Chef John's Chicken Teriyaki


I have enjoyed teriyaki many times at Japanese restaurants. If I've made it at home I've probably just bought a bottle of teriyaki sauce and brushed it on some chicken. This is an authentic version. I'm very glad I did it. The term teriyaki comes from of two Japanese words 'teri' and 'yaki'. Teri refers to the shine or luster of the glazed sauce, and yaki means to broil or grill the meat.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
30 mins
Additional Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 15 mins
10 servings


  • 1 cup soy sauce

  • 1 cup sake

  • ½ cup mirin (Japanese sweet wine)

  • ¼ cup brown sugar

  • 3 green onions, chopped, white and dark green parts separated

  • 2 teaspoons finely grated ginger

  • 10 skinless, boneless chicken thighs

  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, or as needed


  1. Whisk soy sauce, sake, mirin, brown sugar, white parts of green onions, and ginger together in a saucepan; bring to a simmer and cook until sugar dissolves and marinade flavors combine, about 5 minutes. Pour marinade into a bowl and cool to room temperature.

  2. Pour 1/2 the marinade into a resealable plastic bag. Add chicken thighs, coat with the marinade, squeeze out excess air, and seal the bag. Marinate in the refrigerator, 30 minutes to 1 hour.

  3. Set oven rack about 6 inches from the heat source and preheat the oven's broiler. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and grease with vegetable oil.

  4. Arrange chicken thighs on prepared baking sheet. Discard excess marinade.

  5. Broil chicken in the preheated oven for 5 minutes. Flip thighs and broil for 5 minutes more. Flip thighs again and brush each thigh with reserved marinade. Continue to broil, brushing with reserved marinade every 1 to 2 minutes, until cooked through, about 12 minutes. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read at least 165 degrees F (74 degrees C). Garnish with dark green parts of green onions.


The nutrition data for this recipe includes the full amount of the marinade ingredients. The actual amount of the marinade consumed will vary.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

289 Calories
12g Fat
13g Carbs
21g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 10
Calories 289
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 12g 16%
Saturated Fat 3g 17%
Cholesterol 72mg 24%
Sodium 1510mg 66%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 0g 1%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 21g
Vitamin C 1mg 5%
Calcium 23mg 2%
Iron 2mg 9%
Potassium 248mg 5%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.