Pork Adobo

Pork Adobo

    1. This is a recipe post for Filipino Pork Adobo. It is a dish composed of pork slices cooked in soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic. There are version wherein onions are also added. Adobo is a popular dish in the Philippines, along with Sinigang.

Adobo, in general, can be cooked using different kinds of protein. Chicken is the commonly used ingredient. Have you tried cooking Filipino Chicken Adobo yet? Our tried and tested recipe should be able to help you.

Filipino Pork Adobo vs. Mexican Adobo

The word Adobo was derived from the Spanish word “adobar”. It means to marinate. This can be in the form of a liquid marinade or to rub using a combination of powdered ingredient.

This version of Filipino Adobo suggests marinating the pork in soy sauce and crushed garlic. By preference, vinegar can also be added as a marinade ingredient.

Mexican adobo, on the other hand, makes use of chillies, garlic, cinnamon, and oregano as marinade.

Both dishes look and taste different. It will be unfair to compare which among the two dishes are best because each of us has our own preference when it comes to flavor.

Filipino Pork Adobo Versions

The Philippines is composed of composed of many islands. It was initially estimated to be around 7,107. At present, the count rose to 7,641. Each of these islands belong to a cluster, which are divided into regions.

Pork Adobo

Almost every region in the Philippines have their own pork adobo version. Sometimes, there can be more than one version in a location.

The Basic Pork Adobo version is what you see in the recipe below. There are also similar versions with additional ingredients.

Pork and Chicken Adobo is perhaps one of the favorite when it comes to family picnics. This is a dish wherein pork and chicken slices are combined and cooked inadobo style. It can be done the same way as this recipe, with or without onions. This is our clans signature summer dish in the Philippines. I remember my tito’s and tita’s prepare a large portion every summer outing. We would go to Pansol in Laguna to rent a swimming pool for the clan and they would bring with them two large cauldrons (kaldero). One has the adobo in it, while the other is for the rice.

Pork Adobo with Potato is another version that I tried. This is a saucier pork adobo version with cubes of potatoes in it. I’m not sure where this dish originated. It might have been initially created as a filler to feed more people. Nevertheless, I liked the taste. I think that it can be improved by pan-frying the potato first. Most of the flavors gets absorbed by the potato. It can be a carbohydrate overload when you eat the potato with rice. This is a good dish to have when before going to the gym or before starting a marathon.

I cook Pork Adobo with Eggs all the time. This is my favorite. There are two ways to make it. Both ways require boiling the eggs beforehand.  The first version is cooked by adding boiled eggs once the pork gets tender. The eggs absorb the soy sauce, thus becomes darker in color. Be cautious about the time when cooking this way. We don’t want to overcook the eggs.

How can we tell if an egg is overcooked? It is simple. Egg yolk contain iron. When eggs are cooked longer than the usual, the iron turns greenish. This color formation happens between the yolk and egg white. We often refer to this as rings. Slice the boiled egg in half and try to examine the color of the outer yolk. When you see a dark ring around it, that means the egg is overcooked.

The other version of the adobo with egg is easier and does not put the eggs at risk of overcooking (unless it was overcooked during the boiling process). Simply add boiled eggs on the serving plate before serving. The eggs also retains its white color.

Pork Adobo with Tofu is a protein-rich adobo version. This is perfect for people who like their adobo mild in flavor. This version requires fried tofu. Always use extra firm tofu when making this. You can purchase raw tofu and fry it, or you can get packaged fried tofu from the supermarket.

The tofu absorbs most of the sauce in the process which tones down the flavor a bit. This is a good dish to prepare when you are into body building or into a protein-rich diet. Make sure to use lean cuts of pork though.

A favorite among our group of friends who like to drink beer is Spicy Pork Adobo. This is the perfect pulutan as far as I am concerned. The spicier it gets, the better it becomes. I tried making this dish using the former spiciest chili pepper in the world, Bhut Jolokia (It lost its crown to the Carolina Reaper, which is way spicier).  The result was a very delicious and extremely spicy adobo. The spice lingers in the mouth for a while. Be forewarned.

Adobong Baboy sa Gata is a classic. This is notorious for making people on limited-rice-diet crave for more rice. It is very rich, tasty, and delicious. Add a few pieces of Thai chili pepper, and you will not get enough of it.

