Vietnamese Caramelised Pork Ribs – a Fingerlicking Treat

These caramelised pork ribs are another amazing example of how Asian cuisine combines sweet and salty ingredients to perfection!

caramalised pork ribs

Food preparation is important to Asian people and making a feast and the best of every meal is important.   

How to make Asian Caramelised pork ribs?

The savoury caramel is easily prepared with only coconut water and palm sugar, which both add fragrance to the dish, and are healthier options than refined sugar. The marinade helps to caramelise the ribs during braising. If ribs are unavailable, then substitute with cubes of boneless pork shoulder.

Also read how to make sticky Chinese pork ribs with hoisin glaze

caramalised pork ribs

Vietnamese Caramelised Pork Ribs

These caramelised pork ribs are another amazing example of how Asian cuisine combines sweet and salty ingredients to perfection!
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Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Course Meat & Poultry
Cuisine Vietnamese
Servings 2 people
Calories 848 kcal

EQUIPMENT (click pictures for details)


  • 500 gr pork spare ribs riblets
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 200 ml coconut water
  • 2 tbsp palm sugar

For the marinade

For the garnish


Blanch the pork riblets

  • Place the pork riblets in a large pot with salted water and boil for 5 minutes.
    Drain the ribs and rinse with cold water to remove any clogged impurities that may remain.
    caramalised pork ribs in salted water

Prepare the marinade

  • Combine all ingredients for the marinade, toss the pork riblets with the marinade, and keep to one side for 30 minutes.
    mix pork ribs with marinade

Cook the pork riblets

  • Stir 2 tablespoons of palm sugar into a pan with 2 tablespoons of water over a medium high heat until the sugar dissolves and you obtain an amber colour.
    palm sugar and water
  • Add the marinated pork into the pan and stir evenly to coat the riblets with the caramel.
    stir fried pork ribs
  • Pour in the coconut water and bring to the boil, cover with a lid and simmer for 45 minutes.
    coconut water with pork ribs
  • Remove the lid and continue cooking until the liquid completely evaporates and glazes the riblets with a dark shiny caramel.
    caramalised pork ribs
  • Arrange the caramelised pork riblets on a plate with a sprinkle of ground pepper and spring onions on top.
    caramalised pork ribs


  • You can marinade the pork and keep it in the refrigerator overnight.
  • The coconut water brings a natural sweetness.

Nutrition for 1 portion

Calories: 848kcalCarbohydrates: 36gProtein: 41gFat: 59gCholesterol: 200mgSodium: 2217mgFiber: 2gSugar: 15gVitamin A: 61IUVitamin C: 4mgCalcium: 79mgIron: 3mg
Keyword caramel, pork ribs
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