Soy vs Teriyaki Sauce: Difference and Comparison

Searching and finding the perfect taste and flavor has been something humankind has been searching for since the beginning of the era. On getting one satisfactory taste, they search for the next, and this cycle continues.

To get the perfect taste, we have developed various dishes and cuisines.

Accidents have been discovered. Sauces were also discovered as such, and now we have different types of sauces like tomato sauce, soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, etc.

Soy sauce and teriyaki sauce, although different, have been the cause of confusion for a few regarding the dishes they can be used in.

Key Takeaways

  1. Soy Sauce is a dark, salty liquid made from fermented soybeans, while Teriyaki Sauce is a thick, sweet sauce made from soy sauce, sugar, and other ingredients.
  2. Soy Sauce is used as a condiment and seasoning in Asian cuisine, while Teriyaki Sauce is primarily used as a marinade or glaze for meat or fish.
  3. While Soy Sauce and Teriyaki Sauce contain soy sauce as a base ingredient, Teriyaki Sauce is more flavorful due to adding sugar, mirin, and other ingredients.

Soy Sauce vs. Teriyaki Sauce

The difference between Soy Sauce and Teriyaki Sauce is that soy sauce has a salty taste, mainly used for pickling or as an additive. In contrast, teriyaki sauce has a sweet taste that may differ depending on the added ingredients.

Soy Sauce vs Teriyaki Sauce

Food Quiz

Test your knowledge about topics related to food

1 / 10

Which of the following beverages has no fat, sugar, or oils?

2 / 10

Which food group is composed of high fiber foods like granola, whole wheat bread, and oatmeal?

3 / 10

Which one is healthy?

4 / 10

I am linked to the story of Adam and Eve, even mentioned when people are studying Newton. Guess what fruit am I?

5 / 10

We grow in the dark and provide you with lots B group vitamins, especially Riboflavin (B2) which is good for your skin and eyes. What are we?

6 / 10

Which of these is added to the food label because people sometimes don't eat ENOUGH of this?

7 / 10

What type of bread is a staple in French cuisine, typically served with soup or salads?

8 / 10

Which one is unhealthy?

9 / 10

What is a 'seagan'?

10 / 10

What type of soup is made with chicken stock, vegetables, and often contains noodles or rice?

Your score is


Soy sauce is the liquid taken from the paste of fermented soybeans in the presence of molds and salt. They have been in use for 3000 years. It was first used in China for pickling fish by adding salt and wheat. It is now used for many other dishes and especially in Asian cuisines.

Teriyaki sauce is a type of soy sauce that is made by adding brown sugar. It was first used in Japan in the 17th century. The base of this sauce is soy sauce with added ingredients that depends on the dish it is being used for.

Teriyaki sauce has a sweet taste and is orange or coppery in appearance with a thick consistency.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonSoy SauceTeriyaki Sauce
Origin3000 years ago in ChinaWith added ingredients in Japan in the 17th century
IngredientsFermented soybeans and sometimes wheatSoy sauce as a base with brown sugar and other added ingredients
TasteIs saltySince there is brown sugar, it is sweeter than soy sauce
AppearanceIt has a dark colorIt has a light, almost coppery or orange color
ConsistencyIt has a watery consistencyIt has a thick consistency
UsesUsed in many Asian cuisines as an additiveIt is used as a cooking agent

What is Soy Sauce?

Soy sauce, commonly known as soy, is a paste of fermented soybeans. Its origin can be dated 3000 years ago in China and has a watery consistency with a dark-colored appearance.

Since salt is added during fermentation, the final sauce tastes salty.

They can be directly added to the food to enhance the taste, much like what Indian spices do. They also serve as side dips for rice, noodles, and sushi.

Since they can be stored at room temperature, they are kept on restaurant table tops. The different variations for soy sauce are seen due to differences during production and methods used.

