Teriyaki Chicken Bowl

published May 27, 2022
Teriyaki Chicken Bowl Recipe

Rice, steamed broccoli, and carrots turn sweet and savory teriyaki chicken into a complete meal.

Serves6

Prep10 minutes

Cook1 hour 15 minutes

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A chicken teriyaki bowl, with sliced chicken teriyaki, carrots and broccoli
Credit: Perry Santanachote

While teriyaki originates from Japan, versions of the chicken teriyaki bowl have existed in the United States. for generations. The dish has become as associated with Seattle as pizza is with New York. Japanese-style teriyaki would never have sugar, ginger, or garlic in it, but this is America, and the chicken teriyaki even many Japanese Americans grew up eating is spiked with these aromatics and sweetened with sugar. 

Teriyaki is so popular now that you can pick up ready-made bottles of teriyaki sauce at just about any grocery store, but nothing beats homemade teriyaki sauce when it comes to marinating and glazing your juicy chicken thighs. It takes only 15 minutes to whip up and won’t be as thick or sticky sweet as the store-bought variety. Plus, it’ll give your chicken the world-famous sheen that teriyaki is named for.

Main Ingredients in a Teriyaki Chicken Bowl

The teriyaki marinade has only five ingredients: tamari soy sauce, brown sugar, mirin, ginger, and garlic. Once blitzed into a sauce, it’ll transform chicken thighs into a delightfully sweet, savory, and shimmery teriyaki that only needs rice and vegetables to make it into a bowl and satisfying meal.

Credit: Perry Santanachote

What Goes Well with Teriyaki Chicken Bowls?

Rice, of course, is the foundation of a teriyaki chicken bowl. Go for Japanese rice, which is well-suited to soak up the sauce but also maintains some bite. For the vegetables, you can keep it simple with steamed broccoli and carrots or opt for something creamier, like a slaw.

Teriyaki Chicken Bowl Substitutions 

The “yaki” in teriyaki refers to grilling or broiling, so this marinade is ideal for any foods that can handle high heat.

  • Salmon
  • Firm tofu
  • Portobello mushrooms
  • Shrimp
  • Steak

Teriyaki Chicken Bowl Recipe

Rice, steamed broccoli, and carrots turn sweet and savory teriyaki chicken into a complete meal.

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 1 hour 15 minutes

Serves 6

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 1 cup

    tamari or soy sauce

  • 1/2 cup

    packed light brown sugar, plus more as needed

  • 1/4 cup

    mirin with no added sugar, such as Eden

  • 1

    large broccoli crown (about 1 pound)

  • 18

    young carrots (about 1 pound)

  • 1 (1-inch) piece

    ginger

  • 4 cloves

    garlic

  • 3 pounds

    boneless, skinless chicken thighs (10 to 11)

  • 3 cups

    dry sushi rice

Instructions

  1. Place 1 cup tamari or soy sauce, 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar, and 1/4 cup mirin in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the sauce is glossy and thick enough to lightly coat the back of a spoon, about 15 minutes.

  2. Taste and add more sugar as needed. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cut 1 large broccoli crown into bite-sized florets (about 3 cups) and trim 18 young carrots if needed.

  3. Peel 1 (1-inch) piece ginger and thinly slice. Smash and peel 4 garlic cloves. Place the ginger, garlic, and 3/4 cup of the teriyaki sauce in a blender. Blend until smooth to make the marinade, about 30 seconds. Set aside the remaining teriyaki sauce for serving, or refrigerate in an airtight container if you’re cooking the chicken the next day.

  4. Place 3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs in a 1-gallon zipper-lock bag or large food container, add the teriyaki marinade, and flip the chicken until each piece is well coated. Seal the bag or cover the container and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.

  5. Rinse and cook 3 cups sushi rice according to package instructions. If the teriyaki sauce has been refrigerated, let it sit out at room temperature.

  6. Arrange an oven rack about 6 inches from the broiler element and set the broiler to high heat. Fit a wire rack in a rimmed baking sheet. Place the chicken in an even layer on the rack; discard the marinade. Broil until the chicken is lightly charred on top, 4 to 6 minutes. Flip the chicken and and broil until the second side is lightly charred and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest piece registers at least 165ºF, 4 to 6 minutes more. (Alternatively, grill the chicken on an outdoor grill over direct, medium-high heat.)

  7. While the chicken cooks, fill a steamer or large pot with a steamer insert with 1 to 2 inches water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to maintain a lively simmer.

  8. When the chicken is ready, transfer to a clean cutting board, tent with aluminum foil, and let rest for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, place the broccoli and baby carrots in the steamer in an even layer, cover, and steam until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.

  9. Cut the chicken crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. Serve with steamed rice, vegetables, and reserved teriyaki sauce.

Recipe Notes

Make ahead: The teriyaki sauce can be made ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

Storage: Leftover teriyaki chicken bowls can be refrigerated for up to 4 days.