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Teriyaki Chicken

Teriyaki chicken - the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!! |

Teriyaki Chicken Recipe

Teriyaki chicken – the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients.
Serves 2 – 3 | Prep Time: | Cook Time:


12 oz skinless and boneless chicken thighs
1 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 heaping tablespoon sugar or to taste
1 tablespoon Japanese cooking sake (rice wine)
1 1/2 tablespoon oil
White sesame, for garnishing

Marinate the chicken with soy sauce, sugar, and cooking sake for 20 minutes.Heat up a skillet with the oil on low heat. When the oil is heated, transfer the chicken and the marinade sauce into the skillet and let cook slowly. Turn the chicken over after 5 minutes and continue to cook on low heat, for another 5 minutes.

Dish out and garnish with some sesame seeds. Serve immediately with steamed rice.

Cook’s Note:

You can purchase Japanese cooking sake from Asian or Japanese stores. You can also buy it online. If you can’t take alcohol, just skip it.

Teriyaki chicken - the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Learn how to make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!! |

Teriyaki Chicken

Teriyaki chicken – the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Learn how to make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!!

Originally published in 2008, updated with new photos and recipe. You can also check out my other Chicken Teriyaki recipe with crispy skin.

Teriyaki chicken - the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Learn how to make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!! |

Teriyaki chicken, we all love teriyaki chicken with perfectly tender and juicy chicken meat doused in a sweet and savory teriyaki sauce. We order it at Japanese restaurants or takeout, at the fast food joints in the mall, and even at American fast food chains such as Jack in the Box. Never mind its origin, Teriyaki chicken has become an American staple that everyone loves!!

Teriyaki chicken - the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Learn how to make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!! |

Making teriyaki chicken is so easy; in fact, it’s one of the easiest recipes (active time is about 10 minutes) you can prepare at home. This recipe calls for only four simple ingredients: chicken thighs, soy sauce, sugar and Japanese cooking sake. If you have an Asian store or Japanese store where you are, pick up a bottle of cooking sake (which is Japanese rice wine). If not, you can always order it online. If all fails, you can skip the sake and the recipe will work just fine.

Teriyaki chicken - the most popular Japanese chicken dish. Learn how to make teriyaki chicken with this easy 30-min recipe with only four ingredients!! |

When it comes to chicken, you can use chicken breasts or chicken thighs, but chicken thighs are best for this recipe. They are tender, moist and pair perfectly well with the sticky sauce. Serve the teriyaki chicken over a bowl of steaming rice and you’ll have the most scrumptious homemade teriyaki chicken ever. Takeout? What takeout? Homemade is always healthier, cheaper, budget-friendly and so much better than your regular takeout.

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56 COMMENTS... read them below or add one

  1. Phang

    I wasn’t aware that was what teriyaki meant – guess I learn something new every day!. I’m definitely going to try this some time, looks yummy. :)

  2. Nate-n-Annie

    Looks and sounds delicious. I like ’em grilled over a hibachi.

    Hey Bee, you’ve been tagged! Come visit our site for details.

  3. Suzy

    This dish looks delicious and very much like the teriyaki I can buy locally. I always wondered how they did the sauce because I can never replicate it at home. Now I have a clue!! Guess I need to buy a few more ingredients :-) Saki and mirin are not something I currently have stocked in my pantry.

  4. Shreela

    I’ve tried Kikkoman’s teriyaki sauce before, and refused to try teriyaki chicken for years afterwards (it smells like socks). Later, I forget how I accidentally tried teriyaki chicken with a different sauce, but it was good.

    I recently made the mistake of buying Kikkoman’s sweet and sour sauce, that tastes like some kind of jelly mixed with Heinz 57 — I like it sweet, vinegary with a bit of tomato, but not with steak sauce.

    But I’ve learned my lesson, never judge a dish if Kikkoman makes a sauce for it, until I tried it made by someone else.

  5. Zaidey

    Dear Madam,

    I too, am looking forward to try cooking this recipe.

    However, is there any substitute for both of these items; Sake and Mirin?

    Any non alcoholic suggestions would suffice.

    Thanks for your help.

  6. mycookinghut

    Sake is Japanese rice wine. Mirin is a kind of rice wine similar to sake but characterized by sweet taste and low alcohol content.

    I think in Malaysia, you can probably get them in Isetan KL for example. Where do you live?

    I don’t know what would substitute sake and mirin. You can try to make these without these two but I don’t think it would be as nice. Probably, you can try to buy rice wine vinegar.

    I think you can just do without sake. I have checked and you could probably substitute sake for vermouth if you want.

  7. LOLfitness

    We made your teriyaki chicken today, but we were to lazy to look for sake in the supermarket so we substituted with the sherry that was already open and in our fridge. It tasted ok, it had an even stronger flavor than I’m used to from teriyaki! Next time i’ll get the sake and see how good it’ll get. Thanks for the recipe!

  8. Diana

    I made it and it tastes just like the teriyaki I grew up with in Hawaii! I subbed the sake with rice vinegar and it was really good. I posted the results on my blog. Thanks for the recipe!

  9. M

    I’ve just tried this recipe and loving it, even my fussy partner loves it!

