I had only heard of these Japanese grilled chicken skewers myself a few years ago. They really are just that: Japanese chicken skewers.
They often use many parts of the chicken, including gizzards and liver, as well as thigh meat. It’s all cut up into bite-sized pieces and threaded onto bamboo skewers, then basted and grilled.
Chicken yakitori has plenty of that classic umami flavour. And it makes a great handheld appetizer and a Low Carb or an easy dinner recipe.
When I saw chicken yakitori for the first time, I inquired about the sauce and whether it had sugar in it. That was a strong affirmative, so I had to give it a pass at the time
MAKING CHICKEN YAKITORI
But I started researching homemade yakitori recipes to see if I could make a keto-friendly version.
The sauce is usually made of soy sauce, mirin, brown sugar, sometimes sake, and sometimes other seasonings like ginger and garlic. It’s also often thickened with cornstarch.
This combination results in a salty-sweet sauce that pairs perfectly with grilled chicken.
For my keto chicken yakitori, I used tamari instead of soy sauce, because it’s gluten-free.
Additionally, it’s actually much higher carb than real soy sauce or tamari.
- 1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
- 1/four cup water
- 1/four cup Swerve Brown
- 2 tbsp BochaSweet (can use allulose)
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp minced fresh ginger (or half tsp floor ginger)
- 1/4 tsp warm pepper flakes
- 1/four tsp xanthan gum
- 2 lb boneless skinless chook thighs (chopped into bite-sized pieces)
- 2 tsp toasted sesame seeds
- 1 medium scallion, chopped
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the tamari, water, Swerve, BochaSweet, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and hot pepper flakes. Bring to a boil.
- Sprinkle the surface with the xanthan gum and whisk vigorously to combine. Continue to boil 2 to 3 minutes until somewhat thickened. Remove from heat and cool completely.
- Place the chicken in a bowl and toss with 2/3 of the sauce. Refrigerate 2 hours to marinate. Reserve the remaining sauce for serving with the chicken.
- If you’re using bamboo skewers, place in a pan with water to soak for at least an hour. You will need 6 to 8 large skewers or 12 small appetizer-sized skewers.
- Preheat the grill to medium-high and grease the grates to prevent sticking. Thread the chicken onto the skewers. Place the skewers on the grill and brush the marinating liquid.
- Grill 5 to 6 minutes per side, brushing frequently with the marinating liquid. Remove to a platter and sprinkle with sesame seeds and scallions. Serve with the reserved sauce at the table.