Home » Sweet and Spicy Smoked Pork Belly Burnt Ends

Sweet and Spicy Smoked Pork Belly Burnt Ends

Pork belly burnt ends are one of those barbecue items with a million recipes, and really, there’s no one right way to make them. While there are tons of barbecue pork recipes out there, pork belly burnt ends are one of the easiest ways to turn an inexpensive cut of pork belly into one of the tastiest barbecue treats out there. 

Sweet, spicy, and packed with flavor, this recipe utilizes a delicious Vietnamese hot sauce called Chin Su, which is kind of like sriracha with pho spices added in. Seriously, since I found Chin Su, I’ve almost completely replaced my sriracha usage with this hot sauce, and considering there is currently a sriracha shortage, that’s probably a good thing!

These pork belly burnt ends will last for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or two months in the freezer, but that would mean you didn’t eat the entire batch in one sitting, and given how addicting these are, that’s not a bet I would make!

Sweet and Spicy Chin Su Glazed Pork Belly Burnt Ends.

This recipe is relatively straightforward, and you can absolutely prep the rub in advance. You’ll need to increase the smoker temperature towards the end of the cooking process, so make sure you plan ahead if you are using a charcoal smoker or stick burner. 

For those of you using pellet smokers like my Recteq Patio Legend 410, sit back and relax while your pit turns these pork belly chunks into delicious barbecue ambrosia!


  • 3-5 Pounds of whole pork belly, skin off
  • Brown Sugar
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Kosher Salt
  • Chili Powder
  • Ground Ginger
  • Paprika
  • Soy Sauce
  • Chin Su Hot Sauce
  • Butter

1. Mix your dry rub!

In a mixing bowl, combine the garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt, brown sugar, ground ginger, and paprika. Use a whisk to make sure the spices are evenly distributed. 

You can make this rub well in advance, and it works great on a number of different proteins and veggies, so feel free to increase the recipe as needed!

Rub ingredients

2. Preheat your smoker. 

Before you get down to preparing your pork belly, preheat your smoker to 275°f. If you’re using a pellet grill, electric or propane smoker, just dial in your thermostat and wait until the temperature has evened out. 

If you are using a charcoal smoker or stick burner, make sure to give the fire time to get rolling so your smoker is burning as clean as possible when you put the pork belly in. Dirty smoke is the enemy of good barbecue!

3. Score your pork belly burnt ends

Using a sharp knife, score the fat side of the pork belly in a diamond pattern about 1/4″ deep and 1″ wide. This will provide more surface area to render the pork belly fat as it cooks, and it also allows the rub to penetrate deeper into the meat!

If you can only find the skin on pork belly, make sure to remove the skin before scoring the fat side. You can leave the skin on if you want, but the rub won’t penetrate as deeply, and you’ll need to cook it for longer to render the skin and create proper chicharron!

4. Rub the pork belly!

Once scored, rub both sides of the belly with the seasoning blend. Make sure to reserve at least a 1/4 of the rub for the sauce/glazing step later on!

Seasoned Pork Belly

5. Load the pork belly into the smoker.

Once your belly is rubbed and ready, load it into the cooking chamber of your smoker and button up your pit. If you’re using a pit thermometer or wireless meat thermometer, make sure to insert your probe into the thickest part of the belly so you get the most accurate readings possible. 

Once buttoned up, sit back and let your pit do its magic for ~2 hours or until your belly reaches 160°f. 

6. Cut the pork belly into 1″x1″ cubes.

After 2 hours have elapsed, or the internal temperature reaches 160°f, remove the pork belly from the smoker and cut the belly into 1″x1″ cubes using a sharp knife. 

At this point, you can add a bit more rub to the belly cubes if you like and then return them to the smoker for another 20-30 minutes. Place the pork belly cubes directly on the grill grate, if you’re worried about the cubes slipping through the grate you can place a wire rack or resting rack over the grill before putting the cubes back on. 

You want to give them a bit more time in the smoker before building glazing so they have enough time to render and create a bit of bark on all sides. 

Pork Belly Cubes in Smoker

7. Place the pork belly cubes on a baking sheet and build your BBQ sauce!

Instead of tossing the pork belly in a premade BBQ sauce, this recipe requires you to season the pork belly cubes on a cookie sheet or disposable aluminum pan and then tent them in aluminum foil. This allows them to create a delicious pan sauce/glaze while cooking and helps give them a unique “caramel/candy” aspect that will make them the standout of your next barbecue gathering!

To build the sauce, place the cubes on a cookie sheet and drizzle them with chin su hot sauce, butter, brown sugar, soy sauce, and the remaining barbecue rub. Tent the entire tray with a layer of tin foil and return them to the smoker. Allow the pork belly burnt ends to cook, covered with the tin foil for 25 minutes before moving on to the next step. 

