15 Best Substitutes for Teriyaki Sauce

Substitutes For Teriyaki Sauce
Image credit: Cookist

One food that everyone enjoys is teriyaki sauce. It is a common dish in both homes and restaurants. But not all sauces are made equally.

Thanks to a few essential components, teriyaki sauce is what it is today. A popular Japanese sauce known as teriyaki may be used to flavor, marinade, and cook meals.

Even though it has been around for a while, the popularity of this cooking style is rising as more people become aware of its health advantages. Soy sauce, which includes sodium chloride or salt, is the key component of teriyaki sauce.

Teriyaki chicken is one of the most well-known recipes that employ this kind of sauce. It is frequently offered in most Asian eateries, particularly in Japan.

What would you do, though, if you attempted to create one at home but couldn’t locate this sauce? Do not be alarmed; you can substitute for teriyaki sauce. 

Several substitutes for teriyaki sauce that you may use in your recipes are covered in this article:

1. Korean Galbi Sauce

One of the greatest substitutes for teriyaki sauce is Korean galbi sauce. It is a traditional marinade for grilled meats such as beef, pig, lamb, and fish that originates in Korea.

The ingredients used are red pepper flakes, garlic powder, fresh ginger, sesame oil, brown sugar, vinegar, rice wine, and water. As a result, it tastes well and has a similar smokey flavor to teriyaki sauce.

To improve the flavor of your food while using a substitute for teriyaki sauce, it is best to add some additional ingredients.

Scallions have a wonderful scent when cooked, so you could also want to include some chopped ones in the mixture. Consider substituting honey for sugar if you prefer sweet tastes.

Apple cider vinegar can be used in place of water as an alternative. Finally, you might decide to eliminate the brown sugar. The fact that this sauce lacks any flavor means that you must season the meal properly before serving.

2. Oyster Sauce

One of the other excellent substitutes for teriyaki sauce is oyster sauce. The main ingredients are oysters, wheat flour, cornstarch, maltose syrup, mirin, ketchup, and salt. To stir-fried veggies and shellfish, this Chinese-inspired sauce is frequently used.

Its distinctive salty flavor makes it ideal for boosting these meals’ savory flavors. This marinade still has the same smokiness but is sweeter than teriyaki. 

Simply combine all the components to make this substitute smooth. When you are ready to eat, pour them over the prepared dish and set it aside for 10 minutes.

Remember that a low liquid to starch ratio should be used while creating this sauce. Instead of a thinner consistency, too much starch will produce a thicker one.

3. Worcestershire Sauce

Worcestershire sauce is a condiment that is available pretty much everywhere in the United States. It is even more comparable if you’re only familiar with Americanized teriyaki sauces, such as the Hawaiian teriyaki sauce.

This is because teriyaki sauce in the US sometimes includes other ingredients like garlic. Garlic, rice vinegar, salt, and other elements often found in teriyaki sauce are all present in Worcestershire sauce.

Even if you live in a rural region where it is difficult to get Asian spices and sauces, it is generally always accessible even though it is not the nearest alternative.

For a more realistic taste, I’d advise using some soy sauce with your Worcestershire sauce if you also have any in your cupboard. You can experiment with various quantities to find the best recipe for you.

4. Barbecue Sauce

Teriyaki sauce and barbecue sauce are comparable. However, barbecue sauce employs distinct kinds of spices.

Tomato paste, molasses, molasses, onion, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, chili peppers, and cayenne pepper are the typical ingredients in barbecue sauce.

These ingredients provide a spiciness and tanginess that go well with grilled meats. You must first eliminate the tomatoes from the recipe to make successful substitutes for teriyaki sauce.

The number of onions should then be cut in half. After that, add more soy sauce, sake, and mirin to the dish. Add some ground cloves or crushed black peppercorns to spice up the dish.

5. Tianmian Sauce

Originating in China, these substitutes for teriyaki sauce have a flavor somewhat reminiscent of sweet soy sauce from Indonesia.

It contains gluten since wheat flour was used in its production. This sauce is so thick that it could appear more like a paste than a sauce to some people.

Tianmian sauce is excellent for coating meat; if you’ve ever had Peking duck, you’ve probably had it. Given that it is created with soybeans and wheat, it may be referred to in your local store as sweet bean sauce, sweet wheat sauce, sweet wheat paste, or some of the above.

6. Ponzu Sauce

Since it has been around for centuries, ponzu sauce is extremely comparable to teriyaki. It was initially developed in Japan’s Edo era.

Ponzu sauce is thought of as the Indian-origin tamarind sauce’s Japanese equivalent. Similar to its counterpart, ponzu sauce is made from soybeans, citrus fruits, shoyu, and sugar.

