Smoked pork belly has been a staple in my family ever since I can remember. There is nothing more satisfying than hearing the crunch of a perfectly cooked pork crackling.
This is one of my favorite smoked pork belly recipes, it's my favorite for two reasons;
Firstly, this recipe is super simple. I like to make it a couple of days in advance and grill the pork belly on a Sunday afternoon. There is no better way to finish off the weekend than with a nice thick, crispy and juicy piece of pork.
The second reason why I love this recipe so much is the taste. This pork belly is seriously good. . Its sweet, spicy, smoky and most importantly crispy.
I like to serve this pork belly with a side of jalapeño creamed corn and classic crispy baked potatoes. See some of my other favorite sides for pork belly!
Charlie's Tasty Tip
If you are catering for a health conscious crowd, you might want to try a different cut of pork as well. I find that smoking pork loin will yield a much less fat.
Now some people are borderline addicted to the crackling (aka, the fat) and some want to enjoy pork without it. So much sure you cater to everyone!
How to Smoke Pork Belly 101
Twice Cooked Smoked Pork Belly Recipe
Pork belly is a favourite around my house. This recipe give you an amazing smokey flavour and the crisoy skin that we all love. Its essentially the perfect pork belly recipe in my eyes. If you don't like crispy skin feel free to only use the first half of this recipe for an amazingly flavoursome pork belly.
- 1 3 to 3-1/2- pound section of pork belly
- Freshly ground salt & pepper to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 Tablespoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 Tablespoon mustard powder
- 1 Tablespoon granulated garlic
- 1 Tablespoon chilli powder
- 1 Tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 Tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 Tablespoons sugar
- 2 Tablespoons sweet paprika
Preheat your smoker to 225°F as per your manufacturer's instructions. I like to use a mix of cherry and hickory wood.
With a sharp knife remove the rind (skin) from the pork belly. Once the skin is removed score the top side with a sharp knife. You want to create a 1 inch crosshatch pattern. You don’t want to cut all the way through the pork belly, only go around a ¼ inch deep.
In a medium sized bowl mix together cayenne, chilli powder, cumin, garlic, mustard powder, paprika, sugar and salt & pepper.
Dab any excess moisture off the pork belly with a paper towel and rub the dry rub over the top, bottom and sides of the pork belly. Don’t be scared to get in there with your hands and make sure everything is covered.
Once the smoker is up to temperature smoke the pork belly fat side up until bronzed with smoke. You are looking for an internal temperature of 165°F. This should be around 2 - 3 hours, however, I would advise checking after 2.5 and adjust accordingly.
Once the pork has come to temperature you can serve it hot straight out of the smoker. Although I recommend serving the pork belly after it has been chilled and reheated. You get a much better flavour and texture with this method.
If you are going with the reheat method transfer the pork to a wire rack, cover and let cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold.
When you are ready to reheat the pork belly, cut the pork belly into ½ inch thick slices (always remember to cut against the grain). Then lightly season with salt and pepper to taste. I also like to add in a little bit more cayenne at this point.
Set your grill up for direct grilling and preheat to a medium - high heat. For the best result cook over wood or at the very least add in wood chunks to your charcoal.
Once you have a nice hot grill, arrange your pork belly strips along your grill and grill until both sides are sizzling and well browned. This should take around 2 minutes per side.
Charlie's Hot (Smoking) Tip
We all know by know that pork belly needs some really high temperatures to get that tasty crispy crackling! Not only that it needs to this temp for a prolonged period. The last thing you want is chewy pork belly! I have found that my Weber genesis grill works best for this recipe.
There you have it, my simple, delicious and surprisingly easy smoked pork belly. I highly recommend using the twice cooked method for this recipe. It's well worth waiting that extra little bit of time for.
Do you have a similar smoked pork belly recipe? I would love to hear from you in the comments below!
Happy smoking everybody,
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