Tonkatsu (とんかつ, "pork cutlet") are thick slices of pork that are breaded and deep fried in a manner similar to German schnitzel. They are typically made from two cuts of pork: the lean and tender hire (ヒレ, tenderloin or filet) and the fattier rosu (ロース, loin). While tonkatsu is by far the most popular katsu dish, there are other variations made of chicken (chikinkatsu), beef (gyukatsu), ham (hamukatsu) and ground meat (menchikatsu).

Tonkatsu pieces are typically sliced and served in one of the following dishes:

  • Tonkatsu
  • Katsudon (katsu ricebowl)
  • Katsu Kare (katsu curry)
  • Katsu Sando (katsu sandwich)

Where to find tonkatsu

Tonkatsu is a common dish that can be found at a variety of restaurants across the country, such as shokudo, teishoku-ya and specialized tonkatsu-ya. Tonkatsu-ya typically serve a variety of tonkatsu dishes as well as other deep fried foods and seafood. Regular tonkatsu dishes cost typically around 800 to 1500 yen.

Convenience stores, the basement food floor at department stores, food kiosks at train stations and supermarkets often carry pre-packed tonkatsu dishes like katsudon, tonkatsu bento boxes and katsu sando. Prices start from around 300 to 800 yen depending on the item.