Filipino Chicken Adobo- A Balancing Act

A balance between vinegar and soy sauce it can make for a sharp, salty braising liquid. Add a can of coconut milk, and suddenly the flavors mellow. This is a really interesting combination of flavors that are really quite delicious.

This dish could not be easier, with only a few ingredients most that will be found in your pantry. The end result is a tender and tasty dish.  What is great about dishes like this one, is that it can be served up family style, and to a crowd with almost no additional effort.

Filipino Chicken Adobo
Serves 4
Recipe from Cook’s Illustrated

8 (5-7 ounce) bone in chicken thighs, trimmed
1/3 cup soy sauce
1 (13 1/2-ounce) can coconut milk
3/4 cup cider vinegar
8 garlic cloves, peeled
4 bay leaves
2 teaspoons pepper
1 scallion, sliced thin
1.  Toss chicken with soy sauce in large bowl.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.
2.  Remove chicken from soy sauce, allowing excess to drip back into the bowl.  Transfer chicken side down, to 12-inch nonstick skillet; set aside soy sauce.
3.  Place skillet over medium-high heat and cook until chicken skin is browned, 7 to 10 minutes.  While chicken is browning, whisk coconut milk, vinegar, garlic, bay leaves, and pepper into soy sauce.
4.  Transfer chicken to plate and discard fat in skillet.  Return chicken to skillet skin side down, add coconut milk mixture, and bring to boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes.  Flip chicken skin side up and continue to cook, uncovered, until chicken registers 175 degrees, about 15 minutes.  Transfer chicken to platter and tent loosely with aluminum foil.
5.  Remove bay leaves and skim any fat off surface of sauce.  Return skillet to medium-high heat and cook until sauce is thickened, 5 to 7 minutes.  Pour sauce over chicken, sprinkle with scallions and serve over rice.

40 thoughts on “Filipino Chicken Adobo- A Balancing Act

  1. Sounds like a delicious way (other than southern fried, of course) to serve chicken thighs. I find we use them more and more. They don't dry out like breasts can and they have more flavor. I love the flavor combination in this recipe and the fact that it is easy.Have a great weekend.Best,Bonnie


  2. I've been looking for good simple ways to prepare chicken, especially on those busy weeknights. This looks terrific! I like the exciting flavors of salt, vinegar and coconut milk. Looking forward to trying it.


  3. Coconut milk…that's brilliant. I never thought of that and it looks wonderfully delicious.When I make this I will link back to your post here 🙂


  4. I am trying Filipino dishes here in Beirut as there is quite a sizeable Filipino community here; I had heard of this dish but did not realized it was so simple to make. Next on my list!


  5. thanks for stopping by my blog and introducing me to yours, it's so much fun to explore other foodies out there and what's cooking in your kitchen looks absolutely delicious (my husband already made me promise to try this dish this week!)


  6. Velva, I'm loving this recipe. I've been replacing milk with coconut milk in a lot of recipes. Of course, thighs are the most tasty part of a chicken. 🙂


  7. just coming back to let you know that i gave in to hubby's begging (we had something to celebrate) and just made this for dinner, added a little bit of fresh ginger ans sriracha sauce as well. i don't even know where to start – it was absolutely and unbelievably delicious, thanks so much!


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