Most Common Dishes in the Philippines

Most Common Dishes in the Philippines
Philippine cuisine is a mishmash of various culinary influences brought by its first settlers from Austronesia and that of Chinese, Spanish and American cultures. Chinese and Spanish influences, however, are more evident due to the long-standing relationship between the Philippines and these two countries.

1.    Pork Dishes

pinoy-pork-adobo

Adobo

lechon paksiw

lechon paksiw

Sisig

Sisig

Pork is a universal ingredient all over the world, and Filipinos are a natural pork-loving bunch. It’s not surprising therefore for the Philippine lechon or whole roast pig to come as its most popular and most loved pork dish, along with adobo, lechon paksiw (repurposed lechon) and sisig.

2.    Seafood Dishes

escabeche

escabeche

tangy seafood soup sinigang

tangy seafood soup sinigang

seaweed salad

seaweed salad

As a country with more than 7,000 islands with vast stretches of coastlines and fishing grounds, it is common to find a wide array of Philippine seafood dishes. The most common seafood recipes include sweet and sour fish dish called escabeche, seaweed salad, and the deliciously tangy seafood soup sinigang with either shrimp or milkfish.

3.    Chicken Dishes

lechon manok

lechon manok

isaw

isaw

chicken feet bbq

betamax

Some of the famous Filipino chicken dishes include chicken afritada, chicken tinola with malunggay, and lechon manok (whole roast chicken). Chicken is also a main ingredient in Philippine street food as in the case of adidas (chicken feet bbq), betamax (skewered chicken blood) and isaw (skewered chicken intestine).

4.    Beef Dishes

beef soups bulalo

beef soups bulalo

pochero

Beef Pochero

Tagalog beef steak

Bistek Tagalog

Despite the hefty per kilo price of beef, Filipinos do have a penchant for beef preparations including beef soups bulalo and pochero, as well as the well-known bistek Tagalog (Tagalog beef steak) with its tangy-salty sauce.

5.    Vegetable Dishes

mung bean soup with coconut milk

mung bean soup with coconut milk

ngohiong

ngohiong

fresh lumpia

fresh lumpia

As an agricultural nation, the Philippines produces some of the world’s freshest vegetables from cabbages, gourds, beans to peppers. Filipinos are known for serving chopsuey, vegetable sauté of Chinese origin. Other Filipino vegetable dishes include fresh lumpia, ngohiong, laing, and mung bean soup with coconut milk.

pineapple upside-down cake

pineapple upside-down cake

6.    Fruit Dishes

avocado shake

avocado shake

mango float

mango float

Tropical fruits are abundant in the archipelago. Here you can find various fruit desserts and preparations such as mango float, avocado shake, and pineapple upside-down cake, banana cake and cashew nut tart.

7.    Rice Dishes

kalamay

kalamay

biko

biko

bibingka

bibingka

Like its neighboring countries, the Philippines has a rice-eating population who are very adept in creating various rice recipes both savory and sweet. There is the Pinoy version of the Spanish arroz caldo and paella, delectable rice cakes with coconut milk such as biko, bibingka, kalamay and suman.

Pinoy Style Spaghetti

Pinoy Style Spaghetti

8.    Pasta Dishes

Filipino Pancit

Filipino Pancit

Celebrations will not be complete without a pasta dish. In the Philippines, pancit is a mainstay dish served during birthdays because of the country’s adapted belief from the Chinese that eating noodles helps prolong one’s life. Pinoys also love sweet-style spaghetti with hotdog slices and minced pork.

leche flan

9.    Egg Dishes

egg pie

egg pie

beaten egg in corned beef

beaten egg in corned beef

leche flan

leche flan

Filipinos have this penchant for adding eggs into just about any food – beaten egg in corned beef, canned tuna and noodle soup, and boiled egg in pork humba. Two of the well-loved Pinoy egg desserts include leche flan, egg pie.

10.    Pastries

Hopia de Manila

Hopia de Manila

assorted pies with macapuno

assorted pies with macapuno

sans rival in Dumaguete

sans rival in Dumaguete

otap in Cebu

otap in Cebu

durian tart in Davao

durian tart in Davao

pastel in Cagayan de Oro

pastel in Cagayan de Oro

Yes, Pinoys are bakers, too. Anywhere in the country, there’s always a pastry dish, a local delicacy one could enjoy while sightseeing or bring back home as pasalubong. There’s pastel in Cagayan de Oro, durian tart in Davao, Hopia de Manila, otap in Cebu, sans rival in Dumaguete and also assorted pies with macapuno, ube or langka filling.

These are the common Filipino dishes anybody can easily find in the malls or on the streets anywhere in the Philippines. It should also be noted that you can easily find many western fast food chains all over the country along with our local ones so don’t be surprised (like many of our foreign guests) to see more McDonalds and Starbucks here than in some parts of the US.

How about you, what other common Filipino dishes do you enjoy? Feel free to give us your gastronomic opinions in the comment section below.

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  1. December 17, 2015

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