Sunday, October 1, 2023
HomeCooking & RecipeHow To Cook A Healthy Adobo Recipe Step-by-Step Instructions

How To Cook A Healthy Adobo Recipe Step-by-Step Instructions

Adobo is Number #2 on our Top 20 List of Healthy Filipino Dishes

Chicken adobo can be a healthy dish when prepared with certain ingredients and cooking methods. Here are a few reasons why chicken adobo can be considered healthy:

  1. Lean Protein: Chicken is a good source of lean protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues, supporting muscle growth, and maintaining overall health. Protein also helps you feel fuller for longer, which can aid in weight management.
  2. Low in Fat: Adobo typically involves simmering the chicken in a mixture of vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, and spices. This method of cooking requires minimal oil, making it a low-fat dish. By using skinless chicken and removing any visible fat, you can further reduce the fat content.
  3. Nutrient-rich Marinade: The traditional adobo marinade often includes vinegar and garlic. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which may help lower blood sugar levels and improve insulin sensitivity. Garlic is rich in antioxidants and may have potential cardiovascular benefits.
  4. Minimal Processing: Homemade chicken adobo allows you to control the ingredients and avoid additives or excessive sodium found in pre-packaged sauces. This makes it a healthier choice compared to some processed or ready-to-eat meals.
  5. Versatile Ingredients: You can incorporate various vegetables into chicken adobo, such as bell peppers, green beans, or leafy greens. These additions increase the fiber, vitamin, and mineral content of the dish, promoting overall nutritional value.

While chicken adobo can be a healthy option, it’s important to keep portion sizes in mind, balance it with other nutritious foods, and consider individual dietary needs. Additionally, the overall healthiness of the dish also depends on the specific ingredients and cooking methods used in its preparation.

Cooking a healthy adobo recipe is possible by making a few mindful ingredient choices and adjustments to the traditional cooking method. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to prepare a healthy adobo dish:


  • 1 kg of chicken (skinless, bone-in pieces or boneless, skinless breasts/thighs)
  • 1/2 cup vinegar (apple cider vinegar or white vinegar)
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce or tamari (if gluten-free)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil (such as olive oil or canola oil)
  • Optional: 1 onion, sliced, and 1 red or green bell pepper, sliced, for added vegetables


  1. Prepare the marinade: In a bowl, combine the vinegar, low-sodium soy sauce (or tamari), minced garlic, crushed black peppercorns, and bay leaves. Mix well to create the marinade.
  2. Marinate the chicken: Place the chicken pieces in a shallow dish or resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the chicken, ensuring it is evenly coated. Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes, or for more flavor, refrigerate it for a few hours or overnight.
  3. Heat the cooking oil: In a large skillet or pot, heat the cooking oil over medium heat. You can also use a non-stick pan for a lower amount of oil.
  4. Brown the chicken: Remove the chicken from the marinade and shake off any excess liquid. Place the chicken in the heated skillet and brown it on all sides for a few minutes. This step adds flavor to the chicken.
  5. Add the marinade and simmer: Pour the marinade into the skillet with the browned chicken. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the skillet and let it simmer for about 30-40 minutes or until the chicken is fully cooked and tender. Stir occasionally to ensure even cooking.
  6. Optional: Add vegetables: If desired, you can add sliced onions and bell peppers to the simmering adobo during the last 10-15 minutes of cooking. This adds extra flavor and nutrients to the dish.
  7. Adjust seasoning and serve: Taste the adobo and adjust the seasoning if needed. You can add a bit more vinegar or soy sauce according to your preference. Remove the bay leaves before serving.
  8. Serve and enjoy: Serve the healthy adobo over steamed rice or with a side of vegetables. Garnish with fresh herbs like cilantro or green onions, if desired.

By following these steps, you can create a healthier version of adobo that is lower in fat and sodium compared to traditional recipes. The use of skinless chicken, less oil, and low-sodium soy sauce helps reduce the overall fat content. Adding vegetables to the dish boosts its nutritional value, providing additional vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Remember to practice portion control and balance the adobo with other nutritious foods for a well-rounded meal. Enjoy your homemade healthy adobo!



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