This teriyaki chicken bake has it all- it’s tasty, healthy, and easy! Making homemade teriyaki sauce is super simple too. Who knew? Your family will love this filling and delicious recipe!
A little backstory. I am from the Seattle area, and in Seattle we love our teriyaki. Teriyaki is not just an item or even a section on restaurant menus; there are teriyaki shops all over the place. Nowhere else I have been or lived has anything like it. So, sometimes I just need a little teriyaki. It’s in my blood. But, I want it to be easy and healthy too.
That’s where this recipe comes in.
Making your own teriyaki sauce
Making the sauce was simpler than I expected! I’ve always purchased teriyaki sauce, but now I know better! You probably have most (or all) of the ingredients on hand right now- fresh ginger may be the catch.
But I’ll let you in on a little secret: ginger freezes really well! I may have mentioned this in a previous post, but I just love that I can throw it in the freezer and I am set for future recipes! Just take what you need out and grate it (much easier than mincing!).
To make the sauce, simply combine the soy sauce, water, brown sugar, garlic and ginger in a small pot on medium-high heat. Meanwhile, stir the cornstarch and 1/4 cup water together until the corn starch is well dissolved, then add to the pot. Heat it all up until boiling and thickened, maybe 5 minutes.
Now set aside until the bake is assembled.
Easy, healthy, teriyaki chicken bake
One of the things I love most about this recipe is that it’s a throw-it-all-in casserole type recipe. No need to add things at different times or cook multiple things at once. This teriyaki chicken is all-in-one. Once the sauce is made, you’re almost set.
I suggest spraying a 3 quart casserole dish (9×13 inches) with cooking spray, just to make clean up a little simpler (who doesn’t need that?). Layer the quick-cooking brown rice, green beans and carrots, and then chicken strips. Pour chicken broth over everything, and then 1 cup of the teriyaki sauce. Make sure the chicken is well-covered with sauce so it’s nice and flavorful.
Tip: see if your grocery store has chicken pre-cut into strips. Mine does, and it’s the same price as un-cut chicken breasts. Win! I didn’t have to handle meat hardly at all, saving time and clean up.
Once everything is assembled, cover the dish in foil. Place the dish into pre-heated 375* F oven for 45 minutes. At that point, take the dish out and stir just a little to make sure everything is getting enough moisture. If it looks dry, add an extra half-cup of chicken broth. Place the dish back into the oven without the foil this time, and set your timer for 10 minutes.
What I learned about instant brown rice
So I’ve always been a little hesitant about instant rice. Like, what’s the catch? Is it gross, or less nutritious? It cooks in 10 minutes rather than an hour, so it seems too good to be true.
Well, let me bust some myths right here and right now. It’s neither- there’s no catch! Instant brown rice is simply rice that has been pre-cooked and then dehydrated to keep on the shelf. And when I tried it I liked it just fine.
When comparing quick-cooking brown rice to regular, I found their nutritional information to be nearly identical. And, according to a few articles I’ve read, quick-cooking rice might actually have a lower glycemic index than regular brown rice. (Here’s a quick one). In other words, it raises blood glucose less, if that’s something you’re interested in monitoring.
The Verdict: I decided to use minute brown rice for this dish so that everything cooked evenly. I knew the chicken and veggies would cook more quickly than regular brown rice, so I gave the instant stuff a try. It worked perfectly! And tasted great.