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Seafood cocktail sauce without high fructose syrup in it?

Either locally or nationally. All of the ones at local stores seem to have this ingredient.

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  1. Does the HFCS in Ketchup count? If not, make your own: Ketchup, Heinz or Homade Chili sauce, horseradish, lemon juice, tobasco.


    1. Buying cocktail sauce is like buying croutons.

      1/4 cup finely grated raw horseradish
      2 teaspoons dark brown sugar
      1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
      3/4 cup ketchup

      In a small bowl combine horseradish, brown sugar, lemon juice and ketchup. Mix well. Chill in refrigerator.

      5 Replies
      1. re: grampart

        Ditto that, and you can avoid HFCS in the ketchup using one of the organic ones. Even Heinz makes one now without HFCS which I've seen at most stores locally! My only suggestion to the recipe is leave out the brown sugar, as the ketchup is usually sweet enough for my tastes as is.

        1. re: Science Chick

          Yes, the Heinz non-HCFS ketchup is quite good. That's all we buy. (and I make cocktail sauce from it with horseradish, lemon juice, worcestershire and a little tabasco)

          1. re: MrsCheese

            Mrs. Cheese, you stole my recipe exactly ;)

            1. re: Science Chick

              Well, I'm a fellow science chick. ;-)

        2. re: grampart

          i agree

          2 cups ketchup
          2 cups chili sauce
          1 cup horse radish
          juice from 1 large lemon
          6 hits of tabasco

        3. I agree with other posters that making it yourself is easiest (and best). However, if you aren't the DIY-type (or you like "buying croutons"), Trinity Hill Farms, which is sold online, does offer all natural cocktail sauces - no corn syrup.

          1. If you have a Trader Joe's near you, their cocktail sauce does not have HFCS. I went through the same problem with relish and TJs came to the rescue.

            1 Reply
            1. S&F, or Schlotterbeck and Foss, made in Portland, Maine, sells one at Whole Foods, in the seafood department that is not only HFCS free, but horseradish is the first ingredient!
              $2.99 a bottle, too...

              1. I wasn't aware that TJ's had what the OP was asking for. That's great news and I'll have to try it.
                But, since we have gotten on the make-it-yourself line, Alton Brown has a good recipe that has worked well, in addition to his brine-and-broil-shrimp I'm not sure if the chili sauce has HFCS.


                1 Reply
                1. re: powerfulpierre

                  Stir sambal oelek to taste into one of the non-HFCS ketchups (I like Simply Heinz) and you have a tasty approximation of chili sauce. I second AB's cocktail sauce recipe.

                2. From your fellow Bostonians at America's Test Kitchen:

                  1 cup ketchup
                  2 1/2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
                  1/4 teaspoon table salt
                  1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
                  1 teaspoon ancho chili powder or other mild chili powder
                  pinch cayenne pepper
                  1 tablespoon lemon juice from 1 small lemon

                  Mr Taster

                  1. The reason they all have it is because it is chemically equivalent to table sugar (sucrose), only cheaper. If you make your own using ketchup with sugar instead of HFCS, or add the sugar yourself, it's the same, for equal weights.

                    10 Replies
                    1. re: GH1618

                      For the record, HFCS it isn't chemically equivalent to table sugar. Sucrose is a disaccharaide of glucose and fructose, whereas HFCS is, by definition, mostly fructose. So there is a bit more energy involved in breaking down sucrose into its glucose and fructose monosaccharides, and their availability and metabolic fates differ. But, yes, it is used because it is cheaper.

                      1. re: Science Chick

                        You are mistaken. While sucrose is exactly 50-50 glucose to fructose, HFCS is approximately 50% fructose. It could be a little more or less, but it's close, which is why it substitutes for table sugar. Sucrose breaks in two in the stomach, after which the glucose and fructose molecules are identical.

                        "High" fructose corn syrup means that the fructose content is high compared to ordinary corn syrup, which is not particularly sweet.

