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PHILIPPINES: Chicken Adobo



Ready In:

1h 30min

Good For:



About this Recipe

By: Erica Hon, Cynthia Melliza Fragante-Hon 

Many consider adobo to be the national dish of the Philippines. Adobo is a style of cooking, referring to the signature soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic combination. The chicken in this recipe may be substituted for pork, beef, fish, vegetables and even tofu for a vegan/vegetarian option.

Erica is a staff member at Literacy Pittsburgh whose family is from the Philippines. Thank you for sharing this family recipe with us!


philippines on the map
  • 4 pounds of chicken (drumsticks and skin-on thighs are preferable)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut or vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup Filipino Sugar Cane Vinegar (can replace with white vinegar)
  • 2/3 cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1 Whole head Garlic, cloves separated, peeled, and crushed
  • 2 teaspoons ground Black Peppercorns
  • 4 Bay leaves
More about chicken adobo: This is a recipe that families prepare for all occasions as it is hearty, easy to make and features pantry ingredients that families are likely to already have on hand.

Materials needed for this recipe: Large metal, clay or earthenware pot for stewing

chicken adobo with rice and green onions
chicken adobo on rice with bayleaf


Step 1
  • Heat oil in pot over medium heat. When oil is hot, add pieces of chicken until chicken is browned all on sides and some of the fat has rendered out, about 4-5 minutes each side. 
Step 2
  • In a bowl, mix together vinegar, soy sauce, and water.  Pour mixture into pot, on top of chicken. 
Step 4
  • Add garlic, peppercorns and bayleaves.
Step 5
  • Cook on medium low for 45 minutes – 1 hour until chicken is tender.  
Step 6
  • Serve with steamed white rice, green onions