Easy Japanese Recipes

Tonkatsu とんかつ

Tonkatsu とんかつ Recipe | JustOneCookbook.com

Today I’m guest posting at Rasa Malaysia.  I was ecstatic when Bee (author of Rasa Malaysia) asked me to make Tonkatsu (Japanese deep fried pork cutlet) for her website.  Bee’s site is extremely popular with her countless Asian cuisine recipes and the food photography is simply gorgeous.

Tonkatsu | Just One Cookbook.com

Tonkatsu is one of my husband’s favorite Japanese food (which includes yakitori, sushi, shabushabu, and Japanese steak).  Whenever we go to Japan, we always make a mandatory stop at Wako or Maisen, popular restaurants specializing in Tonkatsu.  Even though there are restaurants focused on Tonkatsu, it is a common home cooked meal as well.  Deep frying food might scare some of you away (since it’s messy) and the long recipe might look complicated, but the process is actually very simple.  You just need to know a few tricks to make the perfect Tonkatsu, juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside.  The key to great Tonkatsu is to double fry the pork.  You deep fry once and let the pork sit for a bit, then deep fry again to get the ultimate crispiness.

Tonkatsu | Just One Cookbook.com



If there is an Asian grocery store nearby where you live, sometimes they sell waste oil hardener (oil solidifying powder) that allows you to dispose of the used oil easily in garbage.  This is what I use to get rid of oil whenever I deep fry.



For those of you who prefer a lighter version of Tonkatsu, you can check my Crispy Tonkatsu or Baked Tonkatsu recipes.

Baked Tonkatsu | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

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Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 2
  • 2 Boneless pork chops (at least ½ inch thickness)
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Flour
  • 1 Egg
  • ½ Tbsp. oil
  • Panko or fresh panko
  • Oil for deep frying
  • Tonkatsu Sauce (or Homemade Tonkatsu Sauce)
  1. For Tonkatsu, I highly recommend to use fresh panko (we call it "Nama Panko"). It's fresh bread crumbs not dried one. You can use food processor to make fresh panko from white bread (use only soft part of bread). Or you can spray regular panko with water and leave for 15 minutes. Also, when you select panko, look for packages with bigger crumbs as they are suitable for Tonkatsu.
  2. Get rid of the extra fat and make a couple of slits on the connective 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 when deep frying and prevent Tonkatsu from curling up.
  3. Pound the meat with a meat pounder, or if you don’t have one then just use the back of knife to pound. When using knife, crisscross by first pounding top to bottom then left to right.
  4. Mold the extended meat back into original shape with your hands.
  5. Dust with salt and pepper.
  6. In a large bowl or plate, add ½ Tbsp. of oil for each egg you use and whisk them up. By adding oil, the meat and breaded coating won’t detach from each other while deep frying.
  7. Dredge in flour and remove excess flour.
  8. Dip in egg mixture.
  9. Dredge in panko. After removing excess panko, press gently. While deep frying panko will “pop up” so at this moment they don’t have to be fluffy.
  10. Heat oil in a wok over medium high heat and wait till oil gets 350F (180C). If you don’t have a thermometer, stick a chopstick in the oil and see if tinny bubbles start to appear around the tip of the chopstick. Alternatively, you can drop one piece of panko into the oil, and if it sinks down to the middle of oil and comes right up, then that’s around 350F (180C) as well. When the oil reaches to that temperature, gently lower Tonkatsu into the oil. Keep watching the oil’s temperature and make sure it doesn’t go over 350F (180C) or else it’ll look burnt.
  11. Deep fry for 1 minute on one side and flip to cook the other side for 1 minute. If your pork chop is thinner than ¾ inch, then reduce to 45 seconds for each side.
  12. Now take the Tonkatsu out and get rid of the oil by holding Tonkatsu vertically for a few seconds. Place on top of wire rack (if wire rack is not available, substitute with paper towel) and let it sit for 4 minutes. The hot oil on exterior is slowly cooking the meat as it sits. Please do not cut to check whether the inside is cooked or not. We need to keep it closed to retain the heat. While waiting, you can scoop up fried crumbs in the oil with mesh strainer.
  13. After resting for 4 minutes, bring the oil back to 350F (180C) of oil again and deep fry Tonkatsu for 1 minute (about 30 seconds each side).
  14. Poke the meat with a chopstick and if clear liquid comes out then it’s done. Drain the oil by holding the Tonkatsu vertically again for a few seconds. Then leave it on top of rack/paper towel for 2 minutes. If you have to use paper towel, try to keep Tonkatsu in a vertical position so it does not get soggy on one side.
  15. Cut Tonkatsu into 3 large pieces (see below) by pressing the knife directly down instead of moving back and forth. This way the breading will not come off. Then cut again in between. Transfer to a plate and serve immediately.
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 in your own words and link to this post as the original source. Thank you.
Posted in: 30 Minutes Or Less, Easy Dinner Ideas, Guest Posts, Pork, Quick & Easy

Leave a Comment

one + = 9

  • Mika July 12, 2011, 12:40 pm

    I love tonkatu, but love more Oyster Fried. Maybe you can post this one next time??? I also love katudon.

