Braised Pork Belly Sliders With Asian Slaw

12 sliders
2 hr

Tender, juicy pork belly sliders will be the hit at your next picnic, party, or gathering! Pork belly is slow-cooked in a flavorful Chinese five spice braising liquid until it's fall-apart tender, and gets topped with a bright Asian-inspired slaw. Serve on your favorite slider buns and top with fresh jalapeño slices and extra cilantro.

Asian pork belly slider on a bun and plate.

Foodtalk Recommends!

Enjoy this recipe with this highly reviewed Chinese five spice powder that Amazon reviewers swear by!

Why You'll Love This Recipe

Easy recipe - while the pork belly sliders recipe takes a bit of time to allow the meat to cook down, this is actually an easy two-pot appetizer, meal, or party food! The pork belly can be braised up to three days in advance, then reheated the day you plan to serve it.

Melt in your mouth tender - the pork belly slow cooks in a flavorful braising liquid that makes it so tender. The liquid cooks down into a sticky sauce that coats every piece of pork belly. Paired with the crunchy slaw and soft slider buns, it makes for the perfect texture in every bite.

Asian inspired flavors - the braising liquid is full of ginger and Chinese five spice powder, and the slaw has tangy rice vinegar and toasted sesame oil to tie all the flavors together.

Serve these alongside some other fun party appetizers for a full spread: Puff Pastry Tomato Tart, Phyllo Fried Feta with Hot Honey, or Garlic Parmesan Bread Bites.


Braised pork belly ingredients.
Asian slaw ingredients.
  • Pork belly. This should be cut into 2-inch pieces (length) and 1-inch thick.
  • Soy sauce.
  • Chinese five spice powder. A crucial flavor to the pork belly! This powder typically includes star anise, cloves, Chinese cinnamon, peppercorns, and fennel seeds though there can be some spice variations. You can find this in the spice section or at an Asian grocery store.
  • Rice vinegar. Used in both the braising liquid and coleslaw, this helps to cut through the fattiness of the pork belly.
  • Aromatics. Fresh ginger, fresh garlic, and onion are used in the braising liquid.
  • Beer. I find a lager is best, or even a light beer. Stay away from darker beers or IPAs, as they can turn the dish a bit bitter.
  • Beef stock. Pork stock can also be used in the recipe, but the pork belly will have a slightly lighter color in the end.
  • Vegetables. Cilantro, fresh jalapeño, napa cabbage, carrot, and scallions are used in the slaw.
  • Sesame oil. Used in the slaw and should not be omitted or substituted.
  • Slider rolls. Use any variety you'd like here. Some good options are brioche buns, Hawaiian rolls, dinner rolls or even steamed buns.

See recipe card for full ingredients list and quantities.

Where and How to Buy Pork Belly

Pork belly can come in a few different shapes and sizes. You may be able to find this sliced into thick strips in the pre-packed meat section of the grocery store.

Otherwise, ask the butcher counter for a slab. You can even ask them to slice it how you need it for your recipe!

You'll see that there's quite a bit of fat in this cut of meat. The braising time pulls out a lot of the fat, leaving both the meat and the remaining fat incredibly tender.

Substitutions and Variations

  • Omit the beer in the braising liquid and add an additional cup of beef stock.
  • Add 2-3 tablespoons of Sambal Oelek or Sriracha at the end of the braising time to create a spicy pork belly.

How to Make This Recipe

Cut pork belly in a pan.

One: Add the pork belly to a braising pan or large heavy-bottomed pot and turn to medium heat. Brown on all sides, working in batches if needed.

Pork belly in a pot with braising liquid.

Two: Add the onions, aromatics, and all braising ingredients and boil for 15 minutes. Then, reduce to a simmer and cover, cooking for 45 minutes.

Hot tip! The pork belly will splatter everywhere during the browning process. Use a splatter screen during this process, and remove the pan from the heat to turn the pork belly and reduce splattering, then return to the heat.

A spoon removed fat from the pork belly pan.

Three: Use a spoon to remove the layer of liquid fat from the top of the braising liquid.

A spoon pours braising liquid on top of cooked pork belly.

Four: Cook for an additional 30 minutes, then remove any additional fat. Boil (no lid) until the liquid is completely reduced and turns into a sticky sauce. Remove the pieces of ginger and discard.

Chef's Note! A lot of fat will cook out of the pork belly. When you dip a spoon into the liquid, the fat will be clear and the braising liquid will be dark brown. Try to only skim off the fat, but you'll inevitably remove a bit of liquid. A metal spoon actually works best! Skim around the sides of the pot to remove.

Coleslaw dressing in a bowl.

Five: Whisk together all slaw dressing ingredients in a bowl and set aside.

A spoon mixes Asian slaw in a bowl.

Six: Chop and shred the vegetables, add the vinegar mix, and toss to combine. Add to the assembled sliders.

Hot tip! Assemble the slaw right before serving or assembling the sliders to keep maximum crunch.

Assembling the Pork Belly Sliders

  • Open the slider buns (toast, if you feel like it!)
  • Add one to two pieces of pork belly.
  • Drizzle on extra sauce.
  • Top with a large spoon full of slaw.
  • Add 2-3 pieces of thinly sliced jalapeño, and fresh cilantro leaves.
  • Add the top bun, and gently push down.
  • Add a toothpick into the center, if desired.

