Chinese Salt and Pepper Spare Ribs

  • PrepTime: 10 Mins
  • CookTime: 25 Mins
  • TotalTime: 35 Mins


  1. 2 tablespoons sea salt
  2. 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  3. 1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder
  4. 2 1/2 pounds boneless meaty spareribs or pork shoulder
  5. 3 to 4 cups oil for deep-frying, or as needed
  6. 3 tablespoons cornstarch, or as needed


  1. Gather the ingredients.
  2. Stir-fry the salt and black pepper in a heavy frying pan over medium-low heat, shaking the pan, until the salt darkens.
  3. Remove from the heat and stir-in the five-spice powder. Cool.
  4. Cut the spareribs along the individual bones. Rub lightly with salt and pepper mixture. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
  5. Preheat the oil for deep-frying to between 360 and 375 F.
  6. Dust the spareribs with the cornstarch.
  7. Use a deep-fryer basket to carefully add the ribs into the oil. Deep-fry the submerged spareribs for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove and drain.
  8. Deep-fry the spareribs a second time. Until they are crispy and cooked (about 1 minute). Drain.
  9. Serve with any remaining salt and pepper mix for dipping.