Savory ground pork with fluffy rice topped with cucumbers, tomatoes, Thai basil, and lime. A delicious dinner in 20 minutes!
I wanted to come up with a recipe to use the cherry tomatoes and Thai basil in my garden. This recipe is a variation of my Vietnamese Braised Pork Bowl but instead of braising the pork for 2 hours, we are using ground pork in this recipe. That way it cooks in a fraction of the time!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
This pork bowl comes together in just 20 minutes!
We caramelize the sugar with some water until it turns golden brown, which adds a deeper flavor and color to the pork.
Then, we let the pork fat render out to further caramelize and crisp up the pork.
The soy sauce, fish sauce, and oyster sauce add plenty of saltiness and umami flavors, and the lime juice brightens up the dish.
Finally, we top it off with cucumber, tomato, and Thai basil for some colorful veggies!
The richness and saltiness of the pork paired with rice, crunchy cucumbers, juicy sweet tomatoes, and fragrant basil bring this dish together.
Ingredients & Substitutions
- Instead of ground pork, you can make this with ground beef or turkey. Make sure there is a little bit of fat so the meat can crisp up.
- I used cherry tomatoes from my garden but feel free to use any type of tomato.
- Thai basil really pulls this dish together. Sweet basil, cilantro, or scallions would be just as tasty.
- Substitute white rice with brown rice or your favorite rice alternative!
- In a skillet on medium high heat, add water and sugar. Mix until dissolved then let it caramelize until golden brown. This will take around 5 minutes.
- Add in the ground pork and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add in soy sauce, fish sauce, oyster sauce, and garlic.
- Sauté for 5 minutes on high heat. The fat should render out and caramelize the pork further. Drain out excess fat. Add to a bowl of rice and top with cucumber, tomato, Thai basil, and lime. The perfect bite has a little bit of everything!
More Quick & Easy Meals You'll Love!
Caramelized Pork Bowl
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ¼ cup water
- 1 ½ lb ground pork
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon fish sauce
- 2 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 4 cups cooked white rice
- ½ cup cucumber chopped
- 1 cup tomato chopped
- ¼ cup Thai basil chopped
- 1 lime cut into wedges
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a skillet on medium high heat, add sugar and water. Mix until dissolved and cook until the sugar caramelizes and turns into a golden brown color.
- Add ground pork and sauté for 5 minutes. Add in garlic, soy sauce, fish sauce, and oyster sauce and sauté for another 5 minutes or until the pork crisps up and the fat is rendered out. Drain excess fat.
- Prepare a bowl with steamed rice and pork. Top with cucumber and tomato tossed in salt and pepper, Thai basil, and a squeeze of lime. Happy nomming!
- Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Instead of pork, make this with ground beef or turkey. Make sure there is a little bit of fat so the meat can crisp up.
- Substitute Thai basil with sweet basil, cilantro, or scallions.
- Substitute white rice with brown rice or your favorite rice alternative.