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Thai Garlic Pepper Pork Recipe (Moo Gratiem)

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This Thai garlic pepper pork recipe, also known as moo gratiem in Thailand, is incredibly delicious with the best garlic stir-fry sauce and ready in just 15 minutes. It’s a quick and easy stir-fry dish that’s perfect for busy weeknight dinners and ideal for home cooks. Serve with steamed jasmine rice or Thai sticky rice.

Thai garlic pepper pork, moo gratiem, served with Thai sticky rice and a lime wedge.

This Thai garlic stir-fry is wonderfully versatile and can be customized to your taste. In Thailand, it’s often made with different proteins, allowing you to switch things up and try Thai garlic pepper chicken, beef, or even seafood like shrimp and squid.

Moo kratiem is one of my favorite Thai pork recipes, alongside others like spicy pad kra pao with holy basil and moo pad prik pao with chili paste. I’d love to guide you through my tips for creating the best garlic pork at home. However, if you prefer to jump straight to the instructions, you can do that below!

What is Thai garlic pepper pork

Thai garlic pepper pork, or moo tod gratiem prik thai, is a classic Thai pork stir-fry where pork is cooked with a generous amount of garlic and black pepper. The flavor is savory and peppery, with a delightful aroma, making it perfect for a quick family meal.


In Thai, moo tod means fried pork, gratiem or kratiem is garlic, and prik thai is pepper.

Thai garlic pork recipe

Stir-fried pork with garlic and pepper can be found at nearly every street food stall in Thailand, and also at Thai restaurants around the world. This is because it’s quick and easy to make with simple ingredients.

Many Thai children, like myself, grew up with this dish, and it holds a lot of fond memories. Personally, I find it perfect for those days when I’m low on inspiration.

It’s also a very versatile dish that, as mentioned earlier, can be prepared with different proteins. You can even opt to make it with deep fried pork!

Close-up of garlic pepper pork stir-fry topped with crispy fried garlic served in a patterned dish.

The stir-fry sauce in this Thai garlic pork recipe strikes a perfect balance of sweet, savory, and garlicky flavors. The black pepper adds a slight spiciness, and you can alternate it with white pepper for a milder variation.

While traditionally not done, you can also choose to add your favorite stir-fry vegetables, such as cabbage, mushrooms, morning glory, bell peppers, and broccoli.

It’s truly the perfect easy pork dish to add to your weekly dinner rotation!

How to customize moo gratiem

The great thing about cooking Thai food is its diversity, and this garlic pepper pork stir-fry is the perfect example. Here’s how you can easily customize this recipe to suit your taste:

Thai garlic pork served with sticky rice.

Switch up the protein: You can make this recipe for pork garlic pepper with other meats like chicken and beef, or seafood like shrimp and squid. Vegetarians can opt for tofu. In our former Thai restaurant we offered the chicken and pork version, both were a big hit!

Season to taste: Feel free to experiment with different flavors. Other recipes might call for fish sauce or other Thai seasonings. You can use white pepper instead of black pepper, or ground fresh peppercorns with a mortar and pestle.

Add spice: For a spicy flavor, feel free to add fresh Thai chili peppers like bird’s eye chilies or sprinkle Thai chili flakes before serving.

Crispy fried garlic

The tastiest Pad Kratiem should include a garnishing of crispy fried garlic. These are fried garlic bits that add a crunchy texture and an extra garlic flavor.

Crispy fried garlic in a black spoon on a wooden cutting board.

You can easily make crispy garlic by frying chopped garlic in a pan. I often make a large batch at once because you can store it for a long time in a mason jar. The aromatic garlic oil is perfect for using in my other Thai stir-fry recipes.

Ingredients

Ingredients can be sourced at Asian grocery stores and Asian markets.
The exact measurements are in the recipe card at the end of this post.


Ingredients for garlic pepper pork: pork, oyster sauce, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, flavor seasoning, coriander root, white sugar, black pepper, and fresh garlic.
  • Pork – Choose thin slices of pork to cut down on cooking time. Pork tenderloin, loin, shoulders, or sirloin all work well for quick stir-frying.
  • Oyster sauce – Oyster sauce is a thick, savory sauce is packed with umami, making it a staple in many Southeast Asian stir-fries and marinades.
  • Light soy sauce – Light soy adds a mild salty flavor to dishes
  • Dark soy sauce – Dark soy sauce adds a rich, molasses-like sweetness and a deep, glossy color to dishes.
  • Rosdee seasoning powder – Rosdee is a Thai brand of seasoning powder to boost the dish’s taste profile. Golden mountain seasoning sauce is a good alternative if rosdee isn’t available.
  • Coriander root – This brings a bold, earthy flavor that goess well with the savory notes of this Thai garlic pork stir-fry recipe.
  • White sugar – Sugar is essential for balancing out the savory flavor. Avoid using brown sugar and palm sugar to replicate the exact taste of this recipe.
  • Black pepperFreshly crushed black peppercorns give the best flavor, but you can substitute white pepper for a different kind of heat.
  • Garlic – Don’t hesitate to use a generous amount of garlic for that signature aromatic kick.
  • Oil – Use a neutral oil with high smoke point, like canola oil or vegetable oil.

