Japanese Pork Katsu (Tonkatsu)
Better than take out, this easy Pork Katsu recipe is tender, juicy and crispy. Crunchy panko coated pork is pan-fried until golden then served with a savory Tonkatsu sauce. Always a frequent request in our house!
We love our favorite Japanese take out restaurant but for awhile it was closed and we were going through a bit of withdrawal.
But the one thing Landon missed the most was the Pork Katsu, or Tonkatsu, because he’s not a sushi guy. But he does love the buttery, crunchy, crispy golden pork that’s served with a savory sauce. And we love it, too!
JAPANESE PORK KATSU
Tonkatsu, also known as Pork Katsu, is a breaded, deep fried thinly sliced pork cutlet that’s served with a Japanese Worcestershire sauce.
It’s pretty simple to make because it’s simply coated in panko bread crumbs and fried in a bit of oil.
Similar to this Parmesan Crusted Chicken we love so much, this easy pan fried pork chop is a go-to when weeknights are busy and dinner time is limited.
The word “Ton” means pork while “Katsu” is derived from the word Katsuretu which means cutlet. Usually made with beef, pork was introduced to the Katsu world in 1899 at a restaurant called Rengatei in Tokyo.
HOW TO MAKE TONKATSU
Pork Katsu couldn’t be easier to make. And you don’t need many ingredients to get the job done.
Here’s how to make it:
Pound the pork cutlets with a meat mallet until about 1/2 inch thick.
Season the flour with salt and pepper.
Dredge the pork in the flour, dip in the egg and then coat in the breadcrumbs.
Heat the oil in a skillet.
Fry the pork in the hot oil until golden and crispy.
Transfer to a platter.
Make the pork Katsu sauce by whisking the ingredients in a bowl.
Serve the pork with the sauce.
If you don’t want to use pork, or don’t have it on hand, you can substitute the pork with boneless skinless chicken breasts for a tasty chicken Katsu!
WHAT IS PANKO
Panko breadcrumbs are a medium size bread crumb and that is perfect for Tonkatsu. Italian breadcrumbs are too light and won’t give you the crispy coating that Katsu is known for.
You can find Panko breadcrumbs in just about any grocery store or online.
HOW TO MAKE TONKATSU SAUCE
Katsu sauce is a Worcestershire based sauce that’s tangy and perfect on the fried pork cutlets. You can buy it at most stores but it’s easy to make.
Just whisk together 1 part Worcestershire sauce with 2 parts ketchup. I added a few other ingredients to make the flavor pop even more but it’s a little more over the top than a traditional Katsu sauce.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH PORK KATSU
We love to serve our Pork Katsu on rice with a side of our favorite Cucumber Kimchi recipe! I know it’s not traditional but the tang of the pickled cucumbers with the crunch of the pork is the perfect match!
MORE EASY PORK RECIPES
If you love this easy Pork Katsu recipe, you should also try this Kalua Pork….it’s classic Hawaiian and CRAZY easy to make in the slow cooker.
Get the Recipe: JAPANESE PORK KATSU RECIPE
For the Pork Katsu:
- 4 boneless pork loin chops, approximately 1″ thick
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 cup canola oil, or other oil suitable for high temperature frying like peanut oil
For the sauce:
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
- frying pan
- Using a meat mallet, pound the pork evenly until 1/2 inch in thickness.
- Season the flour with salt and pepper in a shallow dish. Add the eggs to a separate shallow dish and the breadcrumbs in a third.
- Dredge the pork in the flour and coat on both sides.
- Dip the pork in the eggs and then coat with bread crumbs on both sides.
- Heat deep frying oil to 350˚ F.
- Add the pork to the oil and fry until golden brown, approximately 5 minutes. Flip the pork and cook for an additional 3 minutes.
- Transfer the pork to a cooling rack to rest for 2-3 minutes.
- Whisk together the ingredients for the sauce and set aside.
- Slice the pork into 5-6 pieces and serve with the sauce.