This stovetop teriyaki chicken recipe is tender, out-of-this-world delicious, and so easy to make. Serve it alongside rice and veggies for a filling meal that’s even tastier and healthier than takeout.
In This Article
What Is Teriyaki Chicken?
There are few flavors we love more than teriyaki. Whether it’s grilled teriyaki salmon, tender teriyaki steak, or juicy teriyaki meatloaf, we’re always fans. When it comes to quick dinners, this easy teriyaki chicken just can’t be beat! If you’re unfamiliar, teriyaki is a type of Japanese cooking technique in which foods are broiled, grilled, or baked with a glaze made up of a combination of simple pantry ingredients like teriyaki sauce and sugar. It is easily recognized by its sweet and savory profile which is marked with a hint of garlic or ginger for just a little tang.
There are many variations of teriyaki, but for this recipe we kept the ingredient list short and sweet. Here’s what you’ll need:
- To make the sauce, we start with a store-bought Teriyaki Sauce that pairs incredibly well with literally everything.
- Cornstarch is dissolved with water to create the ultimate sticky glaze.
- White sugar and ginger powder help make everything nice especially when mixed with freshly squeezed orange juice.
- High-quality boneless skinless chicken thighs make for the most tender, flavorful chicken teriyaki you’ll ever taste.
- A dash of olive oil helps fry up your chicken for a perfectly juicy center and an irresistible crispy exterior.
- Make the Sauce: In a saucepan, combine all sauce ingredients. Use a hand whisk to stir thoroughly, ensuring there is no trace of undissolved cornstarch left. Turn heat to medium and cook, stirring, until sauce bubbles and thickens. Taste and add more sugar, if desired. Sauce will continue to thicken as it sits. Set aside.
- Dry the Chicken: Remove excess moisture from the chicken will help it sear in the pan. Take your time to pat dry the chicken well.
- Cut and Cook: Slice your chicken into small pieces for even cooking. Cook chicken just until no longer pink in center – do not overcook.
- Sauce it Up: Always serve with extra teriyaki sauce to your chicken for an out-of-this-world taste!
Bonus Pro Tips
It might look fancy, but this chicken is super easy to make, especially when you follow our tips below:
- Slice the Chicken into Even Pieces. This allows for quick, even cooking.
- Pat the It Dry. Be sure to thoroughly pat the chicken pieces with a paper towel to remove any excess moisture and ensure that the chicken browns in the pan.
- Don’t Overcook. Teriyaki is super quick to make! Be sure to keep a close eye on the pan, and remove the chicken as soon as it is no longer pink. Then, use a meat thermometer to check that it has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Use Fresh Orange Juice. The pre-made stuff from the store has too much sugar and preservatives to create the fresh orange taste we want to achieve.
- Garnish. Add a boost of texture, and finish your dish with a sprinkle of scallions and sesame seeds for a beautiful presentation.
What to Serve With Teriyaki Chicken
Our favorite way to serve up saucy teriyaki chicken is with rice, of course. Here are our top choices for rice side dishes.
- Instant Pot Jasmine Rice
- Easy Fried Rice, Chinese Style
- Chinese Sticky Rice (Meal Prep Friendly)
- Perfect Instant Pot Brown Rice
From stir fry veggies to crispy salads, a healthy dose of vegetables on the side will round out your healthy teriyaki chicken dinner.
We absolutely love having “teriyaki night” when we serve our friends and family their choice of favorite teriyaki dishes.
We highly recommend using thigh meat as it tends to remain tender even if slightly overcooked. However, if preferred, you can use boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead. Just be careful not to overcook!
For this stovetop teriyaki chicken recipe, you don’t have to marinate the chicken at all, making it super quick to whip up.
Yes, great for meal prep, leftovers can be kept in an airtight container for up to a week in the fridge.
Homemade teriyaki chicken is great to whip up in big batches and keep on hand for freezer-friendly meals that can be made in a pinch. Store it in the freezer for up to three months.
Also Try Thai Basil Chicken with Peppers
Did you make this?
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Easy Teriyaki Chicken
For the Sauce:
For the Chicken:
- 4 chicken thighs, skinless and boneless
- 2-3 TB olive oil, or canola oil
- Optional Garnish: thinly sliced scallions, toasted sesame seeds
- In a saucepan, combine all sauce ingredients. Use a hand whisk to stir thoroughly, ensuring there is no trace of undissolved cornstarch left. Turn heat to medium and cook, stirring, until sauce bubbles and thickens. Taste and add more sugar, if desired. Sauce will continue to thicken as it sits. Set aside.
- Thoroughly dry each piece of chicken with paper towels (this step is important to ensure chicken browns in the pan, rather than steams.) Cut chicken into 1/2-inch pieces.
- In a heavy large pan, heat oil on medium high until very hot. Add chicken and arrange in an even layer in pan. Let cook undisturbed for 2 minutes, or until bottom of chicken pieces are browned. Stir and cook just until chicken is no longer pink in center, about 2 more minutes. Remove from heat.
- Spoon desired amount of sauce over chicken and stir to coat. Garnish with scallions and sesame seeds, if desired. Serve with remaining sauce.
- We highly recommend using thigh meat, as it tends to remain tender even when accidentally overcooked. However, you may also use 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (take care not to overcook chicken breast meat.)
- For even browning and heat distribution, we use a large All Clad. As it’s not non-stick, be sure to use enough oil.
- To keep this dish gluten-free, be sure your teriyaki sauce is certified gluten-free.
- See original article for serving suggestions.
Nutrition (per serving)
More to Cook and Eat
- Baked Honey Soy Chicken – With only a handful of ingredients and minimal effort, this baked chicken is guaranteed to become a new family fave.
- Slow Cooker Chicken Teriyaki – Tender and saucy, this simple recipe is finger-licking great.
- Easy, Healthy Orange Chicken – Ready in just 30 minutes and made with one pan, this is one dinner you’ll be eager to make.
- Dad’s Asian Chicken Wings – A childhood favorite, we absolutely adore this homestyle recipe.