Is Ketchup A Sauce? Uses, Nutritional Benefits, & Substitutes

Whether with or without added preservatives, ketchup is a processed and preserved sauce made using tomatoes, sugar, vinegar, seasonings, and spices.

However, ketchup is generally used as a condiment and served cold due to its texture and flavor.

This article will explain what ketchup is, its nutritional benefits, and how it is best used. Let’s get started.

What is Sauce?

A sauce is any thick liquid used to add flavor and moisture to food while it is being cooked. You can get it with the main dish or on the side, but either way, it is freshly prepared.

Furthermore, you first need to know that while ketchup is a sauce, not all sauces are ketchup. And as a general rule, ketchup should not be cooked and is best served chilled.

On the other hand, sauces are used in the kitchen and are often served warm. However, it does not matter what kind of sauce you are talking about; the word “sauce” can be used interchangeably.

SEE: Best Domino’s Sauces You Should Try Out

How To Use Ketchup Sauce

Traditionally, ketchup is mostly used with burgers and fries. However, chefs around the world have come up with creative ways to use its sweet-and-tangy flavor. Here are some of the ways ketchup is used in recipes:

  • Glazes: Ketchup is now used to make sweet glazes for a tofu-mushroom salad. You must combine the ketchup with soy sauce, sesame oil, and sherry. Then you dress grilled salmon with it, red wine vinegar, curry powder, and honey mustard.
  • Barbeque Sauce: To make your barbeque sauce sweet and spicy, mix equal parts ketchup and peach jam with a dash of lemon juice to make it sticky and delicious.
  • Coleslaw: You can combine ketchup, apple cider vinegar, sugar, and spicy sauce by simply whisking the ingredients together.
  • Shrimp Cocktail: You also use ketchup to make shrimp cocktails.

SEE: Twin Peaks Drinks Menu: Shots, Cocktails, & Beers For All Tastes

Ketchup Substitutes

Here are some typical ketchup alternatives you can use if you find yourself out of ketchup and do not have time to make your own:

  1. Tomato Jam: Tomato jam can be used in place of ketchup. It has the same sweet and spicy tomato flavor as ketchup sauce.
  2. Salsa: This is also a good substitute for ketchup, depending on what you need it for. While it won’t be as sweet as ketchup, it is actually healthier and has that same tomato base as ketchup.
  3. Sriracha: It is a spicy sauce made from tomatoes. If you like spicy food, you can also use sriracha as a substitute for your ketchup sauce.
  4. Tomato Sauce: While the tomato sauce is not as thick as ketchup, it tastes very much the same. Hence, it is also a good substitute for ketchup.
  5. Barbecue Sauce: The truth is that ketchup is the base of many BBQ sauces. So, a good BBQ sauce can substitute ketchup if you do not mind the smoky flavor and darker color and taste.

SEE: Does BBQ Sauce Go Bad? Here’s How to Tell

Benefits of Ketchup Sauce

Here are some of the healthy benefits of ketchup:

1. It can improve your eyesight

In addition to having a high vitamin C and a low-fat content, ketchup is a rich source of vitamin A, which is essential for a healthy immune system and, most importantly, clear vision.

2. It promotes healthy eating

Despite its health benefits, ketchup is high in sugar and salt. Hence, ideal for a healthy diet.

3. It protects against heart disease

Tomatoes’ lycopene, the main component in ketchup, may help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

4. It combats infertility

Lycopene, a powerful red carotenoid pigment found in tomatoes, is reported to lower the risk of prostate cancer in men and fight infertility.


Can ketchup be refrigerated?

Yes, you can refrigerate and keep ketchup in an airtight container.

Is ketchup sauce real tomatoes?

No, but ketchup is prepared from tomatoes, sugar, vinegar, condiments, and spices.

Is ketchup sauce a smoothie ingredient?

No, ketchup is not a smoothie.

What meals can you eat with ketchup?

Ketchup goes well with meals like hamburgers, hotdogs, and French fries.

Does overeating ketchup have side effects?

Yes, it does. Some problems with consuming too much ketchup include acid reflux, heartburn, obesity, and insulin resistance.

SEE: Does Hot Sauce Go Bad? Read This Before You Open That Bottle


Ketchup is a traditional condiment that goes well with sandwiches, burgers, French fries, and other foods. So, if you like ketchup, you will be glad to know that it is high in lycopene because it is made from tomatoes.

Finally, to reap the most health benefits from ketchup, you should limit your consumption to no more than a few tablespoons at a time. Also, choose ketchup variants with low sugar and salt, and pair them with other healthy dishes.

I hope you found this article helpful. You can also check how to thicken spaghetti sauce to make It tastier.

Thank you for reading.