Vietnamese Pork Chops Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Vietnamese Pork Chops

Total Time
Prep: 20 min. + chilling Cook: 10 min.
Fire up your grill (or turn on the broiler) to prepare super juicy Vietnamese pork chops. This recipe combines all the goodness of sweet and smoky flavors in each bite.

Updated: Mar. 22, 2024

Vietnamese cuisine is known for its incredible variety of pork dishes. Whether it’s in a broth, stuffed into a steamed bun or glazed in a sauce, pork appears in many delicious forms in Vietnamese recipes.

In Vietnam, people eat grilled pork for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’s hard to pick our favorite recipe, but these Vietnamese pork chops (thịt heo nướng sà) are high on the list. The pork chops burst with bright lemongrass notes, and a sweet-tangy fish sauce (nước chấm) completes the dish. The sweet, sour and garlicky sauce is a must!

Ingredients for Vietnamese Pork Chops

  • Lemongrass stalks
  • Shallots
  • Soy sauce
  • Fish sauce
  • Brown sugar
  • Canola oil
  • Garlic cloves
  • Thin-cut boneless pork loin chops

Dipping sauce:

  • Hot water
  • Sugar
  • Lime juice
  • Fish sauce or soy sauce
  • Garlic cloves
  • Red chili pepper, optional

Directions

Step 1: Prepare the marinade

In a shallow dish, combine the first seven ingredients. You can do this by hand or use a food processor to make a smooth mixture. Transfer the marinade to an airtight container, then add the pork chops and turn to coat. Refrigerate at least 4 hours, but overnight is even better!

Editor’s Tip: Tenderize your pork chops by beating them lightly with a meat mallet for no more than 10 seconds on each side.

Step 2: Make a dipping sauce

In a small, heat-safe bowl, whisk together the dipping sauce ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. (This Vietnamese fish sauce will last for up to a week.)

Editor’s Tip: Add 1 teaspoon MSG to the marinade. Despite what some people think, MSG is not harmful to your health.

Step 3: Cook the pork

Remove the pork chops from the refrigerator about 25 minutes before you start cooking. Drain the pork, discarding marinade. Grill pork, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 inches from heat until a thermometer reads 145°F, about 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Let the pork chops rest for 5 minutes before serving to help maintain their juiciness.

Vietnamese Pork Chops Tips

Tips For Making Vietnamese Pork Chops Ft23 273767 St 5 11 2TMB STUDIO

How long should you marinate the pork chops?

Set aside at least 4 hours but preferably an entire night to marinate the pork chops.

If using frozen pork chops, let them thaw to room temperature before starting.

Can you pan-fry Vietnamese pork chops?

We suggest throwing the chops on the grill for best results. But they’re also delicious pan-fried with a neutral oil. For a bit of fusion, try cooking your pork chops with unsalted butter.

What do you serve with Vietnamese pork chops?

Pair the pork chops with steamed jasmine rice, a fried egg, sliced juicy tomatoes, sliced cucumbers and crisp lettuce leaves. Dip in as much tangy fish sauce as you desire!

These pork chops are also delicious in a fresh baguette with pickled vegetables (think Bánh mì) or atop some rice noodles. If you’re short on time or ingredients, the pork chops are tasty entirely on their own.

Vietnamese Pork Chops

Prep Time 20 min
Cook Time 10 min
Yield 6 servings.

Ingredients

  • 2 lemongrass stalks, chopped
  • 2 shallot, chopped
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce or additional soy sauce
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-1/2 pounds thin-cut boneless pork loin chops
  • DIPPING SAUCE:
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce
  • 1 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili pepper (like bird's eye chili), optional

Directions

  1. In a shallow dish, combine the first 7 ingredients. Add pork; turn to coat. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk dipping sauce ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Cover and refrigerate until serving.
  3. Drain pork, discarding marinade. Grill pork, covered, over medium heat or broil 4 in. from heat until a thermometer reads 145°, 5-6 minutes on each side. Let stand 5 minutes before serving. Serve with dipping sauce.

Nutrition Facts

1 pork chop: 227 calories, 9g fat (3g saturated fat), 55mg cholesterol, 1368mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate (10g sugars, 0 fiber), 24g protein.