Filipinos are not just known for their hospitality and the Philippines’ tourist spots. They are also known for their yummy Filipino food! Since the Philippines had been occupied by different nationalities before, their dishes are influenced by the Spanish, American, Japanese, and even Chinese cuisine.
But there are also some dishes that are authentic traditional Filipino food! In this blog post, we will make you crave for our favorite 57 Filipino dishes.
If you’re an avid reader of our blog, you’ll notice that Rachel and I really LOVE food. For each country we visit, we make sure that we taste their local dishes. Rachel is from the Philippines so she’s the one who introduces me to yummy Filipino dishes. Let’s talk about Filipino food!
WHERE TO STAY AND ACTIVITIES IN THE PHILIPPINES
Having insurance while you are traveling outside your home country is very important. Make sure that you have one too, to keep you safe in your trips around the world.
Filipino Food: Our favorite Filipino Dishes
You can find Lechon almost everywhere in the Philippines. The most interesting thing, they eat with their bare hands. It’s a common food whenever there’s a celebration or festival in the Philippines and it brings people together because they don’t want to run out of lechon, ha! Although Pork Lechon is the usual lechon in the Philippines, there are also Chicken Lechon and Beef Lechon.
Filipino adobo is a very famous Filipino dish in the world. Almost every household has its own variations for it, passed from generations to generations. Adobo sauce is made with vinegar and soy sauce, along with other herbs and spices. It could be cooked with chicken or pork, although others had tried cooking it with vegetables too.
Ube is a purple yam that is very common in the Philippines as a standalone dessert or an ingredient of another dessert. Actually, most of the purple desserts you’ll ever taste maybe has ube in it. It has a very gentle flavor, that’s why it blends well with other sweet ingredients.
It is a must try in Pampanga! Did you know that Kapampangans are known to be good cooks? Sisig is the most popular dish in Angeles City. It’s a dish with sliced ears and head of the pig mixed with fried onions and chili. It´s served with rice and calamansi.
We love this noodle dish so much! It has thin noodles and rich, orange sauce, with egg slices, onion chives, and chopped chicharon or deep fried pork skin.
6. Crispy Pata
Another famous Filipino dish but not suitable for people with hypertension, ha! It is deep-fried pork leg that is usually paired with a special sauce or just vinegar and soy sauce.
You can find this dish in the Philippines. Noodles mixed with vegetables and chicken. It’s served for breakfast and usually served at parties, too. Prices are from $0.5-1.
Traditional Filipino Food
Bulalo is a yummy soup that is perfect for rainy days. It’s made with beef, vegetables, and beef broth. Typical traditional Filipino food this dish from Tagaytay!
9. Arroz Caldo
Arroz Caldo is another Filipino dish perfect for rainy days. This is the Filipino version of porridge or congee, made with sticky rice, meat (can be internal organs of pig, beef, or chicken), ginger, and seasonings.
A new specialty for us, Humba. It’s pork belly cooked with onion, garlic, black beans and pineapple. It’s served with rice in the carenderias and the price starts from 40 pesos ($ 0.80 ). It´s tasty and one of the most popular dishes in Visayas.
More Traditional Filipino Food
Kare-kare is a Filipino stew made with ox tail or beef. It can be done with other parts of pig as well, or tripe. It has a yummy thick peanut sauce and usually served with alamang or bagoong. One of the most popular traditional Filipino food.
Bangus, or milk fish, is the Philippine national fish. You can do a lot of dishes with this fish, such as Sinigang (sour soup), inihaw (charcoal-grilled), or just fry it and pair with your specialty sauce.
Another famous type of fish in the Philippines is Tilapia. It’s very versatile and Filipinos cook it by frying, with coconut milk, grilled, and even Sinigang in some provinces.
Bagnet is the double-fried crispy pork specialty of Ilocos. It’s a cross between chicharon and lechon kawali where the lean meat is crispy but not dry and the pork skin is fried to a crisp. You’ll taste the natural taste oh so yummy taste of the pork! You should try Bagnet when visiting Ilocos Norte.
Pinakbet is a popular Ilocano vegetable dish. It is a vegetable stew made with tomatoes, eggplant, string beans, okra, and bitter gourd. The dish might have different version all over the country but the Ilocano pinakbet uses a much loved fermented fish sauce called bagoong isda to season the dish, so it is really a must try!
Ilocos Norte has the best tasting empanadas. If you are in Laoag, you can go to Batac which is about 30 minutes away to buy empanadas. Batac is like the empanada capital in Ilocos Norte. They even have Empanada Festival on the City Charter Day each 23rd of June.
