Making Lechon Kawali

Lechon kawali, also known as pan-roasted pork, is sometimes confused with lechon, a popular Filipino dish that is also the country of the Philippines. While lechon is cooked in a pit of burning charcoal, lechon kawali is prepared by first boiling and then deep-frying a piece of the pig (often the pork belly).

Please serve a cup of rice and a lechon kawali! When I was in high school, I would typically order this at least once a week. One of the better versions of this dish is served in our school cafeteria. The pork is tastiest when it has just been taken out of the pot. It is quite hot and crispy.

Lechon Kawali: What Is It?

The most straightforward way to define lechon kawali is as crispy deep-fried pork. Typically, it is prepared with pork belly, also known as liempo. White rice should be served alongside this dish for lunch or dinner. It tastes good with dipping sauce as well.

This meal should not be confused with lechon, which is regarded as the Philippines’ national cuisine. Different techniques are used to cook the two dishes. Additionally, they differ in terms of appearance.
Lechon kawali is named after the Kawali, a traditional cooking pan used to prepare it. It is the standard pan that is present in practically every Filipino home. The “go-to” pan for everyday cooking is this one.

The term “lechon” was likely adopted to alludes to the crunchy texture of the classic lechon baboy.

Cooking Lechon Kawali

The preparation of lechon kawali involves two steps. The pig belly is boiled in the first step before being deep-fried until the skin is crispy.

First, let’s discuss the boiling procedure. To get that result of crispy skin, this is required. The results of simply frying pork without boiling will differ.

The pork belly must become extremely soft during this process. In a large saucepan, begin by bringing water to a boil. I also season with salt and other ingredients. While the pork is boiling, the flavors are absorbed. The bare minimum is thirty minutes. If more time is needed, feel free to extend it. When creating crispy pata, the procedure is the same.

The skin of the pork belly becomes crispy and golden brown when it is deep-fried. To do this, warm up some oil in a large cooking pot. Before frying the boiled pig belly, make sure to season it thoroughly. It contributes to adding flavor.

Put a piece of pork belly into the heated oil in the pan with caution, and keep your guard up by holding the pot lid. If required, partially cover the area as hot oil begins to splatter. Completely covering the pot is not advised because it holds the steam that eventually turns to water. As a result, when oil drips from the base of the cover, it splatters more. Cook the pork belly over medium heat until it is crispy. Here is a useful forum where you can learn more about frying oil splatter mitigation. When not enough oil is utilized, it is advised to flip the pork belly over to intricately fried the other side. Your lechon kawali will be cooked consistently in this way.

The deep-fried pork should be placed on a wire rack to cool. Cut into pieces for serving. The ideal accompaniment to this is lechon sauce. As a dipping sauce, you can alternatively use a soy sauce and calamines mixture.

Try this recipe for lechon kawali. Tell me what you believe.

You made this, right? If you take a picture, make sure to tag us @panlasangpinoy on Instagram or use the hashtag #panlasangpinoy so we can see what you come up with!

Lechon Kawali Recipe

This is a recipe for lechon kawali or crispy deep fried pork belly.
Prep: 10minutes 
Cook: 50minutes 
Total: 1hour 


  • 2 lbs. pork belly
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons whole pepper corn
  • 5 pieces dried bay leaves
  • 3 cups cooking Oil
  • 34 ounces Water


  • Pour water on cooking pot. Boil
  • Add the pork belly and 1 tablespoon of salt. Put some pepper pepper and bay leaves. Boil for 30 minutes or until meat gets tender
  • Remove the meat from the pot and let it cool down for a few minutes
  • Spread 1 tablespoon of salt on the pork belly. Make sure to distribute it evenly on all sections
  • Start to deep fry the boiled meat. Heat oil on a cooking pot.
  • Put each piece of boiled pork belly into the hot oil with extra caution. Fry until crispy. Turn the meat over to completely fry the opposite side until crispy. Note: be extra careful when frying as oil can splatter. You can use the cover of the pot to cover it while oil splatters, but do not cover completely as steam will be trapped. It will cause more splatters.
  • Remove the meat from the cooking pot. Arrange on a wire rack to cool down.  Slice according to desired portions
  • Serve with lechon sauce. Share and Enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Serving: 6g Calories: 893kcal (45%) Carbohydrates: 2g (1%) Protein: 14g (28%) Fat: 91g (140%) Saturated Fat: 30g (150%) Cholesterol: 108mg (36%) Sodium: 2382mg (99%) Potassium: 324mg (9%) Fiber: 1g (4%) Vitamin A: 85IU (2%) Vitamin C: 0.8mg (1%) Calcium: 34mg (3%) Iron: 1.5mg (8%)


What is Lechon Kawali, and how is it prepared?

Lechon Kawali is a popular Filipino dish consisting of deep-fried pork belly. The pork belly is first boiled until tender, then air-dried or refrigerated to remove excess moisture. Finally, it is deep-fried until the skin is crispy and golden while the meat remains tender and flavorful.

How can I achieve the perfect crispy skin when making Lechon Kawali?

To achieve the perfect crispy skin, make sure the pork belly is thoroughly dried before frying. After boiling, you can pat it dry with paper towels or let it air-dry in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight. Before frying, you can also rub the skin with vinegar or prick it with a fork to help the skin crisp up more effectively.

Can I use a different cut of pork for Lechon Kawali?

While traditional Lechon Kawali is made using pork belly, you can experiment with other cuts of pork, such as pork shoulder or pork loin. However, keep in mind that the texture and cooking time may vary, so adjustments might be needed.

Is it necessary to marinate the pork before cooking Lechon Kawali?

Marinating the pork before cooking is optional, as the dish is already flavorful from the boiling and frying process. However, some people do prefer to marinate the pork belly with garlic, soy sauce, and other seasonings to add an extra layer of taste.

What are some popular dipping sauces to serve with Lechon Kawali?

Lechon Kawali is often served with a variety of dipping sauces to enhance the overall taste. Two common options are Mang Tomas sauce, a liver-based sauce with a sweet and savory flavor, and a simple soy-vinegar dip with minced garlic and chili for added kick. Some also enjoy pairing it with spicy vinegar or banana ketchup for a unique twist.

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