When it comes to taking out, nothing quite beats the taste of Chinese food, and people often wonder how the restaurants manage to get that unusual salty taste that makes the food taste so unique compared to when you make it at home.
This is because it likely contains MSG (monosodium glutamate), which is a common ingredient found in many Asian dishes, as it helps to enhance the taste drastically.
It’s why many Chinese dishes are able to provide that elusive Umami flavor that is so hard to replicate at home.
But what happens when you run out of your accent seasoning at home?
It’s an annoying scenario that can happen to anyone but don’t worry too much, as you can always check out our list of substitutes for accent seasoning that will help you out!
What Is Accent Seasoning?
Many people declare that accent seasoning is a form of magic, and whilst it isn’t actually anything special, the incredible effect it can have by turning your regular dishes into something so special will certainly feel like magic!
It’s great at helping to meld different flavors together, which makes them taste so much better when they reach your taste buds, so it’s a great way of ensuring that your food tastes as good as it looks.
Accent seasoning does contain MSG, which might put a lot of people off initially, but it’s not as bad as everyone makes it out to be.
It’s super common in a lot of food products, and even those who might be sensitive to it probably wouldn’t realize they’ve eaten it unless they were told.
Accent seasoning is especially prominent in a lot of Asian dishes, but the reality is that you can use it in any type of recipe if you’re looking for a way to enhance the flavor, but you might want to adjust the amount you add to a dish depending on the ingredients.
When it comes to adding it to a dish, we always recommend adding a small amount and taste testing before you add more, and you should always add it towards the end of the cooking process, as it means that the flavor will be more prominent!
So, whether you’re using your accent seasoning in a sweet or a savory dish, running out of it is never an ideal scenario, and if you’re looking for some easy substitutions that are going to help replace some of the incredible flavors that it helps bring to a dish, then keep reading onwards through our guide!
Substitutes For Accent Seasoning
So, whether you’ve run out of accent seasoning as you’ve started cooking, can’t find any in your local grocery stores, or you just want to avoid MSG-based products altogether, then here are some of the best substitutes for accent seasoning you can use in your cooking!
It might seem like an obvious choice, but salt is easily one of the best replacements for accent seasoning, no matter what dish you’re cooking.
Sea salt makes for a fine addition to any dish due to its coarse texture as well as its distinct flavor, but there are also some other salts that make for great accent seasonings too!
Table salt is another great option, and has a much milder flavor than sea salt does, so if you don’t want an accent seasoning alternative that is going to overpower your dish, table salt is a great one to choose, it also has a finer texture too.
Kosher salt is the other salt that people will recommend you replace accent seasoning with, especially thanks to its coarsely-grained texture and distinct saltiness.
Salt isn’t a like-for-like replacement for accent seasoning, however, and not all salts will taste the same in your cooking, so you should do some experimentation and taste testing before you ultimately decide on the salt and the amount that is going to work best in your dishes.
2. Bouillon Powder
Admittedly this substitute is slightly unconventional, but if you’re looking for a substitute for accent seasoning that provides something different to your cooking, then why not try some bouillon powder (see also ‘Chicken Bouillon Granules: Top 5 Substitutes‘)!
Typically, you would use bouillon powder in order to create a broth, but since there’s a good chance you’ll always have some lying around your pantry, it also makes a great stand-in for when you need an accent seasoning replacement too!
Composed of dried vegetables, herbs, and spices, this powder is sure to add a whole new level of flavor and taste when combined with your favorite dish.
Whether you decide to simply add it into your dishes as a powder, or by making up a small amount of broth is entirely up to you, and since it’s available in most grocery stores, you should have absolutely no issue in finding some to use in your cooking either.
Make sure you add your bouillon before your salt though, as it’s already quite salty!
3. Herbs And Spices Substitute
There are also a number of herbs and spices that could make for possible last minute accent seasoning replacements!
Garlic powder is a great way of trying to achieve that savory taste that accent seasoning provides, but you should use a lot less of it than you usually would accent seasoning.
Onion powder is another great option, it’s not as strong as garlic powder, but it will still work!
Dried basil and dried parsley are quite different from accent seasoning, but will still help to provide your dish with plenty of flavor.
Ultimately it’s all about experimenting to see what works best for you and your cooking!
4. Soy Sauce
Although it’s a liquid, soy sauce makes for an excellent accent seasoning replacement, this is because of its amino acid content, which helps to enhance the flavors of your food!
The complex flavors that soy sauce has is what makes it such a good addition to begin with, and if you’re looking for a way of trying to replicate that umami flavor, it’s definitely a good option to try out.
5. Creole Seasoning
Originating in Creole cuisine, Creole seasoning is a blend of different cultures’ cuisines, including African, Native American, and European.
It includes paprika, salt, cayenne pepper, granulated garlic, thyme, basil, black pepper, and oregano too.
Because of this it’s extremely versatile, so you can use it in a wide range of dishes, and although it’s not quite the same as accent seasoning, it will certainly help to improve the flavor of your favorite dish.
Whether you decide to buy some premade Creole seasoning, or make it at home but mixing and crushing all of the dried spices we mentioned together, then we’re sure it will make for a great last minute accent seasoning substitution!
In conclusion, trying to achieve the incredible taste and flavor that accent seasoning can add to a dish can be incredibly hard, and the reality is that none of the substitutions out there will truly be able to replicate that flavor perfectly, but these substitutions will work instead!