Pork Belly Cubes and Glaze Ingredients on Sheet Tray

8. Remove the aluminum foil and continue to cook your pork belly until the burnt ends are fork-tender. 

After the burnt ends have cooked covered for 25-30 minutes, go ahead and remove the tin foil and allow them to continue to carmelize. 

With most barbecue recipes, you want to keep the smoker door closed as much as possible, but at this point, you’ll want to flip and turn the burnt ends every 5-10 minutes so they glaze evenly.

You will notice the fat in the baking sheet begin to foam and lightly bubble, and this is completely normal. Many burnt-end recipes call for a sticky/sweet sauce that coats the pork belly completely, while this recipe is intended to separate into fat/sugars and allow the sugars to caramelize in the pan as the pork belly cooks. This caramelization of the bbq sauce mixture creates a crisp, almost candy-like caramel glaze that’s insanely addicting. 

Pork Belly Burnt Ends finishing in the smoker

9. Serve and Enjoy!

Once the pork belly burnt ends have reached an internal temperature of 205° or are completely fork tender, remove them from the smoker and enjoy.

Allow the burnt ends to rest for 10-15 minutes before serving, and enjoy with your favorite BBQ sauce and accompaniments like this savory corn pudding!

Finished Pork Belly Burnt Ends

Sweet and Spicy Smoked Pork Belly Burnt Ends

4 from 2 votes
Recipe by Paul Kostandin Course: Recipes.Cuisine: BarbecueDifficulty: Intermediate


Prep time


Cooking time





Try these Sweet & Spicy Chin Su Glazed Pork Belly Burnt Ends: a blend of sugary bliss & spicy zest. Dive in for a melt-in-your-mouth bbq delight!


  • For the Pork Belly
  • 3-5 lbs 3-5 Pork Belly, Skin Off

  • 1 tbsp 1 Kosher Salt

  • 1 tbsp 1 Light Brown Sugar

  • 1 tbsp 1 Paprika

  • 1 tsp 1 Ground Ginger

  • 1 tsp 1 Chili Powder

  • 1 tsp 1 Onion Powder

  • 1 tsp 1 Garlic Powder

  • For the Glaze
  • 1 tsp 1 Butter, cut into cubes

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Chin Su Hot Sauce

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Dark Brown Sugar

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 Soy Sauce


  • Preheat your smoker to 275°f.
  • Using a sharp knife, score the fat/skin side of the pork belly in a diamond pattern, spacing the cuts 1 inch apart.
  • Mix the ingredients kosher salt, paprika, brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, ground ginger, and chili powder together in a small mixing bowl to create the seasoning rub.
  • Sprinkle the rub evenly over both sides of the pork belly and rub the seasoning into the belly, especially the scored skin side of the belly. Reserve some of the seasoning for the second cooking stage.
  • Once the smoker is preheated, place the seasoned pork belly in the cooking chamber scored side up and close the lid.
  • Cook the pork belly for ~2 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 160°f.
  • Cut your belly into chunks!
  • Once the pork belly has cooked for 2 hours or reached 160°f internal temperature, remove the belly from the smoker and cut into 1″x1″ chunks.
  • Toss the pork belly cubes in the remaining seasoning rub and then place them on the grill grate of your smoker.
  • Once all the cubes are situated in your smoker, close the lid and continue to cook them for 30 more minutes.
  • Glaze your burnt ends.
  • After your pork belly cubes have cooked for 30-40 minutes, remove them from our smoker and place them on a cookie sheet or disposable aluminum baking pan.
  • Add the cubed butter to the pans and then the brown sugar, chin su hot sauce, and soy sauce.
  • Give the cubes a quick toss in the seasoning/sauces, and then cover the pan in aluminum foil before returning the pan of pork belly cubes to the smoker.
  • Allow the pork belly burnt ends to cook covered in foil for 20 minutes before removing the foil and continuing to cook the burnt ends for another 30 minutes.
  • Check on the pork belly burnt ends every 5-10 minutes during the last cooking stage, and make sure to turn the burnt ends with tongs or a spatula so they cook evenly and become fully glazed in the sauce.
  • Once the pork belly burnt ends reach an internal temperature of 206°f remove them from the smoker and allow them to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving.

Final Thoughts.

Whether you’re making these pork belly burnt ends for your weekly meal prep or for a family gathering, this recipe is the perfect combination of sweet, spicy, and savory, and they are sure to keep you coming back bite after bite. 

Make sure to save the leftover fat from the cooking sheet or aluminum pan, it makes an awesome addition to a bowl of ramen or as a cooking medium for pasta dishes like cacio y pepe, or even a pan of delicious fried rice! Keep the fat in your refrigerator for up to 2 weeks or in your freezer for up to a month before using. 

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