Recipes For Your Lechon Craving That Don’t Cost A Fortune

It's easier to make it yourself than the to shell out so much cash.

Layers of crispy, delicious pork skin with flavorful, slightly sweet fat and tender, juicy meat-what's not to love about lechon?

Lechon-it's so good that people will go to parties they don't want to go just to get some of it. For most of our lives, we've come to associate lechon with special occasions. It's so special that it isn't always served at every special occasion, and, to make it even more frustrating, not all lechon is good lechon. We've all had inedible hard skin and desert-dry pork. There's a good reason why good lechon is so scarce: it's also expensive! 

We've got news for you, though.  You don't have to wait impatiently for a party invitation or a big chunk of cash just to satiate that hunger for the delicious pork dish. We've got recipes that you can create at home that are versions of lechon that will guarantee two things: one, everybody on your tables gets the "good part," and two, you're not going to go broke making it.

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Photo by Patrick Martires

1 Lechon Kawali Recipe

To whoever in the history of Filipino cooking cooked lechon in their pan, we salute you. If you're craving for lechon, a delicious lechon kawali recipe can be a quick, affordable, and classic fix. Plus, unlike the grueling process of roasting a whole pig, lechon kawali is simply fried in a regular frying pan, making it so much easier.

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If you're unsatisfied with plain lechon kawali, then there are several ways to give it a saucy, delicious twist. Use it for kare-kare, pork binagoongan, batchoy, or the equally classic lechon paksiw recipe.

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Photo by Majoy Siason

2 Lechon Macau Recipe

Take your lechon recipe up a notch by using the oven and adding five-spice powder. This Chinese spice, when added as a dry rub, gives it a more complex aroma and an earthy-sweet flavor profile.

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Photo by Patrick Martires

3 Roast Pork Loin Recipe

This roast pork loin only takes a little more than an hour to make. Unlike a simple lechon, it's infused with spices which make it even more mouthwatering.

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4 Roast Pork with Crispy Skin Recipe

This decadent, delicious roast pork has a wonderfully crisp skin but tender, herby, and flavorful meat inside. This recipe may take a little more time than other recipes, but it's super worth it. It's best made for a party of ten, but we say, why not make it for an extra special baon this week?

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Photo by Miguel Nacianceno

5 Roast Pork Belly with Crackling Skin Recipe

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Ever wished that the lechon skin was crispier? The perfect lechon skin is hard to come by. We're often left with shards too hard to even bite. This recipe though has delicious, chicharon-crisp skin.

Photo by Bianca Laxamana

6 Boneless Lechon Recipe

Be reminded that lechon-whether if it's a large pig or a lechon de leche-is always super expensive. That's why it's so mind-blowing that to make your own version of lechon only requires, at its simplest, salt, pepper, and sugar.

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Photo by Michael Angelo Chua

7 Crispy Roast Pork Belly Recipe

The four hours needed for this recipe is just about waiting. You barely have to do anything with just five minutes of prep time. All you need is patience and you've got this delicious pork ready to be roasted that's all spiced up and delicious with onions, bay leaf, and peppercorns.

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8 Liempo de Balamban (Herb-Stuffed Pork Belly) Recipe

This liempo dish only takes 55 minutes to make! Using the quintessential lechon cut and seasoning it with herbs and lemongrass mixed with garlic, basil, and pepper, you get this delicious lechon-like dish in lechon kawali form.

These recipes prove that, with just a few basic ingredients, time, and lots of pork, you can have an affordable, but extra special dish to serve. It may not be the real deal, but we're telling you, it might be even better. After all, with these methods, you get supremely seasoned cuts that are all delicious. All of it, not just one part (which can happen with lechon), is the best part of the pig.

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