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

The Best Teriyaki Sauce Recipe

28/01/2021

This is the best teriyaki sauce recipe, full of umami flavour and so easy to make! Use it as a marinade, or cook down into glossy perfection. Try this homemade teriyaki sauce and you’ll never want to buy store-bought again.

Teriyaki sauce in a glass bowl with a spoon.

Why We Love This

Teriyaki sauce takes just a minute to make and brings a big hit of umami flavour for so many dishes – not only Japanese cuisine. 

It’s cheap to prepare with staple Japanese ingredients. You’ll know exactly what’s gone into it, and you can make exactly how much you need for your chosen dish. The recipe below will make around 200ml of sauce, which is the perfect amount for 2 servings of teriyaki chicken or glaze your yakitori chicken skewers or tsukune minced chicken skewers.

Homemade teriyaki sauce contains much less sugar than when commercially made. And like all good homemade sauces, you can tweak the ingredients to suit your tastes.

Teriyaki sauce with marinated chicken in the background.

What is Teriyaki Sauce? 

This Japanese sauce is most known as a glossy marinade/sauce usually paired with grilled meats, especially chicken. It’s sweet, savoury and salty, the perfect flavour combination!

Rather than referring to the sauce itself, the words teri (照= glazed/shiny) and yaki (焼 = grilled/fried) traditionally refer to the cooking method, where something glazed (usually meat, fish or tofu) is grilled or fried. 

The flavours go so well with a whole range of dishes, so have fun experimenting and incorporating it into your regular cooking.

Where We Learned This

We first learned how to make teriyaki sauce a few years ago from our wonderful “Osaka-mum” Yoshiko. She runs a home-based cooking school in Ikeda, and every time we head back to Japan we love to catch up and cook or dine out together. 

The main difference with Yoshiko’s version compared with other teriyaki sauce recipes out there is the inclusion of dashi stock for extra flavour. This is the secret ingredient that will transform your cooking from ‘that’s nice’ to ‘WOW!’ It gives this sauce a similar flavour profile to mentsuyu dipping sauce, it’s just used differently. 

P.S. Yoshiko also taught us our recipes for pork gyoza dumplings and simmered tofu if you’re keen to check them out as well.

What You’ll Need

  • Soy Sauce – For the best flavour and quality, use a Japanese soy sauce such as Kikkoman brand which has the perfect balance of flavour and salt. Chinese or Korean soy sauces may be too salty or bitter for this recipe, however Japanese tamari works great as a gluten-free option. If you only have dark soy sauce on hand you can still use it, you just may need to balance out the intensity with a little extra sugar. 
  • Cooking Sake – This is a type of rice wine made for cooking. It’s lighter and more delicate in flavour than Chinese cooking wine, but you can use either in this recipe. Look for it at Asian grocers or online. You can substitute with sherry or a blend of 50:50 vodka and water in a pinch, or just use water only and leave out the alcohol completely. If you’re unsure about the alcohol in this recipe, remember that it will evaporate during the cooking process, leaving you with the beautiful flavour and shine only. 
  • Mirin – This is a sweet rice wine for cooking. You can sometimes find it in regular supermarkets, otherwise head to your nearest Asian grocer or online. If you don’t have it, just leave it out and add in an extra 1 tsp of sugar instead. 
  • Sugar – This helps add the delicious caramelisation and gloss that teriyaki sauce is known for. We use regular white sugar but any sugar will do. You can substitute with honey if you prefer a natural sweetener.
  • Dashi Stock – We use dashi stock powder dissolved in hot water, which is our favourite shortcut to save time on making dashi stock from scratch. You can find it in two different styles – kombu dashi (vegan) or hondashi (made with smoked dried bonito). If you don’t have it or can’t source it, you can substitute for vegetable stock or chicken stock.
Ingredients laid out for teriyaki sauce.

Wandercook’s Tips

  • Storage Bottles – You could use old empty soy sauce or teriyaki sauce bottles to store your sauce in if you need. Just be sure to clean and sterilise them before use.  
  • Make It Your Way – Don’t be afraid to tweak this recipe to make it exactly the way you like it. It’s so easy to adapt by adding more or less of each ingredient until you get it just right.