How to make garlic pepper pork

  1. Close-up of fried garlic, black pepper, and coriander root in a pan.

    Step 1: Heat a non-stick wok or skillet over medium-high heat and add oil. Add minced garlic and chopped coriander root, black pepper, and stir-fry for about 20 seconds or until garlic is fragrant and turns golden.

  2. Close-up of stir-fried pork slices in a pan.

    Step 2: Add your pork slices and cook until they are about 80% done.

  3. Top-down view of a large pan with stir-fried Thai garlic pepper pork on a wooden background.

    Step 3: Add oyster sauce, light soy sauce, seasoning powder, white sugar, and dark soy sauce. Continue to stir-fry until the pork is fully cooked, making sure each slice is well-coated in the sauce. Serve your moo tod gratiem with rice.

Kitchenware

  1. Thai mortar and pestle (optional, for crushing black peppercorns)
  2. Measuring spoons and cups
  3. Cutting board and sharp knife
  4. Wok or non-stick skillet
  5. Spatula or stirring spoon

Moo kratiem recipe tips

  • Crispy fried garlic bits: Be generous with these for extra crunch and flavor. Adjust the amount according to your preference.
  • Avoid overcrowding: If your pan is too full, cook the pork in batches. This helps each piece cook evenly and develop a nice sear.
  • Adjust to taste: Thai cuisine is all about personalization. Taste your dish while cooking and tweak the seasoning to suit your preference.
  • High heat: Always stir-fry on medium to high heat. This cooks the pork quickly, searing the outside while keeping the inside juicy and tender.

How to serve pork garlic pepper

Thai garlic pork stir-fry is ideal for dinner or as a tasty side. Pair it with steamed jasmine or Thai sticky rice to absorb the savory stir-fry sauce. Complement it with fresh vegetables like long beans or Thai eggplants.

Enhance the flavor with red pepper flakes, black pepper, and crispy fried garlic. For a fresh, tangy twist, add a lime wedge and a sprinkle of cilantro or green onions. Serve with a dipping sauce like Thai hot sauce for extra spice.

How to store and reheat

Storing: To store your moo gratiem leftovers, let them cool to room temperature before placing them in an airtight container. They can be refrigerated for up to 3 to 4 days.

Freezing: For freezing, place the dish in a freezer-safe container or bag. Thaw it in the refrigerator overnight when ready to use.

Reheating: When reheating, gently warm the garlic pork on the stove top in a non-stick pan. You can add a small amount of oil if necessary to prevent sticking and to refresh the flavors.

Frequently asked questions

  1. Is moo kratiem spicy?

    Moo kratiem has a naturally subtle spiciness from the black pepper. If you’re into more heat, try adding fresh chili peppers or chili flakes to turn up the spice level.

  2. Is this recipe gluten-free?

    No, this recipe is not suited for a gluten-free diet since it’s made with soy sauce and rosdee seasoning powder, which both contain gluten.

Authentic Thai pork recipes

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Thai Garlic Pepper Pork recipe (Moo Gratiem)

Thai garlic pepper pork with sticky rice and a lime wedge.
Quick, easy, and delicious! This Thai garlic pepper pork recipe (Moo Gratiem) is ready in just 15 minutes, making it a perfect choice for a family meal.
Praew
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Cuisine Thai
Course Main Course
Serving Size 1

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic minced
  • 3 bunches of coriander root chopped
  • black pepper add to taste
  • 230 g pork sliced thinly (see notes)
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 0.5 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon rosdee seasoning powder (see notes)
  • 0.5 tablespoons white sugar

Instructions

  • Heat a non-stick wok or skillet over medium-high heat and add oil. Add minced garlic and chopped coriander root, black pepper, and stir-fry for about 20 seconds or until garlic is fragrant and turns golden.
    2 tablespoons oil, 3 cloves of garlic, 3 bunches of coriander root, black pepper
  • Add your pork slices and cook until they are about 80% done.
    230 g pork
  • Add oyster sauce, light soy sauce, seasoning powder, white sugar, and dark soy sauce. Continue to stir-fry until the pork is fully cooked, making sure each slice is well-coated in the sauce. Serve immediately with rice.
    1 tablespoon oyster sauce, 0.5 tablespoons light soy sauce, 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce, 1 teaspoon rosdee seasoning powder, 0.5 tablespoons white sugar

Notes

  • Use the nutrition card in this recipe as a guideline.
  • Pork – Choose thin slices of pork to cut down on cooking time. Pork tenderloin, loin, shoulders, or sirloin all work well for quick stir-frying.
  • Rosdee seasoning powder – Rosdee is a Thai brand of seasoning powder to boost the dish’s taste profile. Golden mountain seasoning sauce is a good alternative if rosdee isn’t available.
     
  • Garnish with extra black pepper and crispy fried garlic before serving.

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