This quick and tasty Sweet and Sour Pork combines crunchy fried pork tenderloin with crisp bell peppers, savory onions, and juicy pieces of pineapple for a tantalizing homemade spin on your favorite Chinese takeout! With only 25 minutes from start to finish, making tasty takeout at home has never been easier!
Fresh, fast, and satisfying – this Sweet and Sour Pork is incredible!
Chinese takeout is a classic family favorite! It can be so fun to make your own takeout, but sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. With my super quick and simple recipe, you can have your favorite takeout dish in under 30 minutes!
Serve over white rice to let the flavors of this dish sing! Rice perfectly blends with the crisp vegetables, juicy pineapple, delicious, breaded pork, and an incredible sauce to instantly become a new dinner staple.
❤️ Why You'll Love This Recipe!
It’s packed full of delicious flavor! This meal has the perfect blend of ingredients to create an amazing, Asian-inspired dish.
It’s super quick! This dish can be made in 25 minutes, from start to finish! That’s faster than it takes to order and pick up takeout!
It’s easy! Despite there being breading and frying involved, I’ll make it easy for you with my simplified recipe and great tips.
The sweet and sour sauce is what makes this dish so incredible! You can make my easy recipe or use your favorite store-bought sauce. Whatever you use, my sweet and sour pork is going to tantalize your taste buds!
- Pork Tenderloin – You’ll want to cut this into small, 1” pieces. If you’re low on time, you can sometimes find pre-cut pork pieces in the Meat section of your grocery store!
- Cornstarch – This initially coats the pork pieces to help the egg mixture adhere and create a crunchy, never soggy, breading.
- Beaten Eggs – Eggs are the second step in the breading process to help the final flour coating stick and give the pork great color.
- All-Purpose Flour – The final step in the breading process, flour blends with the other ingredients during frying to create that delicious crunch! Use your favorite brand.
- Oil for Frying – Neutral oils like vegetable, canola, coconut, or peanut are all fantastic choices! I prefer coconut oil, but any of these choices are great.
- White Onion – Sliced into 1” chunks. White onion cuts the sweetness of the other ingredients, but yellow onions work too if you prefer!
- Garlic – Adds delicious savory flavor to the dish! You can use fresh or pre-minced garlic.
- Red, Yellow, and Green Bell Peppers – The varieties of bell pepper in this dish help to create a complex flavor profile and a fabulous crunch!
- Pineapple Chunks – Pineapple adds a unique sweetness and a juicy bite that contrasts so well with the pork.
- Sweet and Sour Sauce – Use my Sweet & Sour Sauce or purchase store-bought. I’ll have you use 1 cup, but you can add more according to your taste.
💭 Tips & Recipe Notes
If you aren’t super familiar with frying, it can seem intimidating – but I’ve got you covered!
Fully heated oil is key.
The easiest way to keep track of your oil to prevent burning or soggy breading is to keep the oil at an even, medium-high temperature setting and let it heat for about five to ten minutes. You can then add a sprinkle of flour or dip the end of a wooden spoon into the oil and look for even bubbles that come to the surface.
A meat thermometer is also helpful!
With the thermometer measure from the center of the pan and start frying when the temperature gets between 350°F (177°F) and 400°F (205°C). Using an oven mitt, if necessary, continue checking the temperature periodically throughout your frying process and adjust the heat setting accordingly. This is a fantastic way to make sure your pork will be thoroughly cooked and crispy!
Keep em' crispy!
When finished, place your fried pork on a wire rack with a paper towel-lined baking sheet underneath to catch the grease. The wire rack will keep the underside of the pork crisp to ensure your pieces never get soggy!
Unsure what kind of pineapple to use?
Canned is probably the easiest to find and use, but be sure to drain thoroughly. You can use the extra juice in my homemade sweet and sour sauce recipe, if you’re making it!
Fresh and frozen are also great options.
If using fresh, make sure to cut into even chunks, about the same size as your veggies. If using frozen, make sure to thaw before adding to the dish to avoid watering your sweet and sour pork down.
When dredging the pork, be sure to shake off any excess flour!
Making sure there isn’t too much extra flour on the pork ensures that all the coating adheres to the meat and doesn’t create a mess going into the fryer.
🔪 Step-by-Step Instructions
Surprise your family with this delicious, easy meal. You’ll all be craving this homemade sweet and sour pork for dinner every week!
- Prep the veggies. Slice 1 large white onion into chunks, mince 1 tablespoon of garlic (about 3 large cloves), and cut ½ each red, yellow, and green bell peppers into strips or chunks. If using fresh pineapple, peel the skin and cut into even chunks.
- Prep the pork. Cut 1 pound of pork tenderloin into 1-inch cubes. Then, place the pork pieces into a large plastic Ziploc bag and add ½ cup of cornstarch. Seal and shake to coat. Remove the pork, place on a plate or bowl and set aside.
- Set up dredging station. In a small bowl, whisk 2 large eggs until completely blended. In another, add ¼ cup of flour.
- Fry the pork. Add enough of your preferred oil to the bottom of your frying pan until it is at least ½ inch deep. Heat the oil to medium-high to high heat until it reaches 360°F (182°C). Next, take the cornstarch-coated pork and dip in egg, dredge in flour (shake off any excess flour), and then carefully put into the hot oil.
