5 Minute Recipes/ Asian Recipes/ Condiments and Sauces/ Japanese/ Recipes

Easy 4 Ingredient Okonomiyaki Sauce

15/10/2020

You’ve just made Japanese pancakes and realised you’re out of sauce! Never fear – this 4 ingredient Okonomiyaki sauce recipe is here! With easy pantry ingredients, you’ll have it ready in minutes.

Okonomiyaki sauce with shichimi togarashi sprinkled on top.

Why We Love This

This is one versatile sauce! We love using this on our Japanese Hamburgers, or to shake things up as the sauce for Oysters Kilpatrick. With this sauce as the base, you could add ginger and turn it into yakisoba sauce or add ginger, garlic and oyster sauce to make takoyaki sauce!

No need for a trip to the Asian supermarket, you should have these ingredients already in your pantry – that’s a huge win for us!

Okonomiyaki sauce with Japanese pancake in the background.

What is Okonomiyaki Sauce? 

A Japanese Pancake’s best friend, this is the sauce that brings it altogether. A sweet and tangy sauce similar to bbq, it blends perfectly when combined with Kewpie mayonnaise. We love smothering the two on our Osaka style okonomiyaki!

You’ll usually see this lining the shelves in Japan, but it can be harder to find or expensive in Asian supermarkets in other countries. That’s why we love the independence of being able to recreate this at home. Of course, if you are feeling lazy, you can always buy the very popular Otafuku Okonomi sauce online.

As far as Japanese recipes go, this is one of the easiest!

What You’ll Need

We do love recipes with less than 5 ingredients – especially when it leads to a Japanese staple sauce from local ingredients! I think you’ll be surprised how much flavour it packs for how simple the recipe is.

  • Worcestershire Sauce – We used an Australian brand today, which is quite spicy. If using an English version, use the amount in the recipe. Or, if you have the Bulldog Japanese Worcestershire Sauce, this is a lot sweeter, so you can double the amount. If you don’t have Worcestershire, you can also use tonkatsu or bbq sauce in a pinch.
  • Tomato Sauce / Ketchup – Ketchup is known as tomato sauce in Australia – they’re the same thing so either works fine.
  • Soy Sauce / Mentsuyu – If you have Mentsuyu or want to make your own, we recommend this in the first instance for a more rounded sauce flavour, otherwise regular soy sauce is fine.
  • Sugar – Sugar in this recipe acts as a sweetener to offset against the tang and spiciness of the Worcestershire, bringing everything into balance. Any sugar is fine – we used white, but a brown or raw sugar will work, you may just need a little extra as they’re not quite as sweet. Substitute with honey or golden syrup in a pinch.
Ingredients laid out for Japanese okonomiyaki sauce.

How to use:

Squeeze straight over the top of your okonomiyaki pancake in zig zag lines. Or pour in a huge dollop in the middle of each pancake, using a basting brush to spread evenly across the top. For best flavour, pair with kewpie mayonnaise, seaweed flakes (aonori) and bonito flakes (katsuoboshi).

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Storage Bottle – We keep our homemade sauces in squeezy bottles we got from Doguyasuji Arcade in Osaka. These make it so easy to squirt your toppings straight on to the pancakes. We have two, one for the okonomiyaki sauce, and the other for the Kewpie Mayonnaise. If you don’t have bottles, sterilised glass jars do just fine as well.
  • Tweak to Suit Taste – Everyone is different, don’t be afraid to alter the amounts if you want a spicier or sweeter sauce.
  • Batch – While this recipe makes enough for one sitting, feel free to double or even quadruple the recipe. This is perfect if you want a full bottle of sauce you can keep going back to.
  • Add Shichimi Togarashi – For an extra spice kick, homemade Japanese 7 Spice is perfect sprinkled over the sauce when dishing up for guests.

FAQs

Can I make okonomiyaki sauce without Worcestershire?

