Tonkatsu (Japanese Deep-fried Breaded Pork Cutlet)

Tonkatsu (Japanese Deep-fried Breaded Pork Cutlet)

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4
Author Connie Veneracion


  • 4 pork cutlets
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup panko (you may need more)
  • oil for deep frying


  • Lay the pork cutlets flat on the work surface. If the thickness is uneven, cover them with cling wrap and use a mallet to pound them until the thickness is uniform. You want them anywhere from half-inch to three-quarter-inch thick.
  • Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
  • Prepare three shallow bowls. Dump the flour in one, crack the egg into the second and pour the panko into the third.
  • Lightly beat the egg.
  • Start heating enough cooking oil in a frying pan to reach a depth of two inches (more is better). The oil shouldn't be too hot to avoid burning the panko coating while leaving the innermost portion of the cutlet undercooked. The ideal temperature is around 145F. You can use a thermometer or eyeball it.
  • While you wait for the oil heat up, prepare the cutlets.
  • Dredge each pork cutlet in flour; shake off the excess.
  • Dip the floured cutlets in the beaten egg.
  • Roll the wet cutlets in panko.
  • Fry the pork cutlets, in batches if your frying pan cannot hold all four together, until golden brown and crisp on the outside. If the cutlets are not completely submerged in oil, you will need to flip them for even cooking. Depending on the thickness of the cutlets, the cooking time can be anywhere from five to seven minutes.
  • Cut the tonkatsu into strips and serve with tonkatsu sauce (get the recipe).