Lechon Kawali – Pan Roasted Pork Belly

Lechon Kawali is a pan-roasted pork dish very popular among Filipinos usually served during special occasions. If you are a meat-lover, you definitely enjoy this pure meat recipe. Pork liempo or pork belly is the choice cut for cooking this recipe because of its alternating meat and fat. This part is actually the one used in making bacon. A similar version of lechon kawali is “bagnet” which uses pork shoulder (pork kasim) or pork¬† buttocks (pork pigue) instead of pork liempo. Bagnet is famous up north in the province of Ilocos in the Philippines.

The basic step in preparing lechon kawali is slowly boiling the meat until it is very tender and this would take about an hour to an hour and a half. Then the boiled meat would be left to dry at room temperature or inside the refrigerator for a few hours. It is important that the boiled meat is dry before deep-frying it to get the desired crunchiness of the pork skin. If you are afraid of deep-frying the meat in very hot cooking oil, an alternative way is to bake it in the oven or simply use a convection oven. You will get the same results.¬† Serve hot with a delicious lechon gravy sauce called “sarsa ng lechon” of any brand. Try this for yourself and let me know your thoughts. Enjoy!

Total Cooking Time: 2.5 to 3 hours including drying time


  • 1 kg pork liempo (pork belly) cut into two pieces
  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tsp whole pepper corn
  • 3 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 liter water
  • 2 cups cooking oil

Lechon Kawali Cooking Video on YouTube:

Cooking Procedure:

  1. Boil the pork belly in 1 liter water with vinegar, soy sauce, pepper corn, garlic and salt until tender. This will take around 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
  2. Drain and let the pork belly cool and dry for about an hour.
  3. Deep fry the pork belly until golden brown.
  4. Chop into 1 inch cube serving pieces.
  5. Serve hot with lechon sauce.

Makes 5 to 6 servings.

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