Baked Tonkatsu 揚げないとんかつ

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Baked Tonkatsu | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.comTonkatsu (とんかつ) or Japanese pork cutlet is a delicious and popular dish yet it’s not common to make at home.  Most people prefer not to deep fry food at home because it can be dangerous and creates oily smell in the kitchen, and who likes to clean up messy splatter all over the stove top after deep frying?  So today I’m going to show you how you can make baked tonkatsu that’s juicy inside and crispy outside!

One of the most important feature of delicious tonkatsu is to have that crispy panko texture when you bite into it.  Just like how I prepared Crispy Baked Chicken Katsu recipe and Crispy Salmon recipe, the key for panko to be crispy and golden brown is to pre-cook panko before breading the pork.  That way you won’t need to spray or pour a lot of oil on panko in order for it to turn golden brown in the oven.  Alto the pork loin could be overcooked and tough to chew while you wait for the panko to turn golden brown.

Baked Tonkatsu | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

Another important tip for oven-baked tonkatsu is that you can’t use thick pieces of pork loin.  It will take too long for the pork to cook through so keep in mind that the thickness of pork should be no more than 1/2 inch (1.2 cm).  And remember to use good quality meat and pound it so that the pork loin will be nice and tender after it’s being cooked.  When the food is as simple as this, quality of the ingredient speaks itself.

Lastly, I added black and white sesame seeds into tonkatsu sauce but it’s optional (Can’t find tonkatsu sauce? Here’s my homemade recipe!).  Japanese tonkatsu restaurants often have bowls of mortar and wooden pestles on the table for you to grind sesame seeds while you wait for the tonkatsu to arrive.  You may wonder why you have to grind your own sesame seeds.  Well, this is part of enjoyment eating tonkatsu.  Sesame seeds emit very nice aroma and flavor when you freshly grind them.  The nutty flavor of sesame seeds goes very well with tonkatsu sauce.

Baked Tonkatsu | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

Here’s a quick video to show you how you can make Baked Tonkatsu, a quick 30-minute recipe from start to finish.

If you prefer regular deep-fried Tonkatsu recipe, click here!  I actually don’t mind deep frying, but for healthier alternative, this baked tonkatsu is AWESOME!

Don’t want to miss a recipe? Sign up for the FREE Just One Cookbook newsletter delivered to your inbox! And stay in touch on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram for all the latest updates. Thank you so much for reading, and till next time!

Baked Tonkatsu
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 pieces pork loin (1/2 lb ,226 g), ½ inch (1.2 cm) thickness
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • Tonkatsu Sauce (or Make homemade Tonkatsu Sauce)
  • 1 Tbsp. black and/or white sesame seeds
    Baked Tonkatsu Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 400F (200C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the panko and oil in a frying pan and toast over medium heat until golden brown. Transfer panko into a shallow dish and allow to cool.
    Baked Tonkatsu 1
  3. Get rid of the extra fat and make a couple of slits on the copnnective tissue between the meat and fat. The reason why you do this is that red meat and fat have different elasticity, and when they are cooked they will shrink and expand at different rates. This will allow Tonkatus to stay nice and flat and prevent Tonkatsu from curling up.
    Baked Tonkatsu 2
  4. Pound the meat with a meat pounder, or if you don’t have one then just use the back of knife to pound. Mold the extended meat back into original shape with your hands.
    Baked Tonkatsu 3
  5. Sprinkle salt and freshly ground black pepper.
    Baked Tonkatsu 4
  6. Dredge each pork piece in the flour to coat completely and pat off the excess flour. Then dip into the beaten egg and finally coat with the toasted panko. Press on the panko flakes to make sure they adhere to the pork.
    Baked Tonkatsu 5
  7. Place the pork on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until the pork is no longer pink inside, about 20 minutes.
    Baked Tonkatsu 6
  8. Cut Tonkatsu into 1 inch pieces (so you can eat with chopsticks) by pressing the knife directly down instead of moving back and forth. This way the panko will not come off. Transfer to a plate and serve immediately.
    Baked Tonkatsu 7
  9. To make special sesame tonkatsu sauce, grind black and white sesame seeds in a mortor and add tonkatsu sauce. Mix all together.
    Baked Tonkatsu 8
Notes
Recipe by Namiko Chen of Just One Cookbook. All images and content on this site are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission. If you’d like to share this recipe on your site, please re-write the recipe and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.
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  1. Stop it, Nami! I’m on a three-day juice fast! I’d love this for lunch right now. I love how this can be baked in the oven instead of fried because like you say, frying creates that awful smell in your kitchen xx

    4
  2. Ayako L.

