I love making my own homemade pantry staples to save money and avoid nasty ingredients, and one of the simplest recipes to make is a Homemade Teriyaki Sauce.
Teriyaki Sauce Recipe
Teriyaki sauce is a Japanese sweet and savory sauce used in a variety of recipes, from vegetable stir fries, to glazing or marinading meat, or seasoning starches like rice.
Whether you want to make homemade teriyaki sauce to avoid the nasty preservatives and “flavor enhancers” like MSG found in store-bought versions, or you want to make a teriyaki recipe and realize you’ve run out of teriyaki sauce, this recipe has got you covered! With just 5 ingredients and less than 10 minutes to whip up, you’ll rethink buying store-bought versions ever again.
I tend to make my teriyaki sauce on the thick side because I primarily use it for grilling, like with my Sticky Teriyaki Ribs recipe, but this sauce can also be made thinner if you’re looking to use it as a marinade or a light seasoning.
This teriyaki sauce would also make a great homemade gift for a Japanese food lover, or any foodie in your life.
How do you store homemade teriyaki sauce? I store my teriyaki sauce in a mason jar in the fridge for up to a month. It can also be frozen in an airtight freezer container for up to three months. (This set of freezer containers is a crazy bargain.)
Why is this teriyaki sauce so thick? I tend to use my teriyaki sauce as a glaze or in place of a BBQ sauce, so I cooked it until it was very thick. If you want a thinner teriyaki sauce, you can cook for less time.
Do I have to use soy sauce to make teriyaki sauce? No, you can use tamari (a gluten-free alternative) or coconut aminos in place of the soy sauce called for in this recipe.
Can I use teriyaki sauce as a marinade? Absolutely. You will not want the recipe to be as thick if you plan to use it as a marinade. You can either add additional water, or reduce the cooking time. (Or both.)
Do I have to use brown sugar in this recipe? No, you can use a brown sugar alternative – anything that you can use to substitute brown sugar in baking can be used to replace it in this recipe.
Recipes Using Teriyaki Sauce
After you’ve made your homemade teriyaki sauce, you’ll need some recipes to use it – here are some awesome ideas:
- Sticky Teriyaki Ribs
- Oven Baked Teriyaki Chicken Wings from Smack of Flavor
- Pulled Pork and Rice Teriyaki Bowl from Sunday Supper Movement
- Ginger Sesame Teriyaki Burgers from Spa Bettie
- Slow Cooker Chicken Teriyaki Sandwiches with Pineapple Slaw from Cheese Curd in Paradise
- Instant Pot Chicken Teriyaki from The Typical Mom
- Mandarin Chicken Salad with Teriyaki Dressing from Shugary Sweets
- Hawaiian Teriyaki Chicken Skewers from House of Nash Eats
- Pineapple Pork Tenderloin from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- 20 Minute Beef Teriyaki from Romina’s Little Corner
- Teriyaki Chicken Kebabs from The Creative Bite
- Instant Pot Ginger Pepper Steak from Simply Happenings
- Traeger Chicken Teriyaki from Or Whatever You Do
- Crockpot Teriyaki Turkey Meatballs from The Rustic Foodie
- Glazed Chicken Sausage Pineapple Bites from Wishes n Dishes
- Teriyaki Shrimp Skewers from Self-Proclaimed Foodie
Homemade Teriyaki Sauce Ingredients
- Soy Sauce <– I personally use tamari whenever a recipe calls for soy sauce, I like the flavor better and it is also gluten-free
- Rice Wine Vinegar
- Garlic, minced <– can use garlic powder, if desired
- Ground Ginger < — can use fresh, if desired
- Brown Sugar
- Sesame oil, optional
- Water <– can be swapped out with pineapple juice for a sweeter flavor, or use half water and half juice
Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.
Tip: if you want your teriyaki sauce to have a bit more bite, you can swap out the water with sake or a good-quality Chinese wine. You can also swap out the water for pineapple juice for a sweet, fruitier flavor.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Sharp kitchen knife
- Mason jar, for storing
How to Make Teriyaki Sauce
In a small saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat.
Reduce to medium-low heat and allow the mixture to continue simmering until it reaches nearly the consistency you want. (It will thicken more once cooled.)
Taste and adjust the quantities of the ingredients to achieve your desired flavor profile.
Store in a mason jar in the fridge until ready to use.
Grab your free printable for our homemade teriyaki sauce recipe:
- 1 cup Soy Sauce
- 1/3 cup Rice Wine Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic, minced (about 3 cloves)
- 1 teaspoon Ground Ginger
- 1/3 cup Brown Sugar, or more to taste
- 2 teaspoons Sesame oil, optional
- Water, to personal preference
- In a small saucepan, combine all ingredients and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat.
- Reduce to medium-low heat and allow the mixture to continue simmering until it reaches nearly the consistency you want. (It will thicken more once cooled.)
- Taste and adjust the quantities of the ingredients to achieve your desired flavor profile.
- Store in a mason jar in the fridge until ready to use.
I personally use tamari whenever a recipe calls for soy sauce, I like the flavor better and it is also gluten-free
You can swap the water for sake if you want more bite to your sauce
You can use pineapple juice in place of the water if you want a sweeter, fruitier sauce (or use half water and half juice)
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 30Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 877mgCarbohydrates: 5gFiber: 0gSugar: 4gProtein: 1g
Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
This homemade teriyaki sauce is a great addition to your homemade pantry and a great gift idea for any foodie in your life! Pair it with some of our homemade seasonings for a thoughtful gift basket, like our Homemade Ranch Seasoning or Homemade Adobo Seasoning.