How to Cook Adobo: A Step-by-Step Guide with Tips and Tricks

Adobo is a classic Filipino dish that has won the hearts of many around the world. It is a savory and tangy dish that is easy to make, and perfect for any occasion. The dish originated in the Philippines and has since then become a national treasure. Adobo is cooked by stewing meat, seafood, or vegetables in a marinade made from vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, bay leaves, and peppercorns. In this article, we will teach you how to cook adobo that will surely make your taste buds dance.


To cook adobo, you will need the following ingredients:

– 1 kg of pork belly or chicken (or a combination of both)
– 1 cup of white vinegar
– 1 cup of soy sauce
– 1 whole garlic, minced
– 2-3 pcs of bay leaves
– 1 teaspoon of peppercorns
– 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
– 2 tablespoons of cooking oil


Now that we have all the ingredients we need, let’s start cooking adobo.

1. In a pan, heat the cooking oil and saute the minced garlic until fragrant.

2. Once the garlic is fragrant, add the pork belly or chicken to the pan and cook it until it turns brown.

3. Pour the soy sauce and vinegar in the pan and add the bay leaves and peppercorns. Mix all the ingredients together.

4. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it simmer for about 30 minutes or until the meat is tender.

5. Add brown sugar to the pan and mix it well with the adobo.

6. You may also adjust the taste by adding more soy sauce or vinegar depending on your preference.

7. Let it simmer for a few more minutes until the sauce thickens.

8. Serve the adobo hot with rice, and enjoy!

Tips and Tricks

– To make adobo even more flavorful, you may marinate the meat overnight in the adobo sauce. This allows the meat to absorb all the flavors from the sauce, resulting in a tastier and more tender dish.

– Some Filipinos like to add coconut milk to their adobo, giving it a creamier and richer taste. You may do this by simply adding a cup of coconut milk to the mixture before simmering.

– Pork belly is the most commonly used meat for adobo, but you may also use chicken, beef, or even seafood like squid or prawns.

– If the sauce is too salty, you may balance it by adding a bit more sugar or a little bit of water. If it is too sour, add a bit more sugar. But be careful not to add too much of either as it may ruin the entire dish.

– To make your adobo look more inviting, you may garnish it with some chopped green onions or sliced red peppers.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

– What is the best kind of meat to use for adobo?

The most commonly used meat for adobo is pork belly, but you may also use chicken, beef, or even seafood like squid or prawns.

– Can I marinate the meat overnight in the adobo sauce?

Yes, you may marinate the meat overnight in the adobo sauce to make it even more flavorful and tender.

– How can I balance the taste if the sauce is too sour or too salty?

If the sauce is too sour, add a bit more brown sugar. If it is too salty, balance it out by adding a little bit of water or more sugar.

– Can I freeze adobo?

Yes, you may freeze adobo for up to three months. Just make sure to store it in airtight containers to avoid freezer burn.

– What can I serve adobo with?

Adobo is usually served with rice, but you may also serve it with mashed potatoes or bread.

In Conclusion

Cooking adobo may seem daunting at first, but with the right ingredients and techniques, anyone can make a delicious and irresistible adobo dish. Just remember to balance the flavors by adjusting the soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar to your liking. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different meats or garnishes to find your perfect adobo recipe. Soon enough, you’ll be cooking adobo like a pro!