How to make sweet pork with eggs

sweet pork hmong

sweet pork hmong  sweet pork hmong

Sweet pork is a very popular dish at Hmong family gatherings.  This is a popular dish in Asian countries such as China, Vietnam, and the Phillippines.  I will show you how I make my version of sweet pork.  It's very simple and easy! We call this in Hmong nqaj qaab zib or nqaij qab zib

I'll be very straight forward and honest, no one was willing to teach me this recipe.  Everytime I asked someone to show me how they made this dish, they would tell me it was very hard and complicated or they would tell me only half of the recipe.  So for many years, I experimented and tried different ways. I felt really bad asking for other people's recipes because some people don't want to give it away.  That's okay, I respect that.  So I went on my own food journey and tried making sweet pork.  I failed miserably many, many times.  The first time I made it, I put too much sugar and it came out like candied bacon. Hahaha!  The second time I  made it, it was way too salty.  The third time I made it, it tasted great but had no caramel color, it looked like boiled pork only.  As the story goes, many pounds of pork belly, sugar, and soy sauce later .... I finally resulted in this recipe which I use whenever I get a sweet pork craving.  Haha, do let me know what you think and if you have any suggestions how you make it. I'm very interested to know how you make your sweet pork recipe!

Sweet Pork Ingredients:

  • 4 cups pork belly, sliced
  • 7 eggs
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 3-5 pieces of star anise
  • 1 tbsp garlic, chopped
  • 1 thumb ginger, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed tight
  • water, lots of it
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • additional soy sauce for browning eggs
  1. Marinate the pork belly in soy sauce and oyster sauce. Set aside.
  2. Boil the eggs. Then remove the eggshell when done.
  3. In a large pot, add oil.  Add the garlic and ginger. Stir until brown.  Add the brown sugar.
  4. When the sugar is melted, add the pork belly marinade including juices and all.
  5. Stir for a few minutes until the pork gets slightly white.  Then add 4 cups water or more  until the pork is all covered.
  6. Cook for 1 hour or more.  For more tender pork, keep adding water and cook 2 hrs or longer.  You can add the star anise at any time.
  7. The water will evaporate.  When it reaches the thickness you like, remove from heat and serve.

Remember, you can always adjust the taste by adding water, increasing or decreasing the amount of sugar or soy sauce!

I hope you enjoy this recipe. Please leave me a comment if you try it or have any questions!


Yours look wonderful! Have you ever tried adding chopped up lemon grass bulb or substituting the brown sugar with palm sugar?

Hi Krissy, yes I have made it with lemon grass in the past. But I didn't have any lemon grass the day I made the video.  As far as the palm sugar is concerned, I have some in my pantry but haven't quite worked out the right amount for the dish yet.  I've tried melting it in a microwave and then adding to the pork but it ended up too sweet and gave me a migraine.  Haha, will have to keep on testing it to get the right measurement. 

I just use 1 or 2 pieces of rock sugar and sweet soy sauce. Use some dark soy sauce to balance out the sweetness.

I make mine with palm sugar and the sweet soy sauce as well. I make mine in the crockpot and it's super easy. When I have the tutorial ready I'll defintely share this.

Oh, please give us the recipe for your crockpot sweet pork. I also love using the crockpot.

Lilly, I would love to see your recipe! Please do share when you get the chance!

Awesome to see your site. Keep up the great work. Thanks for all you could do. Lets stay in touch. rinyxydq

My dear sister, my daughter was craving for sweet pork with egg. I saw your video and I make some. It was soo good and my daughter loves it. Thanks!

i just bought the app...trying it out..  i will give you feedback asap.  i'm exicted for it... 

Thanks for your support!

What there is an app?

There's an app for my Hmong Phrases, Hmong to English, and English to Hmong apps.  I haven't released my cookbook yet. I plan to do it soon. I'm finishing up the code!

Thanks so much for sharing.  I had also commented on your youtube channel before I came here.  I am dying to try this out.  I have eaten sweet pork with eggs before but I never knew how to make this dish.  With the exact amount of ingredients that  you used for this dish, how many people will it serve?  Also, did you use your iPhone 4s to take the above photos?  If so, the pictures turned out beautiful and so HD quality!!  Thanks again for sharing! You're the best!

This recipe will feed 3-5 servings.  It is a small amount compared to the large servings usually found at hmong family gatherings. I took these pictures on this page with my Nikon dSLR. Haha, the iPhone 4S does take very nice pictures too but I needed a more professional grade image so I went with my dSLR.  Thank you very much for commenting. I appreciate your feedback.


Thanks for always bring so giving on these recipes, not much Hmong people do that.

