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This easy homemade teriyaki sauce recipe is based on my sugar-free teriyaki sauce, but this one is for those that prefer a regular version. It has all the sweet, sticky flavor you know and love, yet still uses clean ingredients — and your family won’t even know the difference. It’s perfect for Asian dishes, but can add delicious flavor to a variety of meats and roasted veggies.
What Is Teriyaki Sauce?
Teriyaki sauce is a sweet, salty, and sticky condiment commonly used in Japanese cuisine. Teriyaki also describes a Japanese cooking technique in which meats get broiled, roasted, or grilled after marinating in this sauce.
Why You’ll Love This Homemade Teriyaki Sauce Recipe
- Sweet and savory flavors
- Thick and sticky for marinades and glazing
- Made with just 6 simple pantry staples
- Simple real-food ingredients
- No cornstarch or cornstarch substitutes needed
- Only 15 minutes from start to finish
- Naturally gluten-free
Teriyaki Sauce Ingredients & Substitutions
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for this easy teriyaki sauce recipe, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Aminos Or Soy Sauce – I use coconut aminos to make a healthy teriyaki sauce, but you could also use low sodium soy sauce (if you tolerate soy), tamari, or another soy sauce substitute.
- Honey – Regular conventional honey makes a great natural sweetener for teriyaki sauce, or use sugar-free honey to make sugar-free teriyaki sauce.
- Apple Cider Vinegar – White wine or rice vinegar will give the sauce a lighter taste. You can also use white distilled vinegar, but this will give a more aggressive flavor.
- Blackstrap Molasses – I prefer molasses for a deep flavor without a lot of added sugar. Brown sugar will provide similar results, but you’ll need more, the flavor will be less potent, and the sauce will be sweeter.
- Garlic & Ginger – A combination of garlic powder and ground ginger create a rich and complex flavor profile. If you prefer, you can substitute 4 cloves of minced fresh garlic and 1-2 tablespoons of minced fresh ginger.
- Sesame Oil – Although optional, I recommend adding this at the end for flavor. It adds depth and complexity, and also helps bring out the sweetness of the other ingredients.
How To Make Teriyaki Sauce
This section shows how to make the best teriyaki sauce, with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Combine the ingredients. In a small saucepan, whisk together coconut aminos, honey, apple cider vinegar, molasses, garlic powder, and ground ginger.
- Reduce to thicken. Bring mixture to a gentle boil, then simmer over low to medium heat until the sauce reaches your desired consistency.
TIP: This quick teriyaki sauce thickens as it cools, so remove from heat when it’s a bit thinner than you want.
If you cook it for less time, it will reach the right consistency once cooled, or if you cook for more time, it will be the right thickness almost right away but will harden when cooled. You can thin out with cold water if needed.
- Store: Cool homemade teriyaki sauce completely, then keep in an airtight container (such as a mason jar) in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. It will harden in the fridge, so just reheat it to make it viscous and pourable again.
- Freeze: Transfer to an airtight container and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating on the stove or in the microwave.
Ways To Use Homemade Teriyaki Sauce
This sauce is a versatile condiment that adds flavor to so many different dishes. Whether you use it as a marinade, glaze or dipping sauce, it adds an umami flavor that will make any meal unforgettable. Here are some ways to use it:
- Teriyaki Chicken – Brush it onto baked chicken breast after cooking, or make a teriyaki chicken bowl. It’s also amazing on crispy air fryer chicken wings!
- Teriyaki Salmon – Drizzle or brush over grilled salmon after cooking, or air fryer salmon before cooking.
- Other Meat & Seafood – Use as a glaze for oven baked pork chops, grilled shrimp skewers, or even sirloin steak. It also works well on juicy burgers.
- Rice & Noodles – This sauce pairs perfectly with Asian sides like shirataki rice or shirataki noodles, but it’s even delicious mixed into cauliflower rice or cauliflower fried rice. Or, spoon it on your favorite rice and noodle dishes.
- Asian Recipes – Serve this sauce next to (or drizzled on) dishes like beef and broccoli, tender Hakurei turnips, and stir-fries such as egg roll in a bowl or easy vegetable stir fry.
- Small Saucepan – I love the two convenient pour spouts, so I can easily transfer liquids and sauces like this one without making a mess.
Homemade Teriyaki Sauce
Homemade Teriyaki Sauce (6 Ingredients!)
Take your meals to the next level with this easy homemade teriyaki sauce recipe. It takes just 15 minutes, with only 6 simple ingredients!
Tap underlined ingredients to see where to get them. Please turn Safari reader mode OFF to view ingredients.
Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Bring the sauce to a gentle boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes if you’ll be serving at room temperature, or 15-20 minutes if you’ll be serving it warm. The sauce will thicken as it cools, so if you cook it for less time, it will reach the right consistency once cooled, or if you cook for more time, it will be the right thickness almost right away but will harden when cooled.
Remove from heat. Whisk in the sesame oil, if using.
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Serving size: 1 tablespoon
- Makes 1/2 cup.
- Nutrition info does not include optional sesame oil.
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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