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Sep 27, 2020

Chinese Barbecued Pork - Char Siu

Chinese BBQ Pork, or char siu, is a Cantonese dish where pork is marinated in a sweet sauce and then broiled or roasted. 

Chinese barbecue pork sliced on a plate

Chinese barbecue pork, or char siu, is pretty much meat candy in my mind. It's sweet, fatty, and succulent. 

Whenever I prepare a dish that calls for this pork, I always make extra. Why? Because it it s just about the best pork ever. 


Chinese barbecue pork with sauce

This pork is amazing for steamed pork buns. It's also perfect for sandwiches, egg rolls, fried rice, and lo mein noodles. Frankly, I could just eat it unadorned.

How to make Chinese BBQ pork:

First, you will need pork. There are several cuts of pork you can choose from, but it's best to use a fatty cut such as pork shoulder/butt. Do not trim off the fat because it adds so much flavor. 

Next, cut the pork into chunks and marinate it overnight in a mixture of sauces, including rice wine, white pepper, sesame oil, hoisin sauce, dark soy sauce, honey, bean sauce, and sugar. You will probably have to visit an Asian grocery store for the dark soy sauce and bean sauce. They are both worth adding to your condiment collection. 

While I didn't add it, to get that Chinese take-out restaurant appearance, you can add some red food coloring to the marinade. 


Char siu marinade ingredients

After that, broil the pork until it is nice and charred, brushing it with the marinade halfway through. Broil it on a wire rack set in a half sheet pan or a large sheet cake pan. 

Don't worry about the pork getting charred. You want all of those blackened bits. They add so much flavor. 


Char siu after broiling

Be sure to pour some water in the pan under the roasting rack. There should be just enough water to prevent smoking in the oven, but not so much to reach the meat. 

Once you have broiled the pork on one side, flip it over, brush it with the reserved marinade, and broil it on the other side. 


Char siu in the broiler pan

Once you've pulled the pork from the oven, tent it with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing. 

This method for preparing this pork is ideal for home cooks. Plus, it's so delicious. The first time you make it, you will wish that you had made extra.

Chinese Barbecued Pork - Char Siu serving platter

I first posted this recipe in June of 2015. This post has been updated with new photos and a printable recipe card. Plus, I was craving it!

Chinese Barbecued Pork - Char Siu Recipe

Chinese Barbecued Pork - Char Siu Recipe
Yield: 6 servings
Author: Karen Kerr
Chinese BBQ Pork, or char siu, is a Cantonese dish where pork is marinated in a sweet sauce and then broiled.


  • 1 pound pork shoulder/pork butt
  • 2 T sugar
  • 1 T soy sauce
  • 1 T hoisin sauce
  • 1 T dark soy sauce
  • 1 T Shao Hsing rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1 T bean sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1 T honey


  1. Cut the pork into four pieces, lengthwise.
  2. Rub the pork with one tablespoon of the sugar and let sit for 15 minutes, and then pour off any liquid.
  3. Combine the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, dark soy, rice wine, bean sauce, sesame oil, white peppre, and the other tablespoon of sugar in a small bowl. Pour this mixture over the pork, stir to coat, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
  4. The next day, let the pork come to room temperature.
  5. Place a rack in the oven about 5 inches below the broiler and preheat the broiler.
  6. Place a rack into a half sheet pan or 13 inch by 18 inch cake pan.
  7. Place the pork on top of the rack, reserving the marinade, and drizzle the meat with the honey.
  8. Place the pan onto the oven rack and add enough water to have about 1/4 inch of water on the bottom of the pan.
  9. Broil the meat for about 7 to 10 minutes, until charred.
  10. Turn the pork over and brush with the reserved marinade. Continue to broil for another 7 to 10 minutes.
  11. Remove the pork from the oven and let rest, tented with foil, for about 10 minutes. Slice and serve.



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pork, char siu
Meat, Main dish
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Would you like to comment?

  1. This pork looks so delicious! I wish I could have at least a little slice :)

  2. Karen, you have no idea for how long I"ve wanted to make this recipe, and have it sitting on my folder of "to make soon" - it is a favorite of mine....

    I simply MUST stop dreaming about it... and follow you on this path!

  3. I have been wanting to make this dish forever - thanks for the inspiration!

  4. Oh.. I love all the flavors in this.. My son will love this one! Thank you for sharing on our Pork Recipes Link Party for celebrate 365 Blog Party

  5. This pork looks super flavorful and tender and yummy!

  6. You said "meat candy" and the rest of those words are blah blah blah. I don't need any more words. Just give me meat candy!

  7. Mmmmmm...I need his in my life right now. Totally going to have to try this out!

  8. Yum this sounds so good. I love barbecued pork and this version sounds really flavorful

  9. This looks so good - I am making this soon!

  10. Oh my gosh! This looks YUMMY.


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