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Chicken adobo with zesty turmeric rice

Serves   4
Prep time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 40 mins

Adobo is a popular Filipino dish that can be cooked with any meat, commonly chicken or pork, with a distinct soy flavour and bursts of sweetness and tanginess. Best served with rice.

This recipe is part of a meal plan - see how you can get 5 recipes for 4 for under $100.

Adobo with zesty turmeric rice




Chicken adobo
  • 20g sliced dried shiitake mushrooms* 
  • 1 ½ cups hot water 
  • 1.5 - 2kgs chicken drumsticks or thighs 
  • 1 onion*, diced 
  • 4 cloves of garlic, crushed or 2 teaspoons minced garlic 
  • 3 cm piece ginger, sliced or 1 ½ teaspoons minced ginger 
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 2 star anise (optional) 
  • 2/3 cup soy sauce  
  • ¼ cup vinegar - white, apple cider, or coconut 
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar 
Zesty turmeric rice
  • 250g basmati rice*, rinsed 
  • 1 ½ cups water 
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon  
  • 2 teaspoons turmeric powder 
Raw kale and beetroot salad
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • Pinch salt and pepper
  • ½ bunch curly kale* washed and cut into smaller pieces
  • 1 beetroot*, grated 


Chicken adobo
  1. Soak dried mushrooms and hot water in a bowl and cover with a plate, leave for 5 minutes.  
  2. Place the remaining ingredients into a pot, then pour in the soaked mushrooms with the mushroom broth.  
  3. Cover pot with a lid and place on the stove over high heat, once boiling turn the heat to low and let it simmer for around 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked, stirring occasionally. Test taste, adding more soy, vinegar, or sugar according to taste. 
Zesty turmeric rice
  1. Cook the rice while the adobo is cooking.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a pot, stir briefly, cover with a lid and place on the stove over high heat. Once boiling turn the heat down to low and let it simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and remove from the stove, leave to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. 
  3. Alternatively, combine all the ingredients together in a rice cooker and cook until ready.  
Kale and beetroot salad
  1. Combine olive oil, lemon juice and zest, and salt and pepper in a large bowl and mix together. Add kale and beetroot, toss to coat in dressing.  

Tip: Estimate how much chicken your household will eat and buy enough according to that. If you have more time, you can try making adobo with a different meat, pork or casserole cuts of beef are great. Braise them in the adobo sauce over a slower heat and longer time until tender.  

Leftovers: Eat for lunch the next day. The chicken adobo by itself can be frozen.