Just to begin with a simple definition, Liquid smoke is actually a highly concentrated seasoning that is commonly used to impart a smoky flavor to fish, meat or even to vegetarian mock meat recopies. In short, it is a water-soluble liquid used for flavoring and its colors range from yellow to red. Liquid smoke is not a chemical or synthetic flavor but genuine liquefied wood smoke. Actually, it is used as an alternative for cooking with wood smoke. It is generally manufactured by condensing the smoke from wood. It is used to enhance the appealing flavor and aroma of real smokehouse wood without actually using an actual smokehouse. Vegetarians, barbecue aficionados, vegans and foodies all have their opinions regarding liquid smoke. Individuals against it claim that it has an overwhelming chemical taste. Regardless of what your opinion is, if you want to achieve that smoky flavor without liquid smoke, below are some alternatives;
Spanish Smoked Paprika
This spice is created by drying peppers over oak burning fires for several days. Actually there are two different versions to suit your appetite: Pimenton de la Vera, Picante has a hot smoky flavor and Pimenton de la Vera, Dulce has a sweet smoky flavor. Use the former to give an extra kick to your barbecue and the latter for vegetarian beans.
This is made by grinding jalapeno peppers and slowly smoking them over a natural wood fire. The chipotle powder is a staple in Mexican cuisines but has become popular in the United States.
We two varieties: Morita chipotle powder made with red jalapenos, and brown chipotle powder made with green jalapenos.
If you are a tea drinker, probably you should try this Chinese black tea which gets its smoky aroma and flavor from being dried over pine fires. In order to use it as a liquid smoke replacement, you need to pour boiling water over smoke tea leaves and let the tea steep for a few minutes and then use the brewed tea as an alternative.
Traditional smoking or barbecuing is the best substitute for liquid smoke in a recipe. Using a smoker or a barbecue is the best way to get the flavor without using liquid smoke. In situations when you are in short supply of liquid smoke, you can opt for the traditional smoking method to give that smoky flavor to your dishes. However, smoking can be time-consuming and you can lack all the tools needed for the process. Smoked fish, chicken or turkeys, ham hock with baked beans are some other alternatives that can also be considered in situations when you are in search of some good substitutes for liquid smoke.