Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Teriyaki cod recipe by Mia P. Manansala @MPMtheWriter

Cod must be a popular fish since I'm following up Leslie's lovely roasted cod and broccolini with my teriyaki cod dish. I didn't grow up eating cod, but I absolutely love fish and seafood and have been trying my best to incorporate more of it into my diet (at least twice a week rather than the "only on special occasions" way I'd been doing it). I've been experimenting with new-to-me types of fish and fell in love with the firm, meaty texture of cod, which goes beautifully with the sweet, salty teriyaki sauce. 

And for those of you wondering, teriyaki is not only for chicken--in fact, it was originally a fish dish in Japan (teri means "shine" and yaki means "grill," so it was originally a grilled fish that was brushed with a sweet glaze), and the story goes that an enterprising Japanese American restauranteur subbed in chicken and beef for the customers who didn't like fish.

I'm sure this sauce would work well with other types of fish, but I suggest going with a firmer-textured one for best results. This dish is fast, simple, and requires only five ingredients! Well, six, if you have a sweet tooth like my husband. Make sure to serve with plenty of rice to enjoy that delicious sauce!

Teriyaki cod served over a white rice-quinoa mix and steamed bok choy

Teriyaki Cod Recipe

serves 4


  • 2 lb. cod (I used frozen boneless filets, thawed)
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup sake*
  • 1/2 cup mirin**
  • Cornstarch, optional
  • Brown sugar, optional


  1. Wash the filets and pat them dry with a paper towel.
  2. Pour some cornstarch in a bowl and lightly dredge the fish. This step is optional, but highly recommended, as it creates a light coating for the sauce to cling to.
  3. Heat some oil over medium heat and cook the filets until just done, roughly two minutes per side, depending on the thickness of your fish. Do this in batches so you don't overcrowd the pan, and remove the fish to a clean plate when done. Leave the heat on medium.
  4. Mix the soy sauce, sake, and mirin (I do this directly in the measuring cup) and pour into the pan.
  5. The medium should come to a boil quickly. Turn the heat to medium-low and allow to simmer until reduced to at least half, roughly 15 minutes. Taste the sauce and make adjustments--my husband prefers a fairly sweet sauce, so I added a few tablespoons of brown sugar at this point.
  6. Return the filets to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes or so, turning the filets over halfway through cooking to coat with the sauce.
  7. Enjoy!
*not all recipes include sake, but it provides a wonderful acidity that I think works well in the sauce. You could substitute with an equal amount of dry white wine, a 1:3 mix of rice vinegar and water, or leave it out all together, though it vastly changes the taste.

**mirin is a sweet Japanese cooking wine. If you can't find it, replace with an equal amount of sake and a few tablespoons of honey or brown sugar.

***this recipes makes a lot of sauce, which is how we prefer it, but if you want a less saucy dish, you can cut the sauce ingredients in half.

Cast of characters: cod, mirin, sake, soy sauce, and cornstarch (hiding in the back)

Wash and dry the fish, then lightly dredge the filets in cornstarch.

Over medium heat, cook the filets roughly two minutes on each side (adjust timing according to thickness).

Cook the fish in batches and remove to a clean plate when done.

Mix the soy sauce, sake, and mirin.

Add the sauce to the pan and over medium/medium-low heat, simmer the sauce until it's reduced by at least half.

Return the fish to the pan and simmer together with the sauce for another five minutes or so, turning the filets over halfway through cooking to evenly coat with the sauce.

Enjoy! I recommend serving it with rice (or a rice-quinoa mix, like in this case) and steamed or stir-fried veggies.

What are your favorite ways to enjoy cod? Cod meuniere is next on my list, but I'd love to learn more ways to prepare this yummy fish. Let me know in the comments!

If you liked this recipe, make sure you sign up for my newsletter! I include a Filipino-themed recipe every month, as well as giveaways and book recommendations!

Homicide and Halo-Halo

Death at a beauty pageant turns Tita Rosie’s Kitchen upside down in the latest entry of this witty and humorous cozy mystery series by Mia P. Manansala.
Things are heating up for Lila Macapagal. Not in her love life, which she insists on keeping nonexistent despite the attention of two very eligible bachelors. Or her professional life, since she can’t bring herself to open her new café after the unpleasantness that occurred a few months ago at her aunt’s Filipino restaurant, Tita Rosie’s Kitchen. No, things are heating up quite literally, since summer, her least favorite season, has just started.
To add to her feelings of sticky unease, Lila’s little town of Shady Palms has resurrected the Miss Teen Shady Palms Beauty Pageant, which she won many years ago—a fact that serves as a wedge between Lila and her cousin slash rival, Bernadette. But when the head judge of the pageant is murdered and Bernadette becomes the main suspect, the two must put aside their differences and solve the case—because it looks like one of them might be next.



Order from Murder by the Book and get a signed bookplate, sticker, and bookmark*

Order from Bel Canto Books (Filipina-owned!) to get a signed bookplate & bookmark*

Order from The Book Table or Centuries & Sleuths for signed, personalized copies!

*While supplies last


  1. This sounds great, Mia! I ate plenty of teriyaki fish when I lived in Japan. Have saved the recipe.

    1. Thanks, Edith! I remember being surprised years ago when I read a Japanese food blog that said it was a fish dish. Then I realized how well the sauce would go with fish, and how much quicker it cooks, and it became part of my repertoire.

  2. Mia, this looks terrific and I think my hunny would enjoy it very much -- and as with yours, he'd add the brown sugar!

    1. Thanks, Leslie! My husband is the type to add extra honey to store-bought BBQ sauce, so I knew I had to sweeten this up a bit. He's not a huge fish eater, but this sauce has converted him.

      I need to try your recipe as well!

  3. This does sound good and easy. A winning combination.

  4. Hi Mia! Yum! I like both teriyaki and cod and this looks delicious together.

    1. Hey Tina! I definitely recommend giving it a try. This is one of my go-to dishes since I almost always have the ingredients stocked up.

  5. I like cod or any whitefish just about any way it can be served but this is a favorite recipe ~ 4 (6 ounce) cod fillets
    4 teaspoons olive oil, salt and ground black pepper to taste
    1 bunch fresh chives, coarsely chopped, 2 lemons, sliced
    2 cloves garlic, sliced

    Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
    Cut 4 large squares of heavy-duty aluminum foil. Brush each fillet with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Place each fillet in the center of an aluminum foil square. Lay lemon slices down the length of each fillet and sprinkle garlic slices and chives over the top. Fold foil over the fish and turn the edges over 2 or 3 times; flatten to seal the packets.
    Bake in the preheated oven until the fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, 15 to 20 minutes