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Pork Katsu Sandwich

Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
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Why we love it:

Chef Alison here to talk about this recipe. I started cooking for fun in high school in part because I wanted to taste things that I saw in cookbooks or magazines that were not available anywhere near me. I still love cooking other people’s recipes for this reason. The original version of this pork katsu sandwich recipe was in Bon Appetit from Konbi Restaurant in LA. It looks so good. But even if I flew there, it’s so popular, I might not get a seat! I have created a version that gets the flavors across but you can make from your standard home pantry. Hope you enjoy!


  • 34 pound Pork Loin, Boneless (chops are ok too but trickier to slice)
  • 14 cup White Miso (or yellow)
  • 12 head Green Cabbage (or cabbage only pre-sliced slaw mix)
  • 2 Lemons
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt (divided)
  • 2 Tablespoons Ketchup
  • 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons BBQ Sauce
  • 1 cup Flour (all-purpose)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 3 cups Panko Breadcrumbs (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 14 cup Vegetable Oil
  • Sliced Brioche (8 slices)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon Mustard (for serving)

Cooking Instructions

  • 1. PORK

    Trim the pork to remove most of the fat. Slice into 8 even and thin cutlets.


    Whisk the miso, and a ½ cup water in a medium bowl until it’s an even consistency. Add the pork and let this sit as long as you can and up to overnight (if waiting longer than 3 hours, cover and place in the fridge).

  • 3. CABBAGE

    Cut the cabbage in half and remove the core. Slice it very thinly into ribbons, as if for cole slaw. If you have a mandolin, this is a great time to use it but a sharp knife would be ok. Place in a medium bowl. Finely grate lemon zest over top, then slice and squeeze in the juice. Add half of the total salt listed.

    Using your hands, toss, gently squeezing the cabbage until slightly wilted. Set aside.

  • 4. SAUCE

    Stir together the ketchup, soy sauce and BBQ sauce. Set aside.


    Set out 3 shallow bowls in a line with a clean baking sheet on the end. Separately, one in each bowl, place the flour, cracked eggs, and the panko. Add the remaining salt to the panko bowl.


    *It’s great to have a wet hand and a dry hand while you do this. Essentially, you’re passing the chops off to each hand/bowl alternately so you don’t end up with a triple breaded hand!

    Pull a pork chop from the miso marinade and dredge though the flour, shaking off any excess. Then dip it in the egg on both sides. Let any excess drip off and place it in the panko. Flip and lightly press to coat both sides evenly. Set on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the rest.

  • 7. FRY

    Pour oil into a wide and heavy bottom sauté pan (cast iron is great). Heat oil over medium-high until an instant-read thermometer registers 350°–365°. (If we’re being honest, we don’t use a thermometer. When it looks shimmery, toss a pinch of flour into the oil and if it sizzles, you’re good to go. If it doesn’t make any noise, heat a little more.)

    Carefully lower a piece of pork into skillet, letting it slide away from you as it touches down so you don’t splash yourself. You can probably cook between 2-4 pieces at a time depending on your pan. Don’t overcrowd. Cook about 2 minutes, then flip. Cook about 1-2 minutes more.

    Use tongs to remove the pork and place on a plate lined with a paper towel. Let the oil heat up again and repea

  • 8. BREAD

    Slice the bread you’re using into slices or just set them out.

  • 9. SERVING

    Drizzle tonkatsu sauce over cutlets. Spread mustard on 1 side of half of bread slices; top with cabbage mixture, then 1-2 cutlets, sauce side up. Close sandwiches and slice each in half or thirds for presentation.

    We love serving this with a side of fresh, tangy fruit like oranges, pineapple, or mango

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    look for GF breadcrumbs for frying and serve the cutlets over lettuce rather than as a sandwich. Or you can also find GF bread
  • PALEO:
    double the meat quantity. Double the cabbage recipe and serve the pork over cabbage like a salad. It would be nice to add some extra roasted veggies too. Rather than breading the pork, marinate it in miso and some Braggs aminos and simple pan sear it
  • PORK:
    don’t eat it? Use chicken cutlets and follow the recipe exactly
  • MISO:
    the real recipe calls for Shio Koji, which you’d likely want to buy online. If you don’t have miso paste either, you can use 2 Tablespoons of soy sauce
  • PANKO:
    regular breadcrumbs will be ok, perhaps a little less airy but will taste delicious. But do try to avoid the Italian seasoned ones
    the original recipe calls for Japanese milk bread, which can be hard to find. Brioche is a great substitute, or look for something light and airy. Ideally, something rich, made with milk or eggs. Challah is another great choice. We’d serve this on brioche buns before something like wheat or sourdough slices
    our homemade sauce is a riff on Tonkatsu Sauce. The real thing is a bit fruitier and is really good and readily available online. Look for Bull-Dog Brand
    kids may enjoy the sandwich deconstructed, possibly cut into thin strips and dip into the sauce. Serve with a side of oranges and pineapple or broccoli
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