Who doesn’t know the delicious roast suckling pig meat from the grill, where your mouth waters just thinking about it? So that you can finally enjoy a tasty roast suckling pig without having to go to Oktoberfest, why not try it on your grill yourself? We’ll help you, of course, with a guide on how to prepare roast suckling pig and additional tips for this delicious project.

Where to buy the roast suckling pig?

Buying a roast suckling pig is not as simple as buying a steak or sausage because you won’t find them in the supermarket’s refrigerated section, nor can you get them spontaneously from a butcher. A good place to buy is the butcher, as they can take the order for a piglet and arrange to get it for you on a specific date. A piglet at 6 to 8 weeks old is ideal for grilling. You just need to specify the desired weight, which is usually between 15-18 kg. Roast suckling pig is popular for its tender and light meat, and this size is sufficient for approximately 15-18 people. Another option for purchase is a farmer. Both the butcher and a farmer can provide information about the origin of the animal. They also store the piglet perfectly chilled until you come to pick it up. Often, they even offer the option to buy the pre-seasoned piglet, so you can pick it up completely ready on the day of grilling. The piglet should not have any injuries, such as broken feet or bluish discolorations.

Ensure the right grill

Ensure the right grill

If you don’t have a suitable grill for roasting suckling pig, inquire with a catering service, a grill rental, or the butcher. A rotating spit with the appropriate attachment on the grill is crucial. The spit can be manually operated, but it’s easier with a motor-driven spit. You can find a report with lots of important information on motor-driven spits on our site. Grilling won’t be as quick as with sausages and steak. First, you need time to heat up the grill. The suckling pig needs an average of 6-7 hours on the spit, depending on weight and size. If you plan to grill suckling pigs frequently, you might consider building your own suitable grill. There are many instructions for that available on the internet.

Home sweet home – and now?

Once you have the piglet at home, you need to season it well because the spices need at least a night or a day to infuse.

Recipe for the spice mix (all in equal parts):

  • Paprika powder
  • Salt and pepper
  • Garlic
  • Cumin
  • Cooking oil

The quantity of each ingredient depends on the size of the suckling pig. Crush all the spices roughly first, then mix and stir them with the oil. Feel free to add more spices according to your taste.

Before rubbing the piglet, you need to cut the skin in a diamond pattern at an even distance. For this, you need a very sharp knife! Before grilling, skewer the suckling pig through the lock bone and the mouth onto the spit. Then secure it at the front and back with the locking spits. Use clips to secure the feet firmly. Many people tie the front paws to the pig’s cheeks and stretch the hind legs backward. In this case, wire is suitable for fastening. The open belly can be sewn shut with wire or closed with metal skewers. Store the seasoned piglet in a very cold and dark place in the house, usually found in the cellar.

On the day of grilling

No barbecue demands as exact planning as a suckling pig. If you want to serve it in the evening, your grilling fun begins in the afternoon. Plan approximately 10 kg of charcoal and about 30 charcoal briquettes for grilling. For charcoal and briquettes, it’s better not to skimp, as high quality is required for such a large grilling project over several hours. The ideal grilling temperature is around 180° to 200°. Ignite the fire in the grill with 10 to 15 kilograms of charcoal (many combine with charcoal briquettes). Then place the suckling pig over the fire. Add new charcoal as needed during grilling.

If the grilled meat browns very unevenly and shows conspicuously dark spots, it is recommended to wrap these areas with aluminum foil. While grilling, baste the suckling pig every half an hour with a mixture of oil and beer. It’s important to offer enough moisture to the piglet while grilling, or it will become tough. If you think the piglet should be done, don’t forget to measure the core temperature at the thickest parts. It should be around 80°C. When the suckling pig is done, simply lay it in a large tub, remove the spit and other fastening materials, and cut it into beautiful pieces with a sharp knife.

Ideal side dishes for suckling pig

Good side dishes need to be carefully chosen for suckling pig. Since the grilled meat is less fat-free, you should be mindful of the fat content in the side dishes. Potato salad goes very well. Prefer the Swabian style, as the Rhenish style with mayonnaise might not be the right choice. Swabian potato salad is easy to prepare. The potatoes are sliced very thinly and poured over with hot broth (ready-made broth cubes also work). Add onions, vinegar, salt, pepper, fresh chives, and oil. The onion cubes are better tolerated if you briefly put them in the hot broth.

Bavarian coleslaw with bacon is also delicious, as it is fresh and well-tolerated thanks to cumin. American coleslaw is also very tasty, but it is not as light as the Bavarian version. Sauerkraut is also a perfect match for suckling pig. Lightly fry the kraut with bacon, onions, juniper, bay leaf, pepper, and salt. Then cook it and simply place it on the table in a large pot during grilling. Unlike bread dumplings, which also taste very delicious, you don’t need sauce for these side dishes. Remember to have a good selection of barbecue sauces. A good choice is always crispy wood-fired bread. Freshly sliced vegetables and suitable dips also go well with suckling pig grilling. Rolls also taste delicious with a slice of suckling pig meat between the two halves.

For dessert, choose something refreshing. Fruit salad and a sorbet go exceptionally well with the rather heavy meal.

The best drink to accompany is a cool beer. After suckling pig grilling, a “digestive schnapps” for digestion is also a must.