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Delicious Chicken Teriyaki Bento Recipe: A Taste of Japan’s Culinary Heritage

Chicken Teriyaki Bento

Hey there, foodies! Are you craving a delicious and wholesome Japanese meal that’s perfect for lunch or a quick dinner? Look no further because we’ve got you covered with an irresistible recipe – Chicken Teriyaki Bento! This delectable and nutritious dish will transport your taste buds straight to the streets of Tokyo. So, grab your apron and let’s dive into the world of savory flavors and mouthwatering delights!



The history of Chicken Teriyaki Bento can be traced back to ancient Japan, where the concept of Bento itself originated. Bento, as a packed meal, can be dated as far back as the Kamakura period (1185-1333). During this time, travelers and warriors carried portable meals for sustenance during their journeys and battles.

Origins of Teriyaki

The term “Teriyaki” has its roots in the Japanese language. It is a combination of two words: “teri” meaning “glaze” or “shiny,” and “yaki” meaning “grilled” or “broiled.” Originally, Teriyaki was used as a cooking technique to preserve and enhance the flavor of fish by marinating it in a mixture of soy sauce, mirin, and sugar. The sugar content helped to caramelize the fish during cooking, resulting in a shiny glaze.

Evolution to Chicken Teriyaki

As the centuries passed, Japanese chefs and home cooks experimented with different ingredients and proteins to apply the Teriyaki cooking method. One of the first successful experiments involved using chicken as the main protein. The juicy and tender nature of chicken combined wonderfully with the sweet and savory Teriyaki glaze, creating a new culinary sensation.

During the Edo period (1603-1868), the popularity of Teriyaki grew, and its techniques spread throughout Japan. Various regional variations of Teriyaki emerged, adapting to local ingredients and tastes. It wasn’t until the 20th century that Chicken Teriyaki Bento became a widely recognized and cherished part of Japanese cuisine.

The Rise of Bento Culture

The evolution of Bento as a cultural icon is closely tied to Japan’s modernization and urbanization. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as Japan rapidly modernized and people moved to cities for work and education, the need for portable and convenient meals increased.

The concept of Bento evolved from a simple packed meal for travelers and warriors to a cherished tradition in Japanese society. Mothers began preparing Bento lunches for their children to take to school, showcasing their love and care through beautifully arranged meals.

Chicken Teriyaki Bento in Modern Times

In contemporary Japan, Chicken Teriyaki Bento has become a ubiquitous sight in lunchboxes, convenience stores, and even high-end restaurants. It’s a favorite among schoolchildren, office workers, and anyone seeking a quick yet satisfying meal.

With the rise of globalization, Japanese cuisine, including Chicken Teriyaki, has gained immense popularity worldwide. Food enthusiasts from different cultures have embraced the flavorful harmony of Teriyaki and the convenience of the Bento box. As a result, you can now find variations of Chicken Teriyaki Bento in restaurants and home kitchens across the globe.


StepTime (Approx.)
Marinating the Chicken30 minutes
Searing the Chicken10 minutes
Crafting the Glorious Sauce5 minutes
Preparing the Vegetables and Sides15 minutes
Cooking the Rice20 minutes
Arranging the Bento5 minutes
Total Preparation Time85 minutes

Please note that the preparation time provided is an approximate estimation and may vary based on individual cooking skills and equipment. Enjoy your time in the kitchen, and happy cooking!


IngredientsQuantity for 2 Persons
Fresh boneless, skinless chicken thighs2 pieces
Soy sauce1/4 cup
Mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)2 tablespoons
Sake (Japanese rice wine)2 tablespoons
Sugar2 tablespoons
Garlic (minced)2 cloves
Ginger (grated)1 teaspoon
Vegetable oil1 tablespoon
Steamed white rice1 1/2 cups
Carrots (sliced or julienned)1/2 cup
Broccoli (cut into florets)1/2 cup
Bell peppers (sliced)1/2 cup
Sesame seeds1 tablespoon
Green onions (sliced)2 tablespoons

Enjoy your cooking adventure and the delightful Chicken Teriyaki Bento with your loved one!


Step 1: Marinating the Chicken


  • 2 pieces of fresh boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine)
  • 2 tablespoons sake (Japanese rice wine)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  1. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the soy sauce, mirin, sake, sugar, minced garlic, and grated ginger. Mix the marinade thoroughly until the sugar dissolves.
  2. Add the chicken thighs to the marinade, ensuring they are fully coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it marinate for at least 30 minutes. The longer it marinates, the more flavorful the chicken will be.

Step 2: Searing the Chicken


  • Marinated chicken thighs
  1. Heat a non-stick pan or skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Add a drizzle of vegetable oil to the pan and wait for it to get hot.
  3. Carefully place the marinated chicken thighs in the pan and sear them on each side until they develop a beautiful golden-brown color and a slight caramelization. This should take about 4-5 minutes per side.
  4. Once the chicken is cooked through and has a lovely glaze, remove it from the pan and set it aside.

