Breaded Pork Tenderloin (Mum's Schnitzel)

Sue Fitzpatrick


It looks like way too much reading and work right? lol, but do it once and you'll be a pro and it will be well worth it.

I've gone step by step by step with photos to help you get the best results, doing it first time. It's so worth it :)

These little morsels are really tasty! You need counter space and time. Have a quick side dish in mind - bag salads or microwave veggies & pasta work for me.

I'm usually full from "picking" by the time all the meat is ready to serve lol Never any leftovers!

This is one recipe the guys ask for over and over. They get it twice a yr.


★★★★★ 1 vote

4 - 6
1 Hr
30 Min
Pan Fry


  • 1
    boneless pork tenderloin - 8 - 10" is more than enough for 4 ppl
  • ·
    saltine crackers
  • 4 large
  • ·
    salt and pepper
  • ·
    lard for frying (trust me, it makes all the difference)

How to Make Breaded Pork Tenderloin (Mum's Schnitzel)


  1. Tenderloin is usually pretty lean, but remove any fat you can. Slice the tenderloin into thin strips about ¼" thick max.
  2. This is never perfect unless you have a meat slicer so no worries. Whatever works. The pieces will be whatever shape they wind up lol.
  3. Lay pieces of meat on a layer of saran, lightly salt and pepper the meat and cover with saran. Use the flat side of a tenderizer to lightly flatten the meat. (do not pound) If it's a large piece to start, you might want to cut it in half.
  4. The meat WILL expand!
  5. I start by crushing sleeves of crackers (in their sleeve), in a zip-loc bag. I make sure the ends of the sleeves are open, zip lock the bag then crush them with a rolling pin until they are "coarse" pieces and crumbs. Then remove the sleeve, put the crackers in a bowl or container for your assembly line, then crush 2 more sleeves the same way. 3 usually works for me. Depending on how much pork you prepare, you may have to crush more as you go along.
  6. Have an assembly line of:
    Slices of pork
    Beaten eggs mixed with a little milk
    Crushed crackers
  7. Dip several pieces of pork into egg then coat one or 2 at a time in crackers and put aside on a platter or plate until done. I lay the meat on the crackers then bury the pork using my fingers like a scoop. I like to get as much pork covered as I can, but you won't get 100% coverage and don't really want to :) Discard any remaining egg or crackers. It can get messy during this stage and I found gadgets like tongs just get in the way and slow the process. It's more a hands on thing :) so be close to a sink.
  8. Melt enough lard on med-high to cover bottom of a large non-stick frying pan. I'm guessing 3 or 4 tblsp. Test with a small piece of meat. It should sizzle, not spit!
  9. Place meat in single layer batches. I fry 8 - 10 pieces at a time. Use tongs and do not leave stove unattended. There is no window for distractions lol This cooks very quickly. Be prepared to turn the first pieces over soon after you have filled the pan. Turn only once.
  10. Cook both sides of meat till crackers are toasted looking. (2 - 4 mins per side - depending on size of pieces) If it's too hot, it will burn the cracker.

    You may have to add more lard, in small amounts (by tsp.) It will melt and heat immediately to continue frying without removing the meat. *I've never had an incident frying with lard. You treat it like any other high heat frying oil, with respect!
  11. Use tongs and turn and remove pieces of meat as they are done, to a plate with a paper towel for a quick pat dry of any lard, then move them to a warmed serving plate with paper towel. Put the plate on a baking sheet in a warm oven until remainder of meat is cooked) . REDUCE HEAT BOTH UNDER THE FRYING PAN AND IN THE OVEN AS NEEDED. I have an oven with hidden elements and can do this. You may just want to preheat the oven to warm then turn it off if you aren't comfy with paper towels in the oven.
  12. When a batch is done, carefully remove any large cracker material from remaining lard in fry pan, add more lard and continue process until all pieces of tenderloin are cooked. Discard any remaining lard (old coffee tins are great for this). Remove platter of warm meat from oven and serve with your choice of side dish.

    Trust me, you will not believe how good these are until that first bite!

Printable Recipe Card

About Breaded Pork Tenderloin (Mum's Schnitzel)

Course/Dish: Pork
Main Ingredient: Pork
Regional Style: Canadian

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