Grilled Pork Steaks: Vietnamese Style
Ok, you have to trust us on this flavorful grilled pork steaks recipe. What makes our go-to family friendly Vietnamese-style? It’s the fish sauce, of course. If you’re ever wondering what type of meat we’re grilling on the weekend it’s Vietnamese style pork shoulder (pork butt) steaks.
Grilled Pork Steaks Recipe
These are our go-to steaks to share with family, friends and neighbors. Everyone is always blown away at the umami flavor from our special fish sauce marinade. Even those who have had an aversion to the thought of “fish sauce” still can’t taste it on these grilled pork steaks. All they taste is a wonderful combination of umami and flavorful, juicy pork shoulder. We’ve talked about our ultimate umami burgers recipe for over 10 years and it’s still one of our most popular recipes. You believed us back then when it came to burgers and give it a try again with this pork recipe. Yes, we’re telling you that a few splashes of fish sauce on these juicy pork butt steaks is a huge winner.
Video: Delicious Vietnamese Grilled Pork Steaks
Don’t be afraid of the fish sauce in the pork steak marinade.
Again, trust us. When the fatty pork butt is marinated then grilled, it’s a flavor bomb that’s perfect for sandwiches, salads or spring rolls. In fact, we wrap these slices of cut grilled pork steaks into fresh spring rolls. We’ve had feasts with so many people in our backyard and it reigns as everyone’s top and favorite garden meal. Even our picky Vietnamese parents give this marinade a two enthusiastic thumbs up. If we still can’t convince you to use fish sauce, you can always use soy sauce or Worcestershire!
What is Pork Butt vs Pork Shoulder?
They’re basically the same cut. Pork butt (also known as Boston butt) & pork shoulder (also known as picnic shoulder or roast) are both cuts from the shoulder region on a pig. Pork butt is a from a little higher than the pork shoulder cut. Both are very well marbled and super delicious. Usually used for slow smoking/cooking to make pulled pork and other slow cooked roasts. However, we find them perfect for grilling when cut into steaks about 1/2″-3/4″ thick. Nearly always super juicy and flavorful. But if cut too thick it will be a bit tougher (think of pork butt as similar to beef brisket) so don’t go crazy on your steak thickness. As a super added bonus, it is often one of the less expensive pork cuts and what we prefer when grinding meat for homemade sausages. In our eyes, pork butt is often undervalued and simply magical. And if you’re interested in learning more about different cuts of pork steaks, here’s a great pork cut resource.
-diane and todd
Grilled Pork Steak - Vietnamese Style
- 4 pork shoulder steaks , (aka pork butt or blade steaks) sliced 1/2"-3/4" thick
- 1/4 cup (56 ml) oil
- 2 Tablespoons (30 ml) fish sauce (or soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce)
- 4 cloves garlic , minced or crushed
- 1 Tablespoon (15 ml) brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) onion powder or 1 minced shallot
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) fresh cracked black pepper
- Cut the pork shoulder/ butt into steaks, if needed.
- Combine the oil, fish sauce, garlic, brown sugar, onion powder or shallots, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. Add pork steaks and toss to coat them evenly in the marinade. Cover the bowl and marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight.
- Pre-heat grill on medium heat *see head note. Scrape the grill grates to make sure they are clean (clean grates will stick much less).
- Cook the pork steaks, flipping over every couple minutes for a total of 10-15 minutes or until moderately charred & cooked to your desired doneness. (Turning the pork steaks several times every couple minutes cooks them quicker and more evenly vs leaving them set on each side for 5-8 minutes, only turning once. It also helps keep your attention on cooking which is important considering the flare-up nature of the pork steaks).
Here’s our favorite fish sauce brands and a discussion on why we’re trying to persuade you to love the Magic of Fish Sauce.
More of our Family Vietnamese Recipes and easy recipes:
- Roast garlic to make food more flavorful
- Zucchini roasted with cheese and herbs
- No bake fruit and nut bars
- Quick pickles recipe