The Basic Recipe: Teriyaki Sauce in Japan

According to the article 照り焼き on Wikipedia Japan, “Teriyaki (照り焼き, テリヤキ)” has become a popular dish in many countries, but it seems that those Teriyaki dishes outside of Japan are somewhat different from Japanese-style Teriyaki.

Teriyaki (照り焼き)

Chicken Teriyaki Donburi

Originally, Teriyaki is a cooking method in Japanese cuisine where fish or meat is fried in a pan with some salad (vegetable) oil and Teriyaki Sauce is used to season the fish or meat and give a shine or “Teri (照り)” to its surface. By the way, “Yaki (焼き)” is a Japanese word (suffix) for “fry”, “grill”, “bake” or “roast”.

Main Ingredient

Although Western-style Teriyaki dishes usually use meat such as chicken, pork or beef as the main ingredient, the representative ingredients in Japanese-style Teriyaki are chicken and yellowtail, and other fish, like billfish, bonito, salmon, trout, Spanish mackerel, and conger pike, are also sometimes prepared.

Japanese-style Cooking Method 

Tori (chicken) no Teriyaki

In the case of Japanese-style chicken Teriyaki, first a dash of salt and pepper are sprinkled over chicken and the seasoned meat is coated with wheat flour or Katakuriko potato starch.

Then, it is fried in a frying pan with some vegetable oil until both sides become golden brown. After the excess oil in the pan is removed with a paper towel, the meat is cooked with Teriyaki sauce over medium heat until the surface of the meat shines and the sauce becomes viscous.

Japanese-style Teriyaki Sauce Recipe

Buri (yellowtail) no Teriyaki

Teriyaki Sauce is a versatile sauce. It can also be used for hamburg steak and other meat dishes. For those who want to know the authentic taste of Japanese-style Teriyaki sauce, I did some research online and found out that many Japanese professional chefs say that there is a golden ratio for Teriyaki Sauce, like this and this.

According to those, the golden ratio of Japanese Teriyaki Sauce is soy sauce 2, Sake rice wine 2, Mirin sweet cooking rice wine 2, and sugar 1. Put all the seasonings in a pan and heat over a medium heat, sometimes stirring with a spatula or the like so as not to scorch it, until somewhat viscous.

Teriyaki vs Yakiniku vs Yakitori 

Further, if you want to know how Teriyaki is different from Yakiniku and Yakitori, this article about the difference between Yakiniku, Yakitori, and Teppanyaki will help.


Hi, I'm Tomo, a Japanese blogger living in Niigata Prefecture, Japan. For the purpose of enriching your life, I would like to introduce things about Japan on this blog, especially unique Japanese products, cooking recipes, cultures, and facts and trivia.

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