Teriyaki chicken (照り焼きチキン) is a really famous Asian dish nowadays. Believe it or not, whipping up delicious Japanese teriyaki chicken is a breeze! In less than 20 minutes, using your trusty pan or microwave, and just a handful of ingredients, you’ll be enjoying that authentic flavor right at home.

Close-up photo of mouthwatering teriyaki chicken, showcasing golden-brown glazed chicken pieces

❤️ Why this recipe works?

  • Family-friendly. Teriyaki chicken is a hit with both kids and adults alike. Its sweet and savory flavors appeal to a wide range of palates, making it a family-friendly option for lunch or dinner.
  • Authentic. While many online recipes have been Westernized with this beloved dish, I would like to stick with the classic Japanese Teriyaki style in terms of both ingredients and cooking method.
  • Just 20 minutes for cooking. You don’t have to marinate the chicken in advance so it’s perfect for busy weeknights when you crave a quick and satisfying meal. Say goodbye to store-bought Teriyaki sauce from now on.
  • Pan or Microwave: Enjoy the ease of homemade Teriyaki chicken without the need for an oven.

🍗 Ingredients

THE BEST CHICKEN CUTS

Chicken Thighs for Japanese Teriyaki Chicken

When it comes to chicken dish, chicken thighs are always my ultimate choice because they are not easy to dry out. So you can get tender, flavorful, and juicy meat every time.

Boneless, skin-on chicken thighs are the favorite cut for the classic teriyaki chicken. Chicken breast or chicken tenders can also be used, but be sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Don’t forget to check my other quick and easy recipes with chicken.

USING POTATO STARCH

Japanese often use potato starch (or cornstarch) for “dredging” the chicken before pan-frying them. It means they coat the meat with a thin layer of starch.

It helps to enhance the flavors in many ways. First, the skin on the meat will become slightly crispy with more vibrant color. Then, the starch also helps the sauce sticks to the meat better.

HOMEMADE TERIYAKI SAUCE

There are four basic ingredients for Japanese Teriyaki Sauce:

Teriyaki chicken ingredients 1
  • Shoyu (Japanese soy sauce). Opt for a high-quality, authentic Japanese soy sauce for the best results.
  • Sake (Japanese rice wine). Sake adds depth and complexity to the Teriyaki sauce. It imparts a subtle sweetness and helps eliminate any chicken odor.
  • Mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine). Mirin contributes a delightful sweetness and a glossy finish to the sauce. It balances the savory elements and adds a touch of umami to the Teriyaki sauce.
  • Sugar. Small amount of sugar is added to the sauce to further enhance the sweetness and help create the desired sticky consistency.
Teriyaki chicken is a delightful Japanese dish featuring a perfect balance of sweet and savory teriyaki sauce. This is the best chicken teriyaki recipe that calls for only 4 ingredients. You could prepare it with a pan or a microwave. So easy, so delicious!

To make a delicious homemade teriyaki sauce, use this simple ratio: 2 parts Shoyu or Tamari, 2 parts Sake, 2 parts Honmirin, and 1-1.5 parts sugar, adjusting the sugar to taste.

While the classic recipe calls for only the four basic ingredients , Japanese also could include ginger, garlic and scallion to their Teriyaki sauce.

For my own taste, I would like to enhance the flavor of my Teriyaki chicken with these aromatics. Aromatics are such a game changer here.

📹 Instructional Video:

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📝 Instructions:

  • In a bowl, combine Japanese Soysauce (Shoyu), Sake, Mirin, and sugar.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Poke the chicken with a knife or a fork. The chicken are not marinated in advance so poking chicken is a must. It helps chicken absorb more flavors from the sauce.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Lightly season the chicken thighs with salt. Then, thinly coat the chicken with potato starch (or corn starch), ensuring to brush off any excess starch.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction

PAN-FRYING METHOD

  • Heat a frying pan with a little oil and place the chicken thighs, skin side down. Press them with a spatula to help achieve crispy skin.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Fry the chicken thighs for approximately 5-7 minutes, rotating them occasionally for even browning.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Once the fat has rendered from the skin and the skin is golden brown, flip the chicken thighs over. Use a paper to wipe off all excess oil.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Quickly add the teriyaki sauce, minced ginger, minced garlic, and scallions to the pan.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Lower the heat to medium-low and cook until the sauce is reduced by about half, spooning it over the chicken thighs regularly.
Teriyaki Chicken instruction
  • Once the sauce thickens, turn off the heat. Serve the chicken thighs on a plate and drizzle the remaining sauce on top.
Close-up photo of mouthwatering teriyaki chicken, showcasing golden-brown glazed chicken pieces.

