Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

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! Sticky, sweet, and a little bit sassy, this easy teriyaki chicken recipe has all the convenience of takeout but is made with simple, healthy ingredients and tastes absolutely delicious.

This crock pot teriyaki chicken is INCREDIBLE. The honey teriyaki sauce is out of this world and it only takes 10 minutes to prep! The perfect easy, healthy dinner. @wellplated

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 teriyaki 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.

This crock pot teriyaki chicken will be the BEST thing you make! The honey teriyaki sauce is incredible. Perfect for serving with rice and great leftover too. @wellplated

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.

This slow cooker teriyaki chicken will make you think you are eating takeout! Less than 10 minutes to prep, healthy, and the honey teriyaki sauce is out of this world! @wellplated

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.

What to Serve with Teriyaki Chicken:

  • I like to serve this dish with my favorite brown rice.
  • 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.

Recommended Tools to Make Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken:

More Crock Pot Chicken Recipes You’ll Love:

Watch How to Make Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken (1-minute video):

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Crock Pot Teriyaki Chicken

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

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 2 hours (on high); 4 hours (on low)

Total Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes (on high); 4 hours, 15 minutes (on low)

Ingredients:

  • 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

Directions:

  1. Place the chicken thighs in the bottom of a 6-quart or larger slow cooker.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. Add the chicken to the sauce. Toss to coat. Serve warm with rice or quinoa, garnished with sesame seeds and green onions as desired.
All images and text ©/Well Plated.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 (of 4), without rice

  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories: 326
  • Total Fat: 8g
  • Saturated Fat: 0g
  • Cholesterol: 141mg
  • Sodium: 1661mg
  • Carbohydrates: 28g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Sugar: 23g
  • Protein: 36g

Did you try this recipe? I want to see! Follow Well Plated on Instagram, snap a photo, and tag it #wellplated. I love to know what you are making!

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About Erin Clarke

I’m fearlessly dedicated to making healthy food taste incredible. Wearer of plaid, travel enthusiast, and firmly convinced that sweets and veggies both deserve a place at the table. MORE ABOUT ERIN…

58 comments

  1. Okay, this is such a traditional recipe that most people love and yet somehow you have made it look WAY BETTER and SO DREAMY LOOKING! You go girl! And did I mention how much I love that it is a crockpot meal? GORGEOUS PHOTOS!

  2. hey girl- This looks so  good! Good luck on your stove! I’ll be praying!

  3. This looks really wonderful Erin! Love that you shared a way to make teriyaki sauce at home with staple ingredients. Shared!

  4. Hi Erin!  Sorry to hear about your stove.  I am happy to hear that there will be lots of crock pot recipes coming in store on your site – my crockpot has a special place in my heart ❤️ and in fact I call my Pinterest board for crockpot recipes ‘crockpot saviors’ because that’s what those recipes are to me – they save me so much time!!  – Bita

  5. thank heavens for a slow cooker!!! but is this a blessing in disguise…slash are you shopping for your dream stove? 

  6. I can’t imagine being without a stove, but at least you’re a fabulous cook and can create delicious slow cooker recipes like this! It looks so delicious – teriyaki is definitely a long time favorite of mine. 

  7. Hi, Erin! This sounds delicious. Have you tried it with boneless chicken breast? I am thinking about cutting the chicken breast into bite sized pieces before cooking. I would appreciate your opinion. Thank you!

    • Hi Candy! To be honest, chicken breast is really tricky in the slow cooker, because it dries out so easily. You definitely don’t want to cut it up, because that will make things even worse. If you truly don’t care for chicken thighs (which although I’m more of a white meat girl myself I don’t notice at all in this recipe), then I would suggest you use bone-in chicken breast if you can. If you do decide to use boneless chicken breast, definitely keep it whole and check the cooking time early. I hope that helps!

      • Hi, Erin! I thought about the chicken breast getting too dry so I will give the chicken thighs a try. Love your recipies!!

        Thank you for your response!

  8. I hope you get your new stove soon! You’re going to love having a gas stove.

    This recipe looks great! I printed it for dinner. I love that it’s a slow cooker recipe. I appreciate that you started adding nutritional info. It’s useful to have as a guide.

    • Leila, thank you and I really hope so too! We are just waiting to confirm a delivery date. And I’m so glad that you like the recipe and that the nutritional info has been helpful for you. If you try it, I’d love to hear how it turns out :-)

  9. Hi Erin.   I was wondering why you have to strain the cooking liquid.  Recipe sounds great, however. Can’t wait to try it. 

  10. I’m wondering if you can use salmon instead and what the cook time would be? It looks delicious! Thank you!

    • Hi Sophia! Although you could experiment with making a scaled-down version of the sauce on the stove and brush it over salmon, I’ve never heard of making salmon in a slow cooker. Since salmon cooks so quickly, I fear it would become mushy and dry. If you’d like to make salmon, these two recipes are great: http://www.wellplated.com/balsamic-glazed-salmon/ and http://www.wellplated.com/balsamic-glazed-salmon/. I hope that helps!

