What You Need to Know About Trader Joe’s Pork Belly!

Trader Joe’s Pork Belly is an easy and delicious way to make some spectacular dishes in your kitchen.  This is an extremely versatile product that can be used to make ramen, sliders or perhaps the world’s greatest grilled cheese sandwiches!

Warning: Pork belly is always going to be an extremely fatty cut of pork.  If you don’t like fat then do NOT buy this product.

Keep reading the review and we will cover everything you ever wanted to know about this product!

Trader Joe's Pork Belly

Ready to Eat

Trader Joe’s pork belly is fully cooked  so technically it is safe to eat straight from the package.

According to Trader Joe’s website the belly has already been slow braised for 12 hours.  Since they are using the phrase “fully cooked” then the braise step must have taken the pork to an internal temperature of at least 145F.

That being said, you really do want to heat the meat up before consuming.

The Pork Belly is Fully Cooked

When the pork belly comes out of the package it is going to look like a really fatty wad of meat.  It is not going to look good or appealing and you are not going to want to eat it!

Don’t worry though, after you crisp this stuff up it will look and taste amazing!

Heating Instructions

The first thing you want to do is to take the belly out of the package, rinse it off and pat it dry with paper towels.  Seriously…get the surface of the pork as dry as possible so you can put a proper sear on it!

Once the pork is dried off you need to decide if you want to brown it up as a whole piece, in slices or as cubes/diced.  Personally I prefer to cut the belly into slices that are about a quarter inch thick so that it looks like ultra thick cut bacon.

Once the belly has been sliced place them in a skillet over Medium heat and let them cook for 3-4 minutes per side.  Do not move the slices around in the pan while they are heating.  You want the slices to turn golden brown and crispy which will be harder to do if you keep moving the pork around in the pan.

Pork Belly Heating Instructions


Serving Ideas

Once you have crisped up the belly there are many great ways to use the meat.  Some serving suggestions include:

  • Adding to a bowl of homemade ramen.
  • Shredding for tacos.
  • Putting on a soft bun with toppings for sliders.
  • Adding to a stir fry.
  • Use to make the ultimate Bacon Lettuce and Tomato sandwich.
  • Dicing and use as a salad topping.
  • Dicing and making nachos.

The hardest part of using the belly is avoiding the urge to eat the crispy, succulent strips of goodness straight out of the pan!

Crispy Pork Belly After Air Frying

Calories and Nutrition

A single serving of the belly (three ounces) has 240 calories and of those 190 of them are from fat.  The full nutritional information for the belly is as follows:

  • Calories: 240
  • Fat: 21g (32% DV)
  • Cholesterol: 45mg (15% DV)
  • Sodium: 350mg (15% DV)
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Protein: 13g

Now, if you want to give yourself a health based excuse to enjoy this product then I have you covered!

This stuff is the same as bacon but it has not been cured with unhealthy nitrites.  When you crisp up bacon you end up creating unhealthy nitrosamines.  Since there are zero nitrites/nitrates in this product you can happily eat it and tell yourself that it is much healthier than bacon!

Trader Joe's Pork Belly Nutrition


The 12 ounce package of fully cooked pork belly costs $6.49 at Trader Joe’s which comes out to about $8.65 per pound.  You can buy uncooked pork belly at Costco for about half this price if you want to go through the trouble of cooking it yourself to save some money.

If this is your first time cooking with pork belly then the product from Trader Joe’s is perfect as you can play around with it to see if you like it without committing yourself to a full 5-10 pound slab.

Price of Pork Belly at Trader Joes

My Favorite Pork Belly Recipe!

I love using the pork belly for tacos…it’s a simple idea with amazing results!

Trader Joe's Pork Belly Tacos

Trader Joe's Pork Belly Tacos

Trader Joe's Pork Belly tacos

A 12 ounce package of Trader Joe's pork belly is diced then seared and seasoned before being served in tacos.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4
Calories 415 kcal


  • 1 10 inch Cast Iron Skillet


  • 12 ounces Trader Joe's Pork Belly
  • 4 Tortillas
  • 8 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup Pickled Jalapeno Slices
  • 1 Lime Cut into quarter wedges
  • 1 cup Shredded Cabbage Slaw Optional
  • Taco Sauce of Choice


  • Remove the pork belly from the package and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Slice the pork belly into slices/cubes that are about an inch long.
  • Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat.
  • Add the pieces of pork belly to the pan in a single layer.
  • Let the pork cook without touching for four minutes to develop a nice browned crust.
  • Flip the pieces over and let cook undisturbed for three minutes.
  • Remove the pork from the skillet and lower heat to Medium.
  • Drain off most of the fat but leave about a teaspoon in the pan.
  • Toast the tortillas in the pan until slightly browned.
  • Assemble your tacos as desired and then squeeze the lime over them.


These tacos would be excellent with some cilantro lime crema or even just a hit of hot sauce.
Keyword Trader Joe's pork belly, Trader Joe's Pork Belly Tacos

Good morning and welcome to the site dedicated to helping you find great products at Costco and other stores! My name is David Somerville and these are hands on reviews of products that I have bought and used or am seriously considering purchasing. I do most of my shopping at the Costco in Baton Rouge, Louisiana but will check out any other Costco warehouses I find while travelling. Please get in touch with any questions and let me know of any great products that deserved to be featured in this blog!

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