However, ponzu sauce doesn’t have the sourness that comes from tamarinds as tamarind sauce does. Instead, it gives foods like sushi rolls a reviving sweetness and umami taste.

Because both ponzu sauce and teriyaki sauce are prepared using soybean products, they are simply interchangeable.

Therefore, if you create your own sauce from scratch, go to the guidelines below for making teriyaki sauce from scratch. Simply swap the primary component, blend the ingredients, and serve.

7. Sweet Soy Sauce

Sweet soy sauce is thicker and significantly sweeter than regular soy sauce and comes from Indonesia. It often contains palm sugar, which contributes to its thick consistency. However, brown sugar can also be used. It is referred to as kecap manis in Indonesia.

8. Hoisin Sauce

One of the most often used sauces among Asians is hoisin. It was created in China and is frequently referred to as “hoisin.”

Hoisin sauce, like teriyaki sauce, can be used as a dipping sauce for fried chicken even though it is often served with steamed rice.

Hoisin sauce has many flavors, including dark, light, red, and white variations. Each kind has a distinctive taste profile of its own.

You must first take the garlic and ginger out of your original recipe before using these as substitutes for teriyaki sauce.

Then you have to swap shallots and sesame oil for those two items. After that, you can use other ingredients like soy sauce, vinegar, and brown or white sugar.

Try substituting apple cider vinegar for the water if you want to take it further. But don’t forget to make the appropriate seasoning adjustments.

9. Tamari Sauce

Tamari might be a wonderful choice if you’re looking for a teriyaki substitute without gluten. It is made from fermented soybeans and is wheat-free. Additionally, it doesn’t include any oyster fluids, making it ideal for vegetarians.

Even though it’s thick, unless you add some sugar or honey, it doesn’t precisely taste like teriyaki sauce. Add a dash of salt or additional ingredients like umami or garlic to spice things up.

10. Coconut Aminos

Do you require simple substitutes for teriyaki sauce because of an allergy? Coconut aminos are your greatest choice in that case.

The greatest soy-free alternative to teriyaki sauce is this one, created from fermented coconut palm sap. It has been demonstrated to be less salty than teriyaki sauce, which may assist you in occasionally adhering to dietary restrictions!

11. Anti Stir Fry Sauce

Find any stir-fry sauce at your neighborhood grocery store by visiting the spices or Asian aisle. They frequently have soy sauce, some sugar, and sometimes some garlic, but you can check the ingredients to make sure.

12. Korean BBQ Sauce

Compared to American BBQ sauce, Korean BBQ sauce is somewhat more similar to teriyaki sauce. Nevertheless, depending on where you reside, it can be a little more difficult to locate.

It is sweet and contains a lot of soy sauce, just like teriyaki sauce. Remember that Korean BBQ sauce is the Korean counterpart of teriyaki sauce, which has Japanese origins.

13. Honey and Soy Sauce

Another excellent substitute for teriyaki sauce is honey and soy sauce. The sweet and savory taste profile of this mixture is comparable to that of teriyaki sauce.

This may be used in stir-fries, glazes, and marinades as substitutes for teriyaki sauce. Additionally, it’s an excellent method to spice grilled veggies or meats.

14. Homemade Teriyaki Sauce

Making your own teriyaki sauce at home is possible! Teriyaki sauce is really easy to make. It is mostly made out of soy sauce, mirin, and sugar.

Mix soy sauce, mirin, and sugar in a 2:2:1 ratio to get the ideal balance. Then you may sprinkle on some salt or garlic. Of course, you may always add extra sugar if you like it to be sweeter.

15. Soy Sauce With Sugar

If made correctly, soy sauce and sugar provide a flavor similar to teriyaki sauce. The umami taste of soy sauce makes it a frequent addition in many Asian recipes.

Sugar provides a slight sweetness and helps to counteract the soy sauce’s salinity. This alternative is great in rice bowls, noodle meals, and stir-fries. Tofu or meats can be marinated in it as well.

Finding the ideal ratio of soy sauce to sugar is crucial. The dish will taste salty if there is too much soy sauce and cloyingly sweet if there is too much sugar.

Find the percentage that works best for you by experimenting. Soy sauce and sugar can be used as substitutes for teriyaki sauce since it is adaptable and simple.


There are several substitutes for teriyaki sauce that you may use in a pinch. These alternatives will work whether you want something healthy or just don’t have any on hand. 

Therefore, don’t freak out the next time you’re cooking and notice you’re out of teriyaki sauce! Simply choose one of these substitutes for teriyaki sauce, and you’ll have no trouble finishing your meal.

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