Making the Pork Belly Ahead of Time

The pork belly can be made up to three days in advance and stored in the fridge until ready to use. In this method, you won't need to skim off any fat during the cooking process, and instead will remove it once the pork has been stored in the fridge and has solidified.

To use the make-ahead method:

  1. Cook the pork belly fully covered for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
  2. Allow the pork to cool and either store the entire dish in the fridge, or transfer it to a wide, shallow dish or Tupperware and refrigerate.
  3. Store the pork for up to three days.
  4. Prior to serving, remove all of the solidified fat and discard.
  5. Add to a large pan and heat over medium-high heat, uncovered, allowing the mixture to bubble and the mixture to boil down until thick and sticky, Turn the pieces of pork belly occasionally during the process.

Expert Tips

  • Skim off as much fat as possible during the braising process.
  • Reduce the sauce at the end until thick and sticky.
  • Dress and toss the slaw right before serving to keep the maximum crunch.
  • Drizzle extra sauce on top of each piece of pork belly once on the slider bun.
  • Serve with very thinly sliced fresh jalapeños and extra cilantro for the best flavor.

Recipe FAQs

Why does my pork belly taste very chewy?This is likely because it hasn't cooked long enough. If all of the liquid has cooked out, add water to almost over the meat, and continue simmering until the pork belly is tender. Then, reduce the liquid by boiling it uncovered.

Does pork belly get more tender the longer you cook it?Yes. Cooking the pork belly at a low simmer will continue to get more tender as the time period goes on. Eventually, it will completely break down and fall apart.

What goes well with pork belly slices?Asian flavors and barbecue sauces are common. These can be served as is, fried, with dipping sauces, rice, on buns, in tortillas, etc. The possibilities are endless!


Assembled pork belly sliders should be enjoyed within a few hours.

Store the pork belly in the fridge for 3-4 days. Reheat gently in a saucepan until hot and the sauce loosens.

Store the assembled slaw for two days in a sealed container in the fridge. Note that it will lose crunchiness.

Pork belly on a bun with cilantro on top and asian slaw on the side.
Pork belly slider cut in half on a plate.

More Appetizer Recipes You'll Love

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Homemade Pepperoni Bread

Puff Pastry Ham and Cheese Turnovers

Crab Pretzel

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Braised Pork Belly Sliders With Asian Slaw
Recipe details
  • 12  sliders
  • Prep time: 30 Minutes Cook time: 90 Minutes Total time: 2 hr
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  • ▢ 2 lbs pork belly cut into 2-inch long pieces (about 1 inch thick)
  • ▢ 1 yellow onion thinly sliced
  • ▢ 2 inch piece of ginger sliced
  • ▢ 3 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
  • ▢ 1 1/2 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
  • ▢ 1 cup beer lager or light beer
  • ▢ 3 cups beef broth
  • ▢ 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • ▢ 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • ▢ 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ▢ 1 cup shredded cabbage heaping cup
  • ▢ 1/3 cup carrot shredded, about 1 large carrot
  • ▢ 3 scallions sliced in matchsticks
  • ▢ 1 fresh jalapeno very thinly sliced
  • ▢ 1/4 cup cilantro plus extra for garnish
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ▢ 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • ▢ 1 tablespoon honey
  • ▢ 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  • ▢ 12 slider buns

Place a heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat and add the pork belly. Fry on each side until golden brown. Note the fat will splatter out so use a grease mesh if you have one.2 lbs pork belly
Once browned, add the yellow onion, ginger, garlic and five spice powder and stir until fragrant.1 yellow onion, 2 inch piece of ginger, 3 cloves garlic, 1 ½ teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
Add the beer, beef broth, soy sauce, rice vinegar and sugar and stir to combine.1 cup beer, 3 cups beef broth, ¼ cup soy sauce, 2 tablespoons rice vinegar, 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
Bring to a boil and cook for 15 minutes, then reduce to a low simmer and cover with a lid.
Cook for 45 minutes, then use a spoon to skim off as much melted fat as possible.
Cover again, and cook for an additional 30 minutes. By this point, the pork belly and fat should be incredibly tender and soft.
If the liquid has not yet reduced to a syrup-like consistency, increase the heat (with the lid removed) and bubble until it’s a reduced, sticky liquid coating the pork belly. Keep the pork belly warming on low.
Shred the cabbage and carrots. Slice the scallions, jalapeño, and chop the cilantro and set aside.1 cup shredded cabbage, ⅓ cup carrot, 3 scallions, 1 fresh jalapeno, ¼ cup cilantro
In a large bowl, whisk together the sesame oil, rice vinegar, honey, and sesame seeds. Add the vegetables and toss to combine. 1 teaspoon sesame oil, ¼ cup rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
Toast the buns, if desired, then add 1-2 pieces of pork belly to the bottom piece. Drizzle sauce over top, then spoon on Asian slaw.12 slider buns
Top the slaw with 2-3 slices of jalapeños and extra cilantro. Add the top bun and gently press down. Add a toothpick, if desired, then serve.
  • The sliders are best enjoyed while the pork belly is hot or warm.
  • Pre-assemble and serve the sliders, or keep the pork belly warming on the stove or in a small crock pot and allow people to make their own.
  • If desired, omit the beer and add an additional cup of beef stock.
  • Tips:
  • Skim off as much fat as possible during the braising process.
  • Reduce the sauce at the end until thick and sticky.
  • Dress and toss the slaw right before serving to keep the maximum crunch.
  • Drizzle extra sauce on top of each piece of pork belly once on the slider bun.
The Cozy Plum | Callan
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