Tonkatsu: Deepfired Pork

Tonkatsu, deep-fried breaded pork cutlet, is in its own way just as famous as tempura. Tonkatsu originated in Japan in the 19th century. As well as being served as a single dish, it is also used as a sandwich filling or in combination with curry. It’s not the healthiest food but rather comfort food.  Good news is, though, making Tonkatsu at home is very easy.  Most of the ingredients in the recipe are easily found at US supermarkets.  After all, it is a “western style” dish.

Tonkatsu sauce is an important partner of the dish. It is excellent by itself, but Tonkatsu sauce completes this dish.  The sauce is a Worcester-based sauce but much thicker. Tonkatsu is breaded and deep-fried pork. It’s usually served with shredded cabbage. The sauce can be purchased at Asian grocery stores, but if you can’t find it, you can make it by mixing 1 part Worcester sauce and 2 parts ketchup (at least something similar).

Tonkatsu is one of the most popular meat dishes in Japan. A “set” meal consisting of a deep-fried breaded pork cutlet on a bed of cabbage, a bowl of rice, one of soup, and a side dish of pickles.

It is commonly laid against shredded raw cabbage, which acts as a salad. And it is almost always accompanied by thinly shredded cabbage. You’ll definitely see how Tonkatsu and cabbage complement each other if you eat them together!


  • 4 boneless pork chopsTonkatsu_by_ayustety_in_Tokyo
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/2 – 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 head cabbage, shredded and soaked in cold water
  • salt and pepper
  • flour for coating
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • Tonkatsu sauce
  • Karashi mustard *optional
  • Yield: 4 servings


  1.      Cut the edge of pork chops in several places.
  2.      Season with salt and pepper.
  3.      Coat pork with flour lightly.
  4.      Dip the pork in beaten egg.
  5.      Coat pork with panko and pat well.
  6.      Heat oil for deep-frying in a deep pan to around 340 degrees F and deep-fry breaded pork for a few minutes.
  7.      Turn the pork over and fry a few more minutes or until cooked through and browned. Remove pork from the oil and drain on paper towels.
  8.      Drain shredded cabbage well.
  9.      Cut each tonkatsu into small pieces and serve on plates with cabbage.
  10.  Pour some tonkatsu sauce over them before eating.
  11.  Put some karashi mustard on tonkatsu if you would like.

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