Caramelised Pork Belly (Thit Kho)

    1 hour 25 min

    This dish is very popular in Vietnamese households for everyday eating but is also traditionally served during Tet, the Vietnamese Lunar New Year. The longer you cook the pork belly, the more tender it becomes.

    31 people made this

    Serves: 6 

    • 1kg pork belly, cleaned and cut into 3cm pieces with layers of skin, fat and meat
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 5 shallots, sliced
    • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
    • black pepper
    • 375ml coconut water
    • 6 hard boiled eggs

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:1hr  ›  Extra time:10min resting  ›  Ready in:1hr25min 

    1. In a large wok, heat the sugar over medium heat until it melts and caramelises into a light brown syrup. Don't let it burn! Add the pork and raise the heat to high. Stir and cook to render some fat then add the shallots and garlic.
    2. Add the fish sauce and black pepper to taste and stir to evenly coat the meat. Pour in the coconut water and bring to the boil. The liquid should reach about 3/4 way up the meat.
    3. Add the eggs and simmer covered over low heat for at least 1 hour, until the pork is tender. Check occasionally that the liquid doesn't evaporate too much. Add water a little at a time if the sauce is drying out.
    4. Remove from the heat and let the dish stand for at least 10 minutes. Skim the fat from the surface of the sauce and serve with rice.

    Cook's tip

    If you make this dish ahead, the fat will congeal on the surface making it easier to remove it, and a little healthier! This also allows the flavours to meld a little more.

    Coconut water

    100% pure coconut water, like Vita Coco, is available online or in some Whole Foods, Holland and Barrett and Waitrose stores.

    Recently viewed

    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (6)


    Brillaint dish, the sweetness from the caramlised pork belly as well as the salt from the meat works lovely together. easy to follow and very tatsy . Highly recommand  -  02 Oct 2012


    I have made this a few times now and it always go down well It also is nice without the eggs if you don't have any.  -  26 Sep 2016


    It was a little too sweet for my liking, ended up adding water to bring down the sweetness. I also added two star anise to give it some additional flavor (just like my mom made). Overall, good recipe, I would make again.  -  18 Jun 2016  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)