Everyone knows and loves sweet and sour pork, right?
In my opinion, this is one of the best Chinese dishes, whether we are ordering cheap takeout, eating at a high-dollar Michelin starred restaurant, or cooking up a Chinese feast at home. It’s tangy, sweet, crispy, crunchy, and deliciously porky. This better than takeout version is not only easier, it’s better for you too. Best of all, it uses pork chops, which are by far my favorite cut of pork because they are easy to come by, easy to cook, and taste great.
Healthy and easy sweet and sour pork
Some people don’t know that sweet and sour pork is deep fried and not at all healthy. This is an easy, healthier, just as delicious homemade version with no added oil and no deep frying. The sauce is as authentic as you’d find in any Chinese household or restaurant, and this was so good the two of us demolished over a pound of it in under 10 minutes.
How to make sweet and sour pork chops
- Cube the pork chops. More surface area equals more crunch, but we don’t need to work too hard or go too far here, 1.5″ cubes are just about right.
- Coat the pork. Put the pork in a ziplock bag or a bowl with corn starch to get that crispy coating without deep frying. With the right touch, corn starch and a hot oven can make anything taste deep fried.
- Bake the pork. Bake the pork at 450ºF for 40 minutes, flipping halfway through for even browning.
- Make the sauce. While the pork is baking, make the sauce with the remaining ingredients in a nonstick skillet. While nonstick is the best choice, feel free to use whatever you have. It’s not that important, you can even microwave this sauce.
- Put it all together. Take the pork out of the oven and immediately toss it in the sauce until everything is well coated. Serve with plenty of fluffy white rice and other sides.
This is authentic Chinese sweet and sour pork
Is that ketchup in the ingredients list? Yes. Not only was ketchup originally invented in China, it’s the secret ingredient to get that unique tanginess you find in truly authentic Chinese sweet and sour pork.
Tips and tricks
If you want the pork crispier and you have a can of cooking spray such as pam handy, hit it with a light coat of oil before you dust with corn starch to get even more crunch.
Air fryer sweet and sour pork
If you want to airfry these instead of oven baking, you can! All you need to do is switch the oven out for an air fryer. Coat the pork with cornstarch as per the recipe, then place the pork into the air fryer basket with at least 1/4″ gap between pieces, in a single layer and set the air fryer to 375ºF for 8 minutes. Once done, coat with sauce as directed.
Sweet And Sour Pork Recipe
You won’t believe how easy this no fry sweet and sour pork recipe is.
- 1 lb pork chop cubed, or shoulder
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 3 tbsp ketchup
- 2 tbsp vinegar rice vinegar preferred
- 1 tbsp soy sauce light soy sauce preferred
- 1 bell pepper roughly chopped
- 1/2 onion roughly chopped
Serves 2 as a main or 4 with rice and other sides. Estimated nutrition is for 4 servings.
Sweet And Sour Pork Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 220
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 8.9g56%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Welcome to Dinner & Chill, a new series focusing on quick & easy weeknight dinners with easy to find ingredients, no special equipment, low prep, and low effort. Less shopping, less chopping, less mopping, more eating.