradish burns their sinuses.
Additionally, it can bring tears to year’s eyes when eaten on its own.
To avoid this, you can mix it with a little bit of vinegar.
Here is a few common horseradish uses.
- As a condiment
In the United Kingdom (UK), horseradish is popularly used as a condiment with roast beef. If you want to make your condiment at home, peel and grate the root.
Be sure to add some vinegar immediately after grating to balance out the horseradish spicy flavor.
- In sauces
You can use horseradish to make a tasty sauce. It can either have a creamy base or a vinegar base.
- In salads
If you love your salads spicy, you can add a little bit of horseradish for a spicy flavor.
- As a margarita ingredient
Horseradish can make your margarita even spicier. I’ve tried horseradish margaritas a few times and I’ve never been disappointed.
- In sandwiches
Spicy sandwiches will always be a winner. Add some horseradish to your sandwiches for an enhanced flavor.
- In stews and soups.
Horseradish enhances the flavor of soups and stews. Be careful not to use too much as its intense flavor can easily overwhelm that of the stew or soup.
How to store horseradish
You should store horseradish roots in your refrigerator’s crisper drawer.
If you make a horseradish condiment at home or buy a ready-made one from the store, keep it refrigerated.
Dried and powdered horseradish in an airtight container, then store the container in a cool, dry, place.
The Horseradish substitutes
Here are a few ingredients you can use as alternatives to horseradish.5426
- Wasabi paste
Wasabi, also popularly known as Japanese horseradish, is arguably the best horseradish substitute. Wasabi and horseradish belong to the same family hence the similarity in taste.
Most grocery stores sell wasabi that is mixed with green food coloring. Therefore, it may not be an ideal choice if you want to maintain a neutral color in your dish. Other than that, the flavor of wasabi is not as intense as that of horseradish.
Only use this substitute in recipes where the green color won’t look out of place.
If you are making a cream sauce to serve with roast beef, consider using one of the other substitutes. Wasabi would look out of place in cream sauce.
To be safe, substitute horseradish with wasabi paste in equal amounts. If the dish is not as spicy as you’d want it to be, add a little more, but be sure not to use too much because it can pack a punch.
Note that this substitute is very closely related to horseradish. Therefore, it may not be an ideal choice if you are looking for an alternative due to allergy issues, you may have to consider one of the other options.
- Fresh ginger
When used correctly, fresh ginger can be a good alternative to horseradish. Ginger has a lemony flavor that slowly warms up the tongue. However, it is not as peppery as horseradish.
To imitate the peppery flavor that horseradish offers, you may have to use more ginger than a recipe calls for.
Just be careful not to use too much ginger as the flavor can easily become unpleasant.
Even if you slightly increase the amount of ginger, it won’t give you the same heat that horseradish does. However, it is still a decent substitute.
- Spicy brown mustard
This is arguably one of the most suitable horseradish substitutes. Brown mustard and horseradish belong to the same family.
The many seeds present in brown mustard give it an intense peppery flavor that is very similar to that of horseradish.
If you are looking for a substitute that won’t alter the color of your dish, you should use spicy brown mustard. It won’t give you the off-white color that horseradish does, but it comes pretty close.
Substitute horseradish with spicy brown mustard in equal quantities.
- Black radish
Black radish is an ideal horseradish substitute. It is a radish variety that is black in color. Compared to red radishes, the black ones are much bigger. In terms of appearance, black radishes are very similar to beetroot.
Black radish flesh is white in color. It is also crispy with a hot spicy flavor. Therefore, it can substitute horseradish in several applications.
Note that most of the spicy flavor is on the black radish skin. For the best results, you should grate the whole black radish before adding it to your dish.
The only downside with this substitute is that its color is completely different from that of horseradish. Therefore, it alters the appearance of your dish.
Substitute horseradish with black radish in equal amounts.
Since daikon is a white radish, you can easily use it as an alternative in recipes that call for horseradish.
Daikon has a mild tangy flavor. Compared to other radishes, it is less peppery. It is usually served raw. Most people use it as an appetizer.
Note that the texture of daikon is completely different from that of horseradish. Therefore, it may not work well in all recipes that call for horseradish.
I recommend using this substitute in stews and soups for the best results.
- Horseradish sauce
You can buy horseradish sauce at any grocery store near you. As its name suggests, horseradish is the main ingredient.
However, the flavor is not as intense as that of horseradish itself.
To enhance the flavor of horseradish sauce, combine it with sour cream or cream before adding it to your dishes.
Parsnip is an ingredient popularly used in soups and chicken broth. You can use this root vegetable as a horseradish substitute in various applications.
Note that parsnip has a distinctive sweet flavor. In terms of appearance, parsnips resemble carrots.
The only major difference is the color. Despite the resemblance, carrots and parsnips belong to different families.
Use parsnip the same way you would use horseradish in your recipe.
Sauerkraut is a product derived from natural lactic acid that has been extracted from salted shredded cabbage.
Normally, you trim the cabbage heads to get rid of the green broken leaves before shredding them.
Sauerkraut is usually sour. Therefore, you can use it as a horseradish substitute in savory dishes including meats, sausages, and stock.
How to make homemade horseradish sauce
Making homemade horseradish sauce is very simple, and you only need a few basic ingredients.
Follow these instructions to make the best horseradish sauce you have ever taste.
You will need
- 1 horseradish root (peeled)
- 1 teaspoon of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- ½ tablespoon of cider vinegar
- Chop the peeled horseradish root into small pieces and place in a bowl.
- In the same bowl, add your sugar, salt, and cider vinegar.
- Pour the mixture into a food processor and blend for 1 minute or until the mixture has a saucy consistency. At this point, your horseradish sauce is ready.
- Pour your homemade horseradish into an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
If you need to replace horseradish with another ingredient, you can use any of the substitutes we have discussed above.
Most of them are readily available in grocery stores and supermarkets. My favorite substitutes are wasabi, spicy brown mustard, fresh ginger, and black radish. They have similar flavors, but they differ in appearance.
While deciding on the substitute, you should consider the color, texture, and flavor profile.
Use the substitutes above the next time you need to replace horseradish in a recipe and let me know how your dish turns out.