Most definitely. If Worcestershire sauce isn’t available in your area, you can substitute with tonkatsu, A1 steak sauce, HP sauce, soy sauce, mentsuyu or even regular bbq sauce. Of course, this will alter the final flavour, but it won’t stop you from devouring your Okonomiyaki pancakes after popping this sauce all over it.

How long will this last in the fridge?

It should last a while, we’d say try to use it up within a month or two. Always do a smell test – if it seems off, play it safe and throw it out.

Does homemade okonomiyaki sauce taste like Otafuku Okomi sauce?

Store bought okonomi sauce is made up of many different fruits and spices, which would be super difficult to replicate exactly. So homemade sauce is as close as possible, but it will taste different to commercial – although just as delicious. The different sauce brands will also impact the final result, so tweak if you need to suit your own preferences.

White dish with Japanese pancake sauce.

Add these quick homemade Japanese sauces to your pantry:

★ Did you make this recipe? Please leave a star rating and comment below!

Bowl of homemade okonomiyaki sauce topped with shichimi togarashi.

Easy 4 Ingredient Okonomiyaki Sauce for Japanese Pancakes

You've just made Japanese pancakes and realised you're out of sauce! Never fear – this 4 ingredient Okonomiyaki sauce recipe is here! With easy pantry ingredients, you'll have it ready in minutes.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Japanese
Servings: 1 Jar
Calories: 74kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Add ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce and sugar into a small dish and mix.
  • Heat in microwave for 30 seconds or on low in small saucepan on the stove for a minute to help dissolve the sugar.
  • To serve, squeeze straight over the top of your okonomiyaki pancake in zig zag lines. Or pour in a huge dollop in the middle of each pancake, using a basting brush to spread evenly across the top. For best flavour, pair with kewpie mayonnaise, seaweed flakes (aonori) and bonito flakes (katsuoboshi).
    If using later, pour into a squeeze bottle or jar to store in the fridge.

Video

Recipe Notes

  • Worcestershire Sauce – If using an English version, use the amount in the recipe. If using the Bulldog Japanese Worcestershire Sauce, this is a lot sweeter, so you can double the amount. If Worcestershire sauce isn’t available in your area, you can substitute with tonkatsu, A1 steak sauce, HP sauce, soy sauce, mentsuyu or even regular bbq sauce. Of course, this will alter the final flavour, but it won’t stop you from devouring your Okonomiyaki pancakes after popping this sauce all over it.
  • Soy Sauce / Mentsuyu – If you have Mentsuyu or want to make your own, we recommend this in the first instance for a more rounded sauce flavour, otherwise regular soy sauce is fine.
  • Sugar – Any sugar is fine – we used white, but a brown or raw sugar will work, you may just need a little extra as they’re not quite as sweet. Substitute with honey or golden syrup in a pinch.
  • Storage Bottle – We keep our homemade sauces in squeezy bottles we got from Doguyasuji Arcade in Osaka – these make it so easy to squirt your toppings straight on to the pancakes. We have two, one for the okonomiyaki sauce, and the other for the Kewpie Mayonnaise. If you don’t have bottles, sterilised glass jars do just fine as well.
  • Tweak to Suit Taste – Everyone is different, don’t be afraid to alter the amounts if you want a spicier or sweeter sauce.
  • Batch – While this recipe makes enough for one sitting, feel free to double or even quadruple the recipe for a full bottle of sauce you can keep going back to.
  • Add Shichimi Togarashi – For an extra spice kick, homemade Japanese 7 Spice is perfect sprinkled over the sauce when dishing up for guests.

Nutrition

Calories: 74kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1444mg | Potassium: 269mg | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 154IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 18mg | Iron: 1mg
Hey hey – Did you make this recipe?We’d love it if you could give a star rating below ★★★★★ and show us your creations on Instagram! Snap a pic and tag @wandercooks / #Wandercooks
Easy 4 Ingredient Okonomiyaki Sauce

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