    Have a great time with your mother! And DO NOT even think about checking your computer (hehehe!!!)

  • Sissi July 12, 2011, 1:42 pm

    Nami, congratulations for your guest post!
    I have been making tonkatsu for some time now, but it never looks as juicy and perfect! (There are several steps I must admit I omit… I am too lazy).
    Do you mind if I take the bit from your last photo?
    Have a great time with your mum! I will miss you, so don’t make your holidays too long ;-)

  • The Harried Cook July 12, 2011, 1:47 pm

    Gorgeous guest post, Nami! I think it looks fantastic, and I really, really want that piece in the last picture…. Yummy… I look forward to visiting Rasa Malaysia too! :) Sounds like a great blog! Great that you are taking time off to spend with your mom! That’s fabulous… While I will miss your yummy recipes, I am glad you’ll be doing something special with your family! Have fun! :)

  • Lindsey@Lindselicious July 12, 2011, 1:55 pm

    I looove katsu! My best friends mom (from Japan) makes the best Chicken Katsu cheese. I forget if I told you this already? Sooo good with a squeeze of lemon and katsu sauce. Also in Hawaii we love fried food and we do a Beef Katsu. Marinated teri beef- katus’d!
    I will have to try your tip of spraying the panko first- I have not tried that! It’s been a long time since I’ve made katsu. Darn diet!

  • ray July 12, 2011, 1:58 pm

    Wow Nami! I am very proud of you for two reasons:
    FIRST – for being a very good daughter setting aside a valuable time to spend with your mom.
    SECOND – for being invited to guest post in Rasa Malaysia. Well Nami, with your hardwork, talent, and passion in what you do. . . I am not surprised.
    Have fun with your mom!! :)

  • kankana July 12, 2011, 2:10 pm

    I learn so many new dishes from you every time. Bee’s blog is so gorgeous that I can spend hours drooling on the recipes.
    I will miss you regular posts but everyone needs a break .. so go and enjoy dear and loads of fun with you Mom :)

  • Alessandra July 12, 2011, 2:58 pm

    Lovely, like the Italian cotoletta, but I think that panko has something special about it

    Have a great time with your Mum!


  • sheila @ Elements July 12, 2011, 2:59 pm

    This looks amazing!!!! I’m not at all afraid of deep fried foods. :) I’ve never tried double frying before but I would like to try it to see the difference it makes. I’ve never seen fresh panko anywhere. I had no idea there was such a thing. I have so much to learn! I sure do wish I could try this lovely meal. Do you realize I’ve only tasted a pork chop once in my entire life? Crazy isn’t it! I really need to buy some and try this! Have a great week with your Mom!! Cheers! sheila

  • Maris(In Good Taste) July 12, 2011, 3:13 pm

    As always this is such a great tutorial. Your instruction makes it so easy to follow.

  • Heidi @ Food Doodles July 12, 2011, 3:16 pm

    That looks so good! I don’t often eat meat, but that looks delicious. What a great dish to do as a guest post! I remember when I first started reading blogs and I found Bee’s site I was so excited to see all those awesome Asian recipes and it’s only gotten better since then.
    I have to say, I love your pictures, especially that last one. Mmm :)
    Have a great time visiting with your mother :D

  • Kathleen July 12, 2011, 3:47 pm

    Nami, I am totally drooling all over my keyboard! Seriously! This looks delicious :)

  • Lucy @ Lucy eats July 12, 2011, 3:48 pm

    Wow that looks fantastic, Nami! Japanese food is always so expensive in NZ so I would love to give that a go at home! Great instructions

  • A Little Yumminess July 12, 2011, 4:02 pm

    Usually rely on katsu to be made by restaurants but you make it look easy! Nice photos1

  • sheri July 12, 2011, 5:37 pm

    Beautiful! Your tonkatsu looks perfect. So nice to have a photographic assistant to help with the tutorial too! :o)

  • Amelia July 12, 2011, 8:44 pm

    Very crispy cutlet and I’m drooling :)
    Thanks for the step by step picture.

