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A jar of tamarind paste with a spoon scooping out some paste, surrounded by fresh tamarind pods in the background.
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5 from 3 votes

Tamarind Paste Substitute with Prune and Balsamic Vinegar

Enhance your cooking with my homemade tamarind paste substitute, a balanced mix of sweet and tangy flavors that can transform any dish.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Course: Dressing, Sauces
Cuisine: Asian, Indian
Servings: 1
Calories: 489kcal
Author: Elle John


  • 1 cup prunes
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup water for soaking
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar Optional for added sweetness



  • Place the prunes in a bowl and cover them with ½ cup of warm water. Let them soak for about 30 minutes, or until they become soft and plump.


  • Drain the prunes and transfer them to a blender. Add the balsamic vinegar to the blender. If you prefer a sweeter taste, add 1-2 teaspoons of brown sugar.


  • Blend the mixture on high speed until you achieve a smooth, paste-like consistency. If the mixture is too thick, you can add a little more vinegar or water to thin it out.


  • Taste the mixture and adjust the sweetness or acidity as needed. If it's too tart, add a bit more brown sugar. If it's too sweet, add a bit more vinegar.


  • Transfer the substitute to an airtight container. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.


  • For a smoother texture, ensure the prunes are thoroughly soaked and softened before blending.
  • The quality of balsamic vinegar matters. Use a good quality vinegar for a better flavor profile.
  • This substitute has a bold flavor, so start with a small amount and adjust according to your taste preferences.
  • Serving Suggestions: Try using this substitute in a marinade for grilled meats or as a tangy addition to your favorite stir-fry. It's also great in slow-cooked dishes where its flavors can meld and develop over time.


Calories: 489kcal | Carbohydrates: 126g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 25mg | Potassium: 1350mg | Fiber: 12g | Sugar: 80g | Vitamin A: 1359IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 2mg