Easy Air Fryer Tonkatsu with Classic Tonkatsu Sauce

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This golden and crispy Air Fryer Tonkatsu recipe, paired with classic Tonkatsu sauce, makes for a perfect Japanese-inspired dinner. 中 Fry it, to believe it!

Air fryer Tonkatsu recipe bite shot, with shredded cabbage and Tonkatsu sauce
Air fryer Tonkatsu recipe bite shot, with shredded cabbage and Tonkatsu sauce

If you’re unfamiliar with Tonkatsu, the delicious Japanese pork cutlet, we’re sorry you’ve been missing out.

Tonkatsu, 鞊怒, 具 or 喋怒, is an insanely crispy, perfectly tender pork chop breaded in the crispiest panko and (traditionally) deep fried.

Since it’s typically coated with Panko breadcrumbs (unlike a wet batter like tempura), making air fryer pork Tonkatsu is doable.

The key is to pick high-quality meat from a local butcher. Costco’s meats are an amazing option, they taste great and are more affordable as well.

We’re going to attempt to replicate the most authentic Tonkatsu possible using the air fryer, complete with the traditional Tonkatsu sauce.

So, let’s get frying!

Ingredients for Air Fryer Tonkatsu

Ingredients for Air Fryer Tonkatsu Recipe

For this recipe, youll need the following ingredients. Keep in mind that many of these ingredients are pantry staples!

  • Boneless pork loin chops (about 翻 inch thick)
  • Corn starch
  • Eggs
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Cooking oil spray
  • Tonkatsu sauce, recipe below
  • Shredded cabbage, for serving

You can find the exact measurements and adjust the number of servings in the recipe card down below.

All of these ingredients should be easy to find in the local grocery store. If you have any issues finding anything, a local Asian market will always have everything you need!

ASMR Recipe Video: Air Fried Tonkatsu

Dont have time to read? We made this short recipe video just for you.

*You can find the exact amount of ingredients and adjust the number of servings in the recipe card below.

How to Cook Tonkatsu in the Air Fryer?

Making the Pork Tonkatsu itself is quite simple. In about 20 minutes or less, youll have golden and crisp pork cutlets, ready to be devoured!

1. Get your boneless, skinless pork chops ready.

Patting boneless, skinless pork chops dry with kitchen towel.

Carefully cut your pork chops in half widthwise, into 翻-inch slices. Then, thoroughly pat them dry with a paper towel.

Pro Tip: While there are other meat cuts you can use, pork loin chops offer the perfect balance of tenderness and fat content ratio.

2. Lightly season your pork loin chops with salt and pepper.

Seasoning pork chops with salt and pepper

Sprinkle both sides of the pork chops with salt and pepper.

3. Prepare your breading station.

Breading station for Air Fryer Tonkatsu: dredging station, egg wash station, bread crumb station

Prepare three shallow bowls for breading the pork.

In one shallow bowl, add the cornstarch. In another shallow bowl, beat an egg with one tablespoon of water until smooth. In the third container, add the panko breadcrumbs.

4. Preheat your air fryer to 400簞F (204簞C).

Preating Instant Pot Vortex Plus Air Fryer to 400簞F (204簞C).

If your air fryer doesnt have a preheating option, you can set the temperature to 400繙F (204繙C) and then let it cook for 5 minutes without food.

Important: Reduce the cooking temperature to 380簞F (193簞C) if you’re using a 4-quart air fryer or smaller. They are hotter due to the heating element being closer to the food.

5. Add breading to your lightly seasoned pork chops.

Breaded pork tonkatsu

Bread each pork chop by first dipping the meat into the cornstarch, flipping to coat both sides evenly. Transfer the coated pork to the egg wash and coat the entire piece evenly.

Allow any excess egg to drip back into the bowl and then transfer to the panko, pressing to adhere. Transfer to a clean plate until ready to air fry.

6. Air fry pork tonkatsu for 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through.

Cooking pork Tonkatsu in air fryer

When the air fryer is preheated, place the pork chops inside and generously spray them with avocado oil, ensuring there are no dry areas for a crispy and golden finish.

Air fry for about 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through.

Make sure the internal temperature reaches 145簞F (63簞C) or higher.

