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5 Unique Filipino Dishes You Need to Try

  • Food is an integral part of any travel experience
  • The Philippines is home to some unique dishes for the foodie at heart!
  • Planning to visit soon? Here are five dishes to add to your bucket list

Food is one of the centers of any adventure at any given place, and no travel experience is complete without it! The Philippines is home to some of the most unique and tasty dishes that you can sample. 

Planning for a visit? Here are some dishes that you can try!

#1. Strawberry Sinigang

Strawberry Sinigang is the brainchild of the Zenz Bar and Restaurant by Mines View Park Hotel in Baguio City. Since Baguio and La Trinidad are well-known for producing world-class strawberries, the inevitable partnership between a Filipino classic dish and the succulent fruit would be inevitable. 

Pork Sinigang with Strawberry |
via The Peach Kitchen

Sinigang it itself is a very popular Filipino dish that’s sour in flavor. Usually, it’s cooked with tamarind, but some people prefer to use green mangoes and guava. Since it’s a staple dish, it’s something you can find almost anywhere in the Philippines. But sinigang with strawberries? That dish was first unheard off until about in the early 2010s, where it was popularized by the Baguio restaurant.  

Mixing the pleasantly sour flavor of the sinigang and the tangy taste of the strawberry makes the dish all the more amazing! It’s quite a pleasant surprise to have strawberries in such a known staple dish, but it complements it quite well. 

#2. Adobo Tablea

Adobo is considered as the nation’s national dish. Certainly, if sinigang be something that you can find almost anywhere, adobo takes the mantle on being the nation’s most recognizable food, and unofficially, our national dish as well. With its basic ingredients, it’s a good embodiment of the traditional Filipino flavor profile – sour and salty, with a hint of sweetness in the mix. 


There are variations of the dish that exist in the world, heck even people outside of the country make it! And since the taste is incredibly recognizable, it’s quite a challenge to make a variation that’s unique in itself. 

This is where Adobo tablea comes in. mixes the savory taste of the adobo and the bittersweet tablea flavor to create this unique dish. It has the same undertones of a traditional adobo, but it also takes inspiration from a Mexican mole sauce. The bittersweet note of the chocolate is unexpected, but it harmonizes with the sour and salty taste quite well!

#3. Binakol

Ever heard of tinola before? Well, it’s basically chicken cooked in a very warm broth flavored with ginger, onions and fish sauce. Tinola is also a very popular dish in the country, and its broth’s base is usually water. But with binakol, the chicken is to be simmered in coconut water, garnished with grated coconut, green papaya or chayote, ginger, and lemongrass.
via David Hanson/

The dish is very similar to tinola, but its taste differs a tad bit. The sweet undertones of the binakol are what set it apart as a dish. Binakol is a popular dish in Western Visayas, specifically in the province of Aklan and the nearby towns.

#4. Dinuguan

This is probably one of the more common food choices to be regarded as somewhat odd, but delicious nonetheless! Dinuguan is the Filipino version of blood stew. And in making this dish, pork slices are sautéed in onion, garlic, and cooked pork blood. The delicacy also sometimes contains pork innards such as small and large intestines along with other internal parts of the pig.
Figure 2 via Pulaw/Tripzilla

Its name comes from the Filipino “dugo” which literally translates to “blood,” having dinuguan literally translating to “cooked with blood.” Dinuguan is a fairly common dish because of the wide availability of their ingredients. It’s become a local favorite as well, served with either steaming rice or puto (steamed rice cake).  

#5. Tuslob Buwa

Feeling a little adventurous? Well, if you’re a fan of trying new things, trying the Tuslob-buwa might just be for you. Dubbed as “Cebuano’s Brain Gravy,” this is actually a very popular street food that can be found in the neighborhoods of Pasil, Cebu City.
Figure 3 via Hanging Rice

The main ingredients of this simmering dish are cooked pig brains and liver, which will be sautéed with garlic, onions shrimp paste (or known as bagoong locally), and chilis. The name Tuslob-buwa roughly translates to “dip in bubbles,” which alludes to how you eat it – usually by dipping rice balls called “puso” or “hanging rice” into the thick paste.

You can get them off the street, with the puso costing you less than Php 10.00. But, if you want to try it a-la-restaurant, some establishments like Azul offers its diners a chance to cook their own version of tulsob buwa in a butane stove and share food among friends on the table. – y101fm/Tripzilla/Yummy

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