Japanese-style Souvlaki


Japanese-style Souvlaki

Teriyaki Grilled Skewers with Japanese Flavors

In the context of Japanese cuisine, this recipe takes the traditional Greek dish of Souvlaki and infuses it with the flavors of Japan. The succulent grilled skewers are marinated in a teriyaki sauce, resulting in a delightful fusion of Mediterranean and Asian tastes.

Jan Dec

Preparation time: 40 minutes

Cooking time: 10 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

4 servings


Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Low-carb, High-protein, Paleo-friendly


Vegan, Vegetarian, Nut-free, Egg-free, Soy-free


While the original Greek Souvlaki is typically marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, and herbs, this Japanese adaptation replaces those ingredients with a teriyaki sauce. Additionally, the traditional Greek pita bread is substituted with steamed rice or lettuce wraps for a more Japanese touch. We alse have the original recipe for Souvlaki, so you can check it out.


  • Calories (kcal / KJ): 250 kcal / 1046 KJ
  • Fat (total, saturated): 10g, 2g
  • Carbohydrates (total, sugars): 10g, 8g
  • Protein: 28g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Salt: 2g


  1. 1.
    In a bowl, combine soy sauce, mirin, sake, honey, minced garlic, and grated ginger to make the teriyaki marinade.
  2. 2.
    Add the chicken pieces to the marinade and let them marinate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 2 hours in the refrigerator.
  3. 3.
    Preheat the grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.
  4. 4.
    Thread the marinated chicken pieces onto skewers.
  5. 5.
    Brush the grill with vegetable oil to prevent sticking.
  6. 6.
    Grill the skewers for about 4-5 minutes on each side, or until the chicken is cooked through and slightly charred.
  7. 7.
    While grilling, brush the skewers with the remaining marinade for extra flavor.
  8. 8.
    Sprinkle sesame seeds over the cooked skewers for garnish.
  9. 9.
    Serve the Japanese-style Souvlaki with steamed rice or wrap the skewers in lettuce leaves for a lighter option.

Treat your ingredients with care...

  • Chicken thighs — Make sure to remove any excess fat or skin from the chicken thighs before cutting them into bite-sized pieces to ensure a leaner and more tender result.

Tips & Tricks

  • For a sweeter teriyaki flavor, add a tablespoon of brown sugar to the marinade.
  • Soak the wooden skewers in water for 30 minutes before threading the chicken to prevent them from burning on the grill.
  • If you prefer a spicier kick, add a teaspoon of chili flakes or a dash of hot sauce to the marinade.
  • Experiment with different vegetables such as bell peppers, onions, or zucchini by threading them onto the skewers along with the chicken.
  • If you don't have a grill, you can also cook the skewers in a preheated oven at 200°C (400°F) for about 15-20 minutes, turning them halfway through.

Serving advice

Serve the Japanese-style Souvlaki as a main dish accompanied by steamed rice or lettuce wraps. Garnish with a sprinkle of sesame seeds for added texture and visual appeal. Offer a side of pickled ginger or a simple cucumber salad to complement the flavors.

Presentation advice

Arrange the grilled skewers on a platter, placing them diagonally for an attractive presentation. Sprinkle sesame seeds over the skewers and garnish with fresh cilantro or chopped green onions for a pop of color. Serve with steamed rice or lettuce wraps on the side.