7. Prepare tonkatsu sauce.

Mixing Tonkatsu sauce in a small bowl

If you want to save time with this recipe, you can use a ready-made tonkatsu sauce.

However, if you have all the ingredients, its super easy to make. To a medium bowl, add the ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, mirin, and rice vinegar. Mix until well combined and set aside for serving. (Full recipe below)

8. Allow your air fried tonkatsu to rest for 3-5 minutes.

Pork Tonkatsu on a cooling rack

When the tonkatsu is golden, crisp, and delicious, carefully remove it from the air fryer and transfer it to a cooling rack. Allow to rest for 3-5 minutes, giving it enough time to cool and for the juices to settle.

Skipping this step will result in the residual heat steaming the crust and causing it to become soggy.

9. Serve and enjoy your Air Fried Tonkatsu!

Air fried Tonkatsu with shredded cabbage and classic Tonkatsu sauce

I feel the best way to enjoy tonkatsu is to let the flavor of the simple sauce and crisp cutlet shine!

Shredded cabbage and rice are the traditional accompaniments because theyre truly perfect with the flavorful tonkatsu and sauce!

Recommended Air Frying Time & Temperature

If you are using a thicker slab of meat, you can refer to this chart.

ThicknessCooking TimeCooking TemperatureNote
翻-inch thick10-12 minutes400簞F (204簞C)Flip halfway
1-inch thick12-16 minutes400簞F (204簞C)Flip halfway
1翻-inch thick16-20 minutes400簞F (204簞C)Flip halfway
Recommended air frying time and temperature based on the thickness of the meat.

Important: Reduce the cooking temperature to 380簞F (193簞C) if youre using a 4-quart air fryer or smaller. They are hotter due to the heating element being closer to the food.

As a general rule, always preheat your air fryer for a faster and more accurate cooking time. If your air fryer doesnt have a preheat mode, simply run it without food for 4-5 minutes.

Internal Temperature

The safe internal temperature for pork chops is 145簞F (63簞C). However, you can refer to the chart below for your preferred level of doneness.

DonenessTemperatureColor
Medium145簞F (63簞C)Warm pink center
Medium Well150簞F (66簞C)Slightly pink center
Well Done160簞F (71簞C)Little or no pink
Pork chop internal temperature based on desired doneness

I prefer mine well done. How about you?

Freezing & Storage

Freezing: Allow the air fried Tonkatsu to cool completely before adding to an airtight container between layers of parchment or wax paper. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Fridge: Allow the cutlets to cool completely before adding to an airtight container between layers of parchment or wax paper. Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Reheating Air Fried Pork Tonkatsu

To reheat your leftover Pork Tonkatsu, preheat your air fryer to 360簞F (182簞C) and cook them for 5-6 minutes, flipping halfway through. Simply add 2 more minutes if you’re reheating from frozen.

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Avocado Oil

Don’t miss out on golden, crispy textures in your air-fried dishes. The secret? Avocado Oil! When you use avocado oil, especially in breaded recipes, you’ll achieve that lovely deep-fried crunch. So, what are you waiting for? Grab your stash of avocado oil today!

Air Fryer Pork Tonkatsu FAQs

Can you make Tonkatsu in an air fryer?

Yes, you can make tonkatsu in an air fryer. It’s as quick and easy as deep-frying, requiring significantly less oil.

How long does it take to air fry Tonkatsu?

Air frying tonkatsu typically takes around 12-20 minutes, depending on the thickness of the meat and the specific air fryer model.

How to air fry pork Tonkatsu?

To air fry pork tonkatsu, bread the pork with flour, egg, and panko breadcrumbs, then air fry at 380簞F (193簞C) for about 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through, until golden and crispy.

How many calories are there in an air fried Tonkatsu?

The calorie count of an air-fried tonkatsu can vary, but on average, it’s around 250-300 calories per serving excluding the sauce and side dish.

