Kulinarya - Adobo

Kulinarya was started by a group of Filipino foodies living in Sydney, who are passionate about the Filipino culture and its colourful cuisine. Each month we will showcase a new dish along with their family recipes. By sharing these recipes, we hope you find the same passion and love for Filipino Food as we do.

This months Kulinarya dish was chosen by Trisha. Since the holidays were so busy she decided on making something simple but well known in the Philippines which is Adobo.

Every Filipino family has their own way of making Adobo. Some people use coconut milk or coconut juice. Some people even add lemongrass. Even thought people tend to add their own twist, the one rule about making this dish is to make sure you have the basic ingredients added. These ingredients are garlic, soy sauce, vinegar and bay leaves.

I rang my Aunt to ask her if we had a family recipe for Adobo. She said that everyone uses my grandma’s recipe. So here is my Lola’s (Grandma) version of Adobo.

Chicken Adobo


1.5kg chicken thighs with skin on
3 bay leaves
5 tablespoons of soy sauce
2½ tablespoons of vinegar
5 cloves of garlic chopped
1 to 2 cups of water
1 tablespoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
A pinch of salt


1. Put the chicken in a bowl and add soy sauce, vinegar, chopped garlic, salt and black pepper. Marinate this in the fridge for about an hour
2. Put the marinated chicken (with all the marinated juices) in a pot with the bay leaves and water on high heat. (It is very important not to mix the Adobo)

3. Once the Adobo is boiling reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 20 – 25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside.

4. Add sugar to the sauce and reduce for about 5 minutes. Once it has reduced you can add the chicken back into the pot and bring to the boil.

Remove from the heat and serve with hot steamed rice.

This is a really easy dish to make. Believe me it’s only the second time I’ve made it. Hope you enjoyed this months Kulinarya dish. If you are interested in joining our Kulinarya Cooking Club, please feel free to leave a comment or drop by the food blogs below and leave a comment there - we would love to hear from you!


Trissa (January 24, 2010)  

Kath - your adobo looks amazing! That first picture is making me hungry even if I just had lunch a few minutes ago

♥peachkins♥ (January 24, 2010)  

love love love adobo!! Yours look really mouthwatering. I've never tried ginataang adobo but I'm sure I will love it as well..

panda (January 24, 2010)  

grandma's recipes always work a treat. this adobo looks fabulous! looking forward to seeing more filipino recipes :)

Mark –  (January 24, 2010)  

Great looking recipe. I am always surprised how easy these great looking dishes are.

Conor @ HoldtheBeef (January 24, 2010)  

This looks SO tasty. I don't think I've ever eaten adobo, or if I have then I didn't realise what it was. Well done Grandma and Kath :)

Ellie (January 24, 2010)  

This is my favorite Filipino dish! However I haven't cooked it at home. I will have to try your recipe after my Brisbane trip. Your photos are looking really good.

Trisha (January 24, 2010)  

Nice!!!!! And I love the fact that you added the "skin on" - one of the best thing about chicken adobo is the yummy skin mmmmm..... and I agree with Ellie! Great lighting & photos!

Pierre (January 24, 2010)  

dear katherine
I did not know Adobo thanks for the sharing !! cheers from paris pierre

Chef Aimee (January 25, 2010)  

I cannot wait to try this!

Iron Chef Shellie (January 25, 2010)  

I don't think I've ever had Filipino food before. looks good!

cusinera (January 25, 2010)  

love ur adobo pics, has d drool factor to it! i do agree with skin on as it adds flavour and moist to chicken adobo.

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella (January 25, 2010)  

Thanks for sharing the recipe Kath! I've always wanted to know how to cook this and it's great to know that it's easy! :)

Cherrie Pie (January 25, 2010)  

Kulinarya is a great idea. Can anyone join? If so, I would love to.

I love adobo so much that I used to have it almost everyday when I was pregnant.

Helen (Grab Your Fork) (January 25, 2010)  

Adobo is such a classic Filipino chicken isn't it? I love that every family has their own version. Yours looks so easy and tasty!

Belle@Ooh, Look (January 25, 2010)  

Traditional recipes are so good, aren't they? This adobo chicken is one that I'd love to try.

Malou@IMPROMPTU (January 28, 2010)  

I love that you put sugar in your adobo sauce. My adobo is usually not sweet and I think my children would prefer this one. Your pictures make me hungry now... haha!
Thanks for visiting my site Kath and i'll see you more... Im excited to join you in Kulinarya! Thanks for having me! I will be posting my adobo concoction maybe tomorrow.
I hope you stop by then!

Tangled Noodle (January 28, 2010)  

Thanks for sharing your Lola's recipe! Adobo was the one dish I could make reliably to help me keep in touch with my Filipina-ness before I learned to cook a few more dishes. I'd like to try it next with coconut milk even though I wasn't too fond of it before - but tastes change. 8-)

Sinful Southern Sweets (January 29, 2010)  

This looks really great! I think I have everything on hand to make this for lunch. Thanks

MaryMoh (January 29, 2010)  

Heard a lot about this chicken dish, very popular Filipino dish. Looks very delicious. I'm sure it goes very well with rice. I have to try this.

Chris De La Rosa (January 29, 2010)  

Looks lovely and I'm sure it's just as tasty. There's a fairly large Filipino community in my city, but no restaurants. Someone could easily make some good money with this amazing food you prepare.

happy cooking


Recipe Club (December 20, 2010)  

This sounds like a delicious dish. I am from Indonesia, so I am somewhat familiar with Filipino food. I will definitely have to try this.

Ericka Grace Murcia (March 03, 2015)  

Ohhh, I can't wait to try this Filipino recipe. I can't get over the taste of the foods and amazing Philippine cuisine.

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