Katie Stew

A rich, simmering blend of my favorite things

Chicken Adobo


Chicken Adobo is brilliant. If you’ve never heard of it, I am hear to bring you the good news! Adobo is a classic Filipino dish that basically consists of chicken braised in soy sauce and vinegar. There are as many different takes on Adobo as there are people who make it. Every family has their own recipe, and probably all would argue that theirs is the best. There was even a fun article recently in Bon Appetit about why Chicken Adobo is the Greatest Recipe of All Time.

I’ve fallen in love with it recently for a number of reasons.

#1. It is super easy to make. No really. You can’t really get much easier. One pot. Add it all. Push a button. Magic happens. And even if you don’t have a Insta-pot, your slow cooker or your oven will do the same thing. I love one pot meals.

#2. It is good for you! There is nothing questionable in this dish. Nothing processed or fatty. Just chicken, soy, and vinegar with some seasoning. Granted, if you are watching your sodium levels, this much soy sauce may not be ideal, but for the rest of us, dig into some chicken piled high on a plate of brown rice and you have a light, delicious meal.

Spices for a cheesecloth bundle.

#3. I love how tangy it is! The first time I made this, I had no sugar in it and I loved it. But my boyfriend said it was too tangy and prefers a little sweetness. I get it. So now I add a little brown sugar. But, I love how bright and different it tastes from other chicken dishes in my routine.

Ok. Before I go on. I’m going to have to talk about my InstaPot. I’m sorry if you have friends who have bombarded you with tales already about how much they love theirs, but I have to share. I love this device. It is so handy! If you are unfamiliar with the InstaPot phenomenon, there is a line of electric pressure cookers on the market that has developed an intense following as of late. It is a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and rice cooker all in one, with a bunch of other functions as well. I’ve had mind for about a year now and use it about once a week. You can make beans from dry in an hour! No soaking required. And that, is pretty darn cool.

Anyways, this recipe is for the InstaPot. But you can just as easily make it in a slow cooker, or a dutch oven. Just adjust the time up and cook until meat is very tender.

Chicken Adobo

  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 TB brown sugar
  • 1 tsp peppercorns
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 dried chilies
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 4 drumsticks and 4 thighs
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch (optional)

Add chicken to Instapot. Pour liquids over. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Create cheesecloth package with peppercorns, bay leaves, chilies, and garlic. Cheesecloth is optional. You can certainly just add all ingredients directly into pot, but it is just simpler for serving if you don’t have to search around for the bay leaves later. Add package to the Insta-pot.

Seal and cook on high pressure for 45 minutes. Remove chicken and cheesecloth bundle. Whisk in cornstarch, one TB at a time, and sauté until desired thickness. The cornstarch is entirely optional. I just like giving the sauce a little more body to stick to the rice. So start with a little and see how you like it.

Serve with rice. Be sure to pour over some extra of the delicious sauce.

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