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A Step-by-Step Guide To Making Japanese Pork Tonkatsu At Home

There’s something about this seemingly simple Japanese dish—breaded and fried pork cutlet—that Filipinos love. Perhaps it’s our love of both pork and fried food that makes this such an easy favorite. While the fancier Japanese restaurants serve pork tonkatsu featuring expensive Kurobota pork, there’s no reason you can’t make a more modest version at home. While the frying technique is fairly basic, it’s the tonkatsu sauce that will give that particularly “Japanese” dimension. To complete the experience, make sure to serve your homemade pork tonkatsu with steamed Japanese rice, shredded cabbage, and sesame dressing.


Pork Tonkatsu

Serves 4


  • 4 pork loins, skinless with fat, sliced 1/2 to 1-inch thick
  • salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups Japanese (panko) breadcrumbs



1. Pound the pork loin to desired thickness. Season with salt and pepper.



2. Make a breading station by arranging shallow bowls of flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs on the table. Dredge pork in flour, shaking off excess, dip in egg then coat in breadcrumbs.



3. Heat oil to 350°F. You may also check the temperature of the oil by dropping a small amount of breadcrumbs into the oil. If the crumbs do not sizzle, the oil needs more time. If the crumbs burn quickly, the oil is too hot.



4. Deep-fry the coated meat until golden brown, roughly around 5 to 7 minutes depending on the thickness of the meat.



5. Let the pork rest and drain over a baking rack or a plate lined with paper towels. Cut the pork into slices and serve with tonkatsu sauce (recipe below).



  • 1/2 cup tomato ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brewed soy sauce, preferably Kikkoman brand
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onions


In a saucepan, add all the ingredients. Let it boil. Then lower heat and continue to simmer until sauce is reduced to half and thickens slightly. 



This recipe first appeared in FOOD Magazine, August-September 2014 issue 

Styling by Tina Concepcion Diaz

Photography by Paulo Valenzuela