Teriyaki vs. Worcestershire: What’s the Difference and Which Should You Use?

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On the surface, Teriyaki and Worcestershire sauce have a lot in common. This may make it difficult to pick between the two since you don’t know whether they share any components. So, what’s the difference between Teriyaki and Worcestershire sauce, and which should you use?

Teriyaki is a Japanese condiment comprised of sugar, mirin, and soy sauce, while Worcestershire is a British fermented vinegar-based sauce. When compared to Worcestershire sauce, Teriyaki sauce has a thicker viscosity and fewer ingredients.

This article delves into the distinctions between these two ubiquitous condiments, as well as their popularity and usage.

Teriyaki vs. Worcestershire: Differences



Teriyaki is a Japanese dish that originated during the Tokugawa or Edo era and represents the agricultural status of the time. Teriyaki is a combination of the Japanese terms Teri (which means luster or shine) and Yaki (which means grilled or broiled). This refers to the fact that teriyaki meals often have a sheen or shine about them.

And the shine is due to the teriyaki sauce, which is the key component of a teriyaki meal. As a result, this term is used interchangeably to refer to both the particular sauce and the foods created with it.


Worcestershire sauce was popular in the first part of the nineteenth century. The sauce is named after the English city of Worcester. As a result, the term here is derived from the location of origin rather than the product’s quality.

The original formula for Worcestershire sauce was created by two chemists, John Wheeley Lea and William Perrins, who went on to market it under the brand name Lea & Perrins. Yet, they do not hold the trademark for this sauce. Numerous other companies have subsequently produced their own Worcestershire sauce.


Various teriyaki meals might have stark contrasts. The sauce, however, is something that is shared by all of these foods. Traditional teriyaki sauce is made from three simple ingredients: sugar, mirin, and soy sauce. Mirin, for example, is a popular variety of rice wine in Japan.

Worcestershire sauce, like teriyaki, starts with a fermented component. Nevertheless, unlike teriyaki sauce contains fermented rice (mirin), Worcestershire contains fermented vinegar. This foundation is then supplemented with tamarind, molasses, anchovies, onion, garlic, and other seasonings and spices.


The sauce is responsible for the particular tastes of a teriyaki meal. It has a sweet but tangy taste that complements meat wonderfully. The caramelized sugar provides the sweetness. The soy sauce gives a flavorful depth. Nevertheless, in other variations of the sauce, notably in the United States, the mirin is replaced with white wine.

Worcestershire sauce has distinct tastes. It’s sweet but savory, with a tangy finish. Its taste is provided by the fermented vinegar base. Since Worcestershire sauce has many more components than teriyaki, it has seen far more variants. The actual taste of the sauce may vary based on the items utilized.


Teriyaki sauce contains a lot of sugar. This may not be appropriate for those trying to reduce their calorie consumption. Also, the salt amount may be insufficient for persons with high blood pressure. [1]

Although Worcestershire sauce is not the healthiest sauce choice, it is also not the most dangerous. It’s low in carbohydrates and fat-free. It contains a lot of sodium. A tablespoon of this condiment has around 208 milligrams of sodium. [2]

The majority of Worcestershire sauce’s negative effects stem from the fact that several of its constituents are frequent allergies. Since the sauce contains anchovies, it is not suited for persons who are allergic to fish. Similarly, many businesses add gluten in their products, which is a major cause of allergies in many individuals.


Teriyaki sauce is often used as a glaze or marinade. Normally, fish and meat are marinated in the sauce before grilling or frying. As with stir fry, you may also add the sauce throughout the cooking phase. Alternately, you may pour the sauce at the end to add flavor and a glossy finish to a meal.

Worcestershire sauce, like teriyaki, may be used as a marinade. Instead, spread the sauce over grilled fish or meat. The sauce goes well with stir-fry foods and steamed veggies.


Teriyaki meals often have a shine or luster, which corresponds to the meaning of the term. This is due to the glittering effect of the caramelized sugars when used as a marinade or garnish.

The consistency of Worcestershire sauce is smooth and velvety. The hue of the sauce will vary depending on the brand. Nonetheless, it is usually crimson to deep brown in color.


Teriyaki-based foods have been popular in Japan since the 17th century. Once Japan emerged from its isolationist era and its people gradually relocated to other regions of the globe, their culture spread across the world. As a consequence, teriyaki meals became a mainstay in every restaurant with a significant Japanese cuisine following.

