Stewed Pork Belly in Dark Soya Sauce (before slicing)

This recipe is VERY EASY and DELICIOUS. You have no reasons why you should not try it (unless you do not eat pork), even if you are a beginner. The ingredients are simple and can be obtained almost everywhere. In fact, I used to cook this dish during my university days in England and it was really nice to have it with steaming hot rice on a cold winter’s night!

This is my recipe for Stewed Pork Belly in Dark Soya Sauce


  • 300 grammes pork belly (whole)
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 whole bulbs garlic (separate into individual cloves)
  • Approximately 15 – 20 white peppercorns
  • Warm water
  • 1 piece star-anise (optional)


  • 3 to 4 tablespoons dark soya sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt


Add sugar into a wok / saucepan which has been heated up. Let the sugar caramelise (turn liquid and brown).

Once sugar fully caramelised, add pork belly and let it “sear” for 1 minute on each side. Add water to cover the pork belly by 1 to 2 cm. Add the rest of the ingredients and seasoning. Once water begins to boil, reduce to medium low heat, cover lid and let it simmer for 30 minutes to an hour.

To serve, separate gravy from the rest of the ingredients. Slice the pork belly to desired thinness.

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  1. 1
    January 27th, 2010 at 8:35 pm

    I love this recipe. Tried it twice but the pork still turn out a bit hard. Taste wise is perfect. Any idea what I could do to perfect the texture of the pork?

    Thank you 🙂

  2. 2
    January 28th, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Marisa : Glad you tried it out. This type of meat is slightly tougher compared to cuts like tenderloin. I have not tried this recipe with the more tender cuts of meat but I suppose you can try it out.

  3. 3
    August 31st, 2010 at 12:06 am

    Hi! I used to live in a dormitory and one of the chefs used to make a pork belly dish, the sauce was dark, I remember it was rather oily, with noodles that were clear-ish. Is that a variation of your recipe?

    Also, when you say dark soy sauce, do you mean the thick sweet one?

  4. 4
    September 10th, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    Gabriella : I think that would be a different dish. The dark soya sauce that I use is dark but runny. The thick sauce is sweetish and is almost like caramel which would be suitable for some other type of cooking. If you want to use the thick caramel type, add in little by little to your preference of taste.

  5. 5
    Hui Kheng
    February 28th, 2011 at 2:29 pm

    Thank you for the wonderful website; a most helpful place for me who is learning to cook. Formerly from Singapore and currently in Auckland, it’s a joy to see so many familiar recipes at your website. Tried cooking this dish tonight and it turned out a success! No runny dark soy sauce here though, only those thick sweet ones. I should have reduced the amount of sugar so that it is not so sweet in the end. Once again, thank you!

  6. 6
    May 29th, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    I also lived in Auckland. This is a recipe I have cooked many a times. I learnt it from my grandmother. Marisa, to enjoy a tender belly pork – this is how I learnt from young – never failed before. First, brunched the belly pork in hot boiling water. Take it out and dapped dry. Used a fork to prick the skin and fry the dapped dry belly pork until brown. Removed the belly pork. In a wok or sauce pan (sufficiently deep for immencing the pork) used some balance oil from the left over oil; add some sliced chille (dried or fresh); a few pips garlic; ginger, cinnamon sticks, star arnise, pepper corn, only some sugar. While this is being cooked on high fire, add the thick black soya sauce and with the sugar already in, stirred in the belly pork until well coated. Add sufficient water to cover the meat and cooked for 1.5 – 2 hours depending on the thickness of the belly pork. Check after 1.5 hours – hey presto you will love this. Cut the tender meat in slices. Reduce some of the sause and then add salt and pepper and pour the sauce on the slice belly pork. The tangyness of the taste is yum. Hope all of you will enjoy it!

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