Right Eats

Bitter Melon With Pork and Shrimp


4 medium sized bitter melons

2 sliced  medium size ripe vine tomatoes

1 sliced medium sized onions

6 minced cloves garlic

1 lb. of medium-sized shrimp

1 beaten egg

1tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/4 cup canola oil

1/2 lb.  diced 1/4 " shoulder pork or pork butt


1) Cut bitter melon into half lengthwise.  Using a teaspoon, scoop out insides leaving very thin white layer.  Slice bitter melons medium size.  Soak bitter melons in a bowl of water with 5 tbsp. of water for 20 minutes.  Drain bitter melon and set aside. 

2) In a medium pan, saute garlic, onions.  Brown a little then add pork and cook with cover for 15 minutes.

3) Add bitter melons and shrimp and cook for another 12 minutes or until bitter melons are soft, but not wilted .

4) Stir beaten egg ; stir and cook for 2 minutes and remove from heat.  Serve with white rice. 

Mongolian Beef With Bitter Melon


1 lb. beef (preferably chuck or rib eye steak cut)

4  medium bitter melon

1/2 cup oyster sauce

1/4 cup oil (canola, peanut o rsesame)

1 sliced medium size onion

6 minced cloves garlic

1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

1 cup water

2 tbsp. cornstarch

1 tsp. red crushed pepper


1. Cut bitter melon into half lengthwise. Using a teaspoon, scoop out all the insides until very thin white layer is left.  Slice into medium size.  Soak bitter melon in salted water (about 1/4 c. salt) and let sit for 20 minutes.   . Drain water and set aside. 

2. Under medium heat, heat pan and put oil.  Saute garlic first for 2 minutes, then add onions and cook for approximately 5 minutes.

3) Add sliced beef and saute for 15 minutes with cover. 

4) Add oyster sauce, black pepper, stir and taste; add more as needed.

5) Add sliced bitter melon and stir.  Add 1 cup water  and cook for 10 minutes or until bitter melons are tender.  Add salt if desired. 

6) In a small bowl, mix two tablespoons of cornstarch with 1/2 cup water, stir until corn  starch is dissolved.  Pour mixture into pan, stir for 1 minute and remove pan from fire.  Serve ho tover rice. 

Bitter Melon- Bitter melon is not hard to cook as many think.  The trick to making bitter melon tastes less bitter is to soak them immediately after cutting  in a bowl of water containing 1/2 cup of salt.  Do not squeeze after the soaking as we want to retain all the juices inside them; just pat and dry.     In normal cooking, bitter melon should be cooked within 10 to 12 minutes depending on the size and thickness of their cut.  When cooking, you can tell you're overcooking them when the color changes to medium deep olive green.  Choose bitter melons that are firm with bright green color.  There should not even be one soft spot or a lot of blemishes on the skin.  There should not be yellow discoloration either.  They can be eaten raw, cooked, or pickled.

Most of the recipes for bitter melon and papaya are ethnic-infused  because the fruits are mostly native to Asia.  They're hearty and served for heavy lunch or dinners, mostly with white, brown, or fried rice. 

Read the health benefits of bitter melon in our Pickles Section. 

Mongolian Beef With Bitter Melon

Bitter Melon with Pork and Shrimp

Bitter Melon with Black Bean Sauce

Bitter Melon with Black Bean Sauce


2 lb. minced cguck steak beef cubed in thin slices

1 tsp. salt

1 tbsp. oil

8 bitter melon, cut in 1/2 inch thickness

1 tbsp. ginger, slivered thin

1 medium carrot, 1/2 inch sliced

1 tbsp. garlic, minced

2 tbsp. Chinese black bean paste

1 cup water

2 tbsp. soy sauce

4 tbsp. oyster sauce


1. In a mixing bowl, add beef, salt, and oil and set aside for 5 mins.

2. In a wok or large skillet, add beef, saute until beef is halfway cooked.

3. Add in bitter melons, ginger, garlic, and black bean sauce

4. Stir; add water, stir; add more water if needed.

5. Simmer for 5 mins.; add soy sauce and oyster sauce.

Bitter Melon Recipes