This Pork Stir Fry recipe has a perfect, easy to make, stir fry sauce that smothers the most tender pork while giving you a great serving of vegetables. This 30 minute meal will become a family favorite!
If you are like so many of my readers, you spend a lot of time thinking about where your food comes from and how to make the best choices for your family. This is why I was so grateful to have the opportunity to travel to Iowa last month with the great folks at the National Soy Board. We spent time on a farm, spoke to farmers, and worked with a nutritionist who also grew up as a soy and pig farmer.
In a sea of misinformation, it can be hard to know who to trust when it comes to food safety. This is perhaps what I love most about working with farmers. They, like me, run businesses that need to last and sustain their families. They are thinking about how these businesses can stretch into the future for future generations. Because of that, sustainability is at the forefront of their minds. This means not only protecting and being good stewards of the land they farm on, but also growing crops that they trust. As one of the farmers that I met in Iowa said,
“If I wouldn’t feed it to my own family, I certainly wouldn’t feed it to yours.”
Nutritional Benefits of Soy
Our family consumes a lot of soy, and I feel great about it. We have one child who is sensitive to dairy and drinks soy milk daily. Another child recently decided to switch to a vegetarian diet, and soy has been a life saver. Beyond that, we are often adding other soy products, like soy sauce, to meals our whole family enjoys.
We had the amazing good fortune to learn from Charlotte Rommereim, who is both a registered dietitian and a life long soy and pork farmer. Her down-to-earth style when it comes to food was a breath of fresh air. Here are some of the things she taught us. There is scientific evidence to back up these claims.
- Soybean oil may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
- Consuming soy as a child may reduce the risk of breast cancer later in life.
- Soy consumption may alleviate hot flash frequency in menopausal women.
- There is some evidence to suggest that soy may reduce the occurrence of prostate cancer in men.
This brochure is a great overall resource for the nutrition and health research of soy.
Many people have read or heard that soy can increase estrogen in people. This has been thoroughly debunked and, in fact, the study that claimed this has been retracted.
Sustainability in Farming
In addition to learning about the nutritional benefits of soy, we learned a lot about sustainability in farming. This was my favorite quote from the trip. A farmer said:
“Sustainability is a great word, but for us it’s just a way of life. It’s just what we do.”
Farmers tackle sustainability, not just because it is the right thing to do, but because it will preserve their farm land for generations to come. Doing things like not tilling the soil, adding cover crops which both prevent erosion and put more microorganisms in the soil, and using a farm’s own resources.
For example, many soybean farmers are also pork farmers. They create a natural cycle on their farms in which the pigs provide manure for the soil. The fertilized soil grows soybeans and those soybeans then feed the pigs.
It was for this reason that I thought it would be great to incorporate both pork and soy in a dish for you. You are going to love this amazing pork stir fry recipe.
How to Make Pork Stir Fry
My whole family loves this recipe so much. Using pork tenderloin is a great way to add some protein to your diet; it is comparable to chicken breasts in protein and fat content. It also contains a number of vitamins and minerals that are part of a healthy diet.
The pork in this is incredibly tender and it pairs perfectly with our great soy based stir fry sauced. This is a brief overview of the recipe. For the full measurements and instructions see the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
- Cook the pork. Start by cooking the thinly sliced pork tenderloin in a little soybean oil. Read more on cooking pork below.
- Add the vegetables. The veggies will take about 5 to 7 minutes to cook. I like to cover them so they are steamed, uncovering once or twice to stir them.
- Make the sauce. While the vegetables are cooking, whisk together the stir fry sauce.
- Add the stir fry sauce to the skillet. Allow to cook and thicken for a minute or two, stirring it in to combine. You will know it is finished when it both thickens and darkens in color.
- Serve this great pork stir fry over rice and enjoy!
Unlike in years past, the USDA has changed the recommended cooking temperature for pork. Pork is done when it hits 145 degrees. This is great news because it means much more tender and moist meat.
In this recipe, we are just lightly cooking the pork – about 4 to 5 minutes – before moving on to the next step. There is no need to cook it all the way through in step 1 because there will be another 10 minutes or so of cooking. During this time, the pork reaches the necessary temperature.
Doing it this way we minimize the risk of overcooking and drying out the pork. One of my favorite parts of this dish is how absolutely tender the pork is.
Pork Stir Fry Sauce
I picked this recipe to showcase the great way that soy and pork work together, and that shines through with this amazing stir fry sauce.
- Water: The water in this sauce adds bulk to this sauce without adding unnecessary flavors.
- Teriyaki Sauce: Another great soy product, this adds some amazing flavor and subtle sweetness to the recipe.
- Soy Sauce: The star of the show! The soy sauce adds the perfect flavor. We are going with low sodium soy sauce so that we get the great soy flavor without too much saltiness.
- Hoisin Sauce: Another soy product, the main ingredient in this very unique condiment is fermented soybean paste. Hoisin brings a nice tang to this sauce.
- Garlic and Ginger: These are both minced and fresh in this recipe and add the best layers of flavor in this sauce.
- Brown Sugar: Just a little bit of brown sugar helps to balance the acidity and salt of the other ingredients.
- Chili Paste: Made from hot chilis, this gives the sauce a little zip. For a spicier sauce, add a full tablespoon. For a less spicy recipe, add only one teaspoon.
- Corn Starch: This is what finishes the sauce off and helps it thicken.
Pork tenderloin is the best cut for a pork stir fry recipe. This cut is incredibly tender, easy to work with and nutritious.
It depends on the cut. Some cuts will get more tender with slow and low cooking. Other cuts will get tough the longer it is cooked. With pork tenderloin, that we are using here, a short cooking time is what we are going for.
It does not. Marinating meat is done to help tenderize it. Since we are using a cut that is already very tender, marinating is not necessary.
Using lean meat and lots of vegetables, this is a great dinner for a healthy lifestyle that you can feel good about feeding your family.
The pork cooks first for just 4 to 5 minutes and finishes cooking while the vegetables and then the sauce cook. The total cooking time for pork stir fry is 12 minutes.
Other Great Soy Recipes
- Eye Round Roast
- Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry
- Slow Cooker Pork Tenderloin
- Edamame Salad
- Ham Stir Fried Rice
If you love this pork stir fry as much as I do, please be sure to leave me a comment below the recipe card and let me know. I love hearing from you!
Pork Stir Fry
- 2 tablespoons soybean oil (most commercial vegetable oil is soybean oil)
- 1 1/2 pounds pork tenderloin cut into thin bite sized pieces
- 1 medium red bell pepper diced
- 1 medium yellow bell pepper diced
- 2 medium carrots peeled and cut into 1/4 inch slices
- 1 head of broccoli cut into florets
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce
- 1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons hoison sauce
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons ginger
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons chili paste
- 3 tablespoons corn starch
- Heat the oil in a large 12 inch skillet. Add the sliced pork and cook until it is no longer visibly pink, about 4 to 5 minutes. You don't need to make sure it is cooked through.
- Add the vegetables to the skillet. Stir to combine. Cover and cook until they are tender, another 5 to 7 minutes, stirring once or twice.
- While the pork and vegetables are cooking, mix together the ingredients for the sauce. When the vegetables are tender, pour off any excess liquid. Add the sauce and allow to thicken, about 1 to 2 minutes. You will know it is finished with the sauce thickens and darkens in color.
- Serve over rice.