Inihaw na Liempo (Grilled Pinoy Pork Belly Barbecue)

This is a tried and tested, no-fail recipe for Filipino Grilled Pork Belly Barbecue (Inihaw na Liempo). This has a secret ingredient that tenderizes the meat as it marinates. The meat comes out so tender and wonderfully tasty every time!

In the Philippines, we are truly blessed with so many sunny days, perhaps at least 300 days a year (that’s a guess) but growing up I can hardly remember having too many cloudy days.

They only actually come when rain is about to pour, when there’s a storm brewing or occasionally on monsoon season but they never last long. After a day or two the sun is back with a vengeance.

That’s because we are located just a little above the equator which means we almost always get the sun directly on us. Believe it or not, though, we take the sun for granted and oftentimes don’t like it.

Weird, I know, having lived in Michigan which has only about 60 sunny days in a year on average. I think it’s because it gets too hot when the sun is out and, being surrounded by water entirely, it’s truly humid as well.

That explains why we try to avoid walking during the daytime, if we can. Just a few steps and you’ll be dripping with sweat….yikes.

But, the great thing about having sunny weather all the time is that it’s always barbecue season – pretty much the whole year through.

We are barbecue crazy in the Philippines!!!

In every village, barrio, and street corner you won’t miss a barbecue stand, seriously. The amount and variety of meat that we grill is crazy – from chicken feet, gizzards, organs, etc. Ok, am not trying to gross you out – just explaining how we love to barbecue (and to be honest, I have never tried any of this street food!).

We are quite famous for our Pork Barbecue and we have truly mastered it, I believe. My hubby who is not a pork fan at all, was suddenly converted to eating Pork when he tasted the Inihaw na Liempo (Grilled Pork Belly) at a beach resort we stayed in while vacationing in Manila. That was the best.

After several attempts I can now say, I am happy to have made my own version of Inihaw na Liempo. I like that it is flavorful and comes out really tender.

We do have a secret ingredient and this is what sets the Filipino Pork Barbecue apart….care to know what it is? Then read the recipe and find out what tenderizes the meat.

I used Pork Belly here but feel free to use Pork Chops or your favorite cut of pork (provided there is a little bit of fat in it so it will be more flavorful).

You can chop the pork meat into bite-size pieces and then skewer them or leave them as-is and chop them afterward, it’s really up to you. Enjoy this super easy and really a no-fail recipe, at least it hasn’t failed me yet.

FOR FULL RECIPE & INSTRUCTIONS and to PRINT, SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW.

What are the INGREDIENTS for Inihaw na Liempo (Filipino Grilled Pork Belly Barbecue)?

  • Pork Liempo or pork belly – you can also use pork chops or pork shoulder – must have a little fat for extra flavor.

For the Marinade:

  • 7 UP or Sprite – or your favorite lemon-lime soda.
  • Soy Sauce
  • Lemon Juice – freshly squeezed.
  • Whole garlic – peeled and crushed.
  • Worcestershire Sauce
  • Sugar – use brown.
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper – freshly ground.

Baste Recipe:

  • Ketchup – use Filipino Banana Ketchup (may be found in Asian stores) for a more authentic recipe.
  • Sugar
  • Oil

How do you make Inihaw na Liempo (Filipinp Grilled Pork Belly Barbecue)?


Depending on the pork cut you are using, you can slice them into bite-size pieces if you will use skewers for grilling. If you are using pre-cut pork chops, you can leave them as is.

Mix together all the marinade ingredients in a large glass bowl or dish. Place the pork pieces in the bowl and marinate for at least 4 hours but preferably overnight for more flavor absorption.

Preheat the grill. Thread the pork pieces in the skewers, if using. If they are bamboo skewers you need to soak them in water first for about 30 minutes to avoid burning them during grilling.

Mix all the basting ingredients in a bowl. Grill the meat for about 3-4 minutes per side or until slightly charred and cooked through.

This may take longer if you are using Pork chops so adjust accordingly. Using a kitchen brush, baste with the sweet chili and ketchup sauce on both sides as you grill.

To know if they are fully cooked, just get a piece of pork and slice it in the middle and see if the juices are already clear and the meat is no longer red.

Enjoy! This is perfect with a bowl of rice. You can also have it with a vinegar and garlic dipping sauce on the side! Yummmmm!!!

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Inihaw na Liempo (Pinoy Pork Belly Barbecue)

This is a tried and tested, no-fail recipe for Grilled Pork Belly (Inihaw an Liempo). The meat comes out tender and so tasty every time!
Course Dinner, Main
Cuisine Asian Cuisine, Filipino, South East Asian
Keyword how to make filipino barbecue with sprite, how to make filipino pork barbecue, how to make filipino pork skewers, inihaw na liempo ingredients, use sprite as meat tenderizer
Servings 8
Calories 222 kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs 1 Kilo Pork Liempo (Pork belly, pork chops or pork shoulder – must have a little fat)

For the Marinade

  • 2 cups 7 UP or Sprite
  • 1/2 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup Lemon Juice
  • 1 whole garlic peeled and crushed
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 1/2 tbsp freshly ground pepper

Baste Recipe

  • 1 cup ketchup preferably the Filipino Banana Ketchup, if you’re able to get it from an Asian store
  • 3 tablespoons sugar (adjust to taste)
  • 1 tbsp oil

Instructions

  1. Depending on the pork cut you are using, you can slice them into bite-size pieces if you will use skewers for grilling. If you are using pre-cut pork chops, you can leave them as is. If you are using pork belly, make sure that they are sliced in long thin strips (like the size and thickness of flanken style ribs).
  2. Mix together all the marinade ingredients in a large glass bowl or dish. Place the pork pieces in the bowl and marinate for at least 4 hours but preferably overnight for more flavor absorption.
  3. Preheat the grill. If you are using bamboo skewers you need to soak them in water first for about 30 minutes to avoid burning them during grilling. Thread the pork pieces in the skewers. If not, simply drain the meat pieces.
  4. Mix all the basting ingredients in a bowl. Grill the meat for about 3-4 minutes per side or until nicely charred and cooked through (this applies if you are doing the pork skewers). Adjust the time depending on the type of meat and cut you are using. Grilling may take longer if you are using pork chops so adjust accordingly.
  5. To know if they are fully cooked, just get a piece of pork and slice it in the middle and see if the juices are already clear and the meat is no longer red or bloody.
  6. Using a kitchen brush, baste with the ketchup mixture once they’re nearly done. Adding the basting sauce/glaze last will ensure meat won’t burn or char too much.
  7. Enjoy! This is perfect with a bowl of rice. You can also have it with a vinegar and garlic dipping sauce on the side!
Nutrition Facts
Inihaw na Liempo (Pinoy Pork Belly Barbecue)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 222 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Trans Fat 0.01g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 46mg15%
Sodium 2068mg90%
Potassium 400mg11%
Carbohydrates 26g9%
Fiber 0.3g1%
Sugar 22g24%
Protein 16g32%
Vitamin A 164IU3%
Vitamin C 5mg6%
Calcium 26mg3%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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1 Comment

  1. June 20, 2014 / 11:28 pm

    Your pork looks fab! I do hope you'll bring it on over to Food on FRiday: Chillies over at Carole's Chatter. Cheers

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