FAQs

What else can I use teriyaki sauce for?

It’s best known for teriyaki chicken and yakitori chicken, but so wonderful with other meats as well. Use it as a glaze for grilled salmon, tofu, pork, beef or meatballs. Use it as a cooking sauce for stir fries, veggies, noodles or rice bowls.

My teriyaki sauce is runny, but I want to make it thicker. How?

Japanese teriyaki sauce is much runnier than commercial brands, and is intended to be cooked down in the pan to make it thicker. If you want, you can make a slurry of 1 tsp cornstarch and 1tbsp cold water and add it to the sauce while cooking to make it thicker.

How long does it last?

Leftover teriyaki sauce will last a week or so in the fridge in an airtight container. Glass jars or bottles work perfectly for this.

Variations

  • Add Garlic and/or Ginger – The savoury and citrusy flavours add a delicious element to the sauce. 
  • Like Heat, add Spice – Try it with a sprinkling of shichimi togarashi, cayenne pepper or chilli powder to taste, for heat and depth of flavour. 
  • Add Sesame Oil – Not traditional, but sesame oil is often paired with the main ingredients of teriyaki sauce in other recipes. Why not experiment?
A spoonful of teriyaki sauce above a glass bowl.

More delicious Japanese recipes to try next:

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

Bowl of homemade teriyaki sauce with spoon in it.

The Best Teriyaki Sauce Recipe

This is the best teriyaki sauce recipe, full of umami flavour and so easy to make! Use it as a marinade, or cook down into glossy perfection. Try this homemade teriyaki sauce and you’ll never want to buy store-bought again.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: Japanese
Servings: 1 bottle
Calories: 178kcal
Author: Wandercooks
Cost: $5

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp cooking sake or Chinese cooking wine
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 cup dashi stock 1/2 tsp dashi powder with 1/2 cup hot water

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, add the cooking sake, soy sauce, mirin, sugar and dashi stock. Mix until combined and bottle or use straight away with teriyaki chicken.

Video

Recipe Notes

  • Makes 225 ml / 7.6 fl oz of teriyaki sauce.
  • Use with – teriyaki chicken, tsukune minced chicken skewers or yakitori chicken.
  • Storage Bottles – You could use old empty soy sauce or teriyaki sauce bottles to store your sauce in if you need. Just be sure to clean and sterilise them before use.
  • Make It Your Way – Don’t be afraid to tweak this recipe to make it exactly the way you like it. It’s so easy to adapt by adding more or less of each ingredient until you get it just right.
  • Ingredients:
    • Soy Sauce – For the best flavour and quality, use a Japanese soy sauce such as Kikkoman brand which has the perfect balance of flavour and salt. Chinese or Korean soy sauces may be too salty or bitter for this recipe, however Japanese tamari works great as a gluten-free option. If you only have dark soy sauce on hand you can still use it, you just may need to balance out the intensity with a little extra sugar. 
    • Cooking Sake – Sub with Chinese cooking wine, sherry or a blend of 50:50 vodka and water in a pinch, or just use water only and leave out the alcohol completely.
    • Mirin – Sub with 1 tsp of sugar. 
    • Sugar – We use regular white sugar but any sugar will do. You can substitute with honey if you prefer a natural sweetener.
    • Dashi Stock – You can substitute for vegetable stock or chicken stock but this will alter the flavour.
  • Variations:
    • Add Garlic and/or Ginger – The savoury and citrusy flavours add a delicious element to the sauce. 
    • Add Spice – Try it with a sprinkling of shichimi togarashi, cayenne pepper or chilli powder to taste, for heat and depth of flavour. 
    • Add Sesame Oil – Not traditional, but sesame oil is often paired with the main ingredients of teriyaki sauce in other recipes, so why not experiment?

Nutrition

Calories: 178kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2660mg | Potassium: 189mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 21g | Vitamin A: 5IU | Calcium: 45mg | 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
The Best Teriyaki Sauce Recipe

Adventures with Miso – E-book Out Now

No Comments

Leave a Reply

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.