Hi pk, you're very welcome! My thought is simple: share because you care.  It's only baby steps to teach others about the food we like to eat. We, as hmong, may not have invented the food but we do love to eat and cook them for our loved ones. This is what it's really about.  Sharing with those you love and enjoying a good time with friends.

Thank you for sharing the recipe! I followed your recipe...and only made one minor change...made it with chunks of lean pork instead of the pork belly (because I can't stand eating the fat or skin). It still tasted great. Again, thanks for sharing the recipe!

Hi Christy, glad it all turned out well for you! :-) Makes me happy to know you were able to modify the ingredients to fit your taste!

I sometimes use chicken instead of pork if you want less fatty. Add vegtables like carrots and onions.

Hi Annie,Thank you for the recipe.  I made this for my family for Christmas Eve and everyone loved it.  I thought it was too salty because my sister said that I should put more soy sauce.  I like mine more sweet but I will be making this again for my girl friend so hopefully I will get it correct next time.  Oh and my mom's friend came over and was really impressed with the sweet pork.  She said that I must be a good cook and even she doesn't know how to make it (I felt pretty proud of myself).

Hi Dao! Glad it worked out for you! Adjust the seasoning to suit your taste.  I finally tried mine with sweet soy sauce as someone here suggested, and it does make a difference on taste. You should try that too. Happy eating!

im curious about how you make coconut shrimp annie          and r u hmong like me 

Hi, yes I am hmong :-)  Shrimp is one of my favorite things to eat!!!! There's so many different ways to eat it prepared!

Hey Annie thanks for sharing. I made it today and buoy it was good. It's the best sweet pork I have had in a long time.

Hi Houa, glad it turned out well for you!!!

You should make more video. I am hmong but cannot cook. Thanks for uploading these simple how to do videos.

Hi Ka, I'll add some more videos soon.  :-)

Where can I go buy star anise? I've never heard of that before.  Also, would regular grocery stores have pork belly? Thanks!

You can get star anise from large grocery stores.  Asian stores usually carry them.  I haven't seen pork belly in large american grocery stores. They are sold mostly by asian stores.  I've never tried this recipe with the ham bork belly.  Maybe someday!

The problem with dried star anise is that little pieces sometimes break off and is a pain to find and take out, so I use star anise extract. Just a teaspoon usually does the trick.

I'm so glad I stumbled upon this.  So going to try this recipe sometime soon! will let you know how it goes! Thanks so much :)

Thanks for your comment!

Thanks for sharing this recipe! I too have been wanting to learn how to make this, bur no one was willing to show me and share their recipe. I'm so glad I found you. Keep up the great work and keep on sharing!

Very cool.  :-) Thanks for commenting!

Omg I am so so so so SOoo thankful for this recipe! My husband has never ate this before in his life evn though he's hmong too and I been looking for a recipe! I am happy to have stumble upon your page! Thanks ;) I will try this asap


Your sweet pork looks really good. I am going to try it. Thank you.


Chinese 5-spice powder gives you the same taste as the anise and won't give you a surprise licorice taste if you accidentally bite on it. Chinese 5-spice can be found at any Asian or larger Americn grocery stores.

That would work too.

Great food blog! Thank you for sharing your recipes. I will be trying out your green tapioca layer cake soon. I'm not too good when it comes to desserts.

Good luck and happy eating!

Hi Annie! You're such an inspiration! I've tried just using lean pork and its just dry even when it is tender. So I'm going to try this recipe. And I'm sure it'll be delicious. Thanks for your great vids. Keep up the great work!

You're welcome. Thank you for your comment!

look wonderful, keep it up; other than adding additional soy sauce to browning the egg, you can use dark soy sauce also :D

Thanks for your comment!

Thank u so much, I been try to learn how to make this, but it's looks so hard!!! Thanks to u that now I can finally make it....


Annie, thank you so much for sharing your recipes! I can't believe that I just found your page (through youtube) today. You've really made my day because I've always wanted to know how to make kaub piaj from scratch. I've seen my mother-in-law make it, but it's always a huge hmong party amount AND no measurements---just by eyeballing it, which is difficult for me. I know I'm super late, and you probably already perfected your sweet pork and egg recipe. However, I wanted to give back and share with you what I do since you are so incredibly sweet and generous. I do and use exactly the same thing you do EXCEPT for the following: use dark soy sauce instead of regular soy, add lemongrass to my stock, do not use brown sugar but instead use caramalized white sugar (kind of like when you do nab vam b/c brown sugar can overpower the balance especially when using the dark soy sauce), add a pinch of chinese 5 spice powder (for the smaller amount you made). I think that's it! Take care. =)

Thanks Mailia for sharing your experience with making sweet pork! I try to make things as basic as possible.  It's wonderful to learn how other people make the same dish. We all can learn and benefit from each other.


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