Cuisine Network

Cuisine Network

Dessert Recipes

The Crispy Elegance of Tonkatsu: A Japanese Culinary Delight

10 minutes. Cook
Scroll to recipe

Japanese cuisine is renowned for its intricate flavors, artful presentation, and the rich history that accompanies each dish. Tonkatsu, a beloved classic of Japanese gastronomy, is no exception. This delectable dish is a perfect marriage of crispy, tender pork cutlets and a medley of accompanying flavors that awaken the taste buds. Tonkatsu has a fascinating history, which we will delve into before we roll up our sleeves and embark on creating this culinary masterpiece.

Historical Context: Tonkatsu, or “pork cutlet” in Japanese, has a unique origin story that can be traced back to the late 19th century. It was first introduced by Japanese chef Rakuta Tanaka, who encountered European-style breaded and fried pork while working in Europe. Inspired by this foreign delicacy, he returned to Japan and began serving his own version. The dish quickly gained popularity and evolved into the beloved tonkatsu we know today.


Preparing the Tonkatsu Sauce:

  1. In a small saucepan, combine ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, sugar, Dijon mustard, and grated ginger.
  2. Place the saucepan over low heat and whisk the mixture until the sugar is completely dissolved. Simmer for 5 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
  3. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the tonkatsu sauce cool. Once cooled, transfer it to a serving dish or bottle. You can refrigerate any extra sauce for future use.

Preparing the Pork Cutlets:

  1. Start by preparing your pork loin chops. Lay them between sheets of plastic wrap and gently pound them with a meat mallet to an even thickness of about 1/4 inch. Season each side with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  2. Set up a breading station with three shallow bowls: one with all-purpose flour, another with beaten eggs, and the last with panko breadcrumbs.
  3. Coat each pork chop with flour, shaking off any excess. Dip it into the beaten eggs, ensuring it’s fully coated, and then coat it evenly with the panko breadcrumbs, pressing the breadcrumbs onto the pork to adhere.
  4. Heat about 1 inch of vegetable oil in a heavy skillet or frying pan over medium-high heat. To check if the oil is hot enough, drop a breadcrumb into the oil; if it sizzles and turns golden brown, it’s ready.
  5. Carefully place the breaded pork cutlets into the hot oil using tongs. Fry for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until they are golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 145°F (63°C).
  6. Once the pork cutlets are done, transfer them to a wire rack set over a paper towel-lined plate to drain any excess oil. Let them rest for a minute before slicing.


To serve tonkatsu, simply slice the crispy pork cutlets into strips and arrange them on a plate. Drizzle the tonkatsu sauce generously over the top or serve it on the side for dipping. Traditional accompaniments include shredded cabbage, steamed rice, and pickled vegetables. Enjoy!


prep time
30 minutes.
cooking time
10 minutes.
total time
30 minutes.


  • Heavy skillet or frying pan

  • Tongs

  • Wire rack

  • Paper towels

  • Small saucepan

  • Whisk

  • Mixing bowls

  • Plastic wrap


  • 4 boneless pork loin chops (about 1/2 inch thick)

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour

  • 2 large eggs, beaten

  • 2 cups panko breadcrumbs (Japanese breadcrumbs)

  • Vegetable oil for frying

  • For the Tonkatsu Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup

  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

  • 1 tablespoon sugar

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger


Prepare Tonkatsu Sauce.
Coat pork with flour, eggs, breadcrumbs.
Fry in hot oil.
Drain and slice before serving.
More Servings
Dessert Recipes

Homemade Teriyaki Chicken - Japanese Sweet and Savory

Dessert Recipes

Savory Beef Yakisoba - Japanese Noodle Comfort

Dessert Recipes

Savory Chicken Teriyaki Bowls - Japanese Rice Delight

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x

There is a good reason not to support the Guardian

Not everyone can afford to pay for news right now. That is why we chose to keep our journalism open to everyone.

But if you can, then there are three good reasons to choose to support us today: we are independent and have no billionaire or shareholders telling us what to do; our quality journalism is vital at a time when powerful people are getting away with more and more; and it takes less time than it took to read this message. Choose to help power the Guardian’s journalism for years to come. Give just once from $1. Thank you.

A valid rationale exists for not endorsing or backing The Cuisine Network.

Not everyone can afford paid culinary insights right now. That’s why we’ve kept our culinary information accessible to all.

However, if you’re able to, there are three compelling reasons to support us today: we remain independent without the influence of billionaires or shareholders dictating our direction; our commitment to high-quality culinary journalism is crucial, especially as influential figures escape scrutiny more frequently; and it takes just a moment, shorter than the time it took to read this message. Choose to bolster Cuisine Network’s culinary journalism for the years ahead. Give just once, starting from $1. Thank you.