Pork Bistek

Pork Bistek

We all have our favorite comfort foods that instantly transport us to our childhood. For me it’s definitely my Mom’s Chicken. But for my husband it would have to be this Filipino style Pork Bistek. And I would never hear the end of it if I served it without Garlic Fried Rice, the two go together so well it’s unthinkable to serve one without the other. Pork Bistek is super saucy, and the rice is the perfect vehicle to soak it all up. Luckily both recipes are ready in under an hour; this is weeknight cooking at its best!

ingredients pork bistek

First Make the Pork Bistek

This dish gets its deep flavor from a marinade that does double duty as the sauce. If I can get them, I like to use fresh calamansi, the tiny citrus with the sweet-tart juice enjoyed in the Philippines. They aren’t easy to find unless you have a market that stocks a lot of Filipino items. Bottled calamansi juice is easier to find. And if you have any yuzu juice left over from my Pineapple Yuzu Cocktails you can sub an equal amount of that or you can use lemons, vinegar, or a combination thereof.

Here in Miami, we have a lot of Cuban food and one of the most common flavors is Mojo, a tart marinade that’s made with sour oranges and a ton of chopped garlic. This recipe shares a lot of similarities to Cuban pork dishes, just like Filipino food in general has a lot of Spanish influence; it’s West meets East flavor unique to itself.

citrus bistek

pepper bistek

marinate pork bistek

You can marinate the pork chops for about half hour on the counter, or longer in the fridge. Avoid marinating for longer than a couple hours as the texture of the pork will start to change. When you’re ready to cook, remove the pork and dry it on paper towels, reserving the marinade.

brown pork bistek

add onions

Now it’s time to make the Garlic Fried Rice. While it’s cooking just leave the pork covered off the heat; the onions will continue to get deliciously jammy and the pork will cook through.

Time to Make Pork Bistek’s Costar

If you’ve made any of my fried rice recipes before, like maybe Kimchi Rice or Thai Chicken Fried Rice, then you know that the best fried rice always starts with leftover cold rice. That makes it the perfect side for our Pork Bistek as it’s ready in minutes. Always start by using clean wet hands to de-clump the rice. You want the grains to be as separate as possible, which is why cold rice works best. It holds its shape better in the pan because it’s drier and stiffer than fresh steamed rice. Plus cold rice doesn’t absorb as much oil so you’ll end up with a much less greasy finished product.

rice sear

The cold rice will want to stick to the pan but keep scraping and mixing it back in. As it warms up, it will stick less. And it’s important to let the rice really sear against the side of the pan. This will give your rice that restaurant flavor that’s a little hard to define, but you’ll know it as soon as you taste it.

Once the rice is done, dinner is ready. I like to serve this family style, with the Pork Bistek on one platter and the rice in another.

This meal is such a kid (and spouse) pleaser that I know it’s going to end up in your regular rotation too. Try it tonight and let me know what you think. Leave a comment and don’t forget to tag us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen, we love hearing from you!

Want to explore more Filipino flavors? Check out our popular Chicken Adobo, Pancit, and Halo Halo.


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recipe card pork bistek

Pork Bistek

  • Author: Funky Asian Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: serves 2-3 1x
  • Category: entrees
  • Cuisine: filipino



For the Pork:

  • 1 pound boneless pork chops, about ½  inch thick
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, peeled and sliced into ½ “ rings
  • 3 tablespoons neutral oil
  • salt to taste


  • ⅓ cup calamansi or fresh lemon juice, white vinegar, or a combination
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 6 large cloves garlic, smashed
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

Garlic Fried Rice:

  • 3 cups cold leftover rice
  • 3 Tablespoons neutral oil
  • 6 cloves large garlic minced
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper to taste


Make the Pork Bistek:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the calamansi juice, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, and ground black pepper. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. 
  2. Cut the pork chops in half and then add the pork to the marinade, making sure that the chops are evenly basted with the marinade. Marinate for about 30 minutes. 
  3. Place the chops on a couple sheets of paper towels to dry. Reserve the marinade. Set aside.
  4. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat for several minutes then add 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add pork chops and cook for about 1-2 minutes per side or until lightly browned (the meat will still be raw in the middle which is fine). Transfer the chops to a plate.
  5. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pan and add the onions. Stir fry for approximately 2-3 minutes over medium heat, then add the reserved marinade.
  6. Simmer the onions for 3-4 minutes until the onions have cooked and the sauce slightly reduced.
  7. Return the chops to the pan and cover with a lid. Cook for another couple of minutes. Turn the heat off and leave the pan covered while you make the garlic fried rice.

Make the Garlic Fried Rice:

  1. Separate the rice with wet hands, crumbling it gently, so that you don’t have any large clumps.
  2. Heat a wok, wok pan, or large heavy skillet over high heat for several minutes until very hot and smoking. 
  3. Add the oil and the garlic. Swirl the garlic in the oil for just a second until lightly golden. 
  4. Add the rice and stir fry for several minutes, pressing the rice into the sides of the pan to sear it and then scraping it off and mixing it back in. It may stick to the sides of the pan at first, but it will become less sticky as it cooks. 
  5. Add the salt and pepper and continue stir frying for another minute. Taste the rice and adjust seasoning as needed.
  6. Transfer the garlic rice to a platter and plate the pork and onions separately. Serve both dishes together. 

Keywords: pork, pork chops, bistek, filipino. rice. comfort foods.

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