  • Sonia aka Nasi Lemak Lover July 12, 2011, 10:52 pm

    Yes, i want a piece too, this look super delicious. Congratulations on the guest post in Rasa Malaysia, you are deserved for this. Have a nice holiday with your mother, you must be very happy huh..

  • Bee | Rasa Malaysia July 12, 2011, 11:45 pm

    Thanks for the guest post Nami. You’re an excellent and dedicated cook, have fun with your family.

    • Nami July 16, 2011, 10:49 pm

      Thank you Bee for inviting me to your website. I’m very honored and it was a memorable post for me and Just One Cookbook! Thank you for your kind words. :-)

  • chinmayie @ love food eat July 13, 2011, 12:09 am

    Congrats Nami! Great guest post!

  • Raymund July 13, 2011, 12:27 am

    I love Rasa Malaysia website, they post great Asian dishes there. Your pork tonkatsu looks so yummy

  • Giulietta @ Alterkitchen July 13, 2011, 1:03 am

    Ok, deep fried is bad bad bad for your healt… but it’s damn good :)
    I love this kind of thing, once in while… you made me hungry (and it’s 10 AM) O__O

  • Sutapa July 13, 2011, 3:31 am

    I never had Tonkatsu but really I want a piece….it looks irresistible !

  • Biren @ Roti n Rice July 13, 2011, 5:57 am

    Tonkatsu is delicious but we normally just eat it at the restaurant as I prefer to minimize deep frying at home. Thanks for all the great tips! Have fun with your mom!

  • Sandra July 13, 2011, 6:14 am

    I don’t want just a piece I want the whole thing! Nami you know how I love pork! The step my step pics are so good and I would have never thought to reshape the meat, great idea. Also, so happy that you get to visit with your mom, have lots of fun.

  • Mr. Three-Cookies July 13, 2011, 6:21 am

    Looks really crunchy, I have never attempted tonkatsu. I did make schnitzel, the process is sort of similar. Now I want tonkatsu…

  • Allie July 13, 2011, 6:22 am

    Great recipe! I love when food is crunchy :) Have fun with your mom, I’ll be on the lookout for your next posts :)!!

  • Kitchen Belleicious July 13, 2011, 6:32 am

    Anything double fried is perfect in my book. Never heard of tonkatsu but I am loving it!

  • Mary @ Delightful Bitefuls July 13, 2011, 8:32 am

    Mmm! This both sounds and looks incredible! Thanks for the easy to follow instructions!

  • Jessica July 13, 2011, 8:50 am

    Hi Nami, congratulations on your guest post! I love Rasa Malaysia’s recipes as well. Tonkatsu is a favorite of mine and it had never crossed my mind to make it at home! I think I will try it out with your step by step tutorial. I’ll be getting some tonkatsu sauce this weekend!

    By the way, I am following your blog now =) Have a great trip!

  • anncoo July 13, 2011, 9:12 am

    I love to make Tonkatsu at home too especially for the little ones, they love this very much. Better not to let them see this… hahaa

  • Tanvi@SinfullySpicy July 13, 2011, 10:25 am

    Another new dish for me.I have found so much about Japanese cuisine from your blog..Keep it coming..Anything fried gets my attention :).Looks awesome..Congratulations on the wonderful guest post.

  • rebecca July 13, 2011, 10:44 am

    wow looks so tasty have fun with your mum

  • Evelyne@CheapEthnicEatz July 13, 2011, 11:25 am

    Wow that is so cool, never heard of this dish but now I want to try it, like NOW!

  • Sandra's Easy Cooking July 13, 2011, 11:45 am

    I just want one piece..do you ship:)) I mean looks amazing, perfectly crunchy and sooo delicious..one perfect meal on the plate!!! Fantastic photos as always!
    I hope you enjoy and have great time with your mom..

  • Lyn July 13, 2011, 12:42 pm

    Hi Nami! Congrats on your guest post at Rasa Malaysia! That’s really a great website full of yummy dishes! :D
    I’m always learning new cooking techniques here at your blog and I really love it! :D
    Now I know why my deep frying foods are always sloggy after some time-I just leave them flat down on the paper towels! lol
    This is another recipe on my ‘next-dish-to-cook’! :)

  • tigerfish July 13, 2011, 1:31 pm

    After making Tonkatsu once, I never make it again…because of the frying I need to do, and because I seldom cook(and eat) pork now. Thanks for the great tip on double-frying.

    Enjoy your time with your family.

  • Peggy July 13, 2011, 2:21 pm

    This sounds like such a great tonkatsu recipe Nami!