Air fryer Tonkatsu with shredded cabbage and Tonkatsu sauce

Easy Air Fryer Tonkatsu with Classic Tonkatsu Sauce

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This golden and crispy Air Fryer Tonkatsu recipe, paired with classic Tonkatsu sauce, makes for a perfect Japanese-inspired dinner. 失
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 4 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 16 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine Japanese
Servings 4
Calories 424 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 4 pork loin chops boneless, about 翻 inch thick
  • cup corn starch
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil spray
  • teaspoon salt or to taste
  • teaspoon pepper or to taste
  • 2 cup cabbage shredded, for serving

Tonkatsu Sauce

  • cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar

Instructions
 

  • Get your boneless, skinless pork chops ready. Slice them into 翻-inch filets. If you bought frozen ones, thaw them overnight and let them come to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before working with them. Then pat them dry with a kitchen towel. Optionally, you can brine them overnight.
    Patting boneless, skinless pork chops dry with kitchen towel.
  • Next, lightly season both sides of your pork chops with salt and pepper.
    Seasoning pork chops with salt and pepper
  • Prepare your breading station: In a shallow container, add the cornstarch. In a medium bowl, prepare the egg wash by beating an egg until smooth. In a separate shallow container, place the Panko-style breadcrumbs.
    Breading station for Air Fryer Tonkatsu: dredging station, egg wash station, bread crumb station
  • Preheat your air fryer to 400簞F (204簞C). If your air fryer has a capacity of 4 quarts or smaller, please see the note for more info.
    Preating Instant Pot Vortex Plus Air Fryer to 400簞F (204簞C).
  • While preheating, bread your lightly seasoned pork chops. Begin by dredging them with cornstarch. Then dip them into the beaten eggs, allowing any excess to drip off. Finally, coat the pork chops in the Panko breadcrumbs, pressing lightly to ensure the breadcrumbs adhere to the meat. Repeat this process for all the pork chops.
    Breaded pork tonkatsu
  • Air fry pork Tonkatsu for 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through. Begin by carefully adding the breaded chops into the air fryer basket. Then, spray them generously with cooking oil, ensuring all areas are covered. Air fry them for 5-6 minutes, then flip the chops and spray any remaining dry areas with cooking oil spray. Cook for another 5-6 minutes. Continue air frying until the tonkatsu turns golden brown and crispy, or until you've reached your desired level of doneness.
    Cooking pork Tonkatsu in air fryer
  • Prepare the tonkatsu sauce by mixing ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, mirin, and rice vinegar. Alternatively, you can also purchase a ready-made sauce from your favorite Asian supermarket.
    Mixing Tonkatsu sauce in a small bowl
  • Allow your air fried tonkatsu to rest for 3-5 minutes. To maintain the crispiness of the crust, it's best to place them on a cooling rack.
    Pork Tonkatsu on a cooling rack
  • Serve the air fryer pork tonkatsu hot with tonkatsu sauce on the side for dipping. Serve alongside shredded cabbage and cooked rice for a complete meal. Enjoy!
    Air fried Tonkatsu with shredded cabbage and classic Tonkatsu sauce

Video

Notes

  • For 4-quart air fryers and smaller, reduce the cooking temperature to 380簞F (193簞C). They generate more heat because of the heating element’s proximity to the food.
  • If your air fryer doesn’t have a preheating option, you can set the temperature to 400簞F (204簞C) and then let it cook for 4-5 minutes without food.
  • As per USDA guidelines, pork chops should be cooked to an internal temperature of 145簞F (63簞C) or higher. However, it will ultimately depend on your personal preference.
  • Medium: 145簞F (63簞C), Medium Well: 150簞F (66簞C), Well Done: 160簞F (71簞C). For best results, use a meat thermometer.
  • Spraying the pork tonkatsu with cooking oil is a necessary step for achieving a golden and crispy finish. Without it, the tonkatsu may appear dry and unappetizing.
  • I used a 6-quart Instant Vortex Plus to test the air fryer tonkatsu recipe. Cooking time and temperature may vary depending on your air fryer, the thickness of your pork chop, your desired doneness and the number of servings you are making. For optimal results, begin with the lower end of the suggested cooking time.
  • For thicker slices, extend the cooking time for 4-8 minutes or until you achieve your desired internal temperature.

Nutrition

Calories: 424kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 172mg | Sodium: 765mg | Potassium: 706mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 239IU | Vitamin C: 14mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 2mg
Keywords: air fried tonkatsu, air fryer pork tonkatsu, air fryer tonkatsu

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