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How To Thicken Teriyaki Sauce – 15 Easy Ways (Explained)

Teriyaki sauce is a staple in many Asian-inspired dishes, from stir-fries to grilled meats and vegetables.

However, sometimes the sauce can turn out too thin and watery, making it difficult to coat your ingredients and achieve the perfect flavor balance.

If you’re wondering how to thicken teriyaki sauce, you’re in luck – there are plenty of easy and effective ways to do it.

In this article, we’ll explore 15 different methods for thickening teriyaki sauce, from using cornstarch and flour slurry to adding nut paste, egg yolk, and even gelatin.

Whether you prefer a creamy, rich sauce or a clear, glossy finish, we’ve got you covered with these easy-to-follow tips and tricks.

So let’s dive in and learn how to thicken teriyaki sauce in 15 different ways!

Teriyaki sauce and sesame seeds

How To Thicken Teriyaki Sauce In 15 Easy Ways

Teriyaki sauce is a popular Asian-style condiment with a thick, glossy consistency.

If your teriyaki sauce is too thin or watery, here are 15 easy methods to thicken it up:

1 – Oil or Butter

Butter

Adding oil or butter to teriyaki sauce can help thicken it and add richness to the flavor.

Here are a few ways to use oil or butter to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  • Start with a roux: A roux is a mixture of flour and fat that’s cooked together before being added to a sauce. To make a roux for teriyaki sauce, melt butter or heat oil in a saucepan, then whisk in an equal amount of flour. Cook the mixture for a few minutes until it turns light brown, then gradually whisk in the teriyaki sauce. Simmer the sauce for a few minutes until it thickens to your desired consistency.
  • Use a fat separator: If you have a fatty liquid like teriyaki sauce, you can use a fat separator to remove some of the fat and thicken the sauce. Pour the sauce into a fat separator and let it sit for a few minutes until the fat rises to the top. Then, pour the sauce out of the bottom of the separator, leaving the fat behind.
  • Add a pat of butter: For a quick and easy way to thicken teriyaki sauce, add a pat of butter to the sauce and whisk it in. The butter will melt and help thicken the sauce while adding a creamy texture.
  • Use sesame oil: Sesame oil has a rich flavor and can help thicken teriyaki sauce. Add a small amount of sesame oil to the sauce and whisk it in. Start with just a few drops and add more as needed.

2 – Cornstarch Slurry

cornstarch slurry

Another common method for thickening teriyaki sauce is to make a cornstarch slurry.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Mix cornstarch and water: In a small bowl, whisk together equal parts cornstarch and cold water until the mixture is smooth.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the cornstarch mixture into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken more as it cools.

Cornstarch is a great thickener for sauces because it doesn’t affect the flavor, and it creates a glossy, translucent finish.

However, it’s important to note that cornstarch can break down if it’s cooked for too long or at too high a temperature, so be sure to keep an eye on your sauce and stir it frequently while it’s cooking.

If you find that your teriyaki sauce is too thick after adding a cornstarch slurry, you can thin it out by whisking in a small amount of water or stock.

On the other hand, if your sauce is still too thin, you can make another cornstarch slurry and add it to the sauce, cooking until it thickens to your desired consistency.

3 – Flour Slurry

All-purpose Flour

Similar to cornstarch, flour can also be used to thicken teriyaki sauce.

Here’s how to make a flour slurry:

  1. Mix flour and water: In a small bowl, whisk together equal parts flour and cold water until the mixture is smooth.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the flour mixture into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken more as it cools.

Flour is a common thickener for sauces, but it has a slightly different texture than cornstarch. Flour-based sauces tend to be a bit more opaque and have a creamier mouthfeel.

However, it’s important to note that flour can also break down if it’s cooked for too long or at too high a temperature, so be sure to keep an eye on your sauce and stir it frequently while it’s cooking.

4 – Beurre Manié

Beurre Manié

Beurre manié is a French term for a mixture of butter and flour that’s used as a thickener.

Here’s how to use beurre manié to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Mix butter and flour: In a small bowl, mash together equal parts butter and flour with a fork until the mixture is well combined.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the beurre manié into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken more as it cools.

Beurre manié is a great way to add richness and flavor to teriyaki sauce while thickening it at the same time. However, it’s important to note that beurre manié can be a bit heavy and may not work well for lighter dishes.

Additionally, beurre manié can be difficult to incorporate evenly into a sauce, so be sure to whisk it in slowly and thoroughly to avoid lumps.

5 – Roux

roux

A roux is a mixture of flour and fat that’s cooked together before being added to a sauce.

Here’s how to use a roux to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Cook the roux: In a small saucepan, melt equal parts butter and flour over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the mixture turns light brown.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the roux into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken more as it cools.

Using a roux to thicken teriyaki sauce is a great way to add depth and flavor while creating a smooth, creamy texture.

Roux-based sauces tend to be a bit heavier than cornstarch or flour-based sauces, but they’re great for heartier dishes like stews or casseroles.

6 – Nut Paste

Nut Paste

Another way to thicken teriyaki sauce is to add a nut paste, such as almond or cashew paste.

Here’s how to use nut paste to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Add nut paste: Add a few tablespoons of nut paste to the teriyaki sauce and whisk until the paste is fully incorporated.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using nut paste is a great way to add nutty flavor and creaminess while thickening the sauce. This method is particularly useful for people who want to avoid using flour or cornstarch as thickeners.