    Hope you’re enjoying time with your mother =)

  • PolaM July 13, 2011, 4:14 pm

    I love tonkatsu! Is very similar to our cotoletta, just better!

  • Kath (My Funny Little Life) July 13, 2011, 4:57 pm

    Congrats on your guest post! I hope you’ll enjoy a wonderful time your mom! :D

  • Anh July 13, 2011, 5:02 pm

    Beautiful, beautiful post! And this is one of my favourite Jap dishes!

  • MijoRecipes July 13, 2011, 8:40 pm

    Wow, Congrats for your guest post! As usual, your step-by-step pictures really make the recipe look much easier to do! :) Have lots of fun with your mom!

  • jenny at Baking Devils July 14, 2011, 6:30 am

    This is mouthwateringly good! Thanks Nami, Have a great time with your Mum.

  • Kate@Diethood July 14, 2011, 7:03 am

    It’s only 9 am… I should be craving eggs, but after seeing this, I think I need to head to the freezer and whip out some pork!!

  • Elies_Lie July 14, 2011, 8:20 am

    I read this recipe this noon & decide to make this tomorow, but when I go to supermarket I can’t find the Tonkatsu Sauce :(
    what is the taste of tonkatsu sauce?
    can I switch it with any other sauce? :D

    • Nami July 14, 2011, 10:14 am

      Hi Elies! I have never made Tonkatsu Sauce before as I get all kinds of Japanese brand Tonkatsu Sauce here…. but I found that one of my favorite blogger had Tonkatsu Sauce recipe. I tried cooking her food before and I liked them. So I think this is good. I’ll give it a try next time myself. :-)

  • Caroline July 14, 2011, 9:48 am

    Wow, my mouth is watering. What an absolutely gorgeous photo, Nami!!

  • Kate @KatefromScratch July 14, 2011, 2:31 pm

    This is beautiful! Lovely guest post! Enjoy your time off with your mother. Precious time with loved ones is priceless.

  • Jeff July 14, 2011, 3:29 pm

    I need to cook more Japanese food!!!! Everything just looks so delicious I can barely stand it! What did you put on top? Housin sauce?

  • shaz @ feedingmykidsbetter July 15, 2011, 12:29 am

    Hi Nami
    This looks amazing as all your dishes do. Many many years ago, I was in Nagoya for a school trip and these were all we could afford to eat while we were there. We ate them everyday till we were so so sick of it. It took many years after that before I started eating tonkatsu again. hahhaa. Now, I eat them and love them too, especially with raw cabbage and the tonkatsu sauce or with Jap curry. Have a wonderful time with your mum!

  • Cristina July 15, 2011, 5:12 am

    Hi Nami: I hope you’re enjoying time with your Mom! :)

    I haven’t had breakfast yet, but I am so hungry for this Tonkatsu! My mom used to make something similar with regular bread crumbs (I think it’s called/spelled “milanesa”). But using panko has to be the golden ticket. Delicious!

    Have a fantastic weekend!

  • Tina July 15, 2011, 5:13 am

    Another awesome guest post, Nami! Ryan & I love tonkatsu!
    Have a wonderful time with your mom!

  • Mel July 15, 2011, 5:57 am

    I love tonkatsu but as you mentioned too scared to try cooking it and don’t like the mess but your post makes me want to try the recipe. I might get the ingredients tomorrow. Beautiful post and pictures. Enjoy your time with your mom.

  • Maya@Foodiva's Kitchen July 15, 2011, 7:11 am

    Congrats on the guest post, Nami! I’m not scared off by fried foods, and if it’s double fried like this recipe, that’s even better. LOL. Hope you have a great time taking your mom sightseeing. You deserve a good break because you always work soooo hard on this blog!

  • Natalie July 15, 2011, 7:48 am

    I love your step by step photos. This looks so crispy and delicious and I’m a vegetarian!! My other half is definitely going to try your prawn tempura recipe at the restaurant. He watched the video and was amazed! Hopefully he will be serving the most authentic tempura prawn in Andalucia thanks to you! Don’t you just love this foodblogging business it makes the world so small?!

  • nipponnin July 15, 2011, 8:30 am

    Nami chan, 美味しそう!Our family all love tonkatsu. I didn’t know about adding oil in egg, that’s a great tip. Have a wonderful time with your mother. Thank you for your kind comment on my blog.

  • chopinandmysaucepan July 15, 2011, 7:07 pm

    I usually don’t eat tonkatsu when I frequent Japanese restaurants because I can never go past the fresh sushi and sashimi. But your recipe looks pretty delicious and simple to make. I doubt if I would do it myself because of all the oil but you have renewed my interest next time I eat Japanese.

