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Korean spiced BBQ Pork – Char sui

a close up of food on a plate

Korean spiced BBQ PORK – Char Sui Recipe


  • 2-3 lbs pork shoulder (grab a meaty one)
  • 2 tablespoons cooking molasses (not blackstrap molasses as it’s a bit bitter)
  • 1-2 cubes red fermented tofu (and 4 teaspoons of the sauce, mashed together) – this is also known as red bean curd
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic (roughly chopped)
  • 4 slices of ginger (roughly chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five spice (recipe below)
  • 2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine
  • (to taste) 1 tablespoon Gochugaru (Korean red chili) for a kick of spice
  • 2 tbs honey


Cutting and Marinating the Meat

  1. Cut the pork shoulder into thin 3 inch thick strips. (Cooks faster and absorbs marinade more evenly)
  2. Combine the ingredients in the marinade section into a ziplock or a big bowl and combine it with the pork.
  3. Marinate it in the fridge for 24 hours.

Preparing the Glaze

  1. Remove the meat from the marinade and let it sit for an hour in room temperature.
  2. Reserve the marinade into a small bowl and remove the garlic bits and ginger
  3. Add 2 tablespoons of honey into the marinade and mix. We will use this for glazing at the end of grilling

Grilling the Pork

  1. Heat up BBQ to 325F
  2. Cook the char siu for 15 mins on one side, then flip it for another 10 mins. Check the meat thermometer. Temperature should be around 145F
  3. Glaze 4-5 times, flipping the meat every minute to prevent burning
  4. When the meat looks red, sticky and slightly charred, remove it from the BBQ and let it rest for 20 mins on a plate before cutting into it.
  5. Once the meat has rested, cut it up and enjoy on rice

Make your own 5 spice powder by grinding: 2 tsp Szechuan peppercorns, 1 tbs cinnamon, 1 tsp fennel seed, 1/2 tsp clove, 8 star anise