- Finish frying the pork. Cook the pork in batches until it’s all completely cooked through, about 3-4 minutes for each batch. Set aside on a wire rack, with a paper-towel lined baking sheet underneath. Remove excess oil from the pan, leaving a small amount to cook the veggies.
- Sauté the veggies. Over medium to medium-high heat, add the prepared onion pieces and minced garlic. Cook until the onions are softened. Add the prepared bell peppers and pineapple and cook until tender, about 3-4 minutes.
- Add sweet and sour sauce. Stir in one cup of sweet and sour sauce. Add the fried pork pieces and fold gently to coat. Allow the sauce to cook for one minute until it begins to boil, then turn off heat.
- Cool and serve. Allow the dish to cool for a moment before serving!
I love to serve this delicious sweet and sour pork for lunch or dinner with fluffy, steamed white rice, garnished with sliced green onions for extra flavor and color. Try serving with my homemade crab rangoons or cream cheese wontons for a tasty appetizer!
🥡 Storing & Reheating
Who doesn’t love Chinese takeout leftovers? To maximize freshness, refrigerate the sweet and sour pork in airtight containers. It will last for up 3-4 days, so you can enjoy this deliciousness all week!
If you know you’ll have leftovers, try to store extra pork pieces separately from the sauce and veggies so they can stay as crunchy as possible.
You can definitely freeze this sweet and sour pork! If you know you’ll have leftovers, or if you’re doing meal prep, freeze the pork in a separate airtight container from the sauce and veggies. This will keep up to 3 months for the best quality!
The oven is the best option for reheating the pork to keep it crispy and fresh. If you’re able to keep the pork pieces separate, place them on a baking sheet and cook at 350°F (175 °C) for 15 to 20 minutes or until the pork reaches an internal temp of 165°F (73°C).
Follow the same instructions for premixed leftovers, but in an oven-safe dish.
For sauce that’s been kept separately, reheat at medium on your stovetop in a pan with a little bit of water, until it’s bubbling and hot.
Try my delicious sweet and sour chicken recipe! It’s just as amazing. You can also substitute tofu or other meat alternatives if you’d prefer.
Yes! Using rice flour instead of all-purpose flour creates a fabulously crispy bite while keeping your dish gluten-free.
Not at all. I find that pineapple adds a deliciously juicy flavor to the sweet and sour pork, but if you don’t prefer the taste or texture, you can leave it out!
Sweet and Sour Pork
- 1 lbs pork tenderloin (cut into small 1 inch cubes or pieces)
- ½ cup cornstarch
- 2 large eggs (beaten)
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- oil for frying the pork (vegetable oil, canola oil, coconut oil, or peanut oil are good choices for frying)
- 1 large white onion (sliced or cut into 1" chunks, yellow can work as well)
- 1 Tbsp garlic (minced)
- ½ each, red, yellow and green bell peppers (or 1 ½ bell peppers any color diced into chunks)
- 1 cup pineapple chunks (canned, fresh, or frozen)
- 1 cup sweet and sour sauce (or store bought - more or less to taste)
- Slice or cut the onion into chunks, mince or crush garlic, cut bell peppers into strips or chunks, then chunk up pineapple (or use canned chunks of pineapple or frozen). Cut your pork (tenderloin or loin) into 1-inch cubes.1 large white onion, 1 Tbsp garlic, ½ each, red, yellow and green bell peppers, 1 cup pineapple chunks, 1 lbs pork tenderloin
- Place your pork cubes into a plastic Ziploc bag then add the corn starch, seal securely, and shake to coat thoroughly. Remove the pork and set aside.½ cup cornstarch
- In a small bowl whisk up 2 eggs, add the flour to a second small bowl - this will be your dredging station. *Additional spices like ground ginger, salt, pepper, or paprika can also be added to the flour.2 large eggs, ¼ cup all-purpose flour
Cooking the sweet and sour pork
- Add enough oil to cover the bottom of your fry pan by at least ½ inch. Heat oil to medium-high to high heat until it reaches 360°F (182°C) as measured in the center of the pan.oil for frying the pork
- Start by taking the pork that has been coated in cornstarch, dip it into the beaten egg, dredge in the flour (shake off any excess flour), and then carefully put it into the hot oil.1 lbs pork tenderloin
- Cook the pork in batches until completely cooked through for about 3-4 minutes, and then set aside. Remove excess oil from the pan, leaving a small amount to cook the veggies.1 lbs pork tenderloin
- Over medium to medium-high heat add in your garlic and onions and cook for a couple of minutes to soften the onions. Add in your bell peppers and pineapple. Cook until tender, about 3-4 minutes.1 large white onion, 1 Tbsp garlic, ½ each, red, yellow and green bell peppers, 1 cup pineapple chunks
- Stir in the sweet and sour sauce, then return the fried pork pieces and fold them into the sauce gently to coat. Allow the sauce to cook for a minute until it starts to boil. Turn heat off.1 cup sweet and sour sauce
- Allow the sauce to cool slightly, garnish with sliced green onions if desired. Serve and enjoy!
Equipment You May Need
Angela is an at home chef that developed a passion for all things cooking and baking at a young age in her Grandma's kitchen. After many years in the food service industry, she now enjoys sharing all of her family favorite recipes and creating tasty dinner and amazing dessert recipes here at Bake It With Love!