  • Maureen July 15, 2011, 7:25 pm

    Not sure if I’m more excited about this delicious recipe or that your mother is visiting you from Japan! She must be thrilled to see you and the kids. Enjoy yourselves and make the best memories you can.

  • skip to malou July 15, 2011, 11:09 pm

    well well well what did i tell you… you are definitely the girl to watch… look at you a guest post at a famous blogger! wow amazing! keep it up nami! you are on your way up there!
    tonokatsu? all time favorite hands down!
    have a great weekend!

  • purabi naha July 16, 2011, 3:19 am

    Congratulations on your guest post at Rasa Malayasia. This dish is so authentic and I am sure if I was asked to make this dish, it would have turned out to be something else….

    Great going, Nami!

  • Reese@SeasonwithSpice July 16, 2011, 7:13 am

    Really great tips on deep frying you have shared, Nami. Have a fun time with your mother!

  • elisabeth@foodandthrfitfinds July 16, 2011, 7:39 am

    Love the preparation of the crispy pork tenderloin, Nami. The Tonkatsu sauce sounds, and looks awesome, as well!
    Have a wonderful time with your mom, and when time permits. please pop into my blog to claim your AWARD!…Congratulations, well deserved!

  • food-4tots July 16, 2011, 9:55 am

    Congrats on the featuring!! Great post with detailed step by step photos and useful tips!! Thanks for sharing!

  • Tiffany July 16, 2011, 4:21 pm

    I don’t eat pork, but this is beautiful Nami!

  • Nate @ House of Annie July 17, 2011, 12:55 am

    Beautiful looking tonkatsu. Thanks for the tip in step #1 – didn’t know that!

  • Liz July 17, 2011, 5:48 pm

    Enjoy the time with your mother!!! Anything that gorgeous that’s been double deep fried has got to be delicious~

  • Kelly July 17, 2011, 7:21 pm

    Fantastic Nami and your illustrations are so helpful. The “Tonkatsu Sauce” that you refer to – what is in this? Did you make the sauce yourself or is there a decent brand you can get off the shelf?

    • Nami July 19, 2011, 11:58 pm

      I think most people use store-bought Tonkatsu Sauce like this just like we use Ketchup. It’s thick Worcestershire sauce that uses pureed apples and veggies as a main ingredient. It’s sweet (not too sweet) and this is by far my favorite Japanese condiments. :-)

  • daksha July 18, 2011, 7:34 am

    Hi! Nami how r u? This dish is looks fantastic, crunchy and ur step by step photos r very nice thanks for share this just buzzzzzzed:).

  • Mikaela Cowles July 18, 2011, 11:59 am

    If ever there was an excuse to not eat diet friendly food this would have to be it. What a tasty looking dish!

  • Kulsum at JourneyKitchen July 18, 2011, 1:08 pm

    I don’t eat pork but I wanted to congratulate you on the guest post on Rasa Malaysia! Bee is amazing isn’t she :-D

  • Laura @ Family Spice July 18, 2011, 5:21 pm

    Who’s afraid of fried stuff?? This looks amazing! We double fried some shrimp once and it really did make the outside super crunchy. YUM!

  • Dmarie July 18, 2011, 6:08 pm

    ooh, that looks to be cooked to perfection. thanks for the wonderful tutorial!

  • Manu July 18, 2011, 6:16 pm

    I love Rasa Malaysia! Congrats on your gust post Nami! I will absolutely have to try and make tonkatsu! It was on my must try list for Japan! It is similar to cotolette I guess. It looks amazing, especially with the sauce on the top!!! Hope you are having a great time with your mum! <3

  • Simply Life July 18, 2011, 6:26 pm

    Enjoy the time with your mom!

  • Jenny July 19, 2011, 12:35 am

    that looks delicious! have a lovely break! Jennyx

  • Quay Po Cooks July 19, 2011, 4:44 am

    Thanks for sharing this awesome dish. Congrats on the guest post at Rasa Malaysia. Have nice break and spend a wonderful time with you mum.

  • Dee at Deelicious Sweets July 19, 2011, 7:58 am

    This looks delicious! Enjoy your mom’s company :)

  • Juliana July 19, 2011, 11:45 am

    Nami, tonkatsu is one of my son favorite Japanese dish along with the others one in your list, hehehe…and can you believe that I never made it at home? Shame on me…
    Yours look perfect…better than the restaurant. Hope you are having a fantastic week :-) and enjoy your time with your mom!

