The best yum yum sauce is more than just spicy mayo. It’s nuanced. It’s a delightfully creamy blend that balances the sweet with the salty and the spice. You can use it when you’re hosting hibachi night at home, dishing it out to your guests as you throw shrimp tails into their pockets and create an ill-advised onion volcano on your stovetop. But you can also just use it as a dip for fries or veggies, or slather it onto a burger bun. It’s a criminally underutilized sauce. So, consider this ranking your excuse to run out and buy the best store bought yum yum sauce to keep on hand at all times.
I tried eight different brands of yum yum sauce. I was looking for a creamy texture—this sauce should easily coat a fried shrimp without much drippage—as well as a mix of sweet, tangy, and savory flavors with just a hint of heat (unless it was labeled as spicy, then I wanted a real kick). I found four that I stand behind, including one light version. Unfortunately, I didn’t find a good sugar free yum yum sauce. The one I tried was very one note; it tasted extremely sweet. So, if you can’t do sugar, yum yum sauce just might not be the sauce for you.
Here’s the best yum yum sauce to buy that’ll actually make you say, “yum, yum.”
- Kroger Yum Yum Sauce
This is the best store bought yum yum sauce IF you can’t find our number one pick on the shelf. It’s not quite a one-to-one dupe, but it does come respectably close and it is cheaper. It’s very savory (it could use a bit more sweetness, in my opinion), it’s thick, and it’s creamy. It’d be really great as a dip for fries or, better yet, onion rings.
Related: Best Stir Fry Sauce
Credit: Merc / Ralphs
- Terry Ho’s Yum Yum Sauce the Original Light
This light version of the (spoiler alert) best yum yum sauce we tasted is more tart and tangy than its full-cal counterpart, but it’s still very good. It almost has a relish-like taste—somewhat fruity and punchier. And it’s not quite as creamy but comes in at 90 calories per serving versus 150, which is a sizable difference if you’re counting calories. Add a squirt of sriracha to turn it into a spicy-sweet dipping sauce for grilled chicken or a drizzle for grilled veggies.
Related: Best Frozen Fried Shrimp
Credit: Merc / Walmart
- Kogi Boom Boom Sauce
First of all, I love that this creamy boom boom sauce (essentially a spicy yum yum sauce) comes in a squirt bottle. Secondly, I appreciate that it has really great heat and a bit of a funky, earthy undertone. It’s made with a variety of peppers, including chili de arbol, red bell pepper, and cayenne pepper. Kogi, founded by celebrated chef Roy Choi, is a mobile chain of food trucks that specializes in Korean tacos, and this is certainly the best yum yum sauce to squirt onto a bulgogi burrito.
Related: Best Burger Sauce
Credit: Merc / Walmart
- Terry Ho’s Yum Yum Sauce the Original
It’s only fitting that Terry Ho’s is the best yum yum sauce brand you can buy; Terry invented yum yum sauce for his chain of Hibachi Express restaurants. It became so popular that he started bottling it in 2012. It’s the perfect amount of sweet and tangy (almost like a deviled egg) and it is so thick and creamy. It coats shrimp like a dream. But it also has a bit of a Thousand Island dressing quality, so you can and should also use it on a burger or to dress a salad. Terry, your yum yum sauce remains the yummiest.
Related: Two-Ingredient Fry Dipping Sauces
Credit: Merc / Target
Best Store Brand
Best of the Best
Other yum yum sauce brands we tried: G Hughes Sugar Free Yum Yum, Bibibop Asian Grill Yum Yum, La Choy Yum Yum Sauce, Kroger Spicy Yum Yum Sauce