Teriyaki meals may now be found at Japanese restaurants or specialist teriyaki restaurants all over the globe. In Seattle, for example, there are at least 83 restaurants featuring the term teriyaki in their name.

Worcestershire sauce rose to popularity in the nineteenth century. It gradually gained popularity across the United Kingdom. After then, the sauce spread around the globe, from Mexico and Costa Rica to Denmark and Germany.

Can You Substitute Teriyaki with Worcestershire?

In certain recipes, Worcestershire sauce may be substituted for teriyaki. Worcestershire sauce offers a lot of the sweet, tangy, umami taste that you get with teriyaki sauce. As a result, you may use it as a replacement.

Can You Substitute Worcestershire with Teriyaki?

Teriyaki sauce may be substituted for Worcestershire sauce in recipes. Teriyaki sauce will provide a sweet and savory taste combination. Although teriyaki may be thicker than Worcestershire, the tastes will be similar enough that it will not be noticeable.

Teriyaki Vs. Worcestershire: Which One to Use?

Teriyaki and Worcestershire sauce are quite similar in taste, color, and application. Yet, the components in these condiments are not the same.

Worcestershire sauce, for example, comprises anchovies, tamarind, vinegar, and other ingredients. This makes it very good with fish. Yet, they also preclude vegetarians and vegans from consuming this sauce.

Teriyaki sauce, on the other hand, is vegan friendly and does not include items like gluten or tamarind. Teriyaki sauce is also a less difficult condiment to create. As a result, you may simply make the sauce at home.


Can you use Worcestershire sauce instead of teriyaki?

Worcestershire sauce is a dark, sour sauce that may be used in place of teriyaki sauce in a variety of dishes.

What is the best substitute for teriyaki sauce?

Finally, when it comes to teriyaki sauce substitutions, there are various possibilities. To give a comparable taste and texture to teriyaki sauce, barbecue sauce, soy sauce, ginger and brown sugar, Korean Galbi sauce, oyster sauce, and hoisin sauce may all be utilized.

Should you use Worcestershire sauce?

While it is a sauce, it is best used sparingly during cooking rather than smeared over your final meal at the table—think of it as a concentration to enhance meals (more on that below), sauces (think gravies, steak, or traditional cocktail sauces), and cocktails.

What can I replace Worcestershire with in marinade?

Because of its umami taste, soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce are fairly interchangeable. It works well in meat recipes such as steaks, hamburgers, pies, and marinades. To make Worcestershire sauce, combine equal parts soy sauce and ketchup.

Can I use Worcestershire sauce instead of soy sauce?

2 cup soy sauce, 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, 1 tablespoon water, properly mixed. Since Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce both have strong, acidic tastes, a simple replacement works in a hurry. to take the place of 1

Do you put soy sauce or Worcestershire?

In conclusion, soy sauce is more one-dimensional, with a strong salty flavor that pairs well with fish dishes, but also with certain other cuisines. Worcestershire sauce has a considerably more nuanced taste, is fermented for a longer length of time, and goes well with a variety of meals, especially meat.

Why does teriyaki sauce taste different?

Authentic teriyaki is a sweet and tangy sticky sauce with a large blast of salty umami from its basic basis of soy sauce and mirin, a low-alcohol, sweeter variant of sake, a traditional Japanese rice wine. Garlic, ginger, citrus, and sesame are common flavors in less typical teriyaki dishes.

Why is teriyaki sauce so good?

Many people like Teriyaki sauce because of its simplicity and the way it makes meals seem more attractive. The mirin or sake, as well as the caramelization of the sugar, are responsible for the teriyaki sauce’s sheen and shine.

What does teriyaki sauce taste good on?

Teriyaki sauce complements meats including fish, chicken, beef, and pig. Teriyaki sauce flavored chicken wings, dumplings, prawns, and steak when used as a dipping sauce. Teriyaki sauce is used to add flavor to stir-fries, rice dishes, and vegetables.

What is Worcestershire sauce mostly used for?

For good reason, Worcestershire sauce is most often used as a condiment for Caesar salad dressing and shrimp cocktail sauce. It’s a simple way to add depth to raw sauces, but it may also be cooked into barbecue sauces to cut through some of the natural sweetness.

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