How Much Gluten Is In Teriyaki Sauce? (Fully Explained)

Teriyaki sauce is a popular Asian condiment that adds a sweet and savory flavor to dishes. However, for those with gluten sensitivities or Celiac disease, the question of whether teriyaki sauce is gluten-free can be a concern.

The traditional ingredient in teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, contains wheat and is not gluten-free. But with the rise of gluten-free options, there are now alternatives available.

In this article, we will explore how much gluten is typically found in teriyaki sauce and provide tips on how to enjoy this delicious sauce without compromising your health.

How Much Gluten Is In Teriyaki Sauce?

The amount of gluten in teriyaki sauce can vary depending on the brand and recipe. Traditional teriyaki sauce made with soy sauce contains wheat and is not gluten-free. However, many store-bought versions now use wheat-free tamari, which is gluten-free.

It’s important to always check the ingredients list to confirm that the sauce is gluten-free. Some commercially available teriyaki sauces may also include gluten-containing additives or thickeners, so it’s best to read labels carefully.

If you’re making teriyaki sauce at home, you can use gluten-free ingredients to ensure that it’s safe for those with gluten sensitivities or Celiac disease. Tamari is a great alternative to soy sauce and is naturally gluten-free. However, some brands of tamari may contain a small amount of wheat, so it’s important to double-check the ingredients.

Understanding Gluten And Gluten Sensitivities

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. For individuals with gluten sensitivities or Celiac disease, consuming gluten can cause inflammation and damage to the small intestine. Symptoms can vary from person to person and may include digestive issues, fatigue, joint pain, and skin rashes.

Teriyaki sauce traditionally contains soy sauce, which is made with wheat and therefore contains gluten. However, store-bought versions are often made with wheat-free tamari, which is safe for those on a gluten-free diet. It’s important to note that not all soy sauces are created equal – some are made through fermentation and contain undetectable amounts of gluten, while others are made chemically and still contain wheat.

To ensure that teriyaki sauce is gluten-free, it’s important to read labels carefully and look for products that are certified gluten-free by reputable organizations. Making teriyaki sauce at home using only gluten-free ingredients is also a great option for those with gluten sensitivities.

The Traditional Ingredients In Teriyaki Sauce

Traditionally, teriyaki sauce is made with a combination of soy sauce, mirin, and sake. Soy sauce is the main ingredient in teriyaki sauce and is made from fermented soybeans and wheat. Mirin and sake are types of Japanese alcohol made from rice. Mirin is a sweet rice wine with a low alcohol content, while sake is a stronger rice wine. These alcohols add sweetness to the sauce and help to balance out the saltiness of the soy sauce.

However, in the United States, teriyaki sauce often does not contain mirin or sake, but instead contains sugar as a sweetener. This is because mirin is a relatively high-sugar alcohol, giving traditional Japanese teriyaki sauce a sweet taste. Other ingredients that can be added to teriyaki sauce include vinegar, green onions, ginger, garlic or other spices.

For those who need to avoid gluten in their diets, it’s important to note that traditional soy sauce contains wheat and is not gluten-free. However, there are now many gluten-free options available on the market, such as tamari, which is made from fermented soybeans but does not usually contain wheat. It’s always best to check the ingredients list to ensure that the teriyaki sauce you’re using is gluten-free.

Gluten-Free Alternatives For Teriyaki Sauce

For those who are looking for gluten-free alternatives for teriyaki sauce, there are several options available in the market. One popular choice is Primal Kitchen No Soy Teriyaki Sauce, which is made with coconut aminos and is free from gluten, soy, and dairy. Another option is Kevin’s General Tso’s Sauce, which is also gluten-free and made with tamari.

Coconut Secret Teriyaki Sauce is another great alternative that is made with coconut aminos and is free from gluten, soy, and MSG. This sauce has a sweet and savory flavor that is perfect for marinating meat or vegetables.

If you’re looking for a versatile gluten-free option, Primal Kitchen Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette and Marinade can be used as a teriyaki sauce substitute. This dressing is made with avocado oil, sesame oil, ginger, and garlic, and has a delicious Asian-inspired flavor.

It’s important to note that while these alternatives are gluten-free, they may still contain other allergens or ingredients that some people may need to avoid. Always read the labels carefully and check with your healthcare provider if you have any concerns about food allergies or sensitivities.

How To Check For Gluten In Store-Bought Teriyaki Sauce

When shopping for store-bought teriyaki sauce, it’s important to look for the “gluten-free” certification on the label. However, it’s not enough to rely solely on this claim, as some brands may still contain wheat-based ingredients like soy sauce.

To ensure that the teriyaki sauce is gluten-free, always read the ingredients list carefully. Look out for any wheat-based ingredients such as soy sauce, wheat flour, or malt vinegar. Additionally, be wary of any additives or thickeners that may contain gluten.

If you’re unsure about a particular brand of teriyaki sauce, you can check the manufacturer’s website or call them to verify if their product is gluten-free. It’s better to err on the side of caution and avoid consuming any gluten if you suffer from Celiac disease or have a gluten sensitivity.

Making Your Own Gluten-Free Teriyaki Sauce At Home

Making your own gluten-free teriyaki sauce at home is easy and allows you to control the ingredients. Here’s a simple recipe to try:


– 1/3 cup low-sodium gluten-free tamari or coconut aminos (or soy sauce if not GF)

– 2/3 cup water

– 3 Tbsp maple syrup

– 1 Tbsp rice vinegar

– 1 tsp minced fresh ginger

– 1 clove garlic

– 1/4–1/2 tsp black pepper

– 1/4 tsp sesame oil

– 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch (or arrowroot, for paleo) + 1 1/2 Tbsp water

– Optional: 1/2 tsp sesame seeds


1. In a small saucepan, whisk together the tamari (or other sauce), water, maple syrup, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, black pepper, and sesame oil.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water until smooth.

3. Add the cornstarch mixture to the saucepan and whisk until well combined.

4. Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it thickens and bubbles.

5. Remove from heat and stir in the sesame seeds, if using.

This homemade teriyaki sauce is gluten-free and can be used in any recipe that calls for teriyaki sauce. It’s also customizable – adjust the sweetness or spiciness to your liking by adding more or less maple syrup or red pepper flakes.

Enjoying Teriyaki Sauce Without Compromising Your Health

Teriyaki sauce can be a delicious addition to many meals, but it’s important to be aware of the potential health risks associated with consuming too much of it. One tablespoon of teriyaki sauce contains 613mg of sodium, which is a significant amount considering the recommended daily limit for sodium is 2,300mg.

To enjoy teriyaki sauce without compromising your health, it’s important to use it in moderation and choose low-sodium options when possible. Making your own teriyaki sauce at home allows you to control the amount of sodium and other ingredients used.

To make a healthier version of teriyaki sauce, consider using coconut sugar or brown sugar as a natural sweetener instead of refined sugar. You can also add in other healthy ingredients such as fresh ginger or garlic for added flavor and health benefits.

When enjoying teriyaki sauce in a meal, try to balance it out with other healthy ingredients such as vegetables and lean proteins. For example, you could use teriyaki sauce as a marinade for grilled chicken or tofu and serve it with a side of steamed broccoli or roasted sweet potatoes.

By being mindful of the ingredients in your teriyaki sauce and using it in moderation, you can enjoy this delicious sauce without compromising your health.