You can find empanadas in the Philippines, they are typical from the North. It’s made by a dough with vegetables, chicken or meat inside. It’s fried in hot oil. Price are from $1-2.
Even though the dish is popularly from Ilocos Norte, we also tasted a version in Batanes and we liked so much.
Ilocano Longganisa might be famous, but it is said that the ones from Laoag, specifically in San Nicolas Public Market are jucier because it contains more fat, making it also more lethal. Unlike the Vigan longganisa, Laoag has minimal vinegar or contains none at all.
You can find balut as a street food in Southeast Asia in Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Philippines. It’s a developing duck embryo which is boiled and eaten in the shell.
Sinigang is a sour soup that is usually made with pork, fish, beef or chicken. It is sour because of the tomatoes or tamarind. Other vegetables are also added to this rainy day sour.
21. Chicken Feet
You can find chicken feet as street food in Southeast Asia in Thailand, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia,Vietnam and the Philippines. They are usually fried then covered with flavored sauce. You can find also find some boiled in soups and later deep fried. It’s perfect to share this meal with cold beer. Prices are $2-3.
Another famous street food in the Philippines is barbecue. It can be pork barbecue or chicken barbecue. You can find them in street food stalls offering different charcoal grilled meat and internal organs of pig and chicken. You can buy pork barbecue in the Philippines for as low as PHP 10!
Batchoy, an egg noodle soup cooked with pork meat, intestines, liver and bone marrow mixed with fried garlic and scallions is also a famous dish in Iloilo, the Philippines. It is also topped with chicharon (very crispy fried pork belly/rind) right before serving. The broth of batchoy is usually slow cooked for hours to achieve its unique flavor.
24. Lumpiang Shanghai
This is a famous food not just in the Philippines but other Southeast Asian countries as well. It is influenced by Chinese cuisine. Lumpiang Shanghai is Filipino spring roll– with ground pork, carrot, and spices covered in a thin Lumpia wrapper. You can dip it in sweet sauce to maximize the flavor.
25. Chicken Inasal
Inasal is Bacolod’s pride and joy, making it the #1 must-try food in this city. This unique version of charcoal grilled chicken originated in Bacolod and is cooked with a marinade of calamansi, coconut vinegar, pepper and annato. All these herbs and spices give inasal its unique flavor that people from all over the world fall in love with.
Since Bacolod is inasal‘s hometown, there’s no better place to try it than here. Head on out to Manokan Country, Bacolod’s street market that specializes in this delightful chicken dish. There are a few places where you can try chicken always full of people! For sure it’s the best place to go for dinner. Prices of orders are around 100 PHP chicken and rice!
If you’ve ever heard of bulalo, it would be easy enough for you to imagine what cansi is, the Ilonggo version of said Filipino dish. For those who think those two words sound made up, bulalo and cansi are basically dishes cooked with the same main ingredient: beef shank. However, the shank isn’t necessarily the highlight of cansi.
The star is actually the bone marrow, which can be eaten by using the wrong end of your spoon/fork to scoop the marrow from the bone. Even shaking the bone downwards to let the marrow fall out might do the trick! Prices for order is around 350 PHP and it’s a complete soup full of meat that can be share for a few of you.
There are oysters available in Manokan Country in Bacolod apart from the popular Inasal Chicken. The prices is 60 PHP for a dish and it’s quite big the order. So delicious for a cheap price! You can also find it everywhere in provinces that are near the sea, or seafood restaurants in the city.
This seafood fish famous all over the Philippines is said to be comparable to ceviche. In essence, though, kinilaw (literally “eaten raw”) refers to the process of using vinegar’s acidity to cook meat or fish. It is more commonly used with fish and is served with other souring ingredients like green mangoes.
It is then seasoned with pepper, chili and onions. It does well as an appetizer but is more ideally served with beer as pulutan (finger food). With the abundance of fresh fish in Bacolod, kinilaw isn’t hard to find.
Apart from the ones mentioned above, there are plenty of other seafood available in Bacolod like shrimp and talaba (oysters). Of course, different kinds of fish also abound in Bacolod and they are prepared and processed in different ways.
One famous variant of fish found in the region is danggit, or salted and dried rabbitfish. It’s crunchy and salty, perfect to dip in vinegar, eat with hot rice and fried egg in the morning. Yum!
More Filipino Food and Filipino Dishes
30. Tortang Talong
A simple dish like Torta made from eggplant, cooked with fried egg is so delicious! It´s very typical in Visayas region, or overall in the Philippines, as local food. We found it more in Visayas though, than in Luzon. Prices start from 20 pesos ($ 0.40) in local carinderias.
