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Tonkatsu Curry

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Ready in about 45 minutes, tonkatsu curry is an easy dish bursting with flavor. Simple ingredients and easy techniques is all it takes to create a family-pleasing meal that everyone will love!

Crispy, meaty tonkatsu is always a favorite in my house, and when I need to sneak some extra veggies into the meal, I turn to this tonkatsu curry recipe. 

It cooks in 2 parts: first, get the pork cooking, and then, when that’s underway, you can start the curry sauce. 

Then, just ladle the amazing sauce over the sliced pork tonkatsu, and watch everyone gobble it up! The ultimate comfort dish.

What’s Tonkatsu?

Tonkatsu, also called pork katsu, is a Japanese dish of thinly sliced, breaded, and fried pork. Coated in panko breadcrumbs, the pork is golden brown and crunchy on the outside while staying moist and tender inside. 

Tonkatsu is the official name when this dish is made with pork, but you can also find chicken katsu with chicken breast or chicken thighs or ‘ahi katsu. A tonkatsu sauce usually accompanies it, and this katsu curry dish is a succulent and flavorful curry that’s loaded with tender-crisp carrots and potatoes.

What You Need To Make Tonkatsu Curry

(Full recipe instructions and ingredient amounts are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post)

For the tonkatsu:

  • Pork – Use boneless pork chops or pork cutlet. In a pinch you could also use bone in.
  • Eggs – Well-beaten.
  • Panko bread crumbs – Use panko; regular breadcrumbs aren’t the same.
  • All-purpose flour – This helps bind the eggs and panko.
  • Garlic salt – This gives extra added flavor.
  • Pepper – Start with a little. You can always add more.
  • Frying oil – Vegetable oil, peanut, avocado, and canola oil are all good choices.

For the curry:

  • Onion – A small white, yellow, or red onion. If you can find sweet Maui onions, those are my favorite.
  • Carrots – Peeled and cubed.
  • Potatoes – Cut about the same size as the carrots.
  • Water
  • Japanese curry mix – You can find this in most supermarkets or at a specialty Asian food stores.

What is the Best Pork for Tonkatsu?

Pork katsu should be made with lean, boneless pork. Look for thinly sliced loin chops, or you could use pork tenderloin, but you’d need to cut it thin and on a bias to get nice large slices. 

If you’re using a tougher cut of pork, you may want to tenderize it with a meat mallet before breading.

How to Make Tonkatsu Curry

This pork katsu curry recipe couldn’t be any easier! If you can shallow fry meat, then you can handle this dish. Here’s what to do:

For the tonkatsu:

  1. Heat about an inch of oil in a large skillet over medium heat to medium-high heat. You could also deep fry the pork cutlets.
  2. Set up a dredging station with the beaten eggs in shallow bowls or plates, the panko in a second, and the flour in a third.
  3. Add the garlic salt and pepper to the flour and mix well with a fork.
  4. Coat the pork in flour and shake off excess. Then dip it into the beaten egg, and then into the Panko. Press the Panko onto the pork to stick well.
  5. When the oil reaches about 350F, fry the pork until golden brown. Flip it once.
  6. Remove the pork and place it on a rack or paper towel to drain.

To make the curry sauce:

  1. Add oil to a large pan and cook the onion until soft.
  2. Add the carrots and potatoes and saute for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add the water and bring to a boil and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the Japanese curry roux and stir to combine. Simmer another 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. 

To serve:

Slice the crispy pork into ½-inch strips. Lay over a bed of rice. Ladle the flavorful curry sauce and vegetables over the top, or serve the sauce on the side. Enjoy!

What To Serve With Tonkatsu Curry

I love putting out a bowl of edamame for the family to nibble on while making this tonkatsu with curry recipe. This dish has so much flavor that you don’t need fancy sides. Plain sticky white rice or jasmine rice will soak up all the delicious katsu curry sauce, and steamed greens – like broccoli or beans – will add a nice green veggie to the plate. Add a little soy sauce if you’d like as well.

How to Store Leftover Tonkatsu Curry

Keep the tonkatsu (breaded pork) in an airtight sealed container separate from any leftover sauce, that way, you can reheat it in a skillet or your air fryer to crisp it back up.

The Japanese curry sauce and the pork will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is tonkatsu curry sauce easy to make?

Yes, this is an easy curry sauce recipe. When using a spice packet, all the spices you need are measured and blended for the best curry flavor.

Is this pork tonkatsu curry recipe spicy?

like to use the mild flavor packet, which is not spicy. If you like it spicy you can use medium or hot or add a touch of red pepper flakes to the sauce before serving. 

Is Tonkatsu Curry healthy?

There are vegetables in it and while there are health benefits from some of the spices in the curry blend, the meat is breaded and fried so there’s fat in this dish.

More Delicious Pork Recipes

side view tonkatsu curry on a black plate with rice

Tonkatsu Curry

Relle Lum
Making pork tonkatsu curry at home is easier than you think. Breaded pork cutlet fried to crispy perfection alongside rich and flavorful curry served over a bed of white rice. What’s not to love?
5 from 34 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 4 servings
Calories 1005 kcal


For the rice:

  • 2 cups uncooked white rice
  • 2 cups water

For the tonkatsu:

For the curry:

  • 1 small onion sliced
  • 2 carrots cubed
  • 2 medium potatoes cubed
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 pack 3.2 ounces Japanese curry mix


  • For the rice: Add rice to the pot of a rice cooker. Rinse rice with cool running water until the water runs clear. Pour out water. Add 2 cups fresh water in to a rice pot. Cook the rice in the rice cooker until completed.
  • For the tonkatsu: Heat oil in a large pan over medium high heat. While oil is heating up start dredging the pork.
  • Place the eggs, panko, and flour in three separate shallow dishes.
  • Add garlic salt and pepper to the flour and mix to combine.
  • Next coat the pork in flour. Be sure to shake off any excess flour. Then dip in the eggs being sure to cover the entire surface of the pork. And lastly dip in the panko. You can press the panko on to the pork to ensure even coverage.
  • Once the oil has reached about 350F, place the pork in the pan and fry until golden brown, about 4-5 minutes. Flip and repeat on the other side. Cook to an internal temperature of 145F.
  • Remove pork and place on a paper towel or a cooling rack set over a cookie sheet to catch excess oil.
  • For the curry: Add 1 tablespoon oil to a pot. Add onion and saute until translucent. Then add carrots and potatoes and continue to cook for another 1-2 minutes. Lastly, add water and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  • Add curry mix and stir until combined. Continue to simmer for another 10 minutes or until vegetables are to your desired tenderness. Set aside. Slice pork in 1/2 inch strips. Serve with rice and curry. Enjoy!


Serving: 1gCalories: 1005kcalCarbohydrates: 134gProtein: 55gFat: 26gSaturated Fat: 7gPolyunsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 197mgSodium: 583mgFiber: 5gSugar: 5g
Keyword curry, dinner, easy dinner recipe, japanese food, katsu, keeping it relle, local food, pork katsu curry, tonkatsu, tonkatsu curry
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© Relle Lum for Keeping It Relle. Please do not copy and paste or screenshot recipes online or on social media. I’d love it if you share a link with a photo instead. Mahalo!

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By on May 24th, 2022

About Relle

Aloha, my name is Relle and welcome to my little home on the internet where I like to share all my favorite Hawaiian recipes (and local ones too).

I am a wife, mom of two, and nurse practitioner here in the beautiful state of Hawai’i. I was born and raised in Hawai’i and I am of native Hawaiian descent. In my spare time I love to cook and bake and I have compiled many of my favorite recipes here for you to enjoy.

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