The fermented soybeans were traditionally stored with molds and salt in large urns. It would take months for their preparation.

soy sauce

What is Teriyaki Sauce?

Teriyaki sauce is a special type of soy sauce. It uses soy sauce as its base, and depending on the other ingredients used for this sauce, the taste and texture vary. Commonly, they have an orange-copper-ish appearance with a thick consistency.

Teriyaki is a type of cooking style that is prominently used in Japan. This method involves glazing, broiling, and grilling of the food. This is done with soy sauce, mirin, and sugar, called teriyaki sauce.

Teriyaki sauce is sweet due to the added brown sugar in most of them. But some countries also add mirin or wine to enhance its taste and appearance.

They can be used for chicken wings in the West or simply as a dip like soy sauce.

teriyaki sauce

Main Differences Between Soy Sauce and Teriyaki Sauce

  1. Soy sauce originated 3000 years ago in China for the pickling of fish. Teriyaki sauce is a type of soy sauce with added ingredients. It is dated back to the 17th century in Japan, where it was used for ‘glazing broil.’
  2. The main ingredients of soy sauce are roasted and fermented soybeans. In some places, they add wheat or small amounts of brown sugar. The soy sauce can make teriyaki sauce by adding sugar or vegetables. So, the ingredients of teriyaki sauce are soy sauce and added ingredients.
  3. Soy sauce is salty, whereas teriyaki sauce is found to be sweet due to the added sugar. But the taste of teriyaki sauce can also differ based on the ingredients added.
  4. Teriyaki sauce is lighter than dark-colored soy sauce. It has an almost coppery color or orange. This color also depends on the ingredients.
  5. The consistency of soy sauce is rather watery. Teriyaki sauce is seen to have a thick consistency.
  6. Teriyaki sauce is used as a cooking agent. But soy sauce is popularly used in Asian cuisine as an additive, not a cooking agent.
Difference Between Soy Sauce and Teriyaki Sauce
  1. Quality evaluation of teriyaki sauce processed with shrimp remnants and its physicochemical properties (
  2. Detection of gluten during the fermentation process to produce soy sauce (

Last Updated : 14 October, 2023

dot 1
One request?

I’ve put so much effort writing this blog post to provide value to you. It’ll be very helpful for me, if you consider sharing it on social media or with your friends/family. SHARING IS ♥️

20 thoughts on “Soy vs Teriyaki Sauce: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The comparison table provided in the article is very helpful. Makes it easier to grasp the distinctions between soy sauce and teriyaki sauce.

  2. I appreciate the detailed explanation of the making and uses of soy sauce and teriyaki sauce. Understanding these condiments helps in better appreciating the various cuisines they are used in.

    1. Absolutely, it’s impressive how such simple condiments carry so much history and complexity. Great article.

  3. The article’s detailed breakdown of the taste, appearance, and uses of soy sauce and teriyaki sauce is truly enlightening.

  4. I never knew the specific differences between soy sauce and teriyaki sauce until I read this article. Eye-opening!

  5. Avatar of Caroline Reynolds
    Caroline Reynolds

    I never knew the history and origin of soy sauce and teriyaki sauce. This article has broadened my knowledge and I now have a deeper appreciation for these sauces.

  6. This article perfectly explains the differences between soy sauce and teriyaki sauce in a clear and concise manner. I appreciate the table comparison for an easy visual understanding.

    1. I found the historical context of the soy sauce and teriyaki sauce very interesting to know. It adds depth to the understanding of these condiments.

  7. The historical context and evolution of soy sauce and teriyaki sauce make for an interesting read. Enjoyable and educational.

  8. It’s fascinating to learn about the lengthy history and cultural significance behind soy sauce and teriyaki sauce. A great blend of history and culinary knowledge.

  9. I found the comparison of the uses and appearance of soy sauce and teriyaki sauce very informative. Great breakdown of differences.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to save this article for later? Click the heart in the bottom right corner to save to your own articles box!