This Char Siu (Chinese BBQ Pork) is out of this world good. Not dry at all. And the flavor, especially when smoked, is outstanding!
Char Siu (Chinese BBQ Pork)
Most Chinese restaurants will serve Char Sui as a side dish or appetizer. At my favorite Chinese restaurant, they will serve this with the main entree alongside the fried rice. No matter how it is served, if made RIGHT, it can easily be my favorite part of the meal. More often than not, unfortunately, when I have gotten Char Siu at restaurants it comes out dry.
Here’s How To Do It Right
After getting my Camp Chef Pellet Grill, I decided it was time to attempt this Chinese BBQ pork at home. I did a high smoke until it reached JUST the right internal temperature, wrapped it in foil for a few minutes, and tried a slice. It was heavenly. I am not even kidding when I say it was by far the best Char Siu pork I have eaten. It was tender, flavorful, and perfect. It blew my favorite Chinese place’s pork out of the water and that is saying something because I used to REALLY love their pork.
The trick to getting this perfect is smoking the pork, however, if you don’t have access to a smoker or pellet grill, I have offered some alternative methods of cooking in with the recipe. Another thing to keep in mind if you want your pork to be nice and tender is to go by internal temperature, NOT cooking time. This is crucial.
Pro Tips for Pork
The National Pork Board (yes, that is a real thing) recommends cooking pork such as tenderloin, to an internal temperature of at least 145-degrees (this is medium-rare temperature). I pulled the pork off of the pellet grill at 147-degrees and it was perfect. Wrapping it in foil for a few minutes will actually allow the internal temperature to increase a little more. This is crucial, even if you aren’t a “medium-rare” meat kind of person. By the time you start eating it will be closer to a true medium. Pork isn’t like beef where you can see the doneness. Honestly, medium rare will look pretty much the same on the inside as medium-well, which is why judging by internal temperature is even more important in this recipe.
Can I Cook It Longer If I Want?
If you are wanting it to be a little more done, feel free to cook it longer (only if you must). Just don’t let the internal temp get above 160 before removing it from the grill/oven or you will have dry pork and you will be sad.
Such a Versatile Meal
As mentioned above, you can serve Char Siu as an appetizer, side dish, or even main dish (with hot mustard — oh my gosh I love hot mustard) but you can also serve it a few other ways. You can dice it into smaller pieces and serve in fried rice (this is what I like to do if we have any left over). I promise it will make the best fried rice you have ever eaten. Make it with our Restaurant Style Fried Rice and substitute the Chinese BBQ pork for the ham. It will make all the difference in the world.
You can also slice up the pork and use it in Pork Banh Mi Sandwiches (it is so stinkin’ good. My mouth is watering right now just thinking about it). You are going to love them! In the meantime, enjoy this Chinese BBQ pork!
How To Make Char Siu (Chinese BBQ Pork)
- 2 pounds pork tenderloin (or 2 pounds pork tenderloin tips)
- 1/2 cup teriyaki sauce we used Mr. Yoshidas
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4. cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons Hoisin sauce
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon Chinese 5 spice powder optional
- a few drops red food coloring optional, it just gives it that Chinese BBQ pork look
- Place pork in a large Ziploc bag.
- Combine all remaining ingredients in medium-sized bowl and pour into Ziploc bag with the pork.
- Press out all the air from the bag, seal tightly, and refrigerate.
- Marinade 4+ hours or overnight (the longer the better).
- Remove pork from fridge about 20 minutes before cooking to allow pork to reach close to room temperature. Drain marinade choose cooking method below:
To smoke the pork (preferred method):
- Set smoker/pellet grill to “high smoke” (220-degrees F) and remove when internal temperature reaches 147-degrees F* (this should take appx. 1 hour. Remove from smoker and wrap in foil. Allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.
- Grill over medium heat until internal temperature reaches between 147-160* (medium rare to medium). Remove when desired temperature is reached, wrap in foil.
To Oven Roast the Pork:
- Preheat oven to 375-degrees. Roast for appx 1 hour or until internal temp reaches at least 147 degrees.
- Slice into 1/4″ slices and serve immediately.
- Smoker Pellet Grill
- Outdoor Barbecue Grill