How to Cook Pork Adobo

Pork Adobo Recipe

This version suggests marinating the pork to make it more flavorful. Pork belly and other fatty cuts of pork are ideal for this recipe.

The first thing to do is marinate the pork belly in soy sauce and crushed garlic. It is best to marinate it overnight. If time is limited, one hour should be enough. Some like to add vinegar during the process. You may do so if preferred.

Drain the marinade. Save it for later. The marinated pork needs to be browned. Heat a cooking pot. Add pork with garlic. You can also add a few tablespoons of cooking oil. Cook the pork until it turns brown.

The pork needs to be cooked until tender. Do this by pouring the remaining marinade, if any. Also add water. Let the liquid boil. This is the part where I put the whole peppercorn and dried bay leaves. These ingredients complete my pork adobo. Boiling for 40 minutes should be enough to tenderize the pork. There are times when you have to cook longer.

If you have not added the vinegar as part of the marinade, pour it into the pot and let it cook for 10 minutes. Salt is an optional ingredient for this recipe. Use it only if you think its needed.

Pork Adobo Alterative and Additional Ingredients

Pork – Use any cut of pork that you prefer. I suggest pork belly for best results. However, use leaner parts if you are trying to avoid fats. Pork tenderloin is a healthier choice. This is very tender and contains way less fat than pork belly. You can also use other proteins such as chicken and goat meat using this recipe.

Onion – This recipe does not suggest the use of onion. I think that onions help improve the taste of adobo. Use red, yellow, or white onion for this recipe. Make sure to chop it into small pieces.

Dried Bay Leaves – this is an ingredient that you can almost always find most of the time in the spice section of your local supermarket. Believe it or not, but this makes a huge difference when cooking adobo.

Whole Peppercorn – this is a traditional ingredient. It will not matter if you use crushed peppercorn or ground black pepper. Sichuan peppercorns are also good alternatives.

Sugar – adding a teaspoon of sugar will move your pork adobo on the sweeter side. I personally love the taste of adobo with a bit of sugar.


Pork Adobo Recipe

Basic Filipino Prok Adobo with Soy Sauce, Vinegar, and Garlic. This delicious dish is perfect when served over newly cooked white rice.
 CourseMain Course
 Prep Time10 minutes
 Cook Time1 hour
 Total Time1 hour 10 minutes
 AuthorVanjo Merano


  • 2 lbs pork belly
  • 2 tablespoons garlic minced or crushed
  • 5 pieces dried bay leaves
  • 4 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon peppercorn
  • 2 cups water
  • Salt to taste



  • Combine the pork belly, soy sauce, and garlic then marinate for at least 1 hour
  • Heat the pot and put-in the marinated pork belly then cook for a few minutes
  • Pour remaining marinade including garlic.
  • Add water, whole pepper corn, and dried bay leaves then bring to a boil. Simmer for 40 minutes to 1 hour
  • Put-in the vinegar and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes
  • Add salt to taste
  • Serve hot. Share and enjoy!

Watch How to Cook Pork Adobo


Serving: 4g | Calories: 1211kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 120g | Saturated Fat: 43g | Cholesterol: 163mg | Sodium: 1700mg | Potassium: 530mg | Fiber: 1g | Vitamin A: 115IU | Vitamin C: 2.5mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 2.7mg
Pork Adobo
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4 people
4 people
Pork Adobo
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4 people
4 people
Servings: people
  1. Combine the pork belly, soy sauce, and garlic then marinate for at least 1 hour
  2. Heat the pot and put-in the marinated pork belly then cook for a few minutes
  3. Pour remaining marinade including garlic. Add water, whole pepper corn, and dried bay leaves then bring to a boil.
  4. Simmer for 40 minutes to 1 hour
  5. Put-in the vinegar and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes
  6. Add salt to taste Serve hot. Share and enjoy!
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Filipino Chicken BBQ on a Stick

Filipino Chicken BBQ on a Stick

Barbecue on a stick is a very popular traditional Filipino dish. It is  a popular street food in the Philippines, and is very similar to the Indonesian Satay . It is usually made from chicken or pork which is then grilled in a slightly sweet sauce on skewers. This version is made with chicken.

