Pantry Basics: Teriyaki Sauce

teriyaki ingredients

Teriyaki sauce qualifies as a pantry basic because it’s readily available at the store and most people simply buy it, but it’s quickly and easily made at home. We love chicken with teriyaki sauce, whether it’s baked, sauteed, stir-fried or grilled. Last night we grilled chicken legs, marinating with the sauce during the last 10 minutes. Yum.

While I’ve never actually bought teriyaki sauce from the store, I’ve basically replicated the flavor I liked at restaurants by adapting and combining various recipes I’ve come across over the years. My recipe has a nice balance of sweetness and soy, without being too much of either.

The ingredients are pretty simple. Soy sauce, sugar (update: I now use coconut/palm sugar and I’m sure sucanat would work similarly), grated ginger, chopped garlic and rice vinegar (or mirin, a rice wine, when I have it), in addition to a thickener like cornstarch or arrowroot. Sometimes I’ll add a pinch or two of crushed red pepper flakes.

adding thickener to teriyaki

Dump all the ingredients, except the vinegar, into a small saucepan and mix. To the vinegar, add cornstarch or arrowroot which will help the sauce to thicken. Add the vinegar mixture to the saucepan, bring to a boil and boil over medium heat for about 5 minutes. That’s it.

teriyaki on chicken

I know you wish it was a long and complicated recipe, but here at the cottage I try to keep those to a minimum. *smile* I usually make the sauce when our chicken (or whatever) is cooking before adding the sauce. If you wanted to keep it on hand, however, make a larger batch and keep it in the fridge.

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Oregon Cottage Teriyaki Sauce

  • 1/2 c. soy sauce
  • 1/4 c. sugar (white, brown, palm/coconut, sucanat, etc.)
  • 1 large clove garlic, chopped fine
  • 1/2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
  • crushed red pepper to taste (optional)
  • 3 Tbl. rice vinegar (or mirin if you’ve got it)
  • 1/2 tsp. cornstarch or arrowroot powder
  1. Combine the soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and red pepper, if using, in a small saucepan.
  2. Stir the cornstarch or arrowroot into the rice vinegar in a separate small bowl, then add to the saucepan.
  3. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, lower heat to medium and let simmer for about 5 minutes, or until slightly thickened and reduced to about a 1/3 cup.
  4. Use right away on chicken or store in the refrigerator.

 

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