MICROWAVING METHOD

  • In a microwave-safe bowl, mix the chicken with teriyaki sauce and place the chicken thighs upside down. Cover the bowl.
Pour the sauce to the chicken.
  • Microwave on high heat for 5 minutes (my microwave is 650W).
Cover the bowl of chicken with marinade
  • Remove the bowl, flip the chicken, cover it again, and microwave for an additional 3 minutes.
Marinated chicken in a bowl.
  • Your Japanese Chicken Teriyaki is done!!
Deliciously prepared Japanese Teriyaki Chicken, glazed in a savory and sweet Teriyaki sauce.

What to serve with Chicken Teriyaki

Traditionally, Chicken Teriyaki is enjoyed with steamed rice to create Teriyaki Chicken Rice Bowl and a side of salad or steamed vegetables.

Teriyaki Chicken Rice Bowl

However, you can add a twist by pairing Chicken Teriyaki with various carb options like sticky rice, noodles or even as a filling for your wraps, chicken summer rolls and Banh Mi sandwiches. This allows for a versatile and delicious meals.

Did you find this recipe helpful?

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Close-up photo of mouthwatering teriyaki chicken, showcasing golden-brown glazed chicken pieces

Japanese Teriyaki Chicken in 20 Minutes (Pan-fry / Microwave)

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Making authentic Japanese teriyaki chicken (照り焼きチキン) is surprisingly simple with your pan or microwave. It needs a few ingredients and could be prepared under 20 minutes.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Course Family meal, Main Course
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 2 people

Equipment

  • 1 Large bowl
  • 1 non-stick pan
  • 1 Spatula

Ingredients
  

For the chicken thighs:

  • 1.1 lb chicken thighs (500g)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tbsp Potato starch (or cornstarch)

For Japanese Teriyaki sauce:

  • 2 tbsp Japanese soysauce (Shoyu)
  • 2 tbsp Mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
  • 2 tbsp Cooking Sake (Japanese rice wine)
  • 1.5 tbsp Sugar (adjust to your taste)
  • 1 tbsp Minced Ginger (optional)
  • 1 tsp Minced Garlic (optional)
  • 1 Scallion (optional)

Instructions
 

For the Japanese Teriyaki sauce:

  • In a bowl, mix together Japanese soy sauce, sake, mirin, and sugar.

For the chicken thighs:

  • Use a knife or fork to poke the chicken. Since the chicken is not marinated beforehand, this step is essential for allowing it to absorb more flavors from the sauce.
  • Sprinkle salt over the chicken thighs, and then thinly coat them with potato starch (or corn starch), making sure to remove any excess starch.

Pan-frying method

  • Preheat a frying pan with a small amount of oil and place the chicken thighs in it, skin side down. Apply gentle pressure with a spatula to help achieve a crispy skin.
  • Fry the chicken thighs for approximately 5-7 minutes, turning them occasionally for even browning.
  • Once the fat has rendered from the skin and it turns golden brown, flip the chicken thighs. Use a paper towel to remove any excess oil.
  • Quickly add the teriyaki sauce, minced ginger, minced garlic, and scallions to the pan.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue cooking until the sauce has reduced by about half, spooning it over the chicken thighs regularly.
  • Once the sauce thickens, turn off the heat. Arrange the chicken thighs on a plate and drizzle the remaining sauce over them.

Mirowaving method

  • In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the chicken with teriyaki sauce, arranging the chicken thighs upside down. Cover the bowl.
  • Heat on high for 5 minutes (for my 650W microwave).
  • Carefully take out the bowl, flip the chicken. Cover the bowl again and microwave for another 3 minutes.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
5/5 - (36 votes)

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