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round bowl filled with rice, and topped with butternut squash, braised Asian pork shoulder and garnishes

Braised Asian Pork

This recipe for braised Asian pork creates the most crispy, tender and flavorful pork. Serve over rice or veggies for a naturally healthy & gluten free dinner.
5 from 8 votes
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Prep Time: 8 hours
Cook Time: 3 hours
Servings: 6


  • Dutch Oven


  • 4-5 lb Pork Shoulder
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup Kosher salt
  • 3 tbsp neutral cooking oil more if needed for searing
  • 1 large yellow onion cut into quarters
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce Red Boat recommended
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce or tamari
  • 3 tbsp grated fresh ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1.5 cups coconut water
  • 1 medium butternut squash peeled and cut into large cubes


  • If dry brining pork ahead of time, combine the salt and brown sugar and coat the outside of the pork shoulder. Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight or for at least 8 hours.
  • When ready to cook, remove pork from plastic wrap and brush off any excess salt & sugar.
  • Heat 2-3 tbsp of neutral oil in a large Dutch oven and sear each side of the pork shoulder until brown, about 3-5 minutes each side.
  • Remove from heat and add onion, soy sauce, fish sauce, ginger and garlic to pot. Pour coconut water over the pork shoulder.
  • Cover the pot and place in a 350 degree oven, and cook for 2.5 hours.
  • Remove lid and add in butternut squash. Cover and place back in the oven, cooking for another 30-40 minutes, until butternut squash is fork tender and pork is easy to pull apart. Internal temperature should be about 190 degrees.
  • Strain butternut squash from the pot and set aside on a serving dish. Remove pork and allow to cool till enough so you can handle it. Shred the pork and toss with the butternut squash. Drizzle some of the braising liquid on top for added flavor.
  • Serve over Jasmine rice, rice noodles or lettuce, and garnish with cilantro, limes and chili flakes.


To cook in the slow cooker, start by searing the pork in a separate pot. Place the pork and all the ingredients, except the butternut squash, in the slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours, adding in the butternut squash after cooking for about 7 hours. If you'd like to achieve the crispy bits similar to braising, remove the pork from the slow cooker and pull apart. Place on a baking sheet and broil in the oven for about 8-10 minutes, watching carefully as not to burn. To evenly broil, make sure to stir the pork around 2-3 times during the broiling process.
To cook in the pressure cooker, follow directions above and cook on Manual High Pressure for 20 minutes. Carefully quick release the pressure and add the butternut squash. Cover and cook on high pressure for another 4 minutes, and quick release again. Strain butternut squash and set aside on a serving dish. Follow same broiling directions as above to achieve a more crispy pork texture. 
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Serving: 1.5cups | Calories: 204kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 11g