Smoked pork belly skewers brined overnight and slathered in a BBQ sauce while smoked to give it caramelized edges. A sinfully delicious dish that goes great with coleslaw, potato salad, and other staple barbecue side dishes.
BBQ pork belly is so mouth-wateringly good that it feels like you’re doing something you shouldn’t. If you have never tried pork belly before, get ready to become a convert.
This inexpensive cut of pork tastes rich and can handle almost any flavor profile you throw at it. For this pork dish, I wanted a true BBQ experience and the smokey final result absolutely delivers.
What Is Pork Belly?
Pork belly is exactly what it sounds like; the meat is taken from the belly of the pig. It has a high ratio of fat which for meat connoisseurs means more flavor.
Depending on how it is prepared, pork belly can become crispy or extra tender. This pork belly smoker recipe gets both qualities because of the combined brining and smoking methods.
Ingredients for BBQ Smoked Pork Belly Kabobs
- Pork Belly
- BBQ Sauce
- Brown Sugar
Bacon vs Pork Belly
Does this cut sound familiar? Yes, a lot of bacon is made from the same cut but they are not the same.
Bacon is sliced and cured before it can be called bacon. Whereas pork belly is the unprocessed cut of meat.
Should You Brine Pork?
Not all pork cuts need brining and not all pork dishes need it, either. To know whether you should be brining pork beforehand you first need to understand what does brining do to pork.
Brining is similar to marinating but the brine does not really infuse flavors into the meat. It adds moisture, softens the muscles, and enhances its natural flavor profile.
Brining is a good technique to use for tougher lean cuts of meat and proteins that dry out quickly during the cooking process. Chicken breast and pork chops are often brined, for example.
For this particular recipe, I brine the pork belly for two reasons. First, it prevents the pork belly from drying out when it goes in the smoker so that it can reach the right pork belly internal temp while still maintaining its moisture.
Second, the brining protects it from taking on some of the bitterness that comes with a smoking method. I highly recommend pork brine for smoking – it is a game-changer for all your smoked pork belly recipes.
What to Serve with Pork Belly?
I like to prepare these pork belly kabobs when I know we are having a big barbecue the next day.
All of your favorite BBQ side dishes are an excellent companion to the smoked pork belly. Corn on the cob, any kind of slaw or jacket potatoes – almost anything goes.
Let me know how the brining goes for you. Are you convinced that it is a better way of preparing smoked pork dishes? I’d love to see your reactions below and your photos on Instagram.
BBQ Smoked Pork Belly Kabobs
- 1-2 pounds Pork Belly
- BBQ Sauce
- 2 cups Water
- 1 cup Brown Sugar
- 2 tablespoons Salt
- Cut pork belly into even square pieces that are 2" wide and ½" thick. Place pieces on skewers.
- Combine brining ingredients and allow pork to soak for up to 8 hours in the refrigerator.
- Remove pork from the refrigerator.
- Set smoker temperature to 225-235 degrees Fahrenheit. If your smoker has a water pan, fill it about ¾ full with water to help maintain moisture as it cooks. Once the smoker is up to temperature, place skewers in the smoker. Set timer for 2 hours and allow it to smoke for 1 hour of that time. After 1 hour, brush all sides with BBQ sauce.
- Once the meat has reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit (about 2 hours), brush with more BBQ sauce and remove from heat. Allow to rest under tented aluminum foil for 10 minutes before serving.
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