    Oooooh~! I love deep fried food! ( I know it’s bad… :( ) But I hate deep frying!!
    But…I love Tonkatsu!!
    This is life saving recipe, and perhaps saves my life, too :)
    Thanks!

    5
    • Hi Ayako! I LOVE deep frying food, too, and I don’t mind deep frying –> worse! 😉

      Hope you try this baked version. It’s pretty good, considering this is baked!

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  3. Happy Mother’s Day to you Nami. You are such an awesome lady, posting these great recipes for us readers as well as being a supermom to your kids. 😀

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  4. Eha

    Lovely simple way to cook juicy pork! I never deep-fry anything but that is for health rather than aromatic reasons which I do not mind at all :) !

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    • Hi Eha! Tee hee! I don’t mind half day of oily smell in the kitchen at all as long as I get to eat the deep fried food. 😀 Thank you so much for your comment! :)

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  5. Love the idea you can bake this rather than fry it!I do fry sometimes, but I’m certainly one who doesn’t that often because it’s so messy. This looks terrific — really great recipe. Thanks.

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  6. Lorelle Denham

    This looks delicious – and I’m so glad you are baking it instead of frying it – so I’m definitely going to try it! Oddly – my mother gave me an insert from her newspaper yesterday – and it had a cook – adam liaw – with a recipe for Tonkatsu – but fried, so I would not normally have been interested until I saw your recipe today. The difference is in the sauces. His Tonkatsu sauce contains 1/2 cup tomato sauce; 1/4 cup worcestershire sauce; 2 tbsp soy sauce; 1tbsp mirin; 1 tsp castor sugar and 1tsp english mustard, but he doesn’t say if mild or hot. Just thought I’d let you know.
    Cheers

    12
  7. To be honest, I prefer baked, too! It is healthier and like you mentioned, easier for clean-up at the same time. Thanks for the great idea! Makes me wanna whip up some kani salad to go with your crispy Tonkatsu 😉

    Julie
    Gourmet Getaways

    15
  8. I love tonkatsu and I hate deep frying so this recipe is perfect. I will try it soon. Btw Nami, how do you shred the cabbage so thinly? Do you have a special technique or tip? Do share please?

    16
    • Hi Mel! Hope you enjoy this recipe!

      For shredded cabbage, I cut with my knife – very sharp one. You might need to practice to cut slowly at first in order to achieve thinness. But you’ll get used to it. A sharp knife makes it very easier. Hope this helps. :)

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      • Thanks for the tip Nami, I made the tonkatsu today and my husband is crazy for them. Now I need to make this weekly.
        Keep up the great recipes Nami, I love your blog and recipes.

        Cheers
        Mel

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        • So glad to hear your husband enjoyed it. Now with “baked” version, it’s not so bad to eat tonkatsu every week, right? 😀 Thank you so much for your kind words! :)

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  9. Yes, this is exactly the kind of recipes I love from you, when the deep fry is replaced with baking method. And you know something, I’m sure I heard how crispy the pork is when you cut it.

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  10. Nami, your food is always spot-on authentic and gorgeous! This looks incredibly crispy but not greasy…a great option for those of us who prefer not to fry if possible. I always considered a lot of dishes like these as special ones I can only get when I eat out but you are making them all accessible and do-able at home for us should we want to try. Thank you! Hope you had a great Mother’s Day!

    23
  11. Oh we love tonkatsu and I can only find the best ones when we eat at good Japanese restaurants. I’m glad you taught us how through the video and recipe here. Must try it. Thanks for sharing and hope you had a good Mother’s Day, Nami!

    24
  12. We haven’t made tunkatsu in a while. I should do this soon because we all love it. I love your baked version too. I hope the end of school year is going well Nami. Always a busy time!

    25
  13. Oh my!!! A baked version? I love, love, loveee tonkatsu!! I love the panko crust. In fact, I love it so much I used it to top a green onion casserole for Thanksgiving to go along with the classic french onion topping. Haha!

    31
  14. 天才のレシピですわ。

    本当に勉強なりました。前にパンコをやくことは良い考えですね。
    又は、なみさんのトンカツのカロリーは普通のトンカツより低いですが確かに同じ美味しいさですね。

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  15. oh my mom used to pound pork chops really really thin and then pan fry them! This brings back fond memories but yours look even better – don’t tell her I said that! Love the crispiness!

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  16. Thank you for the recipe, Nami :)! Tonkatsu is one of my most favourite foods, and I usually order tonkatsu/chicken katsu when I go to a Japanese restaurant. I usually deep fry or at least pan-fry my tonkatsu, but I am going to totally try this method because not only does it look delicious, it sounds healthier too :)! The homemade tonkatsu sauce looks delicious too, I usually use Bulldog tonkatsu sauce ;). But I will definitely try your sauce recipe, especially because commercially produced tonkatsu sauces are often rather pricey!

