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Italian Porchetta Recipe: A Flavorful Tradition

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Porchetta is a delicious Italian pork roast that will impress your family and friends. This flavorful dish features a combination of fennel pollen, sage, rosemary, and garlic, making every bite a burst of Italian tradition. Mastering this authentic recipe will not only enhance your cooking skills but also bring a taste of Italy to your table.

Whether you’re planning for a holiday feast or just want a tasty meal, porchetta is a great choice. It’s cooked until the pork is tender and the skin is crispy, creating a perfect texture. Served with roasted potatoes or in a sandwich, this dish is versatile and mouth-watering.

Creating porchetta at home is easier than you think. With a few simple ingredients and some patience, you can prepare this iconic Italian dish. Follow our step-by-step guide, and soon you’ll be enjoying a traditional Italian meal right in your kitchen.

Exact Ingredients (+ Possible Substitutes)

Below is a list of ingredients for a traditional Italian porchetta, with some possible substitutes:


  • Pork Belly: Aim for about 10-12 pounds.
  • Substitute: Boneless pork shoulder.

Seasonings & Herbs

  • Salt: 2-3 tablespoons.
  • Pepper: Freshly ground, 1 tablespoon.
  • Fennel Seeds: 2 tablespoons, toasted.
  • Rosemary: Fresh, 3-4 sprigs.
  • Garlic: 6-8 cloves, minced.
  • Thyme: Fresh, 2 tablespoons.
  • Sage: Fresh, 2 tablespoons.
  • Substitute: Dried herbs if fresh are unavailable.


  • Red Pepper Flakes: 1-2 teaspoons.
  • Substitute: Black pepper for less heat.


  • Olive Oil: 2 tablespoons.
  • White Wine: 1/2 cup.
  • Substitute: Chicken broth.

Optional Add-Ons

  • Lemon Zest: From 1 lemon.
  • Onion: 1 large, finely chopped.
  • Orange Zest: From 1 orange.

Cooking Tools

  • Butcher’s Twine: To tie the pork.
  • Meat Thermometer: For checking internal temperature.

Feel free to adjust the amounts based on your taste!


  1. Prepare the Ingredients

    • Peel 5 garlic cloves.
    • Gather 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds, 1 teaspoon of chili flakes, 1 tablespoon of rosemary, and 1 tablespoon of sage.
    • Zest one lemon and have ready 2 tablespoons of olive oil.
    • Make sure your pork is prepared, either boneless or bone-in.
  2. Make the Seasoning Paste

    • Use a pestle and mortar or a food processor.
    • Combine the garlic, fennel seeds, chili flakes, rosemary, sage, lemon zest, and salt.
    • Add the olive oil and mix until it forms a rough paste.
  3. Season the Pork

    • Lay the pork skin side down.
    • Rub the seasoning paste all over the pork.
    • If boneless, tie with kitchen string at 2-inch intervals to keep it compact.
  4. Preheat the Oven

    • Set your oven to 400°F (200°C).
  5. Roasting Phase

    • Place the pork in a baking tray and put it in the preheated oven.
    • Roast for 1 hour at 400°F (200°C).
    • Then, reduce the temperature to 350°F (170°C) and continue roasting for about 2 hours.
    • Check the internal temperature until it reaches 170°F (76°C).
  6. Finishing Touches

    • Increase the oven temperature to 482°F (250°C) for a final 30 minutes.
    • Pour two glasses of water into the tray before returning the pork to the oven.

Carefully remove the pork from the oven and let it rest before serving. Enjoy your delicious porchetta!

Tips, Tricks & Storing


  • Use a Meat Thermometer
    Ensure your porchetta reaches an internal temperature of 170°F (76°C) for safety and taste.

  • Preheat Your Oven
    Always preheat your oven to the required temperature before placing the porchetta inside to ensure even cooking.


  • Keep It Moist
    Place a pan with water or beer under your porchetta while it cooks. This helps keep the meat moist and adds flavor.

  • Crispy Skin
    To get that perfect crispy skin, roast the porchetta at a high temperature first, then lower it.

  • Season Well
    Massage your porchetta with seasoning and herbs before cooking to infuse the flavors.


  • Refrigerate
    Store cooked porchetta in an airtight container. It will last for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

  • Freezing
    You can freeze porchetta for up to 3 months. Wrap it tightly in foil and place it in a freezer-safe bag or container.

  • Reheating
    To reheat, place it in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) until warmed through. Avoid microwaving to keep the skin crispy.

Benjamin Happy Muncher

Hi, I'm Benjamin. I love cooking, long walks, and my girlfriend! Here you’ll find simple and delicious recipes that you can make in 30 minutes or less.