Step 3: Crafting the Glorious Sauce


  • Remaining marinade from Step 1
  1. Pour the remaining marinade into the same pan used for searing the chicken.
  2. Let the sauce simmer over medium heat until it thickens to a syrupy consistency. This should take around 3-4 minutes.
  3. The sauce will become thick and glossy, coating the back of a spoon.

Step 4: Preparing the Vegetables and Sides


  • 1 1/2 cups steamed white rice
  • 1/2 cup sliced or julienned carrots
  • 1/2 cup broccoli florets
  • 1/2 cup sliced bell peppers
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onions
  1. Steam the white rice and set it aside.
  2. In a separate pan, sauté the sliced carrots, broccoli florets, and bell peppers until they are tender yet still crisp. This should take about 5-7 minutes.

Step 5: Arranging the Bento

  1. In a Bento box or any compartmentalized container, place a generous portion of steamed white rice as the base.
  2. Arrange the seared Chicken Teriyaki on top of the rice.
  3. Add the sautéed vegetables alongside the chicken.
  4. Sprinkle sesame seeds and sliced green onions over the chicken and vegetables for added flavor and garnish.

Step 6: Enjoying Your Chicken Teriyaki Bento

Congratulations! Your delectable Chicken Teriyaki Bento is now ready to be savored. Whether you’re taking it to work, on a picnic, or enjoying it at home, this flavorful Japanese delight is a treat for both your taste buds and your eyes.

Bon appétit!

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

NutrientAmount per 2-Person Serving
Serving Size1 Bento Box
Calories650 kcal
Total Fat18g
– Saturated Fat4g
– Trans Fat0g
Total Carbohydrates80g
– Dietary Fiber5g
– Sugars16g

Please note that the provided nutrition information is an approximation and may vary based on the specific ingredients used and the cooking methods employed. It’s always a good idea to refer to the packaging of the individual ingredients or use a nutrition calculator for precise details. Enjoy your Chicken Teriyaki Bento while relishing its delectable flavors and nourishing goodness!


  • Marinate for Flavor: Allow the chicken to marinate for at least 30 minutes to ensure it absorbs all the delicious flavors of the marinade. For even better results, marinate it for a few hours or even overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Quality Ingredients Matter: Opt for high-quality ingredients, especially when it comes to the soy sauce, mirin, and sake. Authentic Japanese brands can make a significant difference in taste.
  • Searing to Perfection: When searing the chicken, ensure the pan is preheated properly. Use a non-stick pan or a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet for the best results.
  • Thickening the Sauce: If the sauce isn’t thickening as desired, you can add a cornstarch slurry (equal parts cornstarch and water) to help thicken it further.
  • Perfectly Cooked Rice: For fluffy and perfectly cooked rice, use the right rice-to-water ratio and follow the cooking instructions for the type of rice you’re using. Alternatively, use a rice cooker for consistent results.
  • Customize Your Bento: Get creative with the vegetables and sides in your Bento. Feel free to add your favorite veggies, pickled items, or even some fruit for a refreshing touch.
  • Meal Prep Made Easy: Prepare the vegetables and sides ahead of time to make assembling the Bento quicker and more convenient during busy weekdays.
  • Bento Aesthetics: Arrange your Bento with care and attention to detail. Consider using food dividers or cute food picks to make your meal visually appealing.
  • Bento Safety: To keep your Bento safe during transport, use a Bento box with a tight-fitting lid and consider adding a small ice pack to keep the chicken and vegetables fresh.

Pros & Cons

✅ Delicious and flavorful❌ Requires marinating time
✅ Balanced and nutritious❌ Some ingredients may be hard to find
✅ Portable and convenient❌ Searing chicken may create smoke
✅ Customizable with various sides❌ May not be suitable for soy allergies
✅ Represents Japanese culinary heritage❌ Bento box assembly may take time


In conclusion, the Chicken Teriyaki Bento is more than just a recipe; it’s a delightful culinary adventure that brings the savory and sweet harmony of Japanese flavors right to your table. With tender marinated chicken, a luscious glaze, and an array of colorful sides, this Bento is a feast for both the taste buds and the eyes.

By preparing this recipe, you’ll not only indulge in a delicious and balanced meal but also embark on a journey into the heart of Japanese culinary heritage. The artful presentation of the Bento box and the customizable sides allow you to unleash your creativity and express your love for food.

While the recipe may require some preparation and marinating time, the end result is well worth it. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner in the kitchen, don’t be afraid to take on this adventure. Embrace the aromas, flavors, and textures as you craft your Chicken Teriyaki Bento masterpiece.

