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Vietnamese grilled pork recipe over charcoal

Vietnamese Grilled Pork with Lemongrass

  • Author: Jess Pryles



5lb pork butt

1/3 cup white sugar

3 tablespoons sambal chili

1/2 cup fish sauce

1/2 cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 stalk lemongrass, chopped

5 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 cups of water


  1. Start by cutting the pork butt up into thin steaks. Not all pieces will be the same size, but you can make them the same thickness, between 1/4 or 1/2 an inch. When cutting, remove and discard any larger seams of fat, or gristly pieces.
  2. Combine all remaining ingredients and stir with a whisk to combine well. Pour the marinade over the pork steaks and then place into the refrigerator for at least 6 and up to 24 hours. Overnight is best.
  3. Fire up a grill to medium high heat, about 450f. Usually, you cook pork to a “safe” temperature but in this case we’re looking to achieve great color and crust. When we have that external sear, the meat will definitely be safely cooked.
  4. Remove the steaks from the marinade, and lay them on the grill. You may need to work in batches. Flip the steaks every 1-2 minutes. Initially, they will develop a slight color, but as they cook and the sugars caramelize, the color will start to develop very rapidly, so keep an eye on them. I personally prefer a bit of char and crust around the edges. Cook the steaks, flipping frequently, until a deep brown grilled appearance has developed on both sides.
  5. (Optional) Serve with sweet chili dipping sauce or Nuoc Cham