One of the staple sauces I always have in my fridge is a bottle of homemade teriyaki sauce.
It’s so delicious and versatile–with that perfect balance of sweet and savoury.
Authentic teriyaki sauce actually only requires 4 basic ingredients but I love to add some garlic and even ginger in mine for extra flavour.
On the top left is sake, or Japanese rice wine. I purchase a cooking sake that’s much more affordable since sake for drinking is really expensive!
The other (almost) clear liquid on the top right is mirin and contains alcohol as well. It’s a sweet cooking rice wine that has less alcohol than sake. It’s sweet and somewhat syrupy (but not as thick as actual syrup).
There are other types of mirin such as hon mirin, which is basically the real deal, and mirin condiment that contains no alcohol and is really sweet, and often contains corn syrup.
I love to use wither hon mirin or mirin for cooking sauces since the alcohol with evaporate during the cooking process and yields a deeper flavour profile.
Some mirin do contain high fructose corn syrup to get their sweetness from, but I found this one from Eden Foods that don’t contain any corn syrup!
The rest of the ingredients are pretty basic–there’s sugar and soy sauce.
Garlic and ginger aren’t traditionally put in teriyaki sauce in Japanese cuisine, and they’re better to be added when cooking a dish the teriyaki way. But I do love my garlic and ginger in my teriyaki sauce. You can also opt to use garlic or even ginger powder if you don’t like bits in your sauce.
I basically cooked down the sauce until it slightly thickened and added in a cornstarch slurry to really make it into a thick glaze. But you can opt to keep it in its sauce consistency, especially if you’re using it as a glaze!
I then transferred my sauce into a jar to cool before storing in the fridge.
What you can cook with some teriyaki sauce:
- Teriyaki Fried Rice
- Drizzled over Katsu Sushi Sandwiches and Rolls
- Tofu “Chicken” Teriyaki
- Baked Teriyaki Cauliflower Balls
- Eggplant and Tofu Teriyaki
You can also make some Tofu Katsu and enjoy it with a generous amount of teriyaki sauce on top!
Are you looking for more delicious, vegan recipes? Check out my latest Vegan Kitchen eBook, that has over 95 recipes (and a whole section for Asian recipes!) that are packed with flavour and made with simple and easily accessible ingredients! Also, two trees (instead of 1!) will be planted for every download of my eBook through non-profit organisation One Tree Planted.
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Easy Homemade Teriyaki Sauce
TERIYAKI SAUCE (Just choose 1 option depending on your preference!)
Teriyaki Sauce (Option 1) – the more authentic version
Slurry, For the Glaze (For Option 1)
- 1 1/2 tbsp corn starch
- 3 tbsp room temp water
Teriyaki Sauce (Option 2) – no mirin and sake
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup soy sauce see notes
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar or adjust according to desired sweetness
- Optional: 1/2 tsp minced ginger and/or 1/4 tsp minced garlic
Teriyaki Sauce (Option 1)
- Heat a medium-sized sauce pan over medium heat.
- Add in the sake, mirin, soy sauce, and sugar.
- Leave to simmer over medium high heat until it starts to boil.
- Add in the garlic and ginger, if using. Keep mixing until the sugar has completely dissolved.
- Leave to boil over medium high heat until the sauce starts to thicken a little. Note that the sauce will not thicken like a glaze but will slightly thicken from the sugars. If using as a marinade or sauce to cook other dishes, you can opt not to thicken it like a glaze.
- If you’d like to thicken this sauce into a glaze, prepare the cornstarch slurry by mixing the cornstarch and water together.
- While mixing, pour in the slurry into the teriyaki sauce and leave to boil until it thickens.
- Mix well and then when it boils, lower the heat. Continue stirring to ensure the starch doesn't stick at the bottom of the pan.
- Once it thickens, taste the sauce, and adjust the seasonings accordingly. Turn off the heat. It’ll continue to thicken as it cools.
- Transfer the sauce/glaze into a jar and leave it to cool completely before storing. See storage tips below.
- Enjoy your teriyaki sauce/glaze by cooking it with your favourite protein, as a sauce for noodles, fried rice, or as a delicious marinade—it’s totally up to you! Teriyaki sauce is really so versatile.
Teriyaki Sauce (Option 2)
- Heat a medium-sized sauce pan over medium heat. Add in soy sauce, water, and sugar. Start with 1/4 cup soy sauce and adjust as you go along (see notes). Leave to simmer over medium high heat until it starts to boil. Add in the garlic and ginger, if using. Keep mixing until the sugar has dissolved.
- Taste the sauce and add more of the soy sauce, if needed. You can also add more sugar and adjust depending on your desired sweetness.
- if you’d like to use this sauce as a glaze, prepare the cornstarch slurry by mixing the cornstarch and water. While mixing, pour in the slurry into the teriyaki sauce and mix until it thickens. Once it thickens, taste the sauce, and adjust the seasonings accordingly. Turn off the heat. It’ll continue to thicken as it cools.
- Enjoy your teriyaki sauce/glaze sauce by cooking it with your favourite protein, as a sauce for noodles, fried rice, or as a delicious marinade—it’s totally up to you! Teriyaki sauce is really so versatile.
Teriyaki Sauce Storage Tips
- Transfer the teriyaki sauce in a jar. Leave the sauce/glaze to cool completely before covering. Refrigerate until ready to use. It can be stored for up to 1 month (or even longer!)
- You can also refrigerate the teriyaki glaze the same way but note that the cornstarch can clump together so you’ll need to shake or mix the sauce well before using. You can also heat it to completely dissolve the clumps.
- Start with 1/4 cup soy sauce and adjust according to desired taste since some soy sauce can be really salty.