These pork stir fry rice bowls are easy to customize. I can grab whatever veggies I have in my fridge and make them work. Plus everything is ready in less than 30 minutes, so they are perfect for those nights when I don’t have a lot of time to cook.
Ground pork cooks fast, and unlike using strips of pork that can wind up tough if you overcook them, it’s incredibly tender and juicy. It’s also a little healthier for you than ground beef, and it’s naturally gluten-free as long as you buy gluten-free soy sauce.
The recipe below can feed 6 hungry people. You can use the slider to reduce the amount of servings or make the whole recipe and use the leftovers for meal prepping lunches for the week.
Olive Oil and Butter – I like to use both for stir frying veggies. The butter adds flavor and the olive oil is great for high-heat stir frys.
Minced Garlic and Minced Ginger – For flavor.
2 pounds Ground Pork – Regular ground pork is found in the pork section of the meat department next to the pork chops and roasts. It’s different from breakfast sausage, which usually has spices added. Ground pork is just ground up pork.
Vegetables – Shredded cabbage (I like to use both green and napa cabbage), shredded carrot, onion, canned baby corn (found in the Asian food section), and water chestnuts. You can also use mushrooms, bok choy, broccoli, bell pepper, and so on.
Sauce – Honey and low sodium soy sauce.
Optional Garnishes – sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds.
Optional for Serving – Steamed rice.
How To Make It
Saute the onions in olive oil in a large skillet until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and minced ginger and cook for about a minute. Any longer and the garlic could burn.
Add the ground pork and cook until no longer pink. As it cooks, you’ll want to stir to keep it cooking evenly and break it up with a spatula. Drain any excess grease (there shouldn’t be much).
Add soy sauce and honey to the skillet, and simmer with the pork for several minutes.
In a second skillet or wok over medium-high heat, cook the vegetables with more ginger and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and cook until the cabbage is tender-crisp. Stir in some soy sauce and honey and simmer for a few minutes.
Toss the veggies and pork together and serve over rice or keep them separate and let each person create their own rice bowls. You can also serve just the meat and veggies on their own. Drizzle any extra sauce over the top and garnish with sliced green onions and sesame seeds.
Frequently Asked Questions
What cut of pork is best for stir fry?
You can use fattier cuts, like pork shoulder, pork loin, or pork tenderloin. As long as you slice it very, very thin, you can get it pretty tender. I prefer using ground pork because there is no cutting board needed!
How do you make pork more flavorful?
Ground pork has a great flavor, but can be enhanced with things like soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. A little bit of honey adds sweetness to balance the salty umami flavor.
I serve this stir fry over steamed white rice. You could also use brown rice, rice noodles, Chow Mein, or another favorite kind of rice. Quinoa would work as well.
For garnish, sliced green onions and sesame seeds make it look a little prettier. Sometimes if I have them on hand, I’ll add some crispy wonton strips for a little crunch.
Spicy: Add half a teaspoon of red pepper flakes with the garlic and ginger, or a few dashes of sriracha.
Deluxe: Make it fancy by using the garnishes, sliced green onions, or sesame seeds. For an extra touch, toast the sesame seeds in a skillet over medium heat for a few minutes.
Kid friendly: Use your kids’ favorite vegetables in place of what’s in the recipe.
Thicker sauce: If you want a thick sauce that coats the dish, you’ll want to transfer the meat to a plate, then add the soy sauce and honey with about a half cup of chicken broth and simmer that together until it’s reduced and thickened. You can also add some rice vinegar or chili sauce.
Storage and Reheating
Storing: Transfer cooled stir fry into an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. I prefer to store the rice separately, but you could store them together if you want.
Freezing: Transfer cooled stir fry to a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw before reheating.
Reheating: Place stir fry in a microwave-safe bowl and reheat in the microwave in 30 second intervals until warmed through. If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge.
This recipe comes together quickly, so prep all the ingredients in advance.
Just cook the pork until it’s no longer pink. Overcooking will dry it out.
I cook the vegetables and pork in separate skillets because it’s easier that way. If you halve the recipe you could add the veggies to the meat and cook everything together.
Keep in mind when choosing vegetables that some take longer to cook. Carrots in larger pieces (instead of shreds) will take longer. You may want to pre-cook by steaming in the microwave or par-boiling them.
You want to veggies to be tender-crisp, where there are soft enough to chew but still have a bit of crunch.
Optional garnish: sliced green onions and sesame seeds
4cupssteamed ricewhite or brown
Heat 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat with a tablespoon of oil. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally until beginning to turn translucent; 4-5 minutes.
Add 1 tablespoon minced garlic and ½ tablespoon minced ginger and cook for 30 seconds, then add ground pork. Cook, stirring occasionally, until no longer pink. Drain grease.
Add ¼ cup soy sauce and 1 tablespoon honey. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Meanwhile, heat another 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat with a tablespoon of butter. Add cabbage, carrots, baby corn, water chestnuts, 1 tablespoon minced garlic and ½ tablespoon minced ginger. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until cabbage is tender.
Stir ¼ cup soy sauce and 1 tablespoon honey into the veggies and simmer for several minutes. Add veggies to the pork and toss together. Serve over rice, or on it’s own.
If you have extra sauce in the pan, drizzle sauce over the top and garnish with sesame seeds and thinly sliced green onions.
Nutrition information does not include optional rice.Storing: Transfer cooled stir fry into an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. I prefer to store the rice separately, but you could store them together if you want.Freezing: Transfer cooled stir fry to a freezer safe container and freeze for up to 6 months. Thaw before reheating.Reheating: Place stir fry in a microwave safe bowl and reheat in the microwave in 30 second intervals until warmed through. If frozen, thaw overnight in the fridge.
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Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.