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Please do yourself and your taste buds a service; ditch the takeout and make this Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken recipe instead!

bowl of crock pot teriyaki chicken over rice

Along with General Tso’s Tofu, 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 afterward.

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 takeout flavor I remember but is made with real, more wholesome ingredients you can feel good about enjoying any night of the week.

You don’t even need bottled teriyaki sauce to make this teriyaki chicken.

  • The 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. (If you’re a fan of teriyaki sauce, you’ll love this Teriyaki Salmon recipe too.)
  • Simply stir the sauce ingredients together, place the chicken in your crock pot, then pour the teriyaki sauce over the top. Bye-bye bottle.
2 bowls of Teriyaki chicken and rice garnished with sesame seeds

What is Teriayki Chicken?

Teriyaki chicken is pieces of tender cooked boneless chicken breasts or thighs in a teriyaki chicken marinade. It’s tossed in a teriyaki sauce sauce that is sweet, sticky, and savory. It is typically served over rice.

Teriyaki chicken sauce is made of soy sauce, garlic, ginger, vinegar, and sugar (I used a combination of brown sugar and honey for this recipe).

While Teriyaki chicken is actually Japanese, what we order at takeout restaurants in America is typically a much sweeter version of a classic Japanese teriyaki chicken recipe.

5 Star Review

“A hit! This was so easy to make, and my hard-to-please eaters really enjoyed it!”

— Jenni —

How to Make Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

With easy prep and an even easier ingredients list, this crock pot teriyaki chicken recipe is one you’ll want to make on repeat.

It’s family-friendly and tastes amazing leftover.

The Ingredients

  • Chicken Thighs. 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.

Substitution Tip

If you prefer to make a teriyaki chicken breast recipe, try my stovetop Teriyaki Chicken, Instant Pot Teriyaki Chicken or Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry instead. Or, you can swap chicken breast in this recipe. Note that it will cook more quickly.

  • Soy. The main flavor maker in our homemade teriyaki sauce. It adds delightful umami goodness. I used low-sodium soy sauce to keep the sauce from becoming too salty.
  • Rice Vinegar. Acidity with a hint of sweetness.
  • Honey + Brown Sugar. Teriyaki sauce needs some sweetness, so I chose to use a combination of honey and brown sugar. Both ingredients also help make the sauce thick and sticky.
  • Garlic + Ginger. The classic duo that creates exceptional, can’t-be-missed flavor.
  • Cornstarch. A teriyaki chicken cornstarch slurry helps thicken the sauce.

The Directions

  1. Add the chicken to a slow cooker.
  2. Whisk the sauce ingredients together, then pour it over the chicken.
  3. Cook on HIGH for 2 hours or on LOW for 4 hours. Shred the chicken. Strain the sauce into a saucepan.
  4. Whisk the cornstarch slurry into the saucepan, cooking over medium-high heat until thickened. Remove it from the heat.
  5. Stir the chicken into the sauce. Serve with rice or quinoa, sesame seeds, and green onions. DIG IN!
bowls of Asian chicken teriyaki served over rice

Storage Tips

  • To Store. Refrigerate chicken in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
  • To Reheat. Rewarm leftovers in a skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
  • To Freeze. Freeze teriyaki chicken in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

Meal Prep Tip

Up to 1 day in advance, whisk the sauce ingredients together. Cover and refrigerate it until you’re ready to finish the recipe.

What to Serve with Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

Frequently Asked Questions

Can You Overcook Pulled Chicken in a Slow Cooker?

Yes, you can overcook pulled chicken in a slow cooker. 2 hours on HIGH or 4 hours on LOW is how long chicken cooks in a crockpot. To ensure you don’t overcook the chicken, follow the cook times listed in the recipe instructions. For ease, you can also use an instant read thermometer to check for doneness.

Is Teriyaki Chicken Good for You?

Generally, takeout teriyaki chicken is not good for you because of its high levels of sugar and sodium. This crock pot teriyaki chicken, however, uses less sugar than most restaurant-style teriyaki chicken dishes. To keep the sodium level low, I also made this as a low-sodium Kikkoman teriyaki chicken slow cooker recipe.

Is it Safe to Slow Cook Chicken in a Crock Pot?

While it is safe to slow cook chicken in a crock pot, you cannot put frozen chicken in a crockpot. The chicken may spend too long at room temperature and become unsafe to eat.

What Can I Add to My Teriyaki Chicken?

To boost the recipe’s nutrition content and add flavor, you could make this into a crock pot teriyaki chicken with pineapple (add diced pineapple a the end) or a crock pot teriyaki chicken and broccoli (serve it with my Grilled Broccoli or Air Fryer Broccoli, or stir in broccoli florets during the last hour or so of cooking).

Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

4.69 from 200 votes
An easy recipe for Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken that takes less than 10 minutes to prep! Delicious, healthy, and so much better than takeout!

Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 4 hours
Total: 4 hours 10 minutes

Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 1/2 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.



  • TO STORE: Refrigerate chicken in an airtight storage container for up to 4 days.
  • TO REHEAT: Rewarm leftovers in a skillet on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
  • TO FREEZE: Freeze teriyaki chicken in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.


