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Quick Sweet and Spicy Pork Stir Fry with Noodles

Sweet and spicy pork stir fry is a quick and easy weeknight dinner. It's bursting with flavors such as homemade Chinese five spice, honey, chili and sesame and it's done in just a few minutes. The pork (or chicken) and noodles get coated in the most amazing yet simple sauce.


Stir fry noodles and broccoli in a bowl.


And if you love quick dinners with noodles and pasta (who doesn't?), I can also recommend this vegetarian lo mein, rosemary sun-dried tomato pasta and a simple pad Thai. Or simply head to the category noodles and pasta for the most recent recipes!


What cut of pork is best for a stir fry?


I prefer to use a pork tenderloin, also known as pork fillet or pork tender. It's easy to cut and stays tender once cooked. It can easily dry out too though, so a marinade is perfect here. Do not confuse pork tenderloin with pork loin. Pork loin is a wider, larger cut of pork that you can actually cut into steaks. This type of cut works better for slow roasting and grilling.


You can use boneless pork chops as well. They are also low in fat and can be used interchangeably in this recipe. Because they are so lean, a marinade/brine/sauce situation is highly recommended - and obviously we have one here! Further reading: Different kinds of pork chops.


A bowl of pork stir fry with noodles.


How do you cut pork tenderloin into strips?


First, you need to remove the tough silver skin. One side of the pork tenderloin will have a white skin on it. Remove it by running a bone knife in between the meat and the skin. It is also always good to slice the meat against the grain, this way the meat will be more tender.


Now all that remains is to cut it into similar sized strips. How big or small you make them doesn't really matter. You can make them super thin and they will cook equally super fast, or you can make them chunkier - all depending on preference. Just remember that bigger pieces needs more time in the pan, so it's essential that your pieces are of similar size.


This is also how we do it in this sriracha honey glazed pork.


Bowl with pork stir fry and noodles. Chopsticks on the side.


Pork stir fry marinade and sauce


Hello flavor!


Because this is a quick pork stir fry, we aren't marinading per se, but using a very flavorful sweet and spicy sauce. Pork is a very flexible protein, as it doesn't taste all that much on itself. It is kind of like a blank canvas where we can do whatever we crave at the moment.


Today it will be Asian inspired with this sweet and spicy sauce. Pork is fabulous together with something sweet, like peaches and apples. But the sweetness can also be honey, like in this recipe. Just mix all the ingredients together, apart from the sesame oil. Sesame oil isn't great to use over high heat because of its smoking point, but it is absolutely delicious when drizzled over at the end.


Sautéed vegetables and pork in skillet.


What vegetables work best in a stir fry?


The short answer to this, is whatever you have in your refrigerator.


A stir fry is always a clean-out-your-fridge type of meal. And it turns out those are often the best tasting dinners too. Measurements aren't all that important either in a dish like this. So if you've got a little too little broccoli, don't sweat it, because you can use more bell pepper or onion, or simply just add a little less vegetables. It's all fine. Isn't it fantastic?


However, as a guideline, my absolute favorite vegetables to use in a stir fry are:


  • Mushrooms - they soak up alll the flavor, and giving tons of umami
  • Onions - any kind, but at least one kind! Yellow onion, spring onion or even leeks can work brilliantly
  • Garlic - because there can never be too much garlic.
  • Ginger - so flavorful! The Chinese holy trinity are spring onions, garlic and ginger for a reason.
  • Chili - I love some heat! Especially in sweeter stir fries.
  • Broccoli - something green and nutritious
  • Red bell pepper - adds crunch and flavor
  • Herbs - you can never go wrong with a sprinkle of cilantro or parsley right before serving.


However, I deviate a little from this in my gochujang chicken stir-fry


Sautéed vegetables in skillet.


Homemade Chinese Five Spice Seasoning


Another homemade seasoning to add to your portfolio!


If you've followed along, you may have noticed a trend regarding spice blends here at Ginger with Spice. Always easy to make, just combine the ingredients together and store in a sealed container. Chinese Five Spice has shockingly enough just five spices: cinnamon, cloves, fennel seeds, star anise and Sichuan peppercorns.


If you haven't used Sichuan peppercorns before you are in for a treat, my friend. It is nothing like regular peppercorns, and I wouldn't substitute it with anything else.


Chinese five spice in a small white bowl, garnished with star anise and cinnamon sticks.


I prefer using whole spices. This way you can dry roast them to really bring out the flavor. Add all the whole spices in a small non-stick dry pan. Over medium high heat, let it roast until fragrant. Just a minute or two. Then transfer to a spice grinder or pestle and mortar and grind until powder. If you don't have a spice grinder or don't want to get all the whole spices, you can substitute with ground spices without much loss.


Whole spices to make Chinese Five Spice: cinnamon, cloves, star anise, fennel and Sichuan.


