Japanese steakhouse ginger sauce for dipping meat and vegetables, or eating with fried rice. It tastes just like the ginger sauce you eat at Japanese restaurants. Just 5 ingredients and done in under 5 minutes!
This is a recipe for the ginger meat sauce served at Japanese steakhouses where they cook in front of you on a teppanyaki or hibachi grills.
Not to be confused with the Japanese ginger salad dressing that comes with the simple green salad or yum yum sauce, which is mayonnaise-based. This is a brown soy ginger dipping sauce for meat and vegetables.
I’m sure you’ve had it at your favorite Japanese steakhouse like Shogun, Taki, Ohana, Japanese Village, or Benihana restaurant, which serves a very similar dipping sauce. They’re all so tasty!
Does anyone else out there request to have extra ginger sauce at the Japanese restaurant and tell the chef they can skip giving you the seafood mustard sauce?
It’s a very popular sauce. I know I’m not alone in this. My mother does it too and when others at the table hear us request this, they ask the same thing.
We dip everything into it including shrimp, chicken, steak, and vegetables, and pour it on our Teppanyaki fried rice, you name it. It’s a great dipping sauce and it would also make a delicious marinade.
Japanese steakhouses don’t always offer takeout so we were looking to make the sauce at home and we’ve tried many, many different versions.
This is the closest we’ve come to what our local Japanese steakhouses serve. The next time you make a hibachi dinner at home I highly recommend making this sauce.
- Minced Ginger or Ginger Paste
- Diced Yellow Onion
- White Vinegar
- Lemon Juice
- Low-Sodium Soy Sauce
All About Ginger
The inside of the ginger root is called the “flesh” or “meat.” It refers to the edible, fleshy part of the root that is used in cooking and for its distinct flavor. This part is typically pale yellow or ivory in color and has a fibrous texture. The flesh is what is harvested and used in various culinary applications, such as slicing, mincing, or grating for cooking or baking.
I do not recommend substituting ground ginger for this recipe. It does not provide the same freshness, texture, or intense ginger flavor that fresh ginger provides.
How to Select Ginger
Choose a fresh ginger root that looks firm, plump, and has smooth skin. Avoid ginger with wrinkles or mold.
How to Cut Ginger Root
- Peeling: The skin of ginger root is very thin. The easiest way is to use the side of a spoon to scrape it off. It’s known to be better than using a peeler because it tends to take too much meat off. However, a peeler can still work if you’re struggling. Ginger root can have a lot of angles to peel around. Hold the ginger firmly and scrape off the skin.
- Mincing or Grating: For smaller pieces, you can finely mince the ginger by cutting it into thin strips and then chopping it into tiny pieces. Alternatively, use a grater to grate the ginger.
- Crushing or Paste: Use the back of a knife or a garlic press to crush the ginger into a paste. This method releases more flavor.
How to Make Japanese Ginger Sauce
Begin by chopping the onion into small pieces. The smaller the better so that the food processor or blender can easily blend them down into sauce.
- Chop onion into small pieces. Peel and mince ginger root if not already done so. I have found that buying it already minced from the produce section of the grocery is easiest.
- In a food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth. You’ll notice as the air is whipped into the sauce that it changes to a slightly more yellow color. This is normal and once the sauce settles it is brown again.
What to Serve Ginger Sauce With
Hibachi ginger sauce is a versatile and flavorful condiment that pairs well with a variety of Japanese recipes. Here are some ideas on what to serve hibachi ginger sauce with.
- Japanese Hibachi or Teppanyaki Grilled Meats: Use as a dipping sauce for grilled meats such as Teppanyaki or Hibachi shrimp, steak, chicken, or scallops. The sauce complements the smoky flavors from the grill.
- Teppanyaki Fried Rice: Drizzle hibachi ginger sauce over hibachi-style fried rice for added flavor. It adds a tangy and creamy element to the rice.
- Hibachi Vegetables: Dip Teppanyaki or hibachi-grilled or stir-fried vegetables into the sauce. It works well with a variety of veggies like zucchini, mushrooms, onions, and bell peppers.
- Noodles: Serve as a dipping sauce for hibachi-style noodles or stir-fried noodles. It adds a delightful kick to the dish.
- Tofu or Tempeh: Use as a dipping sauce for grilled or stir-fried tofu or tempeh. The sauce adds a tasty contrast to the subtle flavors of these vegetarian options.
- Hibachi Bowls: Drizzle hibachi ginger sauce over hibachi-style bowls, combining grilled proteins, vegetables, and rice.
- Seafood Dishes: Pair with grilled or sautéed seafood like salmon, tilapia, or lobster for a flavorful dipping experience.
Generally, homemade ginger sauce can last for about 1 to 2 weeks in the refrigerator in an airtight container. However, this timeframe can vary based on the freshness of the ingredients used.
- Ice Cube Trays: Silicone trays are often ideal for easy removal of frozen cubes, but regular plastic ice trays work too.
- Portion the Sauce: Spoon the ginger sauce into the individual compartments of the ice cube tray. Leave a small space at the top for expansion during freezing.
- Freeze: Place the ice cube tray flat in the freezer. Allow the ginger sauce to freeze completely, which usually takes a few hours.
- Pop Out the Cubes: Once the ginger sauce cubes are frozen solid, remove the tray from the freezer. Gently twist or tap the tray to release the cubes. If needed, you can use a butter knife to help loosen them.
- Transfer to Freezer Bags: Place the ginger sauce cubes in a resealable freezer bag. Label the bag with the date.
- Store in the Freezer: Store the sealed freezer bag in the freezer for up to 2-3 months.
- Thawing Individual Cubes: When you need ginger sauce, simply take out the desired number of cubes. Thaw them in the refrigerator or if you plan to cook with them, place them directly in the skillet over the stove when preparing food.
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Japanese Steakhouse Ginger Sauce
- 2 tablespoons Minced Ginger or Ginger Paste
- ½-3/4 cup Diced Onion, depending on how much you like
- ¼ cup Soy Sauce
- 3 tablespoons Lemon Juice
- 3 tablespoons White Vinegar
- Chop onion into small pieces. Peel and mince ginger root if not already done so.
- In a food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth. You'll notice as the air is whipped into the sauce that it changes to a slightly more yellow color. This is normal and once the sauce settles it is brown again.
- Serve with steak, chicken, seafood, vegetables, or rice.
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