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Korean Pork Belly is a wildly flavorful main course that you can make in just over 30 minutes, including the time to marinate! Crispy on the outside and juicy within, it’s a dish you’ll crave.

Korean Pork Belly served on a brushed metal platter and photographed from above.

Korea has a rich culinary history dating back thousands of years and is home to some of the world’s best chefs and restaurants. The country’s cuisine is influenced by its geography, climate, and culture. Korean food is known for being hearty and filling, two great words for describing unctuous pork belly. It’s also very diverse, ranging from simple dishes like kimchi (pickled cabbage) to more complex ones like Budae Jjigae (army base stew).

Ingredients You Need to Make Korean Pork Belly

Korean Pork Belly Ingredients on a white marble board.
  • Pork Belly: raw pork belly (without skin)
  • Ginger: fresh ginger root 
  • Korean Got Pepper Paste: (gochujang)
  • Korean Hot Pepper Flakes: (gochugaru)
  • Soy Sauce: or tamari for a gluten free version
  • Toasted Sesame Oil
  • Honey
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • Onion: yellow onion or white onion
  • Green Onions
  • Toasted Sesame Seeds: for serving

This recipe is a no fuss, super simple version of Korean Pork Belly that I adapted from Maangchi’s beautiful cookbook, Maangchi’s Big Book of Korean Cooking: From Everyday Meals to Celebration Cuisine. Her recipes are easy to follow and made with simple ingredients you can find at most grocery stores. This is slightly milder than the cookbook version, uses honey instead of sugar, and adds a 10 minute marinade (or longer) for added flavor depth. 

Recipe Tips

  • For easier slicing, put pork belly in the freezer for 15-30 minutes before you begin.
  • You can marinate the pork for a full day in the refrigerator before cooking. The meat will absorb even more flavor and you’ll be just 15 minutes away from sitting down to dinner.
  • Serve with cucumber slices or on lettuce leaves for a refreshing contrast.

More great Pork Belly Recipes

How to Make Korean Pork Belly

Combine all ingredients except for sesame seeds in a medium bowl; stir well to coat pork belly evenly and let stand 10 minutes.

slices of pork belly marinating in spices and onions in a bowl.

Add pork belly mixture to a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat; cook, stirring occasionally until cooked through and crispy at the edges, 12 to 15 minutes.. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onion if desired and serve.

Recipe Video

Korean Pork Belly

5 from 10 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Asian
Calories: 667
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients  

  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • 3 tablespoons Korean hot pepper paste (gochujang)
  • 1 tablespoon Korean hot pepper flakes (gochugaru)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound pork belly skinless, cut into 2 to 3-inch slices that are 1/8-inch thick
  • 1 small onion halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 green onions cut into 2-inch pieces, plus more for garnish
  • toasted sesame seeds for garnish

Instructions 

  • Combine first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl (ginger through black pepper) and stir to combine. Add pork belly, onion slices and green onion; stir well to coat evenly and let stand 10 minutes.
  • To a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat, add pork belly mixture; cook, stirring occasionally until cooked through and crispy at the edges, 12 to 15 minutes (let cook undisturbed for a few minutes at a time between stirring for the crispiest edges). Transfer to platter and garnish with sesame seeds and green onion if desired; serve.

Notes

  1. This is a milder version of the recipe from Maangchi’s Big Book of Korean Cooking: From Everyday Meals to Celebration Cuisine. Add another tablespoon of Korean hot pepper paste and double the Korean hot pepper flakes (or more) for a spicier version. 
  2. Place pork belly in the freezer for 15-30 minutes for easier slicing.

Nutrition

Calories: 667kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 64g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 8g | Monounsaturated Fat: 29g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 326mg | Potassium: 368mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 749IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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37 Comments

  1. Mimi Rippee says:

    Oh my goodness this sounds incredible. Love the flavors. I have a 6+ pound slap of pork belly from when I used the other half to make chorizo. Pork belly is the bomb. (Do they still say that?!!)

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Thanks, Mimi! I don’t know, but I still say it, lol. Love that you make your own chorizo!

  2. Hilary says:

    5 stars
    I made this tonight and quadrupled the marinade. I’m letting the pork belly slices sit in this lovely concoction, and tomorrow I will pack all of it into jars and can it for easy meals later. The sauce is wonderful, with just the right amount of heat. I’m really excited about it.

    1. Marissa Stevens says:

      Fantastic, Hilary! I hope you loved it!