Japanese yokitori (grilled chicken skewers)

October 16, 2014 (Last Updated: January 11, 2019)

Yokitori goes particularly well with warm sake.

TO DRINK: Warm sake, of course! If you prefer wine, try Constantia Uitsig Chardonnay Unwooded 2007.

Japanese yokitori (grilled chicken skewers)

Serves: 20
Cooking Time: 1 hour


  • 6 boneless chicken thighs, skin on
  • 100ml soy sauce
  • 20ml (4 tsp) mirin (see Cook’s Tip above right)
  • 30ml (2 tbsp) sake (see Cook’s Tip above right)
  • 60ml (¼ cup) sugar
  • ground red pepper, to serve



Cut the chicken into cubes, making sure that you keep the skin on.


Put the remaining ingredients in a wok and cook over a medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.


Stir the chicken pieces into the warm sugar mixture and let it stand for about 30 minutes.


Thread a few pieces of chicken onto a wooden skewer and continue until all the chicken is used.


Heat a griddle pan to hot and grill the skewers until cooked for a few minutes on each side. Baste the chicken with the marinade while cooking. Serve while still hot with red pepper.


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