Learn how to make delicious and easy homemade Teriyaki Sauce the authentic Japanese way. You only need four ingredients! Sweet, savory, and versatile, it will be your go-to sauce for chicken, salmon, tofu, pork, and even meatballs.
Gather all the ingredients. See Notes for half-portion ingredients and substitutions for sake and mirin.
In a saucepan, add ½ cup sake and ½ cup mirin.
Add ½ cup soy sauce and ¼ cup sugar.
Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat and continuously stir the sauce until the sugar is dissolved. Once boiling, lower the heat to medium low. Simmer for 10–15 minutes or until the sauce is thickened.
As you mix the sauce or tilt the saucepan, small bubbles will start to rise and appear on the surface. When this happens, the sauce is ready to use. Pour the sauce into a sterilized jar and leave uncovered to cool. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
Once cooled, close the lid and store in the refrigerator for up to 2–3 weeks.
To Use the Teriyaki Sauce
Teriyaki Salmon: Season salmon fillets with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Lightly coat the salmon with all-purpose flour. Heat a frying pan over medium heat, then add cooking oil or butter. Add the salmon to the pan and cook it on one side for 3 minutes. Once nicely browned, flip the salmon. Add 1 Tbsp sake and cover to cook for another 3 minutes. Remove the lid and spoon the Teriyaki Sauce over the salmon to coat well.
Teriyaki Chicken: Season boneless, skin-on chicken thighs (or chicken breast, if you prefer) with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Lightly coat the chicken with all-purpose flour. Heat a frying pan over medium heat, then add cooking oil or butter. Add the chicken to the pan, skin side down, and cook until browned. Flip the chicken and cover the pan until the chicken is cooked through. Wipe off the oil from the frying pan with a paper towel. Spoon the Teriyaki Sauce over the chicken to coat well.
Teriyaki Tofu: Drain well a block of firm tofu (pressing it or microwaving it for 1 minute). Cut the tofu into steaks (slabs) and lightly coat them with all-purpose flour. Heat a frying pan over medium heat, then add cooking oil. Add the tofu steaks and cook on both sides until golden brown. Spoon the Teriyaki Sauce over the tofu steaks to coat well.
You can also pour additional Teriyaki Sauce onto the finished dish.
Substitution for ½ Cup Sake:
with alcohol: ½ cup dry sherry or Chinese rice wine
without alcohol: ½ cup water
Substitution for ½ Cup Mirin:
with sake: ¼ cup sake + ¼ cup water + 3 Tbsp sugar
without sake: ½ cup water + 3 Tbsp sugar
To make a half portion of this recipe, use ¼ cup (4 Tbsp) sake, ¼ cup (4 Tbsp) mirin, ¼ cup (4 Tbsp) soy sauce, and 2 Tbsp sugar.