The recipe I give here may differ from the way others may make this, as almost everyone has their own version. This instructable will show how my family makes it. After reading it, feel free to make a version of your own!

Also, in my opinion, this is THE tastiest way to grill chicken.


Step 1: Find Ingredients

Find Ingredients

You don’t have to stick strictly to the given measurements of each ingredient .

Add as much or as little as you like of each per your personal preferences
( as long as you stick to the general proportions).

Feel free to substitute ingredients

All measurements are approximate.



–  3 lbs of chicken breast or chicken thigh fillets ( used in this recipe)

–  1 to 1 1/3 cups distilled white vinegar

–  1/2 cup tomato ketchup or banana ketchup, or both

–  1/3 to 1/4 cup soy sauce

–  1/3 to 1 cup ginger beer ,ginger ale or  7-UP, Sprite,orange juice,pineapple juice, or any other kind of sweet drink

– 2 to 3 teaspoons garlic powder



-Bamboo skewers

– 1 1-gallon plastic zip-lock bag

Have all the ingredients and equipment? Move on to step 2 to start preparation!


Step 2: Cut the Meat

Cut the MeatCut the Meat

This is almost self- explanatory.

Cut the chicken breast or thigh fillets into small square-ish pieces, or into small, short strips. Remove any fat or skin, and discard the fat if you don’t like big fat pieces (some people do).  It is OK to leave just a little fat on, as it will cook off in the grill.

If you want a tasty treat, save any chicken skin. You can put on the grill to crisp it up while brushing it with the marinade. It is very tasty.


Step 3: Make the Marinade

Make the Marinade

Remember, you can substitute ingredients with similar ones that you may have on hand. For example, you could use rice wine or apple cider vinegar instead of white vinegar. You probably got the point by now.

Anyway, combine all the other ingredients ( vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce, ginger ale and garlic powder) into the zip-lock bag.


Step 4: Marinate the Chicken

Marinate the Chicken

Put the cut chicken pieces into the bag. Seal the bag, and move it around to help mix the marinade around.

Again, make sure the the bag is sealed, or even double bag it. Place bag on a plate or in a large bowl.

let sit in the refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight.


Step 5: Skewer the Chicken

Skewer the ChickenSkewer the Chicken

Take out the chicken from the bag. Save the used marinade, as we will make it into sauce later.

Put the marinated chicken on the skewers, and put the pieces close together. Make sure you leave enough room on the ends of each skewer so you can hold them while you eat.

You don’t have to soak the skewers, as the chicken, dripping wet with marinade, will soak the skewers on its own.

Step 6: Make the Sauce
Make the SauceMake the Sauce

This is fairly simple. You can do this while you wait for the charcoal to be ready, or any other time before you start cooking the chicken.

Take the marinade that you saved from the chicken earlier (in step 6) and heat it up in a small saucepan on medium heat until boiling.

This is an extra step to ensure that the marinade is safe enough to use as a glaze and/or dipping sauce.

If you want the sauce to become a glaze on the chicken, then add about a teaspoon or tablespoon of sugar to the the marinade when it is near boiling.

Allow to cool down a little bit.


Step 7: Heat Up the Grill

Heat Up the Grill

Heat up the grill to about 300 degrees. While you are grilling the chicken, you will be opening the grill a lot, which means that when you are grilling the gauge will display the temp as about 155- 220 F, although the coals and the grill grate will still be at 300 degrees.


Step 8: Start Grilling!

Start Grilling!
Start Grilling!Start Grilling!

Put the skewers of chicken on the grill. Flip every 2-4 minutes, or continuously flip. Every so often, brush on some of the sauce you made earlier in step 6. 

Cook until well done ( or however you like them).


Step 9: Enjoy!!!


You now have some delicious Filipino BBQ chicken all ready for you to eat!  Now you can either take the meat off the skewers and eat it that way, or you can eat it traditional style: just hold the skewer and eat!

The best way to eat this is with some grilled vegetables and some steamed white jasmine rice.

Feel free to comment if you have any ideas for improvements, or if you think you can make it better, etc.


