Pork Schnitzel

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Tender pounded pork cutlets are breaded and pan-fried in this perennially popular dish.

Pork Schnitzel on a white plate.

The pork schnitzel recipe includes a crispy, tangy cucumber salad. This quick and easy side dish is the perfect mate to the savoriness of the breaded pork cutlets. The red onions in the salad also provide a sharp counterpart to the savory dish. Add a Deviled Egg Potato Salad or Mayo-Free Potato Salad, and you have a complete dinner. Or try Rice Pilaf, Funeral Potatoes, or Garlic Mashed Sweet Potatoes.

Schnitzels are often made with veal or chicken, but pork is a popular alternative. Pounding out the cutlets makes them thinner, so they cook up very quickly, but it also makes them more tender. And that irresistible crunchiness from the Panko breadcrumb coating — this is one of those dishes that will go over without a hitch (that’s what she said) with both kids and adults. It’s perfect for a weeknight meal.

Cucumber salad, potato, and Pork Schnitzel on a plate.

Pork Schnitzel: Tender pounded pork cutlets are breaded and pan fried in this perennially popular dish.

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What Is Schnitzel?

Schnitzel is a meat cutlet of some sort that has been pounded thin, then dipped in flour, a milk and/or egg mixture, and finally coated with breadcrumbs and pan-fried. You can use beef, veal, chicken, pork, or other meats to make schnitzel. The key is to make sure the meat is very thin so that by the time the crust browns and crisps up the meat is cooked through.

Schnitzel is very popular in Austria, Germany, and other parts of central and Eastern Europe. In Germany, schnitzel is often made with pork and is sometimes referred to as German Schnitzel. Schnitzel may be called schweineswchnitzel or Jagerschnitzel. Weinerschnitzel is the term for veal schnitzel, and it is actually a protected term in Austria and Germany.

Four Pork Schnitzels frying in pan.

Which Breadcrumbs Are Best for Schnitzel?

I like to use Panko breadcrumbs to make schnitzel because they’re light and fluffy, and make a light and crunchy crust. You can also use plain dried breadcrumbs (skip the Italian seasoned breadcrumbs for this recipe). Crushed cornflakes are another less traditional option.

German Pork Schnitzel Ingredients

  • Boneless pork chops
  • All-purpose flour – For the first dredging.
  • Eggs and milk – For the second dipping; this dip allows the breadcrumbs to stick to the meat better.
  • Panko breadcrumbs – The final crispy layer.
  • Thyme – Adds an herbal note to the crust.
  • Olive oil – For sautéeing.
  • Lemon wedges – For serving. A little squeeze of lemon brings the whole dish together.

How to Make Pork Schnitzel

  1. Make the cucumber salad: In a serving bowl, stir together the vinegar, sugar, dill, salt, and pepper. Add the cucumber and onion and toss to combine. Refrigerate.
Woman tossing cucumber salad with dressing in white bowl.
  1. Pound the pork chops: Place each pork chop between two pieces of plastic wrap and gently pound them with a meat mallet or rolling pin (or a bottle of wine) until they are an even 1/4- to 1/3-inch thickness.
  2. Prepare the breading ingredients: Place the flour in a shallow bowl, combine the eggs and milk in another shallow bowl, and place the Panko breadcrumbs in a third shallow bowl. Season the flour and the egg-milk mixture lightly with salt and pepper. Stir the thyme into the Panko.
  3. Bread the pork chops: Season the pork lightly with salt and pepper. Then dip each piece into the flour, shaking off any excess, then the egg-milk mixture, then the Panko, pressing so that the bread crumbs adhere to the pork. Place the breaded pork on a plate or wire rack.
  4. Pan-fry the pork chops: Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet until hot. Working in batches if needed, cook the pork for about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown and just cooked through. Once cooked, place the chops on a paper towel-lined plate to drain.
Frying breaded pork schnitzel and draining on paper towels.
  1. Plate and serve: Serve the pork with lemon wedges and the Cucumber Salad, if desired.
Pork Schnitzel on white plate with cucumber salad and potato salad.

What to Serve With Schnitzel

Salad and Pork Schnitzel with Sautéed Mushrooms on a plate.

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5 from 1 vote

Pork Schnitzel with Cucumber Salad

Tender pounded pork cutlets are breaded and pan-fried in this perennially popular dish.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 People
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Ingredients 

For the Cucumber Salad (Optional):

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill (or 1 teaspoon dried dill)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • 1 seedless cucumber (peeled, if desired)
  • ½ red onion (very thinly sliced)

For the Pork Schnitzel:

  • 4 1/2-inch (6-ounce) thick boneless pork chops
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper (to taste)
  • cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs (beaten)
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced fresh thyme
  • 2 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Lemon wedges (to serve)

Instructions 

  • In a serving bowl, stir together the vinegar, sugar, dill, salt, and pepper. Add the cucumber and onion and toss to combine. Hold in the fridge.
  • Place each pork chop in between two pieces of plastic wrap and use a meat mallet, rolling pin (or a bottle of wine) to gently pound the pork chops until they are of an even thickness between 1/4 and 1/3-inch thick.
  • Place the flour in a shallow bowl, combine the eggs and milk in another shallow bowl, and place the Panko breadcrumbs in a third shallow bowl. Season the flour and the egg-milk mixture lightly with salt and pepper. Stir the thyme into the Panko.
  • Season the pork lightly with salt and pepper. Then dip each piece into the flour, shaking off any excess, then the egg-milk mixture, then the Panko, pressing so that the bread crumbs adhere to the pork. Place the breaded pork on a plate or wire rack.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet until hot. Cook the pork for about 3 minutes on each side until golden brown and just cooked through; you may need to do this in at least two batches, adding more oil for the second batch as needed.
  • As the pieces of pork are cooked, place them briefly on a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Serve the pork with lemon wedges and the Cucumber Salad, if desired.

Notes

I like to use Panko breadcrumbs to make schnitzel.  Panko breadcrumbs are light and fluffy and make a light and crunchy crust. You can also use plain dried breadcrumbs (skip the Italian seasoned breadcrumbs for this recipe). Crushed cornflakes are another less traditional option.

Nutrition

Calories: 517kcal, Carbohydrates: 32g, Protein: 45g, Fat: 22g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 11g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 197mg, Sodium: 1391mg, Potassium: 867mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 4g, Vitamin A: 272IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 84mg, Iron: 3mg
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About Katie Workman

Katie Workman is a cook, a writer, a mother of two, an activist in hunger issues, and an enthusiastic advocate for family meals, which is the inspiration behind her two beloved cookbooks, Dinner Solved! and The Mom 100 Cookbook.

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