Chicken (or Beef) Adobo

Chicken (or Beef) Adobo

A good recipe for introducing adobo to kids. The addition of water dilutes the flavor and can be lessened in time as this dish becomes familiar and liked. Most adobo dishes require frying the meat as a last step – omitted in this recipe, which I find very helpful at dinner rush hour! This is also a Paleo friendly dish which does not use soy sauce (as in authentic adobo.)


1 Tbsp oil
2 Tbsp annatto seeds
5 cloves garlic, minced (or just pound and leave whole so big enough for kids to remove if they like)
2.2 lbs chicken pieces or stewing beef
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground peppercorn (or use whole peppercorns to lessen spice)
1-2 cups water (decrease the water once kids accustomed to taste)

2 tbsp soy sauce (or tamari or coconut aminos – Paleo friendly)


1. In a wok heat oil. Add annatto seeds and press to extract color then remove from oil quickly (to avoid burning) and discard seeds.
2. Saute garlic in same oil until golden brown.
3. Combine remaining ingredients except water and add to the sauteed garlic.
4. Pour in water and let boil. (To intensify adobo flavor, lessen amount of water in recipe.) Simmer for about 20-30 mins (50-60 mins for beef) until cooked, stirring occasionally. Remove bay leaves and serve with hot rice.

To intensify flavors even more, remove meat from sauce after cooking and reduce sauce to about half the volume. The meat may be fried or broiled in the meantime. Serve with sauce on the side or poured over the meat.

3 thoughts on “Chicken (or Beef) Adobo

    1. Hi Mia – I actually skip the annatto when I am pressed for time, but yes it adds color and a subtle flavor. But using hot oil is still quicker than the more common method of soaking the seeds in water – so it’s still quite easy to use in this recipe. Kain na! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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