Whenever I go to the mall with my mom, 50% of the time she would order Chicken Teriyaki with extra meat and extra sauce from Sarku Japan. Therefore, I thought she would appreciate me teaching her how to make it at home. So I set about experimenting and finally came up with this Chicken Teriyaki recipe that is exactly like Sarku’s. I served it to her only to hear her say to me “I cook only food that is not available to be purchased at restaurants.” Asian Moms are difficult to please I tell you!
So this Sarku Mall Chicken Teriyaki recipe has instead, become one of my meal prep staples. It’s tasty, healthy, and super easy. And because I made it myself, I know there is no MSG. Besides it is pretty economical to make at home. You may never order from Sarku’s again once you discover how easy it is to make it yourself.
Meal Prep Notes: I usually do a half prep, ie freeze the chicken with the chicken marinade and make an extra batch of sauce to freeze in the freezer. I have also frozen the fully cooked chicken teriyaki and while still tasty, it suffers about 20% flavor loss.
Additional Notes: Please use a high quality non-stick frying pan that can withstand high temperatures to brown the chicken. I have gone through so many non-stick frying pans but this Anolon Advanced Hard Anodized Nonstick 12-Inch Covered Ultimate has been with me since 2012 and still going strong.
1 lb boneless, skinless, chicken thigh (raw) | $1.99
2 garlic cloves (sauce) | $0.08
2-4 slices of ginger (sauce) | $0.08
2 cups chicken broth, homemade, reduced-sodium, or gluten-free (sauce) | $1.50
1 tbsp dark soy sauce or gluten free soy sauce (sauce) | $0.03
2 1/2 tbsp brown sugar (sauce) | $0.15
1 tbsp tapioca starch (sauce) | $0.04
3 tbsp water (sauce) | free
1/3 tsp baking soda (marinade) | $0.01
1 tbsp Shaoxing Wine (marinade) | $0.03
2 tbsp soy sauce or gluten free soy sauce (marinade) | $0.06
1/2 tbsp tapioca starch (marinade) | $0.02
2 tbsp olive oil | $0.24
Total: $4.15 | 4 servings | $1.04 per serving
STEP BY STEP PHOTOS
Pat dry the boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Slice them into small pieces no bigger than 1 inch by 1 inch. Smaller pieces allow for quicker cooking times to ensure the meat will stay tender. Combine the sliced chicken with 1/3 tsp baking soda, 1 tbsp Shaoxing Wine, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1/2 tbsp tapioca starch. Mix well and refrigerate for at least 24 hours. This part is important if you want tender flavorful chicken. I let the chicken marinate for 48 hours.
In a sauce pot add in 2 cups of reduced sodium chicken broth, 2 garlic cloves (chopped), 4 small slices of ginger. After the broth reaches boiling, let simmer for 15 minutes.
Add 2 1/2 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tbsp dark soy sauce. Taste the mixture and adjust flavor if needed. Mix 1 tbsp tapioca starch with 3 tbsp cold water. Pour cornstarch and water mixture into the broth to thicken it. You can make this mixture ahead of time or the day of since it only takes 15 minutes to do.
Set the chicken on the counter top for 30 minutes to let it come to room temperature before cooking. In a non-stick pan, on high heat, add in 1 tbsp olive olive. Spread the olive oil around the pan before adding in 1/2 of the chicken. It is important to not crowd the pot so that all the chicken pieces can get a nice sear. Cook until the chicken turns white at the edges like the picture shown below. Press down with the spatula from time to time to further sear the chicken. Check the sear of the chicken and ensure it is to your liking before flipping all the chicken pieces over. On my stove it takes approx. 3 minutes per side.
I like my chicken to be crispy but not too crispy. Shown below is the sear I like on my chicken. Adjust according to your preferences. Turn the heat off and set aside once the chicken reaches the desired crispiness.
Mix the sauce along with the chicken and serve hot. Serve with a side of mixed stir fry vegetables and rice to make it exactly like Sarku / Sakkio / Sakura Japan’s Chicken Teriyaki. Happy Eating!