Filipino Chicken BBQ on a Stick
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Filipino Chicken BBQ on a Stick
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1/3 to 1 cup ginger beer ,ginger ale or 7-UP, Sprite,orange juice,pineapple juice, or any other kind of sweet drink
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Chicken Katsu Donburi

Chicken Katsu Donburi

Chicken Kastu is a Japanese version of battered and fried boneless chicken pieces.  It can be eaten as a main dish or as part of a noodle or rice bowl where slices of the fried chicken is placed on top of noodles or rice.  If you place it over rice it’s called Katsu Donburi which is a Chicken Katsu rice bowl with eggs.

Katsu Don is one of my favorite Japanese comfort foods.  It’s very similar to my favorite Tendon or Tempura Donburi.  It’s pretty much made the same way, but instead of topping it off with Shrimp Tempura you top it off with  sliced Chicken Katsu.

So to make Katsu Don I make a couple of Chicken Katsu then use my recipe of Tendon.  Easy peasy!

First you make the fried chicken, I prefer to use boneless skinless chicken thighs so it stays tender and juicy.  I also find that thighs are tastier for this type of dish.  But if you want to use boneless breasts you can, just pound it into a thin piece for easier cooking without burning the batter.  I use Panko for breading, if you can’t find it at your grocery store you’ll definitely find it at an Asian Market.  Or you can use plain breadcrumbs.

Once you’ve got the chicken katsu done and set aside just follow the recipe for the Donburi Sauce and the Donburi itself.  In short skip the tempura part of the recipe. 

So here’s what you need to make Katsu Don at home.

Katsu Don


2 Pieces Boneless Skinless Chicken thighs.

1/2 Cup Flour

1 Egg Beaten

1 Cup Panko bread crumbs.  Or plain bread crumbs

Oil for frying

Donburi Sauce – click here for the recipe

Donburi Egg mixture and bowl instructions – click here for the recipe


Dry chicken thighs with a paper towel.

Place flour, beaten egg, and panko in 3 separate bowls.

Line bowls up in this order by your stove – egg, flour, panko – assembly line fashion.  Panko should be bowl closest to stove.

Heat oil in frying pan.

Roll chicken thigh in flour to coat all sides.

Dip in beaten egg.

Roll in Panko to coat all sides.

Shake off excess panko.

Place in hot oil.

Cook until both sides are golden brown.

Drain on rack and set aside.

Make Donburi Sauce and Donburi Bowl click here for those recipes.

Slice fried chicken thighs into 1′ pieces and place the pieces in the bowl on top of rice and fried egg mixture.

Garnish with green onions and seaweed flakes if desired.


Katsu Don
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Japanese rice bowl with fried chicken katsu
2 bowls
2 bowls
Katsu Don
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Japanese rice bowl with fried chicken katsu
2 bowls
2 bowls
Servings: bowls
  1. Pat Chicken thighs dry with paper towel.
  2. Place flour, egg, and panko in 3 separate bowls.
  3. Line bowls up by the stove in this order: flour, egg, panko - panko bowl should be closest to stove.
  4. Heat oil.
  5. Roll chicken in flour to coat all sides.
  6. Dip in egg.
  7. Roll in panko to coat all sides.
  8. Fry in hot oil until both sides are golden brown.
  9. Drain on rack and set aside.
  10. Make Donburi Sauce.
  11. Make Donburi eggs and assemble in a bowl as the recipe instructs.
  12. Slice fried chicken katsu in 1' slices and place in bowl on top of egg mixture.
  13. Garnish with green onions and seaweed flakes if desires.
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Chicken Barbecue

Chicken Barbecue

Barbecued chicken is a variation of Pinoy Pork Barbecue simply because the marinade and procedure are almost the same. However, both has it’s distinct flavor that everyone loves.  Others may call it grilled chicken as it is done indoors under a grill while barbecuing is done outdoors on a barbecue. Whatever it is the process is  just the same cooking it  hot in charcoal or electric grill as I do, since we don’t have any place from the building for charcoal grilling. Nonetheless, my electric grill if just fine for easy grilling of chicken as it has an easy adjustment if you want it cooked low and slow or hot and fast, but for chicken meat it needs both to achieve a fantastic result …well done  from the inside and a bit crispy on the outside.

Just like pork barbecue, chicken barbecue  is fairly simple to make, but it does take a little bit of time to marinate. Please note that the longer you let it marinate the better the taste. If you wish to prepare this dish, marinate it in the evening so as on the next day the chicken is all ready for grilling.

