Maybe it’s my inner college student, but I can never turn down a free sample. My most recent mistake was a little toothpick of teriyaki chicken that the Asian fast-food joint in our mall food court was passing out to unsuspecting shoppers. While it tasted good at first, I was eventually hit with an overly sweet, oily aftertaste, and the texture of the chicken was…questionable. Please do yourself and your taste buds a service; ditch the takeout and make this Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken recipe instead!
Along with General Tso’s, teriyaki chicken was my high school fast-food favorite. Whenever I was out running errands with my mom, I’d beg her to stop at Japan Express so that I could order their jumbo-sized bowl of teriyaki chicken with sticky rice.
While it was absolutely a step up from the mall food court, that chicken, though tasty, never left me feeling particularly stellar afterwards. I’d often experience a serious afternoon slump, which I now recognize as a sugar crash. I’m pleased to report that today’s homemade slow cooker honey teriyaki chicken recipe has the same addictive takeout flavor I remember but is made with real, more wholesome ingredients you can feel good about enjoying any night of the week.
Homemade Sauce for Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken
You don’t need bottled teriyaki sauce to make teriyaki chicken. This homemade teriyaki sauce recipe is only six ingredients, most of which I bet you have in your pantry right now: soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, brown sugar, and garlic and ginger. Simply stir the sauce ingredients together, place the chicken in your crock pot, then pour the teriyaki sauce over the top. Bye bye bottle.
If you’re a fan of teriyaki sauce, you’ll also love this Teriyaki Salmon recipe.
For max tenderness, I opted for slow cooker teriyaki chicken thighs. Even though I usually prefer white meat, by the time the chicken thighs are bathed in that wonderful homemade honey teriyaki sauce, the dark meat is undetectable. White meat dries out more quickly in the slow cooker, so if you are open to trying the thighs, that’s what I’d recommend for this Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken. (If you’ve got an Instant Pot, check out my recipe for Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken. Or take a look at this stovetop Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry!)
Prefer beef recipes? This Crock Pot Pepper Steak is calling your name!
What to Serve with Teriyaki Chicken
- I like to serve this dish with my favorite brown rice. Or go fancy and make my friend Sommer’s homemade lo mein noodles.
- For a more complete meal, transform the recipe into slow cooker teriyaki chicken and vegetables by steaming or sautéing some fresh broccoli or a thawed bag of frozen mixed stir-fry veggies on the side, then mix it in with the chicken and sauce just before serving.
More Crock Pot Chicken Recipes You’ll Love
- Crockpot Sweet and Sour Chicken
- Crock Pot Cashew Chicken
- Crockpot Orange Chicken
- Slow Cooker Honey Garlic Chicken
- Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken
- Crock Pot Mexican Casserole
Recommended Tools to Make Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken
Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken
- 1 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 2/3 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Toasted sesame seeds for serving
- Chopped green onions for serving
- Prepared brown rice quinoa, or other whole grain, for serving
- Place the chicken thighs in the bottom of a 6-quart or larger slow cooker.
- In a medium bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, brown sugar, garlic, and ginger. Pour over the chicken thighs.
- Cover and cook on high for 2 hours or low for 4 hours, until the chicken is tender and cooked through. Remove the chicken to a plate and shred with two forks. Strain the cooking liquid through a mesh sieve and into a medium saucepan.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until smooth. Add to the strained cooking liquid, whisk to incorporate, then heat the saucepan over medium high, stirring constantly until the sauce bubbles. Continue cooking and stirring until glossy and thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
- Add the chicken to the sauce. Toss to coat. Serve warm with rice or quinoa, garnished with sesame seeds and green onions as desired.
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