    I did not have mirin, so I googled the best substitute: Sake:Sugar in comparison to 3:1

    The teriyaki chicken turned glazy, just like the ones in Japanese restaurants! I put extra 1 clove of crushed garlic when heating the oil for extra flavour without too overpowering. This dish is great for everyone, includes fussy kids as well. I thought that the sake would be a little strong, but there was no alcohol after-taste at all. So Yummmmmmmy!

  10. juhuacha

    Will the oil splatter after placing the chicken soaked with marinate in pan? I tried cooking salmon teriyaki and the oil splatter all over my kitchen and I had a tough time cleaning up. Any way to avoid an oily kitchen?

  11. Sisca

    Your recipe is so yummy!! Plus it’s easy to make and simple enough to do. One thing I find it rather annoying though….any ideas on how to decrease amount of layered burnt sauce when browning the chicken after second and third times of using the pan? I put the heat on low heat and still the pan has quite a bit of “cakey” burnt sauce. I made the recipe 4 times as much, so I had quite a batch of chicken to brown. Otherwise……the taste was sooo gooood! I would definately make another one. Thank you.

    • This teriyaki chicken recipe is also 1 of my favorite. I usually get done with one cooking session for this teriyaki portion. I know what you mean by the burnt sauce. I don’t think there’s anyway except to clean it each time before you start the new teriyaki batch. I have had some nice non-stick cooking pans and the burnt sauce still build up. Low heat helps but like you said, still cakey. Then again, most people love that burnt sauce smell and taste of teriyaki :)

  12. StrawberryPocky

    I just made this recipe last night, and it was so amazingly good!! I personally think this is better than the chicken teriyaki in the Japanese store at the mall! :D Not only is this easy to make, the outcome is simply delicious! This will definitely stay in my cook book! ^^

  13. Noriko Watanabe

    I tried this recipe just this afternoon and it turned out very well! I would have used abit less sugar, as i don’t like my meat dishes to be too sweet, and i would have upped the sake, for more of that flavour. Apart from that, it was very nice.

  14. Zoe

    i couldnt find sake in the local supermarket so i got jappanese cooking wine insead can i use this? planing to make it tomorrow night :)

  15. MADDY


  16. Nicholas

    My girlfriend and I love teriyaki chicken so I went in search for a great recipe to make it at home. I found a couple but settled on this one. After going to the grocery store and getting the required ingredients, I went home to try out this recipe. This recipe is very easy and simple to make. I changed a couple things about it though, to suite mine and my girlfriend’s taste. Instead of marinating whole pieces of chicken, I cut the chicken up to start. I also let it marinate for about an hour. After cooking it, which only took about 10-15 minutes, I served it with steamed brown rice. My girlfriend and I fell in love with its taste, and it is now our favorite recipe to make at home. I am actually in the process of making some more as I type this review.

  17. Thien

    So i have a major problem! Because there’s so much sugar in the marinate, the chicken burns quickly whenever I try frying it. Is there any advice you would give to avoid this? thanks

  18. dvagfuzzy

    Made this tonight. The family loved it! Next time, I’ll cut back on the sugar to make it a little bit healthier and less sweet. Thanks Bee!

  19. Sonya Royster

    Made this for inner tonight and it was a hit. I’m on eight watchers so it would be nice to know
    Nutritional values.

  20. Sonya Royster

    Trying the teriyaki salmon tomorrow for dinner,
    My family including my toddlers loved the teriyaki chicken recipe. Can’t wait to make it again.
    This for the reipe.

  21. Michy

    I tried cooking this dish tonight and similar to juhuacha’s experience with pan fried marinated salmon, the oil splattered everywhere once I added the marinated chicken onto the pan. It was a big mess. Any idea on how to prevent this?

  22. Bee, for someone who ain’t a good cook, this recipe is sure easy to follow and tastes good as well. I have just 1 question – is the chicken skin supposed to be crispy or just crisp looking? My husband said it lacked the crisp but I had already been pan-frying it longer than your suggested time and it still stays soft :(

  23. Jolene

    This recipe is so easy and is the best tasting teriyaki chicken recipe that I’ve made. I’m eating it right now and IT IS DELICIOUS! Make it tonight. You won’t REGRET it!

  24. Linda Bauer

    I made this with a few substitutions. I used chicken breasts cut in bite size pieces. I also didn’t use sake but used extra mirin, (no alcohol) and rice vinegar. Added a little extra sugar to compensate for the vinegar. I browned the chicken then added a double batch of the sauce and let it thicken up a bit in the pan. The flavores were delicious. Was a huge hit with my family and I have tried many other recipes before. I do think the Mirin makes the recipe!! I will have to try more of your recipes!

  25. Debra

    Is there a difference between drinking sake and cooking sake? Can I use drinking sake in place of cooking sake?

  26. Kathy

    It was ok, but the sauce did not thicken and did not get the nice sticky sweet taste like the restaurant version. I tried thickening the sauce with cornstarch which worked fine but still was rather pale looking, not as appetizing as the picture. On the bright side, I used a nice Sake for the recipe and enjoyed it while dining

  27. Paula

    We used saki and mirin. The flavor was delicious, but after reducing, there was very little sauce. I doubled the recipe and still not a great deal of sauce, which we are used to.

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