    By the way, thanks so so much for your email :) :)!! I will get back to you with a response soon, I’ve been out all the time the last couple of days and by the time I am home, I am normally too tired to turn on the computer…

    41
  17. Hi Nami! I need to learn how to make the perfect tonkatsu! My entire family and boyfriend’s family would love me if I could serve this up! What a wonderful recipe! Great job again with the step-by-step pictures! I’ll be needing that!

    42
  18. Candice

    Hi Nami,

    If I have 12 pieces of pork chop, how much panko would I use? Would I double the rest of the other ingredients?

    Thanks.

    43
    • Hi Candice! For 2 slices of pork chop, I used 3/4 cup panko. This depends son how large is your pork chop too, but let’s say about 1 cup. So you will need 6 cups panko. Realistically, you will probably need 5 cups or so. The worst part is that you don’t have enough panko when you need it… and this recipe you need to pan fry them first, so you have to re-do that process if you don’t have enough (I’ve done it…). Hope you enjoy this recipe! :)

      49
  19. I went back to your tonkatsu sauce and read it too. I love tonkatsu, so I read this post thoroughly. Pre-frying the panko is a smart idea, thank you so much for sharing this idea. Serving the sesame seeds directly to the guests in a restaurant sounded interesting…and the way you explained the dish made it very easy to understand. Love this pic!

    44
  20. いいね!昨日どんぶりもののポストした時に、カツ丼たべたいなーって思ってたのよ。 そうなの、揚げ物すると家じゅうその匂いがまわるよね。夕べもうちの旦那がクラブケーキを作って、2階まですごい臭かった。フライしたもの大好きだから、まったくジレンマだわ。油を使わないのに、あげたように作れる電化製品が出来たと聞いたから、それを買いたいと思ってるところです。 いつもおいしそうに作るのなみちゃん、今回も100点あげる。

    45
  21. Have you seen those 2 pound pork loin roasts at Costco? I’ve been buying them lately and they are perfect for roasting, grilling, cubing and slicing. I can see slicing one of them up and making this fabulous recipe! Love the addition of the sesame seeds to the panko.

    48
  22. Oh, this looks fabulous – Baked Tokatsu with a wonderful dipping sauce – what could be more delicious – and baking rather than frying will certainly make it evne more healthy. I love how you placed that shredded salad next to the pork – it all makes the dish stand out!

    50
  23. donna mikasa

    I love this healthier version of tonkatsu! And we did get some sesame seeds and a mortar and pestle in Japan and now we have it like that at home!

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  24. Nami, I cannot believe these gorgeous looking tonkatsu pieces were baked! (Every time I try something baked instead of deep-frying it ends up not as good-looking… but then I have never tried toasting panko beforehand…). I am thrilled to learn tonkatsu can be baked and delicious at the same time. It means I don’t have to restrict myself to this treat once in three months 😉 Thank you so much for sharing this precious tip.

    54
  25. Nami-san, This is a great idea to reduce the mess and oil of the traditional tonkatsu dish. BTW I found the traditional bulldog tonkatsu sauce that I used to use in Japan at the market the other day, so the planets have realigned. I can’t wait to give your baked version a try. Have a super weekend. Ja Mata, BAM

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  26. Tonkatsu is one of my husband’s favorite dishes and I love the sound of this baked version. This looks absolutely incredible and I love how crispy it it too :)

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  27. Hi Nami, just this afternoon, my Japanese girlfriend has taught me the same way to prepare the tonkatsu. She said that in Japan, this is a new way to prepare a healthier dish. I’m so glad to find this recipe with the picture instruction. Toasting the crumbs with just enough oil first is totally something new to me. Thanks for sharing.

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  28. Hi Namiko, thank you for your sharing of baked tonkatsu. I cooked it last night and it turned out fabulous. I love your simple and delicious recipes. I’ve tried a number of them and they turned out great.

    Thank you,
    Joyce

    66
    • Hi Joyce! Thank you so much for trying my recipes and I’m happy to hear you liked them! Thanks for writing your kind feedback! xo :)

      67
  29. Amanda

    Made the dish today, and it taste just like fried tonkatsu! Unfortunately I did burnt the ponko a bit. :p. Thank you Nami for your wonderful recipe :)

    68
  30. Agnes

    I tried this last night! It was so delicious! I love this baking method to avoid the oily smell of deep fried. Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! However, after I baked the pork chops, the bottom of the pork chops were wet that the panko flakes stuck to the parchment paper. It was hard to take them out too which was not as clean and neat as you showed in the video. Do you know why? Thanks!

