Teriyaki Chicken marinade is a favorite not only in Japan, but in homes and restaurants around the world. The Teriyaki sauce you buy in the store might taste a bit different from the original Japanese version. But it's so easy to make, you'll never buy Teriyaki sauce again.
According to Wikipedia, the word teriyaki derives from the noun teri (照り), which refers to a shine or luster given by the sugar content in the tare (タレ), and yaki (焼き), which refers to the cooking method of grilling or broiling. So Chicken Teriyaki basically means grilled shiny chicken. And I love eating grilled shiny chicken!
You can find Teriyaki sauce for sale in any supermarket. It's most often used as a marinade or as a Teriyaki dip. We love making a Teriyaki Chicken marinade, before we grill our chicken, just like the name suggests!
How to Make Teriyaki Chicken Marinade
Teriyaki Chicken is popular in western countries, usually as a stir fry served with rice. This is an authentic Japanese Teriyaki Marinade recipe, without any strange additions like orange juice or other added sweetness. A real authentic Japanese recipe.
The Teriyaki Chicken marinade only has 4 ingredients;
- Soy Sauce
Japanese Sake as the key ingredient that makes it taste authentic to me. Sake can be expensive, so people sometimes skip it from recipes. You can substitute Sake with Chinese Cooking Wine or Shaoxing, which is a rice wine made from fermented rice. Sake is a bit sweeter than Shaoxing, so you might want to add a pinch more sugar.
The other essential ingredient is Mirin, which is another sweeter type of rice wine. The sweetness of Mirin contrasts perfectly with the saltiness of soy sauce and sake. To make the marinade, just mix all the ingredients together with and you're done. The hardest part of this recipe is waiting for the chicken to marinate before cooking.
How to cook Teriyaki Chicken
When I was in Japan, grilled Teriyaki was everywhere, usually with chicken or fish and cooked over hot coals or a grill. This was one of my favourite meals in Japan, but most of us don't have the luxury of grilling over coals, so a frying pan will do the trick.
Chicken thighs are juicier and more flavorful, and traditionally made with Japanese Teriyaki, but you can use chicken breast (but it will be drier). The Japanese sometimes leave the chicken skin on the thighs, as the crispy skin adds more flavor and texture. I'm using boneless and skinless chicken thighs.
I marinate them in a Ziploc bag for at least 2 hours before cooking, because I like the flavor right through. It's probably more authentic to crispy fry the chicken without marinade, and toss it through the sauce in the last few minutes of cooking. It's up to you, however, I love the marinate the chicken.
You can bbq them on skewers, over a bbq grill, or pan fry on your kitchen stove. The bbq is pretty self explanatory, so this recipe prepares Teriyaki Chicken in a frying pan. This recipe also allows you to make it year round! When frying the Teriyaki Chicken, fry the chicken with a bit of oil, without the extra marinade. After the chicken is cooked and crisps up, add the remaining marinade and cook for a few minutes until the sauce thickens.
How to Serve Chicken Teriyaki
You can serve this recipe over noodles (less common) or usually over white rice with some steamed vegetables. It makes an easy Teriyaki Rice Bowl. Slice some Asian greens in half and steam them for 2 minutes to serve alongside the Chicken Teriyaki. The extra cooked Teriyaki sauce gets drizzled over the whole thing, and sprinkle with some Sesame Seeds. It's that easy to make a healthy dinner for your family.
Teriyaki Recipe Tips
- Grill, Skewer or Pan Fry the chicken thighs
- If serving with rice, double the Teriyaki Sauce, as it will absorb into the rice
- Marinate meat for at least 2 hours in advance, 20 minutes if in a hurry, or not at all!
- Cut each chicken thigh into 4 to 6 pieces to keep size consistent
- Mirin substitute, mix 1 tablespoon dry sherry with 1 tablespoon of sugar
- Substitute honey for sugar in the marinade
- Adjust Teriyaki to your own flavors, add more or less Soy, Mirin, or Sake
- Not authentic, but add a bit of Pineapple Juice into the marinade - sweetens and also helps tenderize the chicken, make it Hawaiian Teriyaki!
- Substitute Chicken with Fish
Bring home a bit of Japan for dinner tonight. This easy Chicken Teriyaki recipe is an authentic Japanese classic, quick to make and sure to be a family favorite. Ready to grill, bbq, pan fry, or add to a stir fry. Bon Appetit! Приятного аппетита!
Teriyaki Chicken Marinade
- 1 lb /500g boneless, skinless chicken thighs chopped into pieces
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sake
- 1 tablespoon mirin
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- Place all the ingredients in a bowl or a Ziploc bag and allow to marinate for at least 2 hours.
- In a frying pan, heat oil and fry the chicken thigh pieces until they are golden brown. DON'T FRY THE CHICKEN IN THE MARINADE! The chicken thighs should be fried without the sauce, allowing them to crisp up, especially important if there is skin on the chicken thigh pieces.
- When the chicken is cooked, add the Teriyaki marinade and cook until the sauce thickens, usually a few minutes.
- Serve with rice and garnish with sesame seeds and green onions.