                        All this is explained in detail by Dr. Lustig in his well-known lecture: "Sugar — The Bitter Truth."

                        1. re: GH1618

                          Thanks for the clarification.....I was mistaken in thinking the fructose/glucose ratio was signficantly higher.....

                      2. re: GH1618

                        For me, the thing with HFCS in cocktail sauce is not that it's bad for you, as much as it makes the sauce freeze up in a gelatinious disgusting way, that it is almost impossible to dip something in it, after being refrigerated. It took me awhile to figure that one out!

                        1. re: coll

                          That could be. HFCS and sugar differ in structure before being eaten, so would act a little different. But if you can't find a cocktail sauce with the identical fornula except for sugar instead of HFCS, how do you know that's what causes it?

                          1. re: GH1618

                            Because I make my own, and when Heinz changed to HFCS that's when I started having problems. I've been serving shrimp cocktail since the 1960s so I have a little background here.

                            1. re: coll

                              When you refer to Heinz do you mean ketchup? If that's the case, then the HFCS is replacing sugar. It's the corn syrup all right, but whether it is "high fructose" or not wouldn't matter. Plain corn syrup (mostly glucose) would have the same effect, but then it wouldn't be as sweet.

                              1. re: GH1618

                                I use Heinz Organic which is regular sugar.

                                1. re: GH1618

                                  Heinz organic uses cane sugar, not HFCS. While all excess sugar in the diet is unhealthy, there really is a difference in consuming the sugars as mono- rather than discaccharides in terms of potential health risks

                                  I, for one, am glad that so many ketchups are now available without HFCS, and that I can get them at most stores now, including Shaw's, S&S, etc, without having to make a special trip to WF.

                                  1. re: Science Chick

                                    That's an interesting report, but it raises some questions, as do all studies, and calls for further work.

                                    As far as I am concerned, anything with fructose, whether HFCS, table sugar, or "cane juice" is bad, even if there are some demonstrable differences when fed to rats.

                        2. I prefer to make my own because I like it extra zippy but these chains offer HFCS free ones:

                          Trader Joes
                          Whole foods
                          Stop and Shop (in house prepared at seafood counter)
                          Hannafords (wild harvest section)

                          1. I'm looking at the ingredients of my Crosse & Blackwell seafood cocktaul sauce. The principal ingredients are: corn syrup, water, tomato paste, and distilled vinegar. This is the base, which determines its mechanical properties. The remaining ingredients are flavorings. Corn syrup is almost entirely glucose, and the viscosity of corn syrup increases as temperature decreases, so one would expect the sauce to thicken when refrigerated.

                            C&B does contain HFCS, but only because it contains Worcestershire sauce. Worstershire sauce, at least the Lea & Perrons that I use, sometimes contains HFCS and sometimes sugar, so it is possible that C&B cocktail sauce sometimes varies in a similar way. In any case, there can't be much HFCS in it from the Worcestershire, because the cocktail sauce is not dominated by the Worcestershire. It's just the corn syrup that causes the thickening when chilled.

                            I think cocktail sauce is meant to be used at room temperature. That's the way I use it, in any case.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: GH1618

                              It can be better at room temp, and not so obvious, but never like it is without it at all. Especially once it is refrigerated at any point, never really recovers, it took me a bit of detective work to finally figure this out.

                              If you are using premade jarred sauce, I would think it comes from the refrigerated section of the grocery? I know Gold's does. I used to use Gold's in a pinch but gave up on it a few years ago. Now I just make my own with organic Heinz.

                            2. Since folks are sharing recipes I will chime in that I like 'chup, horseradish, and lime.

                              1. Stop & Shop, at least the one in Arlington, has Gold's cocktail sauce in the kosher foods section, not with the other cocktail sauces. Maybe other supermarkets do, too, if you look there? I haven't tried Gold's, but it does have sugar instead of corn syrup.