    70
    • Hi Agnes! Hmmm… I actually had never had this problem. Only thing that I could think of is that you didn’t have enough panko on the bottom side? Did you use Japanese panko (bigger flakes)? Assuming that you follow the recipe exactly, there are not many factors that I could think of… If there are not enough panko, the meat might stick to the parchment paper… I’m sorry I wish I could help you with your question, but I am not too sure…. I’m glad you enjoyed the baked tonkatsu! You can now eat tonkatsu at home without deep frying. :)

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      • Agnes

        Hmm…I used the same panko brand as you but it said honey panko. Was it the reason? I did the same to bake fish last night and the same problem occurred. I will put more panko next time. Thanks for the recipe anyway!

        72
  31. Vg12th

    Just a quick question about panko. Will it not burn after toasting it on the pan then baking it until the meat is cooked?

    73
    • Hi Vg12th! No, as long as you keep the baking sheet in the middle, it won’t burn as you don’t spray oil etc. Each oven is different, so make sure you test to see if my suggested temp works for your oven. :)

      74
  32. Lauren

    Wow, such a great and easy recipe! My mom told me how she enjoyed the tonkatsu my brother made for her and my dad using your website. I had to try the recipe and it turned out oishii! Thank you for this – it’s definitely going to be one of my go-to recipes for dinner (I’m not good at cooking so this is a life saver!). Thanks again!

    77
    • Hi Lauren! Thank you so much for trying this recipe (and big thanks to your brother too! :D) and writing feedback here. I’m so happy to hear you and your family enjoyed this baked tonkatsu. Isn’t it easy and it’s almost close to deep fried version. :) Try the chicken version – it’s great too! Thanks so much again!

      78
  33. Hisayo T0kura-Gallo

    I love Tonkatsu, but with high fat count (when frying in the traditional manner), I stayed away from making it.
    With this recipe, I can eat it without feeling guilty.
    When I get home-sick for Japanese food, Just One Cookbook is the website I go to.
    Thank you.

    79
    • Hi Hisayo! This baked version is much healthier AND it’s pretty close to deep fried version. I really enjoy this recipe too. Thank you so much for your feedback! I’m glad to hear you enjoy my recipes. Thank you so much for your support! :)

      80
  34. Courtney

    Ahh! I’m so happy I found this! I am making katsu curry this weekend and have very little experience in deep frying food. Now I can bake it in the oven~~~!

    Thank you!!!

    81
  35. kazy

    That was a great video. I wish every recipe that I want to cook at home had a recipe as easy and as informative as yours. What do you recommend as a side for the Tonkatsu? Rice? Noodles? I already have a side salad plus shredded cabbage for it, I’m just not sure what kind of starch would compliment it.

    84
  36. kazy

    Hi Nami

    I tried this recipe along with your Tonkatsu sauce and I have to say it was magnificent. So tasty, tender like butter. Due to your method of browning the Panko, it tasted fried. I followed your recipe to the T and it did not disappoint. None of your recipes have yet to disappoint. I thank you for introducing me to Japanese home cooking. My experience has been as most Americans, through Japanese restaurants, which I still love and marvel at the wonderful diverse flavors and seasonings, and I thank you for giving me the opportunity to bring those umami tastes into my home.

    86
    • Hi Kazy! So glad to hear you enjoyed this recipe! Yeah pre-fried panko makes it very crispy and closer to deep fry texture. I’m happy to hear that you now enjoy cooking Japanese food at home! Thank you for your kind feedback. I really appreciate it because these feedback keep me going! :) Thank you!

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  37. Vanessa

    Aww, why did I not see this two days ago? I just bought a deep fryer because I can’t make crispy tonkatsu on the stove. Oh well… I’m a long time lurker on this site. I love your recipes and your posts about your daily life! Thanks for making a great resource for those of us that are Japanese at heart if not by blood.

    88
    • Hi Vanessa! I hope yo give this a try. I love deep fry food and they are so good, but this one is pretty close… it’s not as good as deep fried one, but considering just 1-2 Tbsp. of oil, it’s pretty amazing how crispy outside and juicy inside is. We still need a deep fryer for Karaage and other dishes which can’t be oven baked. 😉 I hope you enjoy this recipe!

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  38. Kristina

    I made this tonight and it was fantastic! My husband and son loved it. We turned it into tonkatsu sandwiches, but next time will make with rice. Love that it is baked. Love that it is so easy. Love that it is CRISPY!!! Thank you.

