Shoyu Chicken

There isn’t anything easier than shoyu chicken. Mix, pour, simmer. That’s it. But it simmers for a good hour, so be sure you’ve planned ahead. The meat soaks up the sauce and becomes very tender and could win over anyone, even the most picky eaters.

This recipe is from one of those community cookbooks from the Hawaii Soto Mission in Oahu. I’ve had several recipes tagged, but haven’t found motivation to cook from it until now. There aren’t any photos, which is a little fact I’ll have to overlook if I’m to scarf down yummy Hawaiian food like this.

Shoyu Chicken
Adapted from Hawaii Soto Mission Cookbook
Makes about 12 servings

5 lbs. chicken thighs
8 oz. can tomato sauce
1 cup sugar
1 cup shoyu
3 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. dry mustard

In a small pot, combine tomato sauce, sugar, shoyu, rice vinegar, and dry mustard and bring to a boil. Place the chicken thighs in a large pot and pour the sauce over the thighs. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to medium-low and cook for 1 hour, partially covering with a lid.

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  1. julie
    Posted October 7, 2009 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    i love seeing variations on shoyu chicken – my “family recipe” omits everything except the shoyu and sugar and adds in ginger + scant garlic. i’ll have to give this version a try – the accompanying photo is certainly mouth-watering!

  2. Posted October 8, 2009 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    Julie, I’ll have to try adding ginger and garlic next time. I was also thinking of upping the amount of vinegar, too, to give the flavor a little kick!

  3. Mavi
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    Azusa!!! I’ve never gotten so many compliments on my cooking before! I dropped some off at my mom’s house and she called me to rave about it!

  4. Posted October 12, 2009 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Mavi, I’m so glad it was a hit!! Especially with your mom—wow, that’s something!

  5. Aspiring Chef
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Does anyone know if the recipe works just as well if you half it?

  6. Posted October 12, 2009 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Aspiring Chef—yes, I’ve halved it and it works beautifully. Would love to hear how yours turns out!

  7. B
    Posted March 2, 2010 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    thank you again for ANOTHER great recipe! made this tonight, it was delicious! i added some ginger and garlic and 1 extra tablespoon of rice vinegar, per the comments. dh prefers white meat so i included some chicken breasts. i was worried it would be dry but he said it was great. i did overcook it just a tad so some pieces were a tad dry but still really good – i’ll just keep a better eye on it next time. i’m curious if anyone’s tried this in the crockpot before?

  8. Posted March 3, 2010 at 12:04 am | Permalink

    B, thanks for the tip about using chicken breasts. I don’t see why it wouldn’t work in a crockpot—I bet the meat would be even more tender with a slow cook. Mmm~!

  9. Posted October 12, 2011 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

    Hi Azusa, I just wanted to thank you, once more, for another simple and luscious dish discovery. I have already made Shoyu Chicken twice (have almost forgotten to say I have posted it yesterday), am planning it for this weekend and frankly it’s on a good way to become such a regular guest on our table as your tomato and shiso salad. Thank you for this lovely idea!

  10. Susan
    Posted November 9, 2011 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Thanks so much for this recipe! It’s delicious and my kids love it (big plus there)! The only thing I did differently was adding whole hard-boiled eggs (eggshells removed first!) to the dish about 15mins before the flame is turned off. The eggs get this nice light brown color and is a very nice contrast to the chicken. This has become a total fave!

  11. sks
    Posted March 28, 2014 at 5:54 am | Permalink

    Looks yummy….and I”ve been craving. I was also thinking of using the Crockpot.

  12. Posted March 28, 2014 at 8:00 am | Permalink

    sks, what a great idea to use a Crockpot. I’ll have to try that next time!

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