How to make Char Siu at Home

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Easy Cantonese BBQ Pork Recipe


How to make Char Siu at home? It seems like a daunting task that only the brave and patient would embark, but Cantonese barbecue meats can be made at home rather easily. 

It won’t be a 30 minute job, nor would it be a one-pot affair. However, this recipe I have from YouTuber: 點 Cook Guide makes it possible to get Char Siu that tastes just like the ones at the roast meat shops in Hong Kong. 

So if you’re looking to impress at your next dinner party, or your mother-in-law 

Char Siu at Home


SERVES 2 or 3

600g of pork shoulder (梅頭豬肉)

15g rice wine

45g soy sauce

105g maltose

20g sugar

20g oyster sauce ground white pepper to taste

1 large garlic clove

2 slices of ginger


1. Prep the pork = trim the fat IF there’s big chunks of it, you want some fat so don’t get rid of it all, but you also don’t want a big lump of it.

2. Prep the pork = try to cut the pork in a way that it is evenly thick to minimise burning and for it to cook evenly. Use common sense here. If there’s a part that’s particularly thick, you can butterfly it to thin it out.

3. Mix all other ingredients except for the garlic, ginger and 45g of maltose in a bowl- you may need to microwave the mixture for a few seconds to be able to stir it properly. So be sure to use a microwavable bowl.

4. Cut 2 slices of ginger

5. Get a big clove of garlic, cut the top and end, take the peel off and use your knife to smack it slightly, just enough so it splits.

6. Put everything into a zip lock bag and move the bag about so the meat is fully coated. Push the air out of the bag before zip locking it.

7. Place in fridge to marinate overnight.


char siu cooked

8. Take the bag of marinated meat out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature (about an hour or two before roasting)

9. Preheat the oven to 200C and at the same time prep the glaze while you wait for the meat to reach room temperature. The glaze consists of 60g of maltose + 30g of the marinade from the ziplock bag. Place the mixture in a small pot over low heat and stir constantly until its fully incorporated into a sauce, you will know once small bubbles start to appear on the edge of the pot. (you can make as much as you want, the ratio is 2:1)

10. Prep your baking tray by lining it with foil and then placing a wire rack on top. Place your meat on top and brush it with the glaze before putting it into the oven.

11. You are going to cook the char siu for 20 – 30 min at 200c. You will need to take it out every 5 minutes to glaze it on both sides and then flip it. You will do this until cooked. (that depends on how thick your pork is but around 20 – 40 minutes)

12. Let the char siu rest before slicing it

13. Use the final bit of glaze you set aside earlier to drizzle on top.

Tips: Soak your spoon in hot water before scooping the maltose to avoid it sticking. 

Start cooking your rice at the same time you pop your Char Siu in the oven for both to be ready at around the same time. 

Janice Fung

Janice Fung

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