  11. Hi Erin,
    I’d like to add some veggies to this–perhaps broccoli and/or mushrooms. Do you have thoughts on how best to do that?
    Thanks!

    • Hi Dawn!
      I wouldn’t suggest putting veggies in the slow cooker w/ the chicken, as they will get overly mushy and the fat that cooks out of the chicken (and that you strain before making the sauce) might give them a weird texture. I’d suggest simply sautéing or steaming some veggies on the side, then mixing them in with the chicken once it’s done. Peas, red peppers, and broccoli would all be great!

  12. Made this chicken last weekend, with a slight variation -threw in some frozen stir fry veggies and brown Minute Rice for the last 30 minutes to make it a complete meal in the slow cooker. Love having one-pot recipes like this that I can easily throw together on a Friday when we’re all tired and don’t want to cook or do dishes!

  13. I made this tonight, and it was incredible! It’s my new go-to chicken in the crockpot recipe! The chicken is tender and moist, and the saucy is so yummy! I also love that it can be cooked in 2 hours on high because I forgot to put it on until 2pm today!
    Thanks for another great recipe, Erin! :)

  14. that looks so good. thanks for your sharing the recipe

  15. How would you suggest cooking the chicken if you don’t have a crockpot? The sauce sounds great so I would love to try this recipe!

    • Hi Rose! I’ve never made this recipe any other way besides the crockpot, so I cannot say for certain. You could try cooking the chicken in the sauce on the stove, and just watch it for doneness. You should be able to reduce the sauce on the stove the same way the directions specify. If you decide to experiment, I’d love to hear how it turns out. I hope you enjoy it!

      • Tried it today and it turned out awesome! Made the sauce in a saucepan first and then transferred it to a skillet and cooked the chicken in the sauce :)

        • I am so happy to hear that Rose! Thanks so much for sharing how the stovetop method worked for you as well—it’s so helpful to know and I know will benefit others too. You are the best!

  16. Wow, just wow. Found your recipe this morning, and used it for this weeks meal prep – lunch. Just tasted the chicken, and it is nothing short of amazingly delicious! Thank you for sharing, this one is definitely going in my meal prep rotation.

  17. Looks so yummy. Can you make a big batch of this and freeze leftovers? I’m all about having something on hand for crazy days and for family to eat when I’m out of town. Would be great to pull this out of freezer for a quick meal. 

    • Hi Annie! Yes, this recipe freezes beautifully. I would suggest cooking the recipe as instructed, cooling completely, and then freezing. Let it thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating. I’d recommend reheating on the stove with some chicken stock to prevent it from drying out. I hope you love the recipe!

  18. so delicious! I served with roasted carrots..only change I made was slicing the chicken so I didn’t have to shred & put the cornstarch mixture in the crock pot.(saving on dishes)…it’s a keeper!!!!

    • Yay, Karin! So glad this turned out to be a keeper for you. Thank you so much for taking the time to leave this kind review!

  19. Hi sounds sooo good, would like to make for our Sunday dinner. If i dont have rice wine vinegar what can i use?

    • Hi Brenda, rice vinegar has a unique taste of its own, and that’s what I recommend, but if you’re really in a pinch, cider vinegar would be the best option. Like rice vinegar, it’s mild, so the flavor won’t overpower the dish like a wine or balsamic vinegar would. I hope you enjoy it!

  20. Where is the high sodium coming from? Any suggestions on cutting it down?

    • Hi Susan, the soy sauce is the source of sodium here. It’s a tricky ingredient to substitute to decrease the sodium, however, since this recipe already calls for a low-sodium soy sauce. I’ve never tried substituting the ingredient myself, so you’d be experimenting, but I know that some people use coconut aminos for a lower-sodium substitute. If you do decide to give it a try, I’d love to know how it goes.

  21. Love how simple this ingredient list is, so perfect for weeknights!

  22. Hi Erin,

    What is the serving size? Is it one cup? Thanks!

    • Hi Meg, the serving size is 1/4 of the recipe. Unfortunately I haven’t measured the specific portion sizes, so I don’t have an exact cup amount to share. I hope you enjoy the recipe!

  23. I’m going to make this tomorrow night and serve it over a bed of spiralized vegetables..broccoli stems, broccoli flowerettes, red pepper, carrots, sautéed in garlic.  We’re going to have some happy campers lickin their lips.  

    Rating: 5
  24. Another fantastic recipe! I seriously can’t wait to try this one out…likely will be in my meal plan for next week. Knowing your love for pressure cookers, I will likely turn this one into a pressure cooker recipe as well. Thank you for the share!

  25. I love the simplicity of this.  I like teriyaki and the list of ingredients here is perfect.  Another good excuse to use my crockpot.

  26. Free samples are my jam! and so is this recipe. My crock pot has been busy, thanks to you! YUM!

  27. Looks totally bonkers delicious!!

  28. hey girl- this looks so good!

  29. My kind of dinner!!

  30. This was delicious! I cut back on the honey and brown sugar as we don’t like things really sweet, and it was perfect. Great easy meal. Thanks.

    Rating: 5

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