    89
    • Hi Kristina! Awesome!!! I’m so happy to hear you and your family enjoyed this recipe! Isn’t it great that it’s baked, easy and delicious!? :) Thanks for trying this recipe!

      90
  39. Jeff

    Hello Nami,

    We absolutely love your recipes. We recently moved to Tokyo and find you method of cooking suits us perfectly. I just tried the Tonkatsu recipe and my wife gave it a 10! She never gives anything a 10. So thank you for sharing your recipes.

    Jeff

    92
    • Hi Jeff! I’m so happy to hear you two enjoyed this recipe! Thank you for your kind feedback! I’m so flattered and honored to receive a 10! Yay! :) Enjoy your life in Tokyo! I can’t wait to go back this summer…. :)

      93
    • Hi Rhea! So happy to hear you like Japanese food! Wait, they don’t have tonkatsu in their menu?! Unless Sushi only restaurants, Japanese restaurants should have Tonkatsu on the menu along with other basic dishes! I think most restaurants in Bay Area have it though. Hope you try this at home! :)

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  40. Mike

    made this last night. browning the panko prior to coating REALLY makes a huge difference. i prefer this recipe than to frying now. it tastes better in my opinion.

    98
    • Hi Mike! I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe! Yes, the toasted panko is the key! I’m happy to hear you enjoy baked version more than deep fried ones. Thank you for your kind feedback! :)

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  41. Michael Collector

    I have made this for some of my health conscious friends and it is almost as good as fried. But I still think the fried is more tender and flavorful.

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  42. tinfeesh

    just tried this recipe tonight – amazing! can’t believe I was able to make tonkatsu at home. I did find the panko a little dry during the baking process (after the first flip), so I drizzled some olive oil on side facing up and continued cooking. Then I flipped the meat again and oiled that side and left the tonkatsu baking for another minute so the oil would even out and soak into the panko. So good!

    102
    • Hi Tinfeesh! I personally don’t mind using a little bit more oil (after all I love deep fried version!), and I’m glad you added more oil and enjoyed this recipe! Thank you for your kind feedback! :)

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  43. Mike

    I’m useless in the kitchen.

    The first time I follow a recipe is always referred to as a “food experiment”, because chances are I’m going to mess something up and the result won’t be as good as it might have been.

    The first time I followed this recipe, however, it was a huge success! It was absolutely delicious. The homemade tonkatsu sauce was really good, too!

    Thank you for such clear instructions on what will undoubtedly become a regular favourite here :)

    104
    • Hi Mike! Your kind comment made me happy! Thanks so much for writing. I’m happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe and will make it again. :) This is very simple process and I’m sure you’re much better cook than you think! 😉 Thank you once again!

      105
  44. Rebecca

    Hi, I tried makin this and top part was crispy n golden brown but the bottom stuck to the aluminum foil and I have to pull it put resulting in one part of the pork has no crust at all. And oso when I cut it into small pieces , some of the crust separated from the pork. Please advice me.

    106
    • Hi Rebecca! I don’t recommend using aluminum foil because the meat gets stuck to the foil. You can avoid this by brushing oil first.

      The dredging part (in flour, egg, and panko) is same as regular tonkatsu recipe. I don’t have any issue with crust coming off, but I am thinking… maybe you left the meat for a while before dredging in flour (or meat has some excess water?), and flour didn’t stick to the meat very well?

      I haven’t received any feedback about crust coming off from my readers so far, so I’m thinking flour and meat part was not done well. I hope this helps. But I wasn’t at your kitchen, and it’s hard to pin point where and which part was wrong… Sorry…

      107
      • Rebecca

        Hi! Thanks for yr prompt reply! Can I ask if parchment paper is better for baking then?

        And also, u r right! Ieft the meat for a while before dredging in flour. I thought marinating it in pepper salt and olive oil & ginger juice will make it more delicious so I kept in the fridge for a few hrs! And of cos the meat has the marinate on when i dredge the flour, egg n Panako! I didn’t know it all matters!!

        Thank u so much for you advice! Will try again!

        108
        • I use parchment paper because I don’t need to oil it and it won’t stick at all.

          A ha! While cooking, the moisture from the marinade probably came out which detached the flour coating. We only season with salt and pepper, and I recommend dry seasoning IF you want to add flavor. In that case, you could also add herbs in panko. (check my Chrispy Chicken recipe/video). :)

          Hope this helps. Glad we could find the reason! :)

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  45. JJ

    This recipe is great! Just tried today for our lunch and it’s really yummy. Less oily than deep fried one and kitchen smells much better too. Thanks for sharing!

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