  • Karen July 19, 2011, 3:03 pm

    Now I really want to try tonkatsu…sounds so good to be crispy outside and tender inside. YUM!
    Hope you’re having a great time with your family!

  • Vijitha July 19, 2011, 6:37 pm

    Hello there,
    This is my first time here and I must say that I totally in love with your blog. Oh man! such a beautiful blog with more beautiful pictures. Loving, loving and loving your space. I am sure I will come back often.

  • Firefly July 19, 2011, 6:59 pm

    This looks so good I want it now :) Hope you are having a nice time on your vacation with your mom and family :)

  • Lyndsey ~The Tiny Skillet~ July 20, 2011, 9:40 am

    Great post! I just love all your photos. I also love tonkatsu, yours looks so good. Yes, I would like a bite right now.

    Have a wonderful time with your family!

  • sweetlife July 20, 2011, 11:53 am

    yummy guest post, congrats!! I am adding this to my dinner ideas.

    have fun with your family!!

    take care

  • hanan July 20, 2011, 12:21 pm

    it looks delicious . Have a wonderful time with your mum

  • khushi July 21, 2011, 11:19 am

    lovely recipe Nami…and congrats for the post….will visit you some times for more such lovely recipes.

  • Kocinera July 21, 2011, 11:46 am

    That tonkatsu looks so delicious! I keep hearing wonderful things about this dish, but have never actually tried it myself. I think that’s definitely going to have to change, because this looks amazing!

  • Lilly July 25, 2011, 12:25 am

    Nami enjoy your time with your mom! I hope you’ll have a blast! Will miss your fantastic recipes, but I am sure you get lots of inspiration with your mom around.

  • Hiragana Mama August 1, 2011, 1:02 pm

    Nami, I made this last night for my family and it was delicious! Thank you for the recipe and instructions. I learned that, next time, I need to pound the pork pretty thin… I had to double-fry several times for the meat to get cooked all the way through. Or maybe I had the oil too hot. Anyway… I’ll be making this again!

    • Nami August 2, 2011, 12:31 am

      Thanks for trying this recipe! :-D I’m glad you enjoyed it. Mine is probably half inch or so. I personally like thin tonkatsu (I use Sukiyaki meat to make katsu, and that’s my favorite), but my husband likes Tonkatsu like 和幸 (Wako). So only thing I can think of is that your oil temp was high. You don’t want oil temp to be too low because Tonkatsu will suck up all the oil, but you need 350F when you drop the meat in oil. Then oil temp will automatically become lower (but won’t go too low). I wish deep frying process is easy. I use thermometer for deep frying this kind of Tonkatsu so I can make sure meat is cooked through (without cutting to check). 2nd time will be better and easier. Thank you for giving me the feedback! :-)

  • bydh August 23, 2011, 10:43 am

    Nami, I stumbled on this site through Rasa Malaysia, and I just had one question about the second frying step. After letting the pork rest for 4 minutes, do you fry just one side for 1 minute again, or both sides (1 or 2 minutes cumulatively)? Thanks for the clarification!

    • Nami August 23, 2011, 11:41 am

      Hi bydh! Thank you for asking me the question! I wasn’t clear and that was a good catch. I already edited the recipe, but it should be about 30 seconds each, total of 1 minute. But remember it varies depending on how thick the meat is. Thank you for letting me know! :-)

  • JoAnn October 4, 2011, 10:17 pm

    Hello, Nami! That tonkatsu looks so good! perfectly crisp on the outside and tender and juicy meat on the inside. yum! :) I will definitely try this at home with some curry, sort of like Coco-Ichi’s kare chicken katsu. Thanks for sharing this easy step by step recipe! I also added Just One Cookbook to my favorite blogs (^-^) I hope you don’t mind.

  • Liliana Tan June 20, 2012, 1:31 am

    Hello Nami. I have one question about the outcome of frying.
    Mine is always look burnt on the panko, but yours is so nice. Any tips? How do you control the oil’s temperature when frying?
    The pork itself is just nice, and juicy.
    Thanks a lot.

    • Nami June 21, 2012, 1:56 am

      Hi Liliana! From what you described, I think your oil temperature is too high especially when panko gets burnt. Do you use thermometer? If you are not sure about the oil temperature, thermometer definitely helps you to make sure to stay on the right temp. Once you get used to it, you will not need thermometer. When you add new tonkatsu in the oil, the temperature drops (because the meat is cold). So controlling oil temperature is the key. :-) Hope this helps.

      • Liliana Tan June 21, 2012, 2:16 am

        Thanks, Nami. Shall get one first and try again..:-)

  • Farnaz (The Pomegranate Diaries) September 7, 2012, 2:40 pm

    This looks great! I’m always looking for lunch ideas for my daughter! She tried Tonkatsu in a Japanese restaurant and liked it so I’m excited to make it at home.

