Pork belly is one of the most flavorful parts of the pig, and the fatty meat is tender and melts in your mouth. Pork belly is especially popular in Asia, with Japan and China both turning it into delicious dishes. Japanese crispy pork belly with persimmons is simmered with honey, miso and sake to create a savory meal, and China's twice cooked pork belly brings the tenderness of pork belly to stir fry. But Asia doesn't have a monopoly on the meat, as England loves to pair it with roasted vegetables and applesauce, and the French put it in with a lentil salad. The world agrees the pork belly is one of the best tasting slices of pork you'll ever have, so try some of our favorite pork belly recipes.
This chile-rubbed, beer-braised pork belly is cooked until tender and served atop arugula and pears. Get the recipe for Beer-Braised Pork Belly Salad »
Awamori, a lightly sweet rice distillate, is used to blanch and cook—as well as coat—tender pork belly, resulting in a sticky, umami-rich sauce. Get the recipe for Braised Pork Belly with Leeks and Ginger »
Pork Belly Gyro
The classic combination of pork and fruit gets the ultimate summer treatment in this dish from John Karangis of Union Square Events. Made tender in an aromatic braise, pork belly gets a quick char on a hot grill before resting atop buttery sweet corn and a relish of sweet and sour cherries tossed with jalepeños and a honey-lime vinaigrette.
Browned butter brings an extra layer of flavor to these otherwise traditional Central Asian dumplings, but the cherry on top comes in the form of fried shallots. Get the recipe for Steamed Pork Belly Manti »
These traditional shumai come from dim sum chef Takeshi Ikeuchi of Morimoto Asia. Get the recipe for Masaharu Morimoto’s Pork and Shrimp Shumai »
Slow-roasted belly stands in for the classic whole suckling pig that graces virtually every special occasion in the Philippines. Chef Dale Talde also swaps out the sauce’s pungent pork liver for more mellow and easier to source chicken livers. Don’t worry, though. It still tastes, as Talde lovingly puts it, like “liverwurst mixed with sweet and sour sauce.” Get the recipe for Filipino Roast Pork Belly with “Lechon” Sauce »
A classic hearty Korean stew made with meaty pork neck, potatoes, and nutty perilla seeds. Sesame seeds cannot be substituted for the perilla in this recipe; seek perilla seed, also called wild sesame seed, out at Asian markets. Optional but recommended: Serve this dish with its accompanying dipping sauce. Get the recipe for Gamjatang (Spicy Pork Neck and Potato Stew) »
The skin on this slow-roasted pork belly gets peeled off and fried into cracklings, allowing the fat underneath to render and caramelize. Whatever vegetables are in season—this time of year, it’s carrots, turnips, and leeks—pair well with the meat, which is served with a cider-spiked applesauce and best enjoyed with a bitter ale, one of the many beers you can drink with it at the Black Bull Inn and Hotel in Coniston. Get the recipe for Crisp Pork Belly with Roasted Vegetables and Applesauce »
Sichuan Twice-Cooked Pork Belly
Red miso paste, more fermented than its blond counterparts, adds piquancy to pork belly cooked with brown sugar, mirin, and sesame seeds.
This spicy pork recipe comes from the kitchen of Arang, in New York, where it’s used to make ddukbokki, spicy rice cakes. Get the full recipe here. Get the recipe for Korean Rice Cakes »
Made with confit duck legs, pork belly, and two kinds of sausage, this meaty, resplendently rich cassoulet is worth treasuring all winter. Get the recipe for Dominique Ansel’s Cassoulet »
This advanced version of traditional pork pies includes three kinds of pork (shoulder, belly, and slab bacon) and tender chicken for a multi-note meaty flavor, plus savory stuffing. The recipe is inspired by the huntsman pie from the Brantwood Café, a restaurant in Coniston, where it’s served with tangy Westmorland chutney. Our recipe makes small single-serving pies; you will need four 5 3/4-by-3-inch loaf pans, available from Wilton. Get the recipe for Huntsman Pies »