Serving: 1(of 4), without riceCalories: 319kcalCarbohydrates: 28gProtein: 35gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 162mgPotassium: 505mgFiber: 1gSugar: 22gVitamin A: 41IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 30mgIron: 2mg

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Erin Clarke

Hi, I'm Erin Clarke, and I'm fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food that's affordable, easy-to-make, and best of all DELISH. I'm the author and recipe developer here at and of The Well Plated Cookbook. I adore both sweets and veggies, and I am on a mission to save you time and dishes. WELCOME!

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  1. I used powdered ginger instead of fresh and the dish was so salty we could not eat it. Used low sodium teriyaki and ingredients as labeled. Ginger, powdered, has very low sodium. Why was the dish so salty? Seems everyone else had good luck with it.3 stars

    1. Hi Keta, the powdered ginger would definitely not give you a salty taste at all. This calls for soy sauce not teriyaki sauce so wondering if that was the reason?

      1. The same happened to me as well. I followed all instructions and meal prepped this for the week. It’s so salty my stomach is turning from a single bite.
        I used regular soy sauce- I am now worried how much sodium I am consuming if I neutralize it out.

  2. Unfortunately this was a disappointment to me. It smelled delicious when cooking but at the end of 4 hours on low I was left with dry chicken thighs and a sauce that tasted oily and salty. I added brown sugar to try to help and it made it eatable but nothing could help the dry texture of the thighs.1 star

    1. Sorry to hear that you had trouble with the recipe. The amounts, flavorings and timing have worked well for myself (and others) so I wished it would of been a hit for you too! I know it can be so disappointing to try a new recipe and it not turn out for you.

  3. I made this meal today for dinner everyone enjoyed it the homemade teriyaki sauce is the best especially that the chicken marinating into it for four hours easy to prepare just follow directions5 stars

  4. So I want to try this tonight, do you think the cook time will be longer if I did 5lbs of chicken instead of 1? Also, do you think 5lbs is going to fit/cook right in an average size crockpot?

    1. Hi Lauren! I haven’t tested it out myself so it would be hard for to say if it fits into your crockpot. You would likely need extra time, but again can’t say for sure. If you decide to experiment, I’d love to know how it goes!

      1. Hi Erin, I did end up experimenting and I’m so happy I did! All 8 thighs, 5.36 lbs, fit nicely and I tripled the recipe to make enough sauce and it turned out wonderful! The cook time remained the same, I got nervous half way through but checked it with the meat thermometer at time and it was done! All 4 of my picky eaters were silent through dinner last night because they couldn’t get enough!5 stars

  5. I like to saute a bag of teriyaki veggie salad mix, and mix that and the rice into the pot after I shred the chicken. Makes for a delicious complete meal in one pot.

  6. How come it doesn’t say what quantities of each ingredient to use? Have no clue how much soy sauce etc is needed. Useless. Every other recipe site has all measured ingredients.

    1. Hi Ryan! I’m so confused, because I see it on my end! The recipe is in the recipe card, right above the area where you commented. You can also click the “jump to recipe” button at the top of the screen to get you there faster. Could you please check again!

  7. My kids are sooooo picky!! I just finished making this for dinner. Everyone had a clean plate, including my 14 year old who barely eats meat. This recipe is definitely going in the recipe rotation, we all loved it and it was so easy to make!! Thank you!!5 stars

  8. Absolutely a hit both times I’ve made it. I’m definitely glad I bought low sodium soya sauce instead of using the regular that I already had. Delicious with a cheater veggie fried rice. Great meal for company or just with the family although I am planning on doubling it next time as there weren’t leftovers5 stars

  9. Delicious!! I made this with about 6 chicken thighs and only needed about half the sauce in the end. The other half is perfect for a tofu marinade or mixed into a fried rice. Amazing work as always Erin, your blog is always my favorite to visit :)5 stars

  10. Made it and everyone really liked it. The only thing that was not as expected was the sauce was not as sweet as our normal teriyaki sauce we get, say panda. :) very flavorful dish will make white rice as the side.4 stars

  11. On a whim, I made the chicken teriyaki….a triple batch. It was absolute 🔥🔥🔥🔥. So much so, that I am not searching for her recipe books lol. SUPER EASY!!!5 stars

  12. Made this tonight for meal prep lunch this week and my goodness- so damn yummy! Homemade sauce was a crowd pleaser as my sisters were here to eat the leftover sauce that I laid over sautéed veggies and rice 😂 good job, Erin! Killer recipe. The only tidbit I changed was seasoning the chicken just a bit before pouring the sauce in the crockpot. Thanks!5 stars

    1. I’m sorry to hear the recipe wasn’t to your taste, Lane. I know it’s disappointing to try a new recipe and not enjoy it. I (and many other readers) have enjoyed it, so I really wish they would’ve been a hit for you too!

  13. Amazing recipe! Turn out great and reheated well too!
    Threw everything g in the crockpot with a liner. Easy cleanup and no hassle!
    I made a few changes: I used Bragg’s coconut aminos (lowest sodium I’ve found) and skipped the ginger.
    Will definitely be making this again!
    Thanks for the recipe 😊5 stars

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