  • Chriss September 16, 2012, 2:40 pm

    Hi, I was wondering if you could switch the pork out and maybe change it for chicken.
    Would that work too?

    • Nami September 17, 2012, 12:00 am

      Hi Chriss! Yes, we do have chicken version and we call it “Chicken Katsu” :) If you use breast, make sure you butterfly it so it will be thin and easy to deep fry (and cook faster). Enjoy! :)

  • William Yap October 14, 2012, 7:10 pm

    Hi Nami, my daughter love the tonkatsu she had in Japan recently (May 2012) and I tried making tonkatsu with your recipe and it was great! The whole family love it.

    Thanks for sharing your recipe, looking forward to try more of your recipes.

    BTW, do you need to heat up the tonkatsu sauce?

    Have a good week ahead.

    • Nami October 14, 2012, 8:05 pm

      Hi William! I’m glad your family enjoyed my tonkatsu recipe! It’s pretty straightforward as long as you are comfortable with deep frying. :)

      About the tonkatsu sauce, nope. I’ve never seen heated tonkatsu sauce, even at Tonkatsu specialized restaurant. :)

      Have a great week too!

  • Jill December 26, 2012, 7:10 pm

    I’ve tried a couple different ways to make tonkatsu and this is by FAR the best way to do it! Mine always come out like ones I buy in a restaurant! Thank you Nami!

    • Nami December 28, 2012, 12:37 am

      Hi Jill! So happy to hear you like this recipe! Yay! :) Thank you for your feedback!

  • Amy February 27, 2013, 11:14 am

    If I am making cheese tonkatsu should I buy a thicker cut since I will be cutting a slit in it to insert cheese? I am thinking if the meat is cut in half it might cook differently.

    • Nami February 27, 2013, 11:26 am

      Hi Amy! If you buy a thicker cut, it will take a longer time to cook (and it’s pork so you want to cook it fully too). What kind of cheese are you going to stuff in? If you can slice the cheese thinly, I think this size works too.

      When I make cheese katsu, I use thinly sliced pork and make sandwich with two slices of pork. It works great too since I don’t have to cook pork for a long time (as the meat is thin), the inside cheese won’t come out. If you have a Japanese grocery store nearby, I recommend you to use sliced pork for Sukiyaki (thicker than Shabu Shabu).

      Hope this helps…

      • Amy February 27, 2013, 12:35 pm

        Okay, I will take your advice then and try that. Thank you for the timely response :).

        • Nami February 28, 2013, 8:49 pm

          Hope you enjoy(ed) it! :)

  • Josie May 5, 2013, 11:58 am

    Hi Nami,

    Thanks for a great recipe. I have one question, I am going to make a dessert with only egg whites (leaving 4 yolks out) but not sure if I could only use the yolk when dipping the meat. What do you recommend?

    Thank you for your time!

    Regards, Josie

  • Ra ru fu October 16, 2013, 11:51 am

    Namiko-san. Domo arigato go zai ma shi te for the #1 tonkatsu recipee ! It brought back memories of Japan. I loved it very much! I will try your katsudon recipee later. I can hardly wait! Itchibon Namiko-san!!

    • Nami October 16, 2013, 12:04 pm

      Hi Ra ru fu! Thank you!!! You are too kind. :) I hope you enjoy this reicpe! xoxo

  • Ra ru fu October 16, 2013, 12:02 pm

    Namiko-san. Domo arigato go zai ma shi te for the #1 tonkatsu recipee ! It brought back memories of Japan. I loved it very much! I will try your katsudon recipee later. I can hardly wait! Itchibon Namiko-san!! Also please Thank your husband for helping you find your way on the internet! You all have really brought back memories of Japan. Do you all have your own cookbook that I can purchase?

    • Nami October 16, 2013, 12:05 pm

      Thank you for your interest on cookbook. I hardly can catch up my work for the blog and now with YouTube video, I don’t have time to write a cookbook. :) Maybe one day…

  • Justin June 10, 2014, 6:15 pm

    So silly question, I like the crispy-ness of panko but find that there is not a lot of flavor in the breading. Is it the brand or are they normally bland? Is there a trick to give it more flavor?

