Sunday, April 29, 2012

Pork Adobo (Filipino)

Filipino adobo is a well loved plate lunch choice among the locals in Hawaii.  It’s an easy one pot meal of stewed pork or chicken and sometimes a combination of both.  Adobo gets its unique flavor from a handful of simple ingredients (soy sauce, vinegar and garlic) and works best with fattier cuts of pork like the shoulder, butt, spareribs or belly.  Pork loin would not be a good choice for this dish, it’s too lean.

If you choose to use chicken, dark meat parts (thighs, legs or wings) are the best choice.  Breast meat will get pretty dry, so if you are using a whole chicken instead of parts, save the breast meat for another meal.  At least that’s what I would do...

The way that I was taught to make adobo was to place all the ingredients in the pot I was cooking it in, give it a little stir and put it in the fridge overnight.  Then when I'm ready to cook it I simply take the pot out of the fridge and place it on the stove to do its thing.  I guess you could call this a true one pot meal.

The all meat version is traditional, but I like to add diced potatoes and carrots in the last 20 minutes of cooking and sometimes peas.

3          pounds            pork butt, cut into bite size pieces
½         cup                  white vinegar
¼         cup                  soy sauce, Kikkoman
3          cloves              garlic, minced
¼         tsp.                  kosher salt
¼         tsp.                  coarse black pepper
1          whole               bay leaf

*I use Kikkoman soy sauce which is a lot stronger than Aloha.  If you use Aloha shoyu use equal parts of shoyu to vinegar.

Cut pork into bite size pieces.  Mix all the ingredients together and marinate the meat overnight.
Place the meat in a pot and bring to a boil (no browning needed); lower heat and simmer covered for 30 – 45 minutes or until meat is very tender but not falling apart. 

Remove lid and turn the heat back up to high and let cook at a boil while stirring for 10 - 15 minutes to let the sauce reduce until most of the sauce has evaporated.


  1. What perfect timing for this recipe! We had "pork stew" as I called it in my naivete in Hawaii last week. I instantly wanted a recipe! Lucky me. Thanks Susan!

    P.S. Can this be made in a slow cooker? Just wondering.

    1. Aloha Sally, Thanks for stopping by. I have never cooked adobo in the slow cooker,but I don't see why it wouldn't work. If you like Filipino pork stew, you may also want to try the Pork Guisantas. Happy cooking :)