chicken, easy, filipino

Easy Authentic Filipino Chicken Adobo

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A Filipino classic, chicken adobo is one of the most flavorful chicken dishes ever. And the best part? It’s EXTREMELY easy to make. With just a few cheap ingredients and very little effort, you too can have a delicious and hearty meal ready in minutes. Winner winner chicken dinner.

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What is Adobo?

Well, it depends who you ask! Adobo originates from Spain. It originally consisted of meat marinated with spices such as paprika and oregano. When the Spanish colonized the Philippines they encountered a cooking process that involved stewing meat with vinegar, a characteristic that was shared with Spanish adobo. Hence, they called that dish adobo. However, both dishes developed separately and are therefore very different from each other.

Key Ingredients

Soy sauce –  A very common ingredient in Asian cuisine. This is the dish’s only source of salt, as well as one of two primary flavors of this dish. 

Vinegar – The other star ingredient of this dish. The sour vinegar helps balance the salty soy sauce out to create an amazing sweet and salty flavor combination. Coconut vinegar is traditional, but almost any other vinegar works as well. White vinegar is the closest substitution. Other good options are apple cider vinegar and rice wine vinegar. However both of those are a little on the sweet side so add half the usual amount of sugar if you use those.

Garlic – It can’t be a filipino dish without a LOT of garlic. Because the garlic is so prominent, garlic powder or minced jarred garlic do not substitute well. Try to use fresh garlic or pre-peeled whole cloves

Peppercorns– Using whole peppercorns to flavor the dish is the traditional way to make it. The peppercorns slowly release their flavor into the sauce as it simmers. But if you aren’t super excited about biting into one of them by accident, freshly ground pepper works similarly. 

Easy Authentic Filipino Chicken Adobo

Servings

4

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

40

minutes

Ingredients

  • 5-6 chicken thighs, bone-in skin on

  • ½ cup soy sauce

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • 4 bay leaves

  • 1 tsp black peppercorns

  • 7-8 garlic cloves

  • ¼ cup vinegar

  • 1 cup water

Directions

  • Add chicken thighs, soy sauce, garlic cloves, bay leaves, black peppercorns, and sugar in a container. Mix together and let marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  • In a lightly oiled pan on medium heat, brown the chicken on each side for about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the marinade as well as a cup of water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Remove the lid, add the vinegar and simmer uncovered until the sauce is darker and slightly thickened, about 8-10 minutes. 

11 Comments

  1. This is such a tasty recipe! The flavors are incredible, especially after adding in the vinegar. Instant favorite, thank you for sharing!

  2. Found your video cooking the adobo and felt inspired to try it myself. It was very easy just like you said and a ton of fun to make! I can’t wait to try more of your recipes from this site <3
    Thank you!

  3. Came from Instagram, made this recipe twice so far. Love how I can make a meal and have left overs for the week. Made it tonight with green beans, considering setting up the marinade and chicken and freezing another batch for next time.

  4. Shayberri789

    I’m going to try make this tonight, it looks good! I’m a uni student so easy meals like this are golden. I have a question though: are the Bay leaves required? I’m not a spectacular cook and don’t know what flavour they offer, but I just don’t have them in my pantry

  5. I’ve made this several times only now realising I didn’t have the right chicken but skinless works too, it’s an awesome recipe and super helpful when I really cannot put effort into cooking, tysm for sharing !!

  6. Excellent recipe! I accidentally did the marinade with the vinegar and ended up adding more vinegar at the end. Still was sooo good.

  7. Actually cooking adobo is very easy. Am a Filipino and is a common dish in our country. If u want to make adobo more tastier, try to add 2 to 3 boiled eggs when chicken meat is almost tender. Or if u dont like boiled eggs, try to add pineapple chunks to taste a little sweet and sour sauce. Enjoy !

  8. I found this recipe on TikTok and it has been a go-to for the last year! We sometimes swap out the soy sauce for ponzu sauce to mix it up but keep the rest the same. It’s so amazing! I swear, we make this at least 2x a month. Thank you for this amazing recipe!

  9. Best Adobo recipe, followed it exactly, no modifications needed! I actually give my Filipina mother-in-law the tip to add vinegar right at the end so it doesn’t evaporate out, felt like a pro!

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