Difference Between Sauce and Ketchup

Main Difference

The main difference between Sauce and Ketchup is that a Sauce refers to a condiment that can be made from a variety of ingredients and Ketchup is a condiment that is mainly made of tomatoes.

Sauce vs. Ketchup

Sauce and ketchup both are the condiments that add flavor, appeal, and moisture to another dish. The sauce is a semi-liquid or liquid substance that is served with food to add moistness and flavor. Ketchup is a tangy and sweet sauce that is made primarily from tomatoes and vinegar. The main difference between sauce and ketchup lies in their ingredients. The sauce is made from a variety of ingredients. Ketchup is mainly made of tomatoes. The word sauce derives from the Latin word salsas meaning “salted.” Food historians believe that sauce was made for the first time for many reasons like it served the purpose of a cooking medium. Initially, it was a meat tenderizer, and it enhanced the flavors. The word ketchup word is considered to be derived from the Chinese “koechiap” that means brine of fish. It originated in the seventeenth century. Originally, it was related to a sauce that contains fish brine, herbs, and spices as main ingredients. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century, this term was used for all the sauces with vinegar as one of the ingredients. Later, it got associated with tomatoes juice. Since then, the term got popularized for tomato sauce. The sauce can be eaten with both savory dishes and desserts. Ketchup is mainly eaten with fast food. The sauce is a universal word. Ketchup is a specific type of sauce. It can be a sauce, but not all sauces are ketchup. The sauce can be liquid or may contain some solid ingredients. Ketchup is much thicker and does not contain any solid elements.

Comparison Chart

SauceKetchup
A semi-liquid or liquid substance served with food to add moistness and flavorA tangy and sweet sauce made primarily from tomatoes and vinegar
Ingredients
Wide variety of ingredientsTomato and vinegar
Eaten with
Savory dishes and dessertsFast food
Viscosity
LessMore

What is Sauce?

The sauce is a semi-solid or liquid substance. It is always served with another food and acts as a condiment to the main dish. The word sauce derives from the Latin word salsas meaning “salted.” Food historians believe that sauce was made for the first time for many reasons like it served the purpose of a cooking medium. Initially, it was looked like a meat tenderizer, and it enhanced the flavors. It adds flavor, moisture, and visual appeal to food. Sauce may be a semi-solid or liquid that is served with certain dishes. In general, sauces are not consumed on their own. They add visual appeal, moisture, and taste to the dish. Most of the sauces need liquids in their ingredients, but few also contain lots of solids than liquid ingredients. Every culture has some indigenous recipes for sauces. Sauces have a big commercial market. Most of the people also make sauces at home, and most of the chefs have their recipes for making different kinds of sauces with many dishes. The sauces are of various viscosities. A sauce used as a cooking medium may have less viscosity than the sauce used for dressing. The sauce is an important food item in cuisines around the world. A sauce can be eaten with both desserts and savory dishes. Sauces are prepared by a variety of ingredients and processes. Sauces which are made for salads are called salad dressing and sauces made by deglazing a panned source.

Examples

  • Apple sauce
  • Tomato sauce
  • Béchamel sauce
  • Mayonnaise
  • Bread sauce

What is Ketchup?

Ketchup is a table sauce or condiment. Ketchup is mainly made from tomatoes and vinegar. The word ketchup word is considered to be derived from the Chinese “koechiap” that means brine of fish. It originated in the seventeenth century. Originally, the term ketchup was related to a sauce that contains mushrooms, eggs, oysters, walnuts, fish brine, herbs and spices as main ingredients. In the eighteenth and nineteenth century, ketchup term was used for all the sauces with vinegar as one of the ingredients. Later, it got associated with tomatoes juice. Since then, it typically refers to a sweet and spicy sauce that is made from tomatoes, vinegar and an assortment of spices and seasonings. The seasonings and spices of ketchup can vary according to different recipes. But the common ingredients include cloves, garlic, pepper, cinnamon, and onions. Ketchup is used as a relish with various food items that are served hot, i.e., chips, burgers, hot dogs, grilled meat, etc. Ketchup is served cold. It is used as a base for other salad dressings or sauces. The term ketchup is mainly used in Canadian English and American English. Although, the term tomato sauce is more famous in some other English-speaking countries, like India and South Africa. Ketchup is mainly used as a relish. It is generally served cold. One of the unique characteristics of ketchup is its viscosity. Thus, pouring it on a plate is sometimes a difficult task and also be fun at the same time.

Key Differences

  1. A sauce is a semi-liquid, or liquid, that is served with food to add moisture and flavor whereas ketchup is a table sauce and is refer to a sauce made of tomatoes in modern times.
  2. All sauces are not are ketchup on the flip side ketchup is a type of sauce.
  3. The sauce is made from a wide variety of ingredients while ketchup is mainly made of tomatoes and vinegar.
  4. Sauces can be ready-made like soy sauce or can be freshly prepared through cooking; on the other hand, ketchup is ready-made and is available in bottles in the market.
  5. The sauce can be eaten with both savory dishes and desserts conversely ketchup is mainly eaten with fast food.

Conclusion

Sauce and ketchup are the condiments that enhance the taste of food. They are similar to each other but are different in their preparation, ingredients, and taste.

Aimie Carlson

Aimie Carlson is an English language enthusiast who loves writing and has a master degree in English literature. Follow her on Twitter at @AimieCarlson

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