Chef John's Best Ground Pork Recipes
Budget-friendly, versatile, and just plain delicious, ground pork pleases in so many ways. We add it along with ground beef to meatloaf, meatballs, and sometimes burgers. And when we want to branch out, we turn to Chef John, who puts ground pork in pot stickers and stir fries, crepinettes and meat pies, sausage rolls, and more. We've gathered together a quick collection of our very favorite Chef John's ground pork recipes. And as always, be sure to check out Chef John's recipe videos for always smart, always entertaining cooking tips and advice.
Spicy Pork and Vegetable Tofu
"If you can't decide what to make for dinner, try this spicy pork and vegetable tofu dish," says Chef John. "Fast, easy, and tasty, it checks all the boxes for a satisfying meal and acts as a catch-all for any seasonal produce. All the individual ingredients taste distinct while blending seamlessly into one harmonious flavor bomb. Zucchini is our favorite veggie to showcase, especially if you take the extra 15 minutes to salt it, but pretty much any vegetables will shine."
Lazy Pork Dumplings
"I've come up with a much quicker, more casual assembly method for making the dumplings that works whether you boil, steam, or fry them," says Chef John. "Served in a vinegary broth, however, they mimic the experience of soup dumplings, which are typically served with vinegar to balance that gush of rich, meaty juices you get when you bite in."
Chef John's Italian Meatballs
Here's a classic that combines equal parts ground pork and ground beef. "Homemade meatballs are a very easy to make," says Chef John. "And since we skip the very messy step of pan-frying these before they hit the sauce, it becomes downright simple. You can substitute water or beef broth for the milk, if preferred. The other trick here is to soak the bread crumbs in milk for a moister, more tender meatball. This is one of those dishes that just get better -- more tender and flavorful-- the next day."
Crepinettes (Pork Sausage Patties) with Apricots and Pistachios
"Crepinettes are probably my favorite type of sausage, both to make and eat, and that's all thanks to caul fat--one of the culinary world's most interesting and useful ingredients," says Chef John. "Unfortunately, it's also one of the most bizarre looking ingredients, and that does scare some people off. But these sausage patties are so moist and flavorful, I do hope you give them a try."
Chef John's Sausage Rolls
"People often bake the sausage roll whole, then cut it up," says Chef John. "But I've found that if you cut them into individual rounds first, the crispier results more than make up for the extra work. I like to eat mine dipped in a bit of mustard."
Chef John's Swedish Meatballs
To make these sensational Swedish meatballs, you'll season ground pork and ground beef with nutmeg and allspice, and bake in the oven before gently simmering them in Chef John's Swedish meatball sauce. "Swedish meatballs, traditionally served with boiled potatoes and lingonberry preserves, are a hearty meal the whole family will love!" says Chef John.
Chef John's Pork Wonton Soup
To make his pork wonton soup, Chef John simmers flavorful pork wontons in a simple broth with shiitake mushrooms, bok choy, and green onions. Almost any thinly sliced vegetable will work deliciously here, which means this comforting soup also offers a terrific way to clean out the veggie drawer! "You can add ginger, onion, soy, hot pepper, cilantro, lime, lemon grass, etc., to suit your taste and customize the broth," says Chef John.
Tourtiere (French Canadian Meat Pie)
It's pork pie, Canadian style. "This French Canadian meat pie is hearty, satisfying, and easy to make so it's a great choice for a holiday main course. Visually impressive, relatively affordable, and best served at room temperature, so a tourtiere doesn't require any kind of precise timing."
Perfect Pot Stickers
These delicious pot stickers are filled with ground pork seasoned with minced garlic, green cabbage, green onions, ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, and cayenne. "Homemade pot stickers are so versatile--you can fill them with anything you want and as full as you want," says Chef John. "And the play between the crispy, crusty bottom, and the tender parts, makes for a truly unique dumpling. These are filled with ground pork, green onions, ginger, and cabbage."
Creamy Mushroom Meatloaf
This meatloaf is a triple threat, featuring ground pork, veal, and beef. Chef John bakes his meatloaf smothered in mushroom gravy! "This technique keeps the meatloaf moist, while fortifying the sauce with its flavorful drippings," says Chef John. "This technique will work with just about any meatloaf recipe out there."
Hot Dog Sausages
Chef John combines ground beef and pork with seasonings to create homemade dogs! "I wondered what would happen if I did a skewer-less kebab using the same ingredients that would typically go into a hotdog," says Chef John. "This meaty mash-up came about thanks to some lamb kebab experiments. The firm texture of the kebab reminded me of a hot dog's 'snap.' The taste is actually closer to a bratwurst."
Lion's Head Meatballs
Here's Chef John's tender, melt-in-your-mouth version of Lion's Head meatballs, the Chinese dish that's simmered with vegetables in a savory broth. "People throw out the term 'melt-in-your-mouth' pretty casually, but these meatballs really are," says Chef John. "Some people think the name comes from their large size, while others believe eating these gives you the strength of a lion, but the actual answer is not quite as mythical. The look of this crinkled-up napa cabbage reminded the inventors of this dish of a lion's mane."