Teriyaki Sauce Vs. Soy Sauce

Teriyaki Sauce Vs Soy Sauce: Can I Use Them As Alternatives?

It’s never easy to get that restaurant-like taste using random ingredients in any dish. But, if you’re into Japanese, Chinese or Asian cuisine, Soya sauce, and Teriyaki sauce can do a lot. Speaking of soy sauce and Teriyaki sauce, many people assume both sauces are the same. 

But no, Teriyaki and Soy sauce are not the same. They are different in taste, texture, appearance, and price. Teriyaki is an expensive element to use. You can’t use Teriyaki sauce as an alternative to soy sauce in every recipe but it’s okay to alternate them for a few recipes.

If you want to know more about soy and Teriyaki sauce, it’ll help to make your food taste better. First, you must know which sauce is required to bring which taste. You might also want to know the nutritious factors as well.

What is Teriyaki Sauce?

Chicken fillet in sesame seeds, teriyaki sauce and Chinese chopsticks on a black stone plate

Teriyaki Sauce is a sweet and salty ingredient used in different recipes to bring a salty taste. This special ingredient is widely popular in Japanese cuisine. Nowadays, In the USA, this special sauce is used widely. 

If you don’t know, Teriyaki comes from the Japanese words TERI and YAKI. Teri means “Luster,” and the other word, “Yaki,” means “cooking style.” It was invented in the 17th century in Japan.

Teriyaki sauce will make an amazing marination of meat and fish. It suits best with grilled chicken. Some also prefer this for making dipping sauce. If you love momos, sushi, kabobs, or dumplings, teriyaki sauce would be a perfect dipping sauce to try. This also tastes best with seafood. Even teriyaki sauce tastes amazing with vegetable salads. 

Some also use teriyaki sauce by spreading it over the oven/ cooker. It gives really good moisture to make your food well-baked. 

You can find this sauce in your nearest grocery shop. If you’re making this sauce at home, keep it in the refrigerator for a week. 

How is Teriyaki Sauce Made?

Teriyaki, traditional Japanese sauce

Teriyaki sauce contains mirin, brown sugar, honey, cornstarch, soy sauce, garlic powder, ginger powder, corn scratch, and water. These are stirred for five to seven minutes to thicken them. 

These major elements altogether bring a very sharp taste. Once you find the preferred level of thickness, turn the stove off. Then give it time to cool. Now you can use this sauce in your cooking process.  

What is Soy Sauce?

Soy Sauce

Soy sauce is another special liquid paste that’s used in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. However, even in Asian cuisine, soya sauce is a popular element. The sauce is mixed directly into the food. It has a dark color that gives your recipe an amazing color with a tasty and sweet hint. 

Soy sauce originated in China around 3000 years ago. This was used before the ease of the high price of salt. 

There are basically two different types of soy sauce; light soy sauce and sweet soy sauce. Light sauces are popular in Chinese dishes, whereas sweet ones are popular in Indonesian food. And Indonesian soy sauce has different varieties. 

Soy sauce tastes amazing with stir-fries, soups, noodles, sushi, sashimi, and stews. They are also used for meat and fish marination. You would also love salad dressing with soy sauce. Even soy sauce is another amazing ingredient used to make ice cream, caramel sauce, and other desserts.

You can get soy sauce in any grocery shop near you. And they can be stored at room temperature for a long time. They will enhance the taste of your food as other spices are used directly while cooking.

How is Soy Sauce Made?

Soy sauce includes fermenting soybeans, wheat, salt, and other elements. The main element of soy sauce is soybeans. 

Firstly, here Soybeans are soaked overnight. Then you can team them in high temperatures. Once you’re done with steaming, it goes for roasting and crushing. After that, you can make a koji mold. And there comes the process of fermentation. It takes around six months for the maturation process. And then, it needs to be filtered to extract the raw soy sauce. 

And for quick and easy homemade recipes: 

  • Get a pressure cooker and pour around 1 cup of water. Get your soybeans inside it.
  • Let it sit for 20 minutes on high heat.
  • As the soybeans are properly boiled, smash them thoroughly.
  • Now, get the paste out. 

Teriyaki Sauce Vs. Soy Sauce: Differences:

Teriyaki sauce is higher in price and better in taste. Besides, there are some other major differences between these two special sauces. Let’s check on them:

Comparison FactorsTeriyaki SauceSoy Sauce
TasteIt has more hit of a sweetnessSalty
Key IngredientSoy sauceSoybeans
Available formsRestaurants mostly use low-sugar teriyaki sauceRestaurants mainly use low-sodium soy sauce
ThicknessThickerSoy sauce has a light and thin texture
Used inTeriyaki sauce is used as a regular cooking agentSoy sauce is used as Asian cuisine 
ColorLight orangeReddish brown

Taste and Texture

Teriyaki sauce is basically an additive element. Its sweet, savory taste with thicker consistency brings a bold taste to any recipe. 