Kaldereta is a kind of stew in the Philippines, which has thick, yummy sauce. Beef is the usual meat in Kaldereta but there are also variations with pork and chicken.
32. Lechon Manok
Locally called daraagin Bacolod, this chicken dish is famous for its vinegar and calamansi flavor and that one of a kind lemongrass aroma and taste. Lechon manok, or roast chicken, is famous all over the Philippines and some of the best restaurants in Iloilo serve this dish. Go to Tatoy’s to get the best tasting lechon manok in the city! It’s legit!
33. Flying Fish
It is one of our favorite dishes. It’s served in carinderias and restaurants. It was actually our first time trying it in Batanes and we were wondering if we can bring some to Pampanga. That’s how much we loved it!
Laing is made with mixed vegetables, specifically the dried leaves of gabi or taro, and coconut milk, served with garlic and you can add pork if you wish. It is usually made with chili, which adds a kick to its flavor.
Tocino is a classic local dish usually eaten for breakfast. It’s a pork dish processed and mixed with flavorings like sugar, then soaked/marinated for a time. When cooked, it is sweet and delicious. It is Rachel’s favorite! Wherever we are in a restaurant, if there is tocino, sisig and Ube, she will forget about the other dishes in the menu,
36. Beef Tapa
Tapa is dried or cured beef, although other meat or even fish may be used. Filipinos prepare tapa by using thin slices of meat and curing these with salt and spices as a preservation method. Tapa is often cooked fried or grilled.
Luñis is a pork dish that’s quite similar to adobo. While adobo has sauce, Luñis is rather cooked dry. It is a traditional dish that is mixed with salt and is cooked with salt until the pork becomes golden brown. It can be stored for quite a long time in a jar.
A typical dessert in Batanes called Suman. It is made from sticky rice, a sweet and delicious treat! Suman is usually topped with latik, a sweet sauce made from coconut.
39. Chop Suey
This dish is known to be influenced by the Chinese Cuisine and Filipinos love it. It has vegetables, quail eggs and meat and a little bit of thick brown sauce.
40. Pork Dinuguan and Puto
Pork Dinuguan is made of pig’s blood, pork, vinegar, chili while puto is a type of steamed rice cake. It may seem weird but these two go well together!
Liempo is a pork cut that is loved by many Filipinos. For them, it’s the best cut of pork! You can grill liempo or fry it, it will be perfect with sauces or gravy too.
42. Filipino Spaghetti
Maybe the type of spaghetti that you usually eat is sour because of the tomatoes. But in the Philippines, kids love spaghetti because it’s sweet! Filipino Spaghetti has sweet sauce, lots of hotdog slices, ground pork, topped with grated cheese! Yum! Jollibee is the most popular place in the Philippines to try Filipino spaghetti.
Bibingka is another popular Filipino street food mostly eaten during Christmas season. This egg based dessert is eaten alongside. It’s usually served on a banana leaf.
Champorado is a delicious chocolate rice porridge in the Philippines, usually eaten for breakfast or as snack. It’s served with evaporated or condensed milk. A weird trivia about Champorado is that Filipinos sometimes also eat it with tuyo, or dried fish. You have to taste it when you go to the Philippines!
It’s the most popular dessert in the Philippines. The ingredients are kidney beans, sugar palm, coconut, ice cream, purple yam and evaporated milk. Prices are from $1-2.
46. Bread and Ice cream
This strange dessert is from the Philippines. You can find them everywhere, where the sorbetero (ice cream vendor with a cart) is going, especially at Christmas time. It’s just sweet bread with ice cream. It’s delicious and affordable!
Puto is steamed rice cake staple in every Filipino occassion. It is usually topped with a slice of cheese or salted egg.
This is another type of bread in the Philippines. It is covered in butter, cheese, and sugar. It’s fluffy and cheap! Prices start at PHP 20.
49. Crema de Fruta
Crema de Fruta is a famous dessert usually served during holidays in the Philippines. It’s made with rectangular cookies, fruit cocktails, sweetened cream and milk.
Yema can be identified as a candy because it’s usually served in bite-size pieces. It’s a sweet Filipino delicacy made with milk and sugar.
51. Puto Bumbong
Turon is primarily made with saba, a type of banana, wrapped in a thin wrapper then deep-fried with lots of brown sugar. Some turon variations have langka or jackfruit too.
54. Pan de Sal
It is a street food in the Philippines. Calamares is deep fried squid covered in batter.
Filipinos love street food, and it’s a must to try charcoal grilled intestines of pork or chicken. It’s paired with vinegar or sweet sauce.