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Japanese Ginger Pork

Welcome to my Japanese Ginger Pork recipe, also known as Shoga-yaki! If you crave simplicity and flavor, you’re in for a treat! This delightful dish combines the savory essence of ginger, a touch of sweetness, and juicy pork, offering an authentic taste of Japan in just 10 minutes of cooking!

Japanese pork ginger cut into sliced being picked up with a pair of chopsticks, close up shot.

Why I Love This Recipe

What makes my Ginger Pork shoga-yaki recipe stands out is its accessibility. I’ve made it hassle-free by substituting traditional thinly sliced pork with easy-to-find pork chops, ensuring that everyone can enjoy this Japanese classic. What’s more, it’s a breeze to prepare, taking just 10 minutes from start to finish. This dish caters to anyone who craves a taste of Japan without the complexity. Its savory and slightly sweet flavor profile is sure to please your palate.

This recipe is accessible to all skill levels, ensuring that everyone can enjoy the delectable flavors it offers. It pairs beautifully with your choice of rice, creating a satisfying meal. If you’ve relished dishes like my Japanese Pork Stir Fry or Bean Sprouts and Pork Stir Fry, you’ll appreciate the similar style sauce that elevates your pork chops to a whole new level of deliciousness. Get ready to savor the irresistible taste of my Japanese Ginger Pork!



  • Pork – top loin pork chop. Can also use thinly sliced pork found at Asian grocery stores.
  • Salt – sea salt preferred.
  • Black Pepper – ground.
  • Neutral Oil no taste or flavor with high cooking temperature. Some choices are sunflower oil, peanut oil, sallower oil, vegetable oil, and canola oil. 
  • Green Onion – finely chopped green onion scallions.
  • Onion – grated yellow or brown onion.
  • Ginger – freshly grated ginger.
  • Garlic– freshly grated garlic.
  • Sweetener – use your preferred sweetener.
  • Japanese Sake – typically will come in a large bottle labeled junmai sake. Can also substitute with dry sherry wine or Chinese cooking wine, found at local grocery stores or Asian markets. 
  • Soy Sauce – low-sodium Soy Sauce preferred. Can also use tamari for gluten-free.
  • Toasted Sesame Oil – 100% Toasted Sesame Oil that should have a dark brown color.  
  • Cabbage – for a traditional cabbage side salad, use a mandolin or slicer and shred cabbage thinly.  You can also serve along with a choice of small bowl of rice.

Ingredient Substitutions

For an true authentic Japanese ginger pork experience, you can opt for Thinly Sliced Pork Loin, a traditional choice readily available in packages labeled ‘shabu-shabu’ at Asian supermarkets.

🥬 Shredded Cabbage Pro Tip

To simplify preparation, consider using pre-shredded cabbage.

🥓 Pork Chop Note

For optimal results, select boneless pork loin cuts that are the thinnest available, ideally around 1/2 inch thick.

🍶 Mirin Note

While mirin is traditionally used in Japanese ginger sauce, this recipe acknowledges the potential unavailability of mirin in certain locations. To address this, the recipe adjusts the ratio of Japanese sake and sweetener, ensuring that you can still enjoy the authentic flavors without mirin on hand.

Japanese pork ginger served on a white plate with a pair of chopsticks, top down shot.


🍖 Brining Pro Tip

For achieving Juicy Pork Chops, consider brining them in a solution of 2 Cups of Water with 2 Tablespoons of Salt for 30-45 Minutes. However, it’s essential to avoid over-brining, as this can lead to overly salty and mushy pork. If you opt for brining, remember not to add extra salt when seasoning the pork chops.

Step 1 In a mixing bowl, combine grated onion, grated garlic, grated ginger, Japanese sake, soy sauce, sweetener, and toasted sesame oil to prepare the flavorful sauce.

Pork ginger sauce in a bowl.

Step 2 Season pork chops with salt and black pepper.

Seasoned pork chops.

Step 3 In an oil-coated frying pan, add the pork. If using thinly sliced pork, cook for 2-3 minutes until it turns golden brown. For pork loin, cook for 2-3 minutes per side until both sides are golden brown, and the

Pork chops in a frying pan.

⏲️ Cooking Time Pro Tip

Cooking times for pork chops can vary based on their thickness. To achieve perfect results, it’s advisable to use a thermometer to monitor the temperature and ensure it reaches the target level.

💡 Juicy Pork Pro Tip

To ensure juicy and tender pork chops, avoid overcooking them. Stop cooking when the temperature reaches 145°F. It’s important to mention that a slight pinkish hue in the center is entirely safe at this temperature, so there’s no need for concern.

Step 4 Pour the prepared sauce into the frying pan and simmer for 15-20 seconds.

