Gluten-Free Teriyaki Sauce

Gluten-free teriyaki sauce

The Spruce Eats / Rachel Riesgraf

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 5 mins
Servings: 20 servings
Yield: 2 1/2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
29 Calories
0g Fat
6g Carbs
1g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 20
Amount per serving
Calories 29
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 702mg 31%
Total Carbohydrate 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 3mg 14%
Calcium 9mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 76mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Wheat is one of the most common allergens found in processed food. It's key to baked goods, frozen meals, pastries, and soups, so most foods from a box that aren't made in dedicated gluten-free facilities might have wheat. Soy sauce, which one would expect would be free of gluten, isn't always, as wheat is used as a thickener. Therefore, most of the popular brands of soy sauce, as well as teriyaki sauces, might contain gluten. Thankfully, many more gluten-free brands are becoming available.

Many foods are off-limits when you need to maintain a gluten-free diet, but that doesn't mean great alternatives aren't available. There are options that are both delicious and easy to make, like our teriyaki sauce. Gluten-free doesn't mean without flavor: There are many tricks you can use to make great food that's free of wheat and has all the flavor of the regular options. Our delicious sauce is great as a dipping sauce, marinade, on grilled meats, with vegetables, or to season rice or stir-fried dishes.

Tamari is one of the better options out there to replace soy sauce, but read the labels because manufacturers often change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, abstain from buying and look for products that are certified gluten free. This is especially important if you have celiac disease or otherwise have a very strong reaction to gluten. If you are cooking for someone with severe wheat allergies, always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans, and tools are free of gluten.


  • 1 cup gluten-free soy sauce

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, firmly packed

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for gluten-free teriyaki sauce recipe gathered

    The Spruce Eats / Rachel Riesgraf

  2. Add all the ingredients into a 1-quart jar with a lid.

    Gluten-free soy sauce, apple cider vinegar, pineapple juice, brown sugar, and garlic powder in a jar

    The Spruce Eats / Rachel Riesgraf

  3. Secure the lid and shake until the brown sugar dissolves. If you don't have a jar with a lid, mix vigorously with a whisk and pour the sauce into a container with a lid for storage.

    Gluten-free teriyaki sauce ingredients in a jar

    The Spruce Eats / Rachel Riesgraf

  4. Store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks, preferably in a glass jar. Use in your favorite recipes.

    Gluten-free teriyaki sauce in a jar

    The Spruce Eats / Rachel Riesgraf

  5. Enjoy!

Substitutions and Additions

Here are some suggestions to enhance the flavor and texture of our basic sauce with some easy tricks and additions:

  • Thicker sauce: Place all ingredients in a saucepan and cook on medium-high heat, just until the sugar dissolves and the sauce begins to simmer. Let the sauce cool completely before storing it in a jar.
  • Sweetness: Replace the sugar with maple syrup or honey if you want to enjoy a different kind of sweetness and texture.
  • Sesame and garlic: Add 2 tablespoons of sesame oil into the sauce and a teaspoon of garlic powder. Complement with a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Mix well before each use.
  • Soy-free: Many people need to abstain from eating soy the same way they need to keep away from gluten. Our sauce can be made without soy by replacing the gluten-free soy sauce with coconut aminos. This fermented coconut sap is savoy with a touch of sweetness. Reduce the sugar amount to just 1 tablespoon. Mix well, taste test, and add sea salt if needed.

How to Use Gluten-Free Teriyaki Sauce

Teriyaki sauce is a great ingredient to have at hand in your fridge, as it can add a ton of flavor to all sorts of dishes without you having to work too hard. Here are a few ideas on how to make the best of this sauce:

  • Marinade: Teriyaki sauce is commonly used to impart flavor into meats: Simply coat firm tofu, tempeh, seitan, chicken, fish, pork, or beef before cooking. As it has a high percentage of sugar, the sauce might burn quickly if you don't pay close attention, but the result is an unbelievably succulent meal. Add chopped ginger, garlic, green onion, and a drizzle of sesame oil into the marinade and let the meat rest in the fridge for 20 to 30 minutes before cooking.
  • Rice: Teriyaki sauce can transform a bland plate of rice into a delicious meal. To change up your rice and pan-fried chicken dish, simply drizzle some teriyaki over your plate for instant gratification.
  • Stir-fry: Veggies like onions, peppers, celery, carrots, and broccoli make a great base for a stir-fry. Keep it vegetarian as is, or add tofu and perhaps chicken, beef, or fish for the meat eaters. A generous drizzle of teriyaki ties the dish together. Serve over steamed rice.
  • Dipping sauce: Potstickers, gyoza, kabobs, and even grilled ribs can be dipped in this delicious sauce.