The difference between tamari and gluten free soy sauce is subtle, they are in fact both made from soybeans. Without lining the two up next to each other to do a taste test you might not initially spot the difference but below we have listed some basic variations.

Production process

Gluten free soy sauce is made by mixing a paste of soybeans, rice (normal soy sauce is made using roasted wheat) and sea salt with mould cultures and yeast, then keeping that mixture at a steady temperature. After it has brewed the liquid is strained and pasturised to remove any nasties.

Tamari is made using a similar process but without rice. Historically tamari was captured as the liquid that runs off miso as it matures but is now made as a product on in its own right.


  • Gluten free soy sauce has a rich, salty flavour.
  • Tamari has a nutty and more complex flavour.


Both can be used to marinate meat or make dipping sauces and dressings but tamari stands up as a seasoning in dishes that need to be cooked for longer such a stews and soups.