Pork Stir Fry with Green Onion

Quick and EasyChineseLow CarbPaleo

Lean pork sliced into shreds and stir-fried Chinese style with green onions and garlic.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

Don’t you love a good stir-fry?

The following stir-fried pork recipe couldn’t be easier. All you need is lean pork, some green onions, and garlic. You marinate thin strips of pork first in a mixture of soy sauce, a little sugar, and cornstarch.

The cornstarch marinade is a useful trick to help keep the pork from drying out when it gets cooked on that high heat. The sugar is just enough to create some caramelization for added flavor.

It helps but isn’t necessary to have a well seasoned wok. Years ago I had this big wok with wooden handles, well seasoned, in spite of a housemate’s attempt one day to scour off all of the pan’s beautiful black seasoning I had worked so hard to create.

I don’t know what eventually became of that wok; these days I’m using a non-stick enamel cast iron wok. It does a great job with high heat, it’s stick-free and I don’t have to worry about it rusting.

Pork Stir Fry with Green Onions

The good thing about stir-fries is that you don’t need a lot of fancy ingredients to have a perfectly presentable dish. All you need is a pan and a cooking oil that can take high heat. Woks work well for this, as do large pans of cast iron or hard anodized aluminum.

Consider this recipe a base for experimentation, though it is satisfying enough, unadorned. You could easily add some chile to the hot oil, or ginger, red bell pepper, mushrooms, or water chestnuts to the pork. Sprinkle on some fresh cilantro or toasted sesame seeds for a garnish too if you would like.

The base recipe is adapted from one in The Cultural Revolution Cookbook by Sasha Gong and Scott Seligman.

Recipe and photos updated; first published 2013

Pork Stir Fry with Green Onion Recipe

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

You can substitute the green onions with Chinese chives (much thicker than regular chives), if available.

If you want to spice this up a bit, add some chile pepper flakes to the hot oil with the garlic, and/or add some minced fresh ginger with the pork.


  • 1 pound pork loin or boneless pork chops
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce (use gluten-free soy sauce if cooking gluten-free)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 4 Tbsp peanut oil or canola oil
  • 5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 8-12 scallions/green onions, sliced diagonally into 1 to 2-inch pieces, green and white parts included
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil (optional)


1 Pound thin the pork chops, then cut into strips: Pork chops tend to come in thicknesses either around 1/2 inch thick or an inch thick. If you are working with a thick boneless pork chop, start by slicing it into two thin layers, horizontally.  If starting with pork loin, cut slices 1/2 inch thick.

Put the slices under some plastic wrap or wax paper and pound them thin with a rubber mallet, meat mallet or even an empty wine bottle. This will help tenderize the meat. The slices should be about 1/4 inch thick.

Cut the pork across the grain into thin strips, about 1 1/2 inches long.

2 Marinate 10 min in soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch: Put the soy sauce, sugar, and cornstarch into a large bowl and whisk to combine.  Add the pork strips to the bowl with the marinade and toss to coat completely. Set aside for at least 10 minutes.

3 Stir fry pork strips on high heat: Heat the peanut oil in a wok or large sauté pan on high heat. When the oil is hot (shimmering but not smoking) add the garlic slices and stir-fry until they begin to turn brown at the edges, about 30 seconds.

Add the pork strips and stir-fry until the pork changes color, about 90 seconds, stirring constantly.

4 Add in green onions, sesame oil: Add the sliced green onions and continue to stir-fry for another minute, or until the green onions wilt. Turn off the heat and stir in the sesame oil, if using.

Serve immediately. Serve alone (paleo and low carb), or with rice.

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Pork and Kimchi Stir-Fry, from Appetite for China

Pork Stir Fry with Asparagus and Sugar Peas, from The Kitchn

Stir-Fried Beef with Ginger and Green Onions, from Noob Cook

Pork Stir Fry with Green Onion

Elise Bauer

Elise Bauer is the founder of Simply Recipes. Elise launched Simply Recipes in 2003 as a way to keep track of her family's recipes, and along the way grew it into one of the most popular cooking websites in the world. Elise is dedicated to helping home cooks be successful in the kitchen. Elise is a graduate of Stanford University, and lives in Sacramento, California.

More from Elise

26 Comments / Reviews

No ImagePork Stir Fry with Green Onion

Did you make it? Rate it!

  1. Polly

    Outstanding. Didn’t change a thing.


  2. Natalia

    90 seconds for pork? I mean, I’m cooking it as we speak, but please don’t get people poisoned with undercooked pork.

    Show Replies (1)
  3. Dawn

    I made this last night with pork tenderloin. It was fast and delicious. I did make a few changes. I used garlic oil instead of garlic (low FODMAP diet) and I added red and green bell peppers and stir fried them before adding the pork, to boost the veggie nutrition. I also put a teaspoon of Chinese 5 Spice powder into the marinade. I also used the optional minced ginger and some crushed red pepper flakes, as suggested at the top of the recipe. It was fabulous with Jasmine rice. My husband is begging me to make it again soon, thanks so much Elise!


  4. Laura

    I don’t see where to add the garlic L

    Show Replies (1)
  5. Kelly Kolb

    Had all of the ingredients and just made it for lunch. So flavorful and delicious.


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