Other spice blends to try:


Pick your poison! I've also made this stir fry with 1 tablespoon Jamaican jerk. It is so delicious, although you might find it weird to combine Jamaica with China, but they are actually friends in this dish. However, Chinese five spice is just extra yummy.


A quick and easy weeknight dinner, bursting with sweet and spicy and warming spices. Comfort dinner that works all year around. Scroll down to find the instructions in a printable recipe card. Enjoy!


Chopsticks holding a chunk of the pork stir fry noodles.


Did you like this Pork Stir Fry Recipe? Here's more quick dinners I think you'll like:



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📖 Recipe

Pork and broccoli stir fry with noodles. Chopsticks on the side.

Quick Sweet and Spicy Pork Stir Fry with Noodles

Yield: 3 people
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Sweet and spicy pork stir fry is a quick and easy weeknight dinner. Done in just a few minutes, and bursting with Chinese five spice, honey and sesame!


Chinese Five Spice - makes ⅓ cup

  • 4 cinnamon sticks, or 1 tablespoon ground
  • 4 star anise, or 1 tablespoon ground
  • 1 ½ tablespoon whole cloves, or 1 tablespoon ground
  • 1 ½ tablespoon whole fennel seeds, or 1 tablespoon ground
  • 1 ½ tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns, or 1 tablespoon ground

Sweet and Spicy Pork Stir Fry

  • ½ lb pork tenderloin, 225g. Or boneless pork chops
  • 5 oz egg noodles
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 cup chopped broccoli, 175g
  • 1 cup sliced mushroom, 75g
  • 2 spring onions, chopped, reserve a little of the green for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek, or any other chili paste. Less for less spicy
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup honey, 4 tbsp
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon Chinese Five Spice, see above
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds


Chinese Five Spice

  1. If using whole spices: Add to a nonstick dry pan and roast for a couple of minutes, until fragrant. Grind in a spice grinder or with a pestle and mortar. Store in an airtight container.

Sweet and Spicy Pork Stir Fry

  1. Remove silver skin from pork tenderloin and cut into strip.
  2. Cook noodles according to package. Rinse and drain.
  3. Heat canola oil in a large non-stick pan. On medium heat, sautée broccoli and mushroom for 3 minutes before adding in ginger, garlic, spring onion and bell pepper. Add sambal oelek and cook for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. In the same pan, cook pork strips on high heat with a little salt and pepper, until browned on all sides.
  5. Combine honey, rice wine vinegar, and Chinese five spice. Add to the pan. Cook until thickened, about 5 minutes.
  6. Once thickened, add in the sautéed vegetables and cooked noodles. Drizzle sesame oil and sprinkle sesame seeds and the green of spring onions on top. Herbs like cilantro and parsley are also good.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 3
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 397Total Fat: 14.7gSaturated Fat: 2.3gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 69mgSodium: 95mgCarbohydrates: 43.3gFiber: 2.9g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or tag @thegingerwithspice on Instagram, I'd love to see!

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Marilyn O'Hare

Thursday 15th of April 2021

I would like so-called reviews to be from people who have actually made the recipe and are reviewing the results. I don't want to hear from people who "can't wait to try it". That is NOT a review. Could they at least fall to the bottom of the stack?

Marilyn O'Hare

Friday 16th of April 2021

@Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice, I'd just like an honest review of the recipe before I try it. Obviously, I think it sounds nice or I wouldn't be considering it. Need a different spot for comments or reviews. Should be clear distinction. Thanks for the reply!

Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Friday 16th of April 2021

I agree, that is not a review. I do not know how to place them at the bottom, and sometimes it's not easy for me to tell whether they have tried it or not either. I'm sorry if this bugs you, but I guess people are just trying to be nice! Let me know if you have any questions regarding the recipe, and I may be able to help.


Monday 29th of June 2020

I love this fresh Asian dish, it's so hard to find one that is not only easy to make but tastes delicious and this one hits all the points.

Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Tuesday 30th of June 2020

Thank you so much, Alexis. True, there can be a lot of ingredients in Asian dishes, so glad you found this helpful (and delicious!).


Monday 29th of June 2020

The colors and flavours in this recipe are so inviting Stine and your photos make me hungry and salivate every time I come here looking for inspiration. Love how practical this is for a weeknight dinner.

Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Monday 29th of June 2020

You are so kind, Kari. Thank you very much.

Amy Liu Dong

Sunday 28th of June 2020

First of all, thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. I love the color it shows, it makes you entice for this and crave. I will definitely make this at home.

Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Sunday 28th of June 2020

Thank you so much!

Jere Cassidy

Sunday 28th of June 2020

Your food is simply amazing, it always looks so delicious. I have to try this recipe since I have been a failure at stir-fries but this dish is calling my name.

Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice

Sunday 28th of June 2020

Thank you so much, my friend. I hope you try it!

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