Sweet Soy Sauce Glaze

Sweet Soy Sauce Glaze

This sweet and savory sauce is fantastic as a glaze or dipping sauce alongside crispy fried foods such as Korean Fried Chicken. It’s a great option for those who don’t really care for spicy dishes, but still want to enjoy Korean food. If possible, track down some kochukaru chili pepper for a more nuanced and authentic flavor (see note below).

Note: Kochukaru (Korean: 고추가루, sometimes also called gochugaru) is a type of Korean red chili pepper. It can range in flavor from sweet and mildly spicy to quite hot, and has a texture somewhere between finely ground powder and coarsely ground tiny flakes. It can be found in most Asian markets (here in the States, the H Mart grocery chain- a.k.a. Han Ah Reum- carries a wide selection of kochukaru), and is used extensively in Korean cooking for sauces, soups, stews, and side dishes like kimchi. Regular crushed red pepper or Chinese-style dried chili flakes can be used in its place, but will have slightly less depth of flavor (adjust your other seasonings to taste to compensate).


  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup mirin or other sweet rice cooking wine
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed dried red pepper (preferably Korean kochukaru, see note above)
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1/4 cup finely sliced scallions

1. Heat soy sauce, vinegar, mirin, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, crushed red pepper, and sesame oil in a small saucepan over medium heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Combine corn starch with 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl and whisk into sauce. Bring to a boil and cook until sauce is slightly reduced and thickened, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Serve with Korean Fried Chicken.