On the other hand, Soy sauce has a salty and sweet flavor. You can find its similarity with plum sauce. Teriyaki sauce has a watery and thin consistency. And on the contrary, thicker consistency. 


Soy sauce has more varieties in use than teriyaki. It can be used as an alternative to salt. You can use this sauce for marinating, seasoning, coloring, or dipping.  

And on the other hand, teriyaki sauce is traditionally used for marinating and dipping. They can also complement vegetable salads. But the use is quite limited to soy sauce. 

Soy sauce is an Asian additive element. And this is a cooking agent.


Teriyaki sauce is usually stored in the refrigerator. In contrast, soy sauce is generally kept at normal room temperature. Also, teriyaki sauce should be used for six months. If the bottle is not opened yet, you can use this for 1 hour.

Nutrition Factors:

  Nutrition FactorTeriyaki Soy Sauce
calories4 mg10 calories
Proteins 0 g2 grams
Fat18 g0 grams
Carbohydrates5 g0 carbohydrates 
Sodium302 mg920 milligrams
Potassium17 mg163 mg

Do Teriyaki Sauce and Soy Sauce Offer Health Benefits?

Yes, both sauces are made with healthy ingredients.

Soy sauce is used in very small quantities. They have immense health benefits. Soy sauce can improve your cholesterol level and fight menopause issues. They are good for preventing high blood pressure and minimizing stroke risk.

Soy sauce is full of antioxidants and sodium. In the USA, people use this special element in their food around 3,400 milligrams daily. 

But this will also trigger your allergy in many ways. This is not recommended for children.

On the contrary, teriyaki sauce has very little fat. Per tbsp of teriyaki sauce has around 2.2 g sugar. But this is not really high in vitamins. 

Soy sauce protects you from cancer. And for someone who wants to gain weight, teriyaki sauce will help them. It is really low in calories. So, it can also help your digestion system. 

And if someone has an allergic reaction to soy sauce, this will also affect health issues.

Can You Use Teriyaki Sauce Instead of Soy Sauce?

The answer is somewhere between yes and no. Since teriyaki sauce is too thick and sweet to be a substitute for soy sauce, it’s better not to use them as alternatives. However, it’s okay to use teriyaki sauce instead of soy sauce in recipes that include sugar, ginger, or honey.

In such recipes, the best way is to use both sauces in slight amounts. And if you’re making a dish with soy sauce and yet want that bold taste in it, consider using Teriyaki. 

Teriyaki Sauce or Soy Sauce; Which Is Better?

You can’t really decide which one is great, between Teriyaki and soy sauce. This entirely depends on your recipe. Teriyaki can make your recipe tastier if you want that tangy flavor. 

However, soy sauce seems to be a good pick. It has various uses. You can make hundreds of dishes with different cuisines. So, soy sauce is better that way.

Also, teriyaki sauce is good for a low-calorie diet. You will get a great flavor to your chicken, meat, and salad. Yet, this will not gain your extra calories.

Frequently Asked Questions

What flavor is similar to Teriyaki?

There are many other types of sauces that you can use as an alternative to teriyaki sauce. They are quite similar in their tangy-bold flavor. These sauces are barbecue sauce, Korean kalbi sauce, oyster sauce, ginger sauce, and others.

Which is sweeter, Teriyaki or soy sauce?

Teriyaki sauce has a sweeter flavor than soy sauce. Soy sauce can be used as a substitute for salt. At the same time, Teriyaki has a sweet yet tangy flavor. This increases your food’s taste.

Is teriyaki sauce full of sugar?

Yes, teriyaki sauce contains a high sugar level. It is full of sugar that comes from carbs. And the high level of carbohydrates gives that sweet flavor to teriyaki sauce.

Does soy sauce raise blood sugar?

No, it is a myth that soy sauce raises blood sugar. It is made with no carbohydrates. So, it is safe for people following a weight loss diet.


Soy sauce and teriyaki sauce are both amazing ingredients for any exotic dish. But there are some basic differences that every cook must need to know. Soy sauce can be used in many ways in many dishes.

And fancy Japanese dishes require teriyaki sauce to make them more tender. And, if you don’t want to waste much of your teriyaki sauce, mix it with soy instead. After all, teriyaki sauce seems to be higher in price.

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