7 – Reduce the Sauce

One of the simplest ways to thicken teriyaki sauce is to reduce it by simmering it over low heat.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Simmer the sauce: Pour the teriyaki sauce into a small saucepan and bring it to a simmer over low heat.
  2. Cook until thickened: Let the sauce simmer, stirring occasionally, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Reducing the sauce concentrates the flavors and thickens the sauce naturally. However, keep in mind that this method can take some time and may not work well if you’re in a hurry.

8 – Egg Yolk

egg yolk

Whisking an egg yolk into teriyaki sauce as it cooks is a great way to thicken the sauce and add richness.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Beat an egg yolk: In a small bowl, beat an egg yolk until it’s smooth.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the egg yolk into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using egg yolk to thicken teriyaki sauce adds a creamy texture and rich flavor to the sauce.

However, it’s important to note that adding too much egg yolk can cause the sauce to become too thick and curdle. Be sure to add the egg yolk slowly and gradually and keep a close eye on the sauce as it cooks.

9 – Mashed Potato

Mashed Potatoes

Adding a spoonful of mashed potato to teriyaki sauce is a unique way to thicken it.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Add mashed potato: Add a spoonful of mashed potato to the teriyaki sauce and stir until it’s fully incorporated.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using mashed potatoes creates a smooth, creamy texture and adds a mild potato flavor to the sauce.

However, keep in mind that this method may alter the overall flavor of the sauce and may not be suitable for all dishes.

10 – Xanthan Gum

Xanthan Gum

Xanthan gum is a thickening agent that’s commonly used in gluten-free cooking.

Here’s how to use xanthan gum to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Sprinkle xanthan gum: Sprinkle a small amount of xanthan gum over the teriyaki sauce and whisk it in.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using xanthan gum is a great option for people who want to avoid using flour or cornstarch as thickeners.

However, it’s important to note that using too much xanthan gum can cause the sauce to become too thick and gel-like.

11 – Arrowroot Powder

Arrowroot powder

Arrowroot powder is a starch that’s extracted from tropical plants.

Here’s how to use arrowroot powder to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Mix arrowroot powder: Mix arrowroot powder with a small amount of cold water to create a slurry.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the arrowroot slurry into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using arrowroot powder is a great option for people who want to avoid using flour or cornstarch as thickeners. Arrowroot powder creates a clear, glossy finish and doesn’t affect the flavor of the sauce.

12 – Miso Paste

White Miso Paste

Adding a spoonful of miso paste to teriyaki sauce is a unique way to thicken it and add umami flavor.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Add miso paste: Add a spoonful of miso paste to the teriyaki sauce and stir until it’s fully incorporated.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using miso paste to thicken teriyaki sauce creates a rich, savory flavor that’s great for Asian-inspired dishes. However, keep in mind that miso paste can be salty, so you may want to adjust the seasoning of your dish accordingly.

13 – Tomato Paste

Tomato Paste
Source: thekitchn.com

Adding a spoonful of tomato paste to teriyaki sauce is a unique way to thicken it and add a tangy flavor.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Add tomato paste: Add a spoonful of tomato paste to the teriyaki sauce and stir until it’s fully incorporated.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using tomato paste to thicken teriyaki sauce creates a tangy, slightly sweet flavor that’s great for dishes with a bit of acidity.

However, keep in mind that tomato paste can be quite thick, so you may want to adjust the consistency of your sauce as needed.

14 – Powdered Sugar

Adding a small amount of powdered sugar to teriyaki sauce is another unique way to thicken it and add a touch of sweetness.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Add powdered sugar: Add a small amount of powdered sugar to the teriyaki sauce and whisk until it’s fully incorporated.
  2. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using powdered sugar to thicken teriyaki sauce is a great option for people who want to add a touch of sweetness to their dish.

However, it’s important to note that adding too much powdered sugar can make the sauce overly sweet and affect the overall balance of flavors.

15 – Gelatin

Unflavored Gelatin

Gelatin is a protein that’s derived from animal collagen and is commonly used as a thickener in sauces, desserts, and other foods.

Here’s how to use gelatin to thicken teriyaki sauce:

  1. Bloom the gelatin: In a small bowl, sprinkle powdered gelatin over cold water and let it sit for a few minutes until it becomes soft and spongy.
  2. Add to the sauce: Gradually whisk the bloomed gelatin into the teriyaki sauce, stirring constantly.
  3. Cook until thickened: Cook the sauce over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens to your desired consistency.

Using gelatin to thicken teriyaki sauce creates a smooth, silky texture and can help stabilize the sauce.

However, it’s important to note that gelatin is not suitable for vegetarians or vegans, and it may alter the flavor of the sauce slightly.

Teriyaki sauce

How To Thicken Teriyaki Sauce

This article provides 15 easy and effective ways to thicken teriyaki sauce, including using a cornstarch slurry, roux, nut paste, and even gelatin. Each method is explained step-by-step, making it simple to achieve the perfect consistency and flavor. Whether you're a seasoned cook or a beginner, this article is a must-read for anyone wondering how to thicken teriyaki sauce.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Sauce
Cuisine Asian
Servings 4 people
Calories 15 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp cold water
  • 1 cup teriyaki sauce

Instructions
 

  • In a small bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon of cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of cold water until the mixture is smooth.
  • In a saucepan, heat 1 cup of teriyaki sauce over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.
  • Gradually pour the cornstarch slurry into the teriyaki sauce, whisking constantly to prevent lumps from forming.
  • Continue to whisk the sauce over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, or until the sauce thickens to your desired consistency. Keep in mind that the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools.
  • Once the sauce has thickened, remove it from the heat and use it as desired in your recipe.
  • If you find that your teriyaki sauce is still too thin, you can make another cornstarch slurry and add it to the sauce, cooking until it thickens to your desired consistency.
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Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.