Tangy Chicken Adobo

“My wife, Meshelle, is Filipino, and her grandma is always cooking food for us,” says Cathal Armstrong, chef at Restaurant Eve in Alexandria, Virginia. His version of this quintessential Filipino dish is extra-tangy thanks to the generous amount of cider vinegar. To ensure that all the chicken pieces finish cooking at the same time, halve each breast and separate the wings from the drumettes. Slideshow:  More Chicken Recipes  Recipe from Food & Wine Chefs' Easy Weeknight Dinners

Tangy Chicken Adobo
Photo: © Fredrika Stjärne
Active Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
45 mins


  • 1/4 cup canola oil

  • 1 large onion, diced

  • 20 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped

  • Salt

  • 2 cups chicken stock or low-sodium broth

  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce

  • 10 fresh or dried bay leaves

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch stirred with 2 teaspoons water

  • One 3 1/2-pound chicken, cut into 12 pieces (breasts halved, wings separated from drumettes)

  • Steamed white rice, for serving


  1. In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the oil over moderately high heat. Add the onion and garlic, season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, about 12 minutes. Add the stock, vinegar, soy sauce, bay leaves and pepper and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the cornstarch slurry and simmer the sauce for 1 minute.

  2. Meanwhile, in another large skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil over moderately high heat. Season the chicken with salt and cook skin side down, turning once, until browned, about 8 minutes. Add the chicken to the sauce, cover partially and simmer over moderately low heat, turning the chicken once, until cooked through, about 20 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and serve with rice.

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