Crisp tender veggies, juicy pork, and lo mein noodles drenched in a delicious sauce create the perfect pork lo mein that’s better than any takeout!
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Don’t get me wrong, with 4 kids I love grabbing takeout when I’m running all the errands, but I know it’s so much healthier and less expensive to make my own! Being able to make this pork lo mein recipe in the Instant Pot makes it so much easier!
What is Lo Mein?
Lo mein is a Chinese dish that has become popular around the world. It consists of noodles and vegetables, along with meat or seafood. The ingredients are usually stir-fried in oil and then served with a flavorful sauce. Lo mein is often served as a main course but can also be served as a side dish. It’s easy to make at home and even easier when made in the Instant Pot!
Pork Lo Mein Ingredients
You’ll need a few basic pantry staples along with fresh vegetables and pork cutlets to make this delicious and easy pork lo mein!
Spaghetti – To keep this easy, we’ll use regular or thin spaghetti noodles. Either will work depending on your preference.
Pork – You’ll need a pound of center pork cutlets or center-cut pork chops.
Veggies – I’m a huge fan of recipes that are loaded with vegetables, and this particular one features red bell peppers, baby bok choy (a Chinese cabbage), carrots, onions, and garlic.
Soy Sauce – This recipe calls for both dark and light soy sauce. Dark soy sauce is thicker and darker compared to light soy sauce, and it has a richer, more complex flavor with a slightly sweet and caramelized taste and is used to add color and depth of flavor. Dark soy sauce is usually used in marinades. Light soy sauce, on the other hand, is lighter in color and has a saltier, more subtle taste and is commonly used in stir-fries like lo mein as well as dipping sauces and dressings.
Hoisin Sauce – also known as Chinese BBQ sauce, is crafted by blending soybeans, sugar, vinegar, garlic, and an array of flavorful spices, including chili peppers and five-spice powder.You can find Hoisin sauce in the Asian section of your local grocery store.
Sesame Oil – I prefer to use toasted sesame oil for its rich deep flavor. You can find it in the Asian section of your local supermarket.
Mirin – A type of Japanese rice wine, not to be confused with Rice Wine Vinegar, used in Asian marinades, dressings, and dipping sauces. You should be able to find it in the Asian section of your local grocery store.
Salt & Pepper – Season to taste, be careful with the amount of salt as soy sauce is salty!
Oil – I use canola or vegetable oil to saute the pork.
Water – For cooking the noodles and making the pork lo mein sauce.
Sesame Seeds – For garnish!
Too busy to make this right now? Pin for later to your favorite Pinterest Board!
How to Make Instant Pot Pork Le Mein
Using an Instant Pot to make this easy pork lo mein recipe makes this a great weeknight meal!
Start by washing and slicing your onions, Bok Choy, carrots, and red bell pepper. Mince your garlic. I cheat here and sometimes use jarred minced garlic!
Cut the pork into 1-inch cubes. Alternatively, you can slice the pork into thin strips, but I like the cubes for this recipe. Place the cubed pork into a mixing bowl and add half of the dark soy sauce and the sesame seed oil. Mix until well combined and set aside.
Turn the Saute setting on high on your Instant Pot and add 1 tablespoon of oil. All the oil to get hot and then add the marinaded pork to the pot and saute until golden brown on the outside. Remove the pork from the Instant Pot and set aside.
Add the minced garlic to the Instant Pot and saute for 30 seconds or so until fragrant.
Add the water to the Instant Pot and deglaze the bottom, scraping up all the brown bits. This adds so much flavor to the pork lo mein!
Break the spaghetti noodles in half and put them down in a crisscross pattern. This will help keep them from sticking to each other. Do not stir the noodles after you’ve put them in the pot! Gently push the spaghetti noodles into the water.
Close the Instant Pot lid, seal the valve, and pressure-cook on high for 4 minutes.
After 4 minutes have passed, immediately release the natural pressure release valve, and let it rest for 4 more minutes.
After resting for 4 minutes, open the pot and give the noodles a stir. Add the remaining dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, Hoisin sauce, and Mirin to the noodles and stir until well combined.
Turn the Saute setting on high and add the sliced vegetables – bok choy, red bell peppers, onions, carrots, and pork to the pot. Cook and stir often for 5-8 minutes. The time here will vary based on how tender you like your veggies.
