Porous silicon nitride ceramics with various amounts (25, 35, and 45 vol %) of hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) were fabricated at 1800°C for 2h by the pressureless sintering process. With FESEM and TEM, the effects of h-BN on the microstructure and mechanical properties of Si3N4 ceramics were investigated. Results of the microstructure and mechanical properties of Si3N4/BN composites showed that the growth of the elongated β-Si3N4 were hindered by h-BN additive, which resulted in the decrease of fracture toughness of Si3N4/BN ceramics with increasing h-BN content. The morphologies of the fracture surfaces by FESEM revealed the fracture mode for Si3N4/BN composites to be intergranular. However, phase analysis by XRD indicated that the effect of h-BN on the α- to β- Si3N4 phase transformation of Si3N4/BN composites was negligible.