Chicken Adobo in 6 Easy Steps!

Happy First Day of Summer Everyone! πŸ™‚

How are you today? I hope you’re doing well and the weather is cooperating. Are you out enjoying the sunshine? Today I want to pull up a chair together and talk about Chicken Adobo. Not only is it the national dish of the Philippines, but it also has a rich history in preserving and curing meat in vinegar and salt. This dish is one of the oldest recipes in Filipino history, with records dating back to the Classical Period (900-1521)! In this recipe, you’ll see that the daunting 24+ hour recipe is much easier then you think. All you need to do is get a large bowl and start one day ahead of time. The rest is a piece of cake. So let’s dive in together!

Filipino Chicken Adobo
Filipino Chicken Adobo

Chicken Adobo in 6 Easy Steps:Β 

Courtesy of: The Splendid Table


  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 10 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/4 cups white or cider vinegar
  • 1 cup whole canned tomatoes with their liquid
  • 2 bay leaves, broken
  • 3 lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (Note: I purchased 1 whole chicken and broke it down into 8 parts)
  • Olive oil for frying
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 whole scallions, thinly sliced


Step 1: Begin 18-24 hours before you want to serve the adobo. Get a large mixing bowl and create your marinade. Combine the soy sauce, garlic, black pepper, vinegar, tomatoes, (crush them in your hands before tossing them in), and bay leaves. Add in the chicken making sure it sits beneath the liquid. Cover the bowl with cling wrap and refrigerate for 18-24 hours.


Step 2: About 1 hour from the time you want to serve, get a pot of rice going in your rice cooker. Now it’s time to get the chicken going! Pour the chicken and marinade into a large 4 quart pot. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce to a gentle simmer and cook for 25 minutes.


Step 3: With tongs, remove the chicken pieces to a plate. Keep simmering the marinade to reduce the liquid by half. This will be your sauce. (And it’s SO good!)


Step 4: Grab a large frying pan, pour in a drizzle of olive oil and turn the heat on to medium-high. It’s time to fry the chicken pieces. (Your pan should be very hot, but the chicken will spatter so please be careful!). Fry the chicken pieces for 2-3 minutes, just enough to brown the skin and make them crispy. Work in batches, then remove to a plate.


Step 5: When all of the chicken is cooked, add in the sliced onions and cook until tender and soft.


Step 6: When you’re ready to plate, place the chicken on a large communal platter. Place the onions on top and pour on several ladles of the sauce. Garnish with sliced scallions. Serve with steamed rice and enjoy! πŸ™‚





  1. Enjoying the sunshine? Not hardly. I think my hair is melting. πŸ™‚

    I don’t particularly like the taste of soy sauce, so what would you replace it with in this recipe? And what’s all that vinegar for? Does cider vinegar smell better than regular vinegar?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good questions! πŸ™‚ If you aren’t crazy about soy sauce I’d try oyster sauce or hoisin sauce, though the sauce will be thicker but that’s okay. The vinegar seems like a ton I know. When I was cooking the dish I thought, “Oh my goodness this is a lot… I hope it doesn’t make it sour”, but I promise you it doesn’t. It’s the traditional way of cooking the meat. I used cider vinegar because I had run out of white vinegar. But either way is fine. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 2 people

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