Japanese BarbequesJapanese RecipesYakitori

Chef’s Armoury Yakitori Sauce Recipe

January 18, 2011 3 Comments
yakitori tare recipe

Some things will remain a secret forever – “Who shot JFK?”, “Did man really land on the moon?”, “Was Lady GaGa ever a man?” and “How can I make tare that tastes just like the one at that famous yakitori-ya?”

Tare basically translates as sauce and the tare that is used to dress grilled chicken in downtown Tokyo is a savoury sweet combination of shoyu and sugar with a big spoonful of complexity. Recipes are closely guarded from generation to generation and each yakitori-ya shows a unique balance in salt, sweetness and umami in their tare.

After the eighth visit to our favourite yakitori-ya and far too much time in the Chef’s Armoury kitchen, we’ve developed a tasty incarnation of our favourite yakitori tare.

Yakitori tare

Tare wa oishii

Chef’s Armoury Original Yakitori Tare Recipe

© Chef’s Armoury 2011, All Rights Reserved

Serves:      20
Preparation time:      10 minutes
Equipment:      a heavy based pot
Cooking time:      20 minutes

yakitori barbeque binchotan

Grilling yakitori on binchotan charcoal


  • 100ml mirin
  • 125gm sugar
  • 400ml high quality shoyu
  • 1 tsp of dashi stock powder
  • 1 tbsp kuzu for thickening (can substitute with potato starch)

Japanese ingredients available at Chef’s Armoury.


Pour mirin and sugar in a heavy based pot and boil until reduced by a third. To test if it is reduced enough, drop some of the mixture in cold water. If it forms a soft ball when it cools it is reduced enough.

Add the dashi powder and shoyu and bring to a simmer for 3 minutes. Dissolve about a tablespoon of kuzu starch in a little cold water and stir into the tare. Stir for a further 3 minutes until glossy and slightly thick.

Chefs Armoury yakitori sauce

The consistency of tare should be like thin pouring cream

This is a simple recipe but the last stage of adding the starch can be a little tricky. Add a little at a time as different starches have different strengths so keep adding until you achieve the desired thickness. The sauce should have the consistency of thin pouring cream.

Let cool and store in the fridge until needed.

Chefs tips

  • Use the very best shoyu you can afford because it will add a richer flavour to the finished tare.
  • When making Yakitori, grill your chicken over genuine binchotan charcoal. Anything else will not deliver the same results.
  • If you’re looking for authentic yakitori grills, don’t despair. Chef’s Armoury import these into Australia and ship nationwide.
yakitori sauce recipe

Chef’s Armoury’s yakitori sauce

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Ariel July 8, 2013 at 11:30 am

I tried this recipe because I only had mirim sake and not regular sake as other recipes ask for and it turned out great. I used corn starch instead of kuzu and it worked well.

Kirk January 20, 2022 at 2:55 pm

I’ve also made this. Is 400ml of Shoyu correct ? Next time I make it I’d probably my do half and half

Also wondering how long it lasts in the fridge ?

Admin August 2, 2022 at 4:18 pm

Hi Kirk,

If you have Japanese shoyu it is a good guide. It depends on how salty your soy sauce is. Feel free to adjust the recipe to your personal taste.


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