Homemade Yakiniku Sauce

A delicious Asian BBQ sauce…

If you like your barbecue sauces a little sweet, a little fiery, and a bit exotic, try crafting up a homemade yakiniku sauce. Yakiniku in Japanese simply means “grilled meat”, so really the sauce says exactly what it is: grilled meat sauce. It’s a perfect marinade to add an Asian-inspired sweet and gingery twist (with a little crushed red pepper heat) to your steak, chicken, or pork. Or just use it as a drizzling or dipping sauce, as you would any other barbecue sauce.

Try this yakiniku sauce over veggies too. There’s an earthiness behind the sweetness that brings life to plain broccoli or cauliflower. It turns a simple vegetable dish into something much, much more. This is an excellent crudités sauce, particularly if you’re looking for something more unique than the norm.

Our homemade yakiniku sauce is one of many unique sauces and dips in our spicy recipe index. In particular, two are terrific options for grilled meats as well. Our homemade yum yum sauce (well known from Japanese hibachi restaurants) is delicious with grilled steak and really easy to make. Or try our homemade hoisin sauce. It’s a unique mix of sweet and spicy, perfect for pairing with grilled pork.

homemade yakiniku sauce

Homemade Yakiniku Sauce

Delicious with grilled meats
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Sauce
Servings 16 servings
Calories 16 kcal


  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon white miso
  • 1 tablespoon ginger juice or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper or to taste, keep it coarse or crush fine
  • Mirin to taste, can use cooking sake as a substitute


  • In a mixing bowl, add all of the ingredients and stir to combine.
  • Pour the sauce into a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, lower the heat and allow the sauce to thicken. While thickening, adjust the crushed red pepper, miso, and mirin (or cooking sake used) until you get your desired balance of flavor. 
  • Remove from the heat and allow the sauce to cool. Use immediately. Or for best flavor, cover the yakiniku sauce and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours to allow the flavors to meld.


Calories: 16kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 318mgPotassium: 22mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 150IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 3mgIron: 0.2mg


Keyword Crushed Red Pepper
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UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on January 31, 2020 to include new content. It was originally published on February 27, 2017.