    • Nami June 11, 2014, 2:58 pm

      Hi Justin! Yeah we don’t really expect to taste flavor from panko (but more expensive panko (coming from good quality bread) tends to taste better) as we always put tonkatsu sauce. I live outside of Japan now and it’s very hard to find good quality panko… Hope this helps. If you don’t put tonkatsu sauce, you can always add herbs and garlic etc. :)

  • Dorothy October 29, 2014, 9:12 am

    Hi Nami,

    I tried making this and somehow they turned out… um… undercooked and mostly white. I followed the directions as close as possible; I assume my problem was the oil probably dropped below 350. I more paranoid of it being burnt and ended on the opposite spectrum… lol
    However, I don’t have or even know of a thermometer that you can clip to a wok that would be able to monitor its temperature the entire time; do you have to just hold it, or, is there a thermometer out there that clips onto woks? Alternatively, what’s your method at keeping the temperature stable? Thanks!

    • Nami October 29, 2014, 10:44 am

      Hi Dorothy! Thank you for trying this recipe! Deep frying needs practice, so I hope you don’t give up. :)

      From what you wrote, it sounds like the oil temperature wasn’t there. While deep frying, you should see the active bubbling going on around the pork like you see in Step 9 and 10. I also worry about outer layer of tonkatsu get burnt / cooked too fast too. So the temperature is really the key for deep frying. If you use the chopstick (or if you have wooden chopstick), you can check the temperature by putting it in the oil. Or drop panko in it to see how it acts in the oil.


      But if you’re not too sure, the thermometer would help. There’s one that has a clip:


      But this never worked on my pot, so I used to stick that in to the oil when I need to check (but be careful with your hands).

      Now I use a Japanese deep fryer that comes with a thermometer (can’t find the same model on Amazon…).

      You don’t need to hold on to the thermometer all the time, but when you’re not sure it’s good to have a thermometer. When you deep fry several times, you kind of understand the look of oil if it’s good temperature or not. The oil definitely needs to actively bubbling, and the food should stay up instead of being sunk. When the oil is not hot enough, the food absorbs the oil too much. When the deep fried food is fried perfectly, the food absorbed least oil (it’s kind of hard to explain in English…sorry…).

      Also, is your stove gas or electric? Gas is very easy to control the temperature. When the oil is “getting” too hot, you need to start turn down the heat (it’ll take time for oil to reduce the temperature, so you have to plan ahead to reduce the heat). OR you can add more food so the oil temperature will go down. This is all from experience when to add food and when to turn down/up the heat.

      One last thing. Do not put too much food in the oil. It’s very hard to control the temperature. Hope this helps! Please feel free to ask me if you have any question. :)

      • Dorothy October 30, 2014, 8:39 am


        I must attain delicious perfected tonkatsu, so I do intend to try again. (That said, it was still actually pretty good, haha)

        I think I’ll try out the chopstick method first, and if it’s no good I’ll order the fancy deep fry thermometer (or just try holding one I have… haha). I did actually see this when I first read it, but, I wasn’t sure if you could still use those methods during cooking so I wanted to double check. Yeah, hopefully I’ll get the hang of how it should look after doing it enough times, haha. No worries; I know what you mean about not wanting the food to absorb too much of the oil.

        My stove is gas, so I’ll keep that in mind, as well as not putting too much in the pan. Thanks for all the tips! :)

        • Nami November 2, 2014, 10:32 pm

          Hi Dorothy! Thank you for your response! Try the wood chopstick trick. It should show lots of small bubbles. You don’t have to check the temperature with chopsticks when the food is in it… as food is the indicator. If it doesn’t give lots of bubbles, the temp is a little too low. Glad to hear your stove is gas! I had a hard time adjusting oil temperature with electric stove in my previous house! :)

          p.s. I’m not sure if you have seen, but you can also try “Baked” Tonkatsu recipe too. It’s easy, and very close to deep fried version. :)


          Good luck, Dorothy! :)

  • Matthew Thomas January 31, 2015, 2:16 am

    This is fantastic. I tried four different ways of cooking tonkatsu today, after deciding to make it for the family tonight. Most of the recipes I have seen had cooking times far too long, but even after adjusting for that the breadcrumbs were crisping up too quickly. They looked beautiful after a minute, but pretty ropey after five or six. The tweaks you have suggested here — not just the double-fry, but the sprinkling of water on the breadcrumbs — made all the difference in the world. I was starting to think that my rather thin pork chops could never achieve the moistness I desired, but not so. Great work!

    • Nami February 1, 2015, 9:51 pm

      Hi Matthew! I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe! In Japan we have several kinds of panko including “nama panko” (very soft and fresh breadcrumbs, not dried ones we normally use). It tastes so good!! Since we don’t have those, spraying water helps it fluff up a bit. :) I’m glad you like the method! Your kind comment and feedback made my day! Thank you! :)