Pork chops in a frying pan with pork ginger sauce.

Step 5 Transfer the cooked pork onto a bed of shredded cabbage or your choice of rice and drizzle any remaining sauce over the pork and top with chopped green onions.

Japanese pork ginger served on top of shredded cabbage.

Recipe Variations

If you’re seeking a flavorful change, try substituting the ginger sauce with a delicious savory butter sauce for a Asian Pork Chops recipe. This variation adds a rich element to your Asian-style pork chops, elevating their flavor profile.

Paring Recommendations

To complete your Japanese Ginger Pork experience, consider serving it with a side of your favorite rice, be it white, brown rice or cauliflower rice. The hearty pork and savory sauce perfectly complement the rice, creating a satisfying meal. If you’re looking to add some traditional Japanese flair, a warm bowl of Tofu Miso Soup pairs exceptionally well, with its delicate and comforting flavors with the ginger-infused pork. For a refreshing side, why not prepare some Japanese Cabbage Salad using the shredded cabbage from the recipe? It brings simplicity and freshness to the meal, balancing the rich flavors of the pork. To cleanse your palate and provide a refreshing touch, a cup of Mugicha is an excellent choice. This combination of accompaniments creates a well-rounded dining experience, allowing you to savor the authentic taste of Japan.

Japanese pork ginger cut into sliced being picked up with a pair of chopsticks.

Frequently Asked Questions

What kind of rice is best to serve with Japanese Ginger Pork?

You can serve it with your choice of rice, whether it's white, brown rice, or even cauliflower rice for a low-carb option.

Can I use other vegetables besides cabbage for the Japanese Cabbage Salad?

Certainly! You can opt for a simple green salad with lettuce, spinach, or mixed greens for a fresh and vibrant alternative. Alternatively, steamed vegetables such as broccoli or asparagus would pair well.

Is it possible to make this recipe gluten-free?

Yes, you can use gluten-free soy sauce or tamari to make this dish gluten-free.

Storage Tips

To store your leftover, simply store it in an airtight container and place it in the refrigerator. It will maintain its quality for about 5 to 7 days. When you’re ready to enjoy it again, a quick reheat in the microwave will work.

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Watch How To Make It

Japanese pork ginger cut into sliced being picked up with a pair of chopsticks, close up shot.

Japanese Ginger Pork

Discover the delectable flavors of my Ginger Pork recipe, also known as Shoga Yaki. A savory and sweet Japanese delight that's quick and easy to prepare.
5 from 8 votes
Course: Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Japanese
Keyword: ginger pork recipe, Japanese ginger pork, shoga yaki
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2
Print Recipe
Calories: 397kcal


Pork Chops

  • 1/2 lbs Pork Top Loin or thinly sliced pork
  • 1/8 tsp Salt
  • 1/8 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Cooking Oil neutral, no flavor or taste
  • 2 Cups Cabbage
  • 1 Stalk Green Onions


  • 1 tbsp Onion
  • 1 Inch Ginger
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 1 tbsp Sweetener your preferred sweetener
  • 4 tbsp Japanese sake
  • 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp Toasted Sesame Oil


  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients for Japanese pork ginger on countertop.
  • Pat pork dry with a paper towel. Once dried, sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides.
    Seasoned pork chops.
  • Shred cabbage with a shredder (or you can buy pre-shredded cabbage at a supermarket) and transfer to a serving plate.
    Shredded cabbage on a plate.
  • Thinly cut green onions and set aside.
    Chopped green onions.
  • Grate ginger, onion, and garlic with a grater and add to a mixing bowl.
    Grated onion, giniger and garlic in a bowl.
  • Add sweetener, Japanese sake, Soy Sauce and Toasted Sesame Oil into the same mixing bowl. Mix well and set aside.
    Pork ginger sauce in a bowl.
  • Add neutral cooking oil in a large frying pan and bring up to temp.  Once oil is up to temp, reduce heat to medium and carefully add pork chops (you can partially cover to avoid splattering). Cook until golden brown, should take around 2-3 minutes (time will vary with thickness). If using thinly sliced pork, cook for 2-3 minutes until the pork is golden brown and skip to step 9).
    Pork chops in a frying pan.
  • Flip and cook the other side for about 2-3 minutes, or until internal temp should reaches 145F.
    Cooked pork chops in a frying pan.
  • After pork is cooked through, pour ginger sauce and increase heat to high. Cook uncovered for another 15-20 seconds and then transfer pork onto of bed of cabbage on serving plate. Drizzle any extra sauce on top and sprinkle with chopped green onions.
    Japanese pork ginger served on top of shredded cabbage.


Calories: 397kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 1230mg | Potassium: 536mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 137IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 2mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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