Homemade teriyaki sauce isn’t something I ever really thought I’d be making, or recommending other people make. There are plenty of flavourful bottles of teriyaki sauce available at your local supermarket, I feel quite sure. But one day when I planned on teriyaki sauce in my dinner and found myself out, my mom pointed me to this little nugget of a recipe for homemade teriyaki sauce, one that takes all of 5 MINUTES to make, that uses basic ingredients, and that tastes absolutely delicious.
Thanks Mom! (And Betty Crocker.)
I never went back. (Well, ahem, kinda…I did buy a bottle once when it was on sale. But I didn’t like it quite as much anymore. Funny how that works, hey?)
So, what to do with this sauce, you ask? Let’s talk about stirfries. Stir fries? Are they one word or two, Andrew? I shall go with two unless someone tells me otherwise :)
Before I had kids, I would say stir fry was a pretty regular weekly staple. As a newlywed learning her way around the kitchen, there is not much that can go wrong here. You know you’re covering all your nutritional bases, and you will not prove your mother-in-law right by giving your handsome new husband scurvy, high blood pressure, diabetes, or food poisoning.
But you may have noticed that kids don’t really like super obvious, giant veggies in their dinner. My four-year-old will eat an entire serving platter of raw broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, cucumber, etc., but put those same veggies into her dinner and it’s a whoooole different story, with a much less happy ending.
I am a peacemaker and people pleaser (kind of – I also selfishly like to enjoy my dinner in peace), so I generally leave stir fry alone unless I have leftovers of something the kids can eat in its place. But recently I’ve felt the winds of change blowing through our home – not gale force winds, mind you, but at least some gentle breezes.
Veggies are ok in dinner now, especially if she can help with the prep and know exactly what’s in there, sampling the raw version, throwing them into the pan, and re-identifying them on her plate as we eat. My two-year-old also happens to LOVE veggies, so even if a few get picked out and set aside by his big sister, the majority of the family is actually really enjoying dinner.
Also, when buckwheat soba noodles go on sale for 10 cents a package at your local grocery store because their expiry date is fast approaching, and you are on a tight budget, you buy those 10 cent noodles and you make stir fry for days.
- 1½ lbs boneless, skinless chicken breast (approx 2-3 breasts, depending on size)
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced (or ½ tsp dried garlic seasoning)
- ½ a medium onion, thinly sliced
- ¾ cup chopped broccoli
- ½ cup sliced bell peppers (red, yellow, or orange)
- 1-2 large carrots, julienned or grated
- ½ tsp ground ginger (or 1 tsp grated fresh ginger)
- ⅔ cup teriyaki sauce (see below for recipe, or use prepared sauce)
- Noodles or rice for serving
- FOR TERIYAKI SAUCE:
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup soy sauce (I prefer reduced-sodium)
- 2 Tbsp ketchup
- 1 Tbsp white vinegar
- ¼ tsp pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- Cook chicken in oven at 375 degrees F for 30 minutes or until done.
- Meanwhile, make teriyaki sauce by combining all the ingredients listed. Set aside.
- Then, heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. When pan is hot, reduce heat to medium and sauté onion and garlic just until onions are translucent and garlic is fragrant, 3-4 minutes.
- Add all veggies and stir fry until tender crisp and bright in colour, 7-10 minutes. Add ginger, teriyaki sauce, and cooked chicken to veggies and stir to evenly coat everything. Bring to a gentle simmer and let cook for 3-5 minutes.
- Serve over hot cooked noodles or rice.
Obviously, stir fry is highly personalizeable with whatever veggies and sprouts you favour, and whatever meat you have handy, or no meat at all, or double the veggies…consider this recipe a suggestion, not a hard and fast rule book. Except for the teriyaki sauce. That is perfect just the way it is :)
Teriyaki Sauce: Betty Crocker’s Cookbook: Everything you need to know to cook today. (2000) Wiley Publishing, Inc.; Hoboken, NY.
Stirfry: Original creation.