So, gather your ingredients, sharpen your knife, and let the sizzle of the chicken on the pan transport you to the vibrant streets of Japan. It’s time to treat yourself and your loved ones to a wholesome and delectable meal that will leave a lasting impression.

Give it a try, and savor each mouthwatering bite of your homemade Chicken Teriyaki Bento. From the first taste to the last, let this culinary experience immerse you in the rich tapestry of Japanese cuisine. Your taste buds will thank you, and you’ll find joy in creating and savoring your very own Bento creation.

Get ready to savor the flavors of Japan and the fulfillment of cooking a masterpiece that doubles as a visually appealing meal. Don’t hesitate—take your kitchen skills to new heights, and enjoy the delightful journey of preparing a Chicken Teriyaki Bento that’s as satisfying to create as it is to enjoy. Bon appétit and happy Bento-making! 🍱😊


  • Fact 1: Teriyaki’s “Shiny” Origins! 🌟
    • Did you know that the term “Teriyaki” is a fusion of two Japanese words? “Teri” means “glaze” or “shiny,” while “yaki” means “grilled” or “broiled.” This mouthwatering glaze is the secret behind the Chicken Teriyaki’s luscious appearance and irresistible taste.
  • Fact 2: Bento’s Samurai Connection! 🍱⚔️
    • During the Kamakura period, Bento was initially created as a convenient meal for samurai warriors, who needed portable sustenance during battles. Little did they know that centuries later, their humble packed meal would evolve into a culinary art form enjoyed worldwide.
  • Fact 3: The Marinade Magic! 🧙‍♀️🍗
    • The secret to the Chicken Teriyaki’s delectable flavor lies in its marinade alchemy. The blend of soy sauce, mirin, sake, sugar, garlic, and ginger works its magic on the chicken, infusing it with a perfect balance of sweet and savory notes that will leave you craving more.
  • Fact 4: Bento as Edible Art! 🎨🥢
    • Bento preparation isn’t just about taste; it’s a form of edible art! In Japan, some skilled individuals transform Bento boxes into awe-inspiring masterpieces, creating characters, animals, and landscapes using a mix of colorful ingredients. Food that looks too good to eat? Almost!
  • Fact 5: Teriyaki’s Global Adventure! 🌏🍱
    • As Japanese cuisine’s global ambassador, Chicken Teriyaki Bento has traveled far beyond Japan’s borders. Embracing diverse culinary cultures, it has adapted and evolved with local ingredients, resulting in delightful fusion versions worldwide. A taste of Japan with a sprinkle of global flair!


Can I use chicken breast instead of chicken thighs for the Chicken Teriyaki Bento?

For optimal freshness and food safety, consume the Bento within 24 hours of preparation if refrigerated. It’s best to enjoy it on the same day whenever possible.

Can I make a large batch of Chicken Teriyaki Bento and freeze it for later use?

While you can freeze the cooked chicken and rice separately, we recommend assembling the Bento just before consumption for the best taste and texture of the vegetables and sides.

Is Chicken Teriyaki Bento a kid-friendly meal?

Yes, Chicken Teriyaki Bento is a great option for kids. The sweet and savory flavors, along with the colorful presentation, make it appealing to children. You can also customize the sides to include their favorite vegetables.

Can I prepare the Chicken Teriyaki sauce in advance and store it for later use?

Yes, you can prepare the Teriyaki sauce in advance and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Just reheat the sauce before using it in your Bento.

I’m a vegetarian. What can I use instead of chicken for a Vegetarian Teriyaki Bento?

For a vegetarian version, you can substitute the chicken with tofu or tempeh. Marinate the tofu or tempeh in the same Teriyaki sauce for a similar flavor profile.

Can I use frozen vegetables in the Chicken Teriyaki Bento recipe?

While fresh vegetables are recommended for better texture and taste, you can use frozen vegetables if that’s what you have on hand. Just make sure to thaw and drain them before sautéing.

Is there a low-sodium version of Chicken Teriyaki Bento for those watching their salt intake?

To reduce sodium, opt for low-sodium soy sauce and mirin when preparing the marinade. Additionally, use less sauce during cooking and incorporate more fresh vegetables to enhance the flavor.

Can I add more vegetables and sides to the Bento?

Absolutely! Feel free to get creative and add your favorite vegetables and sides. Broccoli, snap peas, corn, and sliced cucumbers are all excellent choices to complement the Chicken Teriyaki.

Is there a low-sodium version of Chicken Teriyaki Bento for those watching their salt intake?

To reduce sodium, opt for low-sodium soy sauce and mirin when preparing the marinade. Additionally, use less sauce during cooking and incorporate more fresh vegetables to enhance the flavor.

Can I make the Chicken Teriyaki Bento ahead of time for a picnic or lunchbox?

Yes, you can prepare the Chicken Teriyaki Bento ahead of time, but for the best taste and presentation, we recommend assembling the Bento just before packing or serving to maintain freshness.