Chicken on the Grill


  • 6 pcs. chicken , cleaned
  • 1/2 cup of Mama Sita’s barbecue marinade
  • 1 whole garlic, peeled & smashed
  • 1 medium size lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp. Maggi magic sarap
  • 1 pinch MSG (optional)

Instructions for Cooking

  1. Make the marinade by combining the garlic, mama sita’s marinade, juice of 1 lemon, msg., maggi magic sarap, and ground black pepper in a bowl. Stir to mix.
  2. Put the chicken leg quarters inside a large freezer bag, and then pour-in the marinade.
  3. Shake the bag gently to coat the chicken with marinade then remove the air inside the bag. Seal the bag then refrigerate overnight.
  4. Remove the chicken from the bag and transfer the remaining marinade to a bowl and put a little oil  for basting.
  5. Put on the chicken into bamboo or metal skewers for easy turning.
  6. Heat-up your grill and start grilling the chicken under medium heat for 12 to 15 minutes per side or until the chicken is completely cooked. Do not forget to baste the chicken with the remaining marinade mixture.
    Note: Chicken takes a long time to cook. Grilling it in high heat will cause the outer part of the chicken to cook earlier leaving the inside raw.
  7. Remove from the grill and transfer to a serving plate.
  8. Serve with steamed rice.
  9. Share and enjoy!


Baste the chicken with the remaining marinade to further enhance the flavor while grilling. Basting the meat will also help to keep it moist through the entire cooking process.

Chicken Barbecue
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Tri-Colored Mochi

Tri-Colored Mochi

A centuries old Japanese tradition is the eating of mochi on New Year.  It usually starts around the new year when Japanese households and communities take part in a traditional Mochitsuki the pounding of sweet rice to make the flour.  The flour is used to make mochi which can be a sweet or savory treat.

In Hawaii mochi is definitely served on New Year specially by families of Japanese ancestry.  I’ve been fortunate enough to be invited by friends whose families practice this tradition.  I’ve had mochi as dumplings in a fish based soup, not exactly my favorite; fried and served with soy sauce; and sweet chewy squares, my favorite.

Mochi is also always available in Hawaii.  It’s found in many local grocery stores and some bakeries.  But most of the time I make Mochi at home.  One of my favorites is Chi Chi Dango, it’s a sweet square made with coconut milk and is usually pink in color.  Another favorite is this Tri-Colored mochi, which is really just a layered Chi Chi Dango in 3 colors, green, pink, and white.  I don’t make it often simply because it’s tedious baking 3 layers, the single color version is just as good.  But Tri-Colored Mochi does look pretty when served at a party.

By the way Mochi is made from glutinous rice flour and is naturally gluten free and since it uses coconut milk it’s also dairy free! It’s the perfect treat for any one with gluten, dairy, and nut allergies.

You can buy both Mochi flour (one of the brand names is Mochiko), canned coconut milk, and Katakoriko at any Asian market.

Tri-Colored Mochi


1 Box Mochiko flour (1 pound)

2 1/2 Cups Sugar

1 Tsp. Baking Powder

1 Can Coconut Milk

3/4 Cup Water

1 Tsp. Vanilla

2 – 3 drops each of red and green food color

Katakoriku (potato starch)


Pre-heat Oven to 350 degrees.

Grease a 9 x 13 baking pan.

Mix all ingredients except the Katakoriku in a bowl until smooth.

Divide batter into 3 equal parts. (I pour them 1 measuring cups)

Color one part pink with red food color, and one part green with green food color, leave third part white.

Pour Green part into your pan and cover with foil.

Bake for 15 minutes and remove from oven.  Uncover and cool for 15 minutes.

Pour white batter over green layer and cover with foil.

Bake for 20 minutes and remove from oven.  Uncover and cool for 15 minutes.

Pour pink batter over white layer and cover with foil.

Bake for 30 minutes and remove from oven.

Uncover and cool for at least 30 minutes.

Cut into squares – I use a pizza wheel to cut even strips then cut those strips into small rectangles.

Place Katakoriku on a plate and roll each piece of mochi in it.  This will dust the mochi so that they don’t stick together.

Store in airtight containers on the counter.  It should last about 3 days, that is if you can keep from eating it sooner!



Tri-Colored Mochi
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Tri-Colored Mochi
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