Serve Instant Pot Pork Lo Mein on a plate garnished with sesame seeds! Enjoy!
Instant Pot Lo Mein Variations
You can change up this Instant Pot Lo Mein recipe a bit to suit your tastes or what you have on hand.
Vegetables – Add some sugar snap peas or snow peas or thinly sliced celery. Small broccoli florets would work well too!
Protein – Skip the pork and make Instant Pot Chicken Lo Mein by using sliced or cubed boneless skinless chicken breasts. You could also use thinly sliced beef and do an Instant Pot Beef Lo Mein. Love seafood? Add shrimp as your protein for shrimp lo mein.
Spicy Pork Lo Mein – If you’d like to add a little spice to your pork lo mein, add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes to the garlic when sauteing. You could also add a dash or two of Siracha sauce. Either of these will give it a nice little kick!
- 8 oz. spaghetti
- 1 lbs. center cut pork loin
- 2 cups water
- 1 red Bell Pepper
- 1 lbs. baby bok choy
- 2 small carrots
- 1 yellow onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 3 Tbls dark soy sauce
- 2 Tbls light soy sauce
- 1 Tbls Hoisin Sauce
- 1 Tbls toasted sesame oil
- 1 Tbls Mirin
- Oil (Canola or Vegetable)
- Salt & Pepper, to taste
- Sesame seeds, optional garnish
- Wash and prep your vegetables by slicing the baby bok choy, onions, carrots, and red bell pepper. Mince the garlic. Set aside.
- Cut the pork into 1-inch cubes and place in a mixing bowl. Add half of the dark soy sauce and mix until well combined.
- Turn the Saute setting on high on the Instant Pot and add 1 tablespoon of oil. Allow the oil to get hot.
- Add the pork to the pot and saute it until it is golden brown on the outside. Remove from the Instant Pot and set aside.
- Add the minced garlic to the Instant Pot and saute for about 30 seconds or until fragrant.
- Add the water to the Instant Pot and deglaze the bottom of the pan by scraping all the brown bits up.
- Break the spaghetti noodles in half and place them in a crisscross pattern. This will help keep them from sticking together. Do not stir the noodles! Instead, gently press them down into the water.
- Close the Instant Pot lid and seal the valve. Pressure cook on high for 4 minutes.
- After the 4 minutes have passed, immediately release the natural pressure release valve, and let it rest for another 4 minutes.
- After it rests for 4 minutes, open the pot and stir the noodles.
- Add the remaining dark soy sauce, light soy sauce, hoisin sauce, and mirin to the noodles and stir until well combined.
- Turn on the saute setting on high and add the sliced vegetables and pork to the Instant Pot. Cook and stir for about 5-8 minutes depending on how crispy you like your vegetables.
- Serve pork lo mein hot garnished with sesame seeds!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 486Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 91mgSodium: 1456mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 5gSugar: 9gProtein: 39g
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What to serve with Instant Pot Pork Lo Mein?
Serve your pork lo mein with a side of crispy egg rolls or steamed Chinese dumplings.
How do I store leftover pork lo mein?
Store leftover pork lo mein in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4–5 days. Be sure to follow the USDA guidelines for storing leftovers.
To reheat, microwave until hot or add to a pot and warm on low over the stove.
What is baby bok choy?
Baby bok choy is a type of Chinese cabbage that has become increasingly popular in recent years. Its sweet, mild flavor makes it a great addition to any meal. It’s also very versatile — you can use it raw or cooked and in stir-fries, soups, salads, and more. Plus, baby bok choy is loaded with vitamins A, C, and K as well as essential minerals like calcium, iron, and potassium. Not only does it add flavor to your dish, but it also packs some serious nutrition!
What is Mirin?
Mirin is a Japanese rice wine that has been used in traditional cooking for centuries. It has a sweet flavor, similar to sake but with lower alcohol content. Mirin adds a unique depth of flavor to dishes and can also be used as a marinade or glaze. Both types are widely available and can usually be found in your local grocery store or Asian grocery store.
I hope you love this Instant Pot Pork Lo Mein recipe as much as my family does! It’s a great addition to your weekly menu plan and comes together for a complete meal quickly and easily!