Enjoy this super easy air fryer pork belly recipe, Korean style. The crispy outer layer and moist internal layer of pork belly bites are savory and so delicious. This is a perfect recipe for pork belly meat lovers.


Korean pork belly BBQ (Samgyeopsal, 삼겹살) is a staple dish in Korea and with the increased popularity of air fryers, making samgyeopsal in an air fryer is also getting really popular.

A few reasons people use an air fryer when making samgyeopsal are:-

You can get crispy outer texture and soft juicy internal texture of pork belly. While these pork belly bites are not crispy like crackling pork rind, but it is still very tasty in a different way.
You can potentially have less cleaning work after cooking compared to the typical method of grilling them over the stove (e.g. less oil splash as it will be contained within the air fryer, albeit you will have to wipe down the air fryer inner walls.)
You can set it and “almost” forget it while the pork belly is cooking. Grilling samgyeopsal in a traditional way requires you to observe the meat often while it’s cooking to turn them over as it gets cooked. But with the use of an air fryer, you just need to set the timer until the timer beeps. How convenient is that?!

To make pork belly in an air fryer, many people simply season the pork belly meat with a small amount of ground black pepper and fine salt and rub it around the meat evenly, then air fry it.

But to give a nice extra flavor and aroma, I pasted the pork belly with some yellow mustard (American mustard) sauce as well.

Just be sure to use the pork belly as a whole meat as opposed to using thinly sliced pork belly meat, which is what the typical Korean pork belly meat is like, to prevent the meat going drier.

To get the crispy outer texture, cooking the pork belly in an oven is not recommended as it gives more of a steamed meat effect. Although, you may broil to crisp the meat if you insist on using an oven, but overall it won’t give you the same result as using an air fryer.


Pork belly has plenty of natural fat, so it produces a fair bit of oil dripping while cooking. If you cook the meat for 30 minutes in a closed environment like an air fryer, it may cause a lot of smoke in the air.

For instance, I had the fire alarm go off for about 10 minutes because of the smoke that was produced and it was quite a scary experience for my daughter.

Some people put baking paper sheet underneath the basket to collect the oil for easy cleaning afterward. I tried this method but the baking paper blocks the airflow in the air fryer, so the meat wasn’t fully cooked within the set time and also the meat wasn’t crispy.

So I came up with this simple solution, which is wiping the oil in the pan half way through the cooking and I had no more issues with the smoke alarm going off! In case, you’re curious, this is my beloved air fryer (Philips Air Fryer XXL 9861/99).


Air fried or grilled, the best ways to serve Korean pork belly is with green lettuce leaves with signature Korean BBQ dipping sauce – ssamjang. You can also add a bowl of rice, kimchi or any other Korean side dishes (e.g. pickled radish) you might have.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy my recipe!


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