Filipinos love to get a bottle of beer with their friends and even their family members. It’s not that Filipinos make it a past time to consume large amounts of alcohol, but it’s a great activity to relax and bond with loved ones, especially on a peaceful night. And Filipinos rarely if ever have drinks with loved ones without dishes of pulutan.
Pulutan are delicious Filipino dishes or snacks that are customarily served whenever there’s a drinking session. They’re these tasty and filling foods packed with flavors that Filipinos love that also helps keep down the alcohol. In this article, we’re listing some of the most popular pulutan recipes that Filipinos love along with links to great alternatives.
Here are popular pulutan of Pinoys:
First on this list is the delicious and sinful sisig originated in Angeles City, Pampanga. The sisig recipe that is known far and wide all over the Philippines has an interesting history but it’s mainly made up of pig’s cheeks, liver, and brains first marinade for hours then grilled. It’s commonly topped off with a raw egg and calamansi juice when served.
It’s one of the most popular pulutan in the Philippines and the party just isn’t complete without. Different recipes for this favorite dish using fish, chicken, and others have popped up over the years.
Read further: The Best 13 Sisig Recipes Available in the Philippines
Much like sisig, lechon kawali embodies the love that Filipinos have for the pork. And just like sisig, originally the pork used in lechon kawali are leftover parts from a whole lechon. This crunchy and meaty dish with its dipping sauce goes perfectly with any type of alcohol shared with loved ones.
Filipinos can enjoy their lechon kawali with rice or as it is. Its flavors will always leave the mouth to water from the tenderness of the meat and the satisfying crunching sound from its salty skin.
See also: Crispy Pork Belly Lechon Kawali Recipe
This third one is another pork recipe that derives its meat from the leftover lechon baboy. It just goes to show the resourcefulness and innovation that Filipinos have in developing their recipes.
This time, crispy pata, just like from its name ‘pata,’ takes the whole leg of the lechon and turn it into the scrumptious, tender, and crispy dish that Filipinos love to munch on after taking a drink. It goes great with any alcoholic beverages and provides even more flavor if you pair it with a dipping sauce.
See also: Crispy Binagoongang Pata Recipe
For the more health-conscious Filipinos out there who would prefer to eat less pork but still want to drink with their pork loving friends, tokwa’t baboy is the pulutan of choice. Tokwa’t baboy means tofu and pork. This dish can be enjoyed as a pulutan for meant and non-meat lovers because they both have the option to eat their preferred food.
Tokwa’t baboy is one of the most popular pulutan dishes in the Philippines because of its delicious pork flavor with less negative health effects and relatively cheaper price in the market.
Reminiscent of the Spanish ceviche, kinilaw is a uniquely Filipino dish that brings all the flavors of the sea straight to the plate. Fresh fish is used for this dish and the fresher the better. The most commonly used fish is fresh tuna and which is served raw for the kinilaw recipe but other species of fish can also be used. The raw fish is mixed with copious amounts of vinegar and calamansi juice then served. It’s no wonder that kinilaw is a hugely popular pulutan at seaside bars and restaurants.
See also: Sinuglaw (Sinugba and Kinilaw) Recipe
One of the simpler pulutan that barakadas can share over is a plateful of peanuts. It’s probably the most basic form of pulutan anyone can have and calls for an intimate gathering with friends and family. Filipinos can commonly buy this from street vendors, or better yet, cook their own.
Peanuts or adobong mani for pulutan is relatively simple to cook which requires minimal and simple ingredients. And as far as pulutans go, it’s also one of the healthier dishes to munch on with a drink at hand.
See also: Top Health Benefits of Peanuts
Along with mani or peanuts, chicharon is one of the more simpler and basic snacks you can have for pulutan with friends and families. It’s probably the pulutan of choice for those who are on a tight budget but still want to have some fun and quality time with their barkada.
Just like mani, you can buy chicharon bulaklak at the market or from street vendors but you also have the option to cook your own batch of chicharon. It’s not for the faint of heart though but the result is a much cleaner and fresher batch of chicharon bulaklak compared to what you can buy.
See also: Chicharon Bituka Recipe
The next entry on this list is the universally loved crispy chicken wings. Even Pinoys have an affinity to the chicken wings because of its delicious greasy flavor. They especially love to snack on it for their pulutan with friends. That’s why it’s one of the most popular orders at bars and restaurants serving drinks.
Of course, Filipinos often cook their crispy chicken wings for when they have guests over for drinks. This is a relatively simple recipe to follow that bakes the chicken rather than fry it for a healthier option.
See also: Caramelized Chicken Wings Recipe
This Ilocano is very similar to how sisig is prepared and the pork parts used in sisig are the same. Dinakdakan uses pork cheeks, liver, and brain as well. The main difference between the two dishes is that sisig’s pork is finely chopped while dinakdakan is only cut into small cubes. And it’s no wonder why dinakdakan is also considered to be one of the most popular pulutan amongst Pinoys. The larger cut of the pork doubles the flavor in the mouth, perfect for keeping down the alcohol.
Read further: 10 Ilocano Foods That Will Make You Drool
Most commonly eaten as street food, crispy fried isaw is also a favorite food used as a pulutan, especially for houses near busy streets where street vendors are abundant. Isaw are chicken intestines dipped in dipping sauce that’s either sweet or spicy and it’s a delicious afternoon snack. It’s also a great choice as a pulutan whenever there’s a get together of friends for a casual drink by the street. But there’s also the option of cooking isaw at home by following the very simple recipe above.
See also: Adobong Pork Isaw
This is another set of street food options that Filipinos commonly buy from street vendors. Kwek-kwek, kikiam, and fish balls along with isaw are a set of street foods that you wouldn’t see without the other. Likewise, it can also make for a great pulutan shared with the barkada over drinks.
Kikiam is made of ground pork, kwek-kwek of deep-fried quail eggs, and fish balls of tilapia fillet, so you have a variety of meats to choose from that’s great for keeping down the alcohol. The best part is with the right ingredients and preparation, you can cook this at home with its own dipping sauce as well.
See also: Fishball with Special Manong’s Sauce
Another pork dish on this entry, but this one doesn’t get their meat from leftover lechon. Pork barbeque is grilled pork skewers with special sweet Filipino sauce and has proven to be a very popular pulutan among barkadas. It’s easy to find vendors grilling this delicious meat by a busy road and the smoke the meat emits entice passersby to grab a stick.
We also provide a recipe you can follow above so you can cook it at home for your pulutan. The skewered meat makes it very convenient to munch on with a drink at hand.
See also: Pork Skewers Recipe
Returning to the flavors of the sea, calamares are squid rings that are deep-fried to delicious crunchy level. The large squid rings are coated in a mixture of flour, breadcrumbs, beaten eggs, and seasonings before being deep-fried to a golden brown color. Pair it with a delicious mayo dip and you’ve got the perfect pulutan for your drinks.
See also: Magic Crunchy Calamares Recipe
Lumpia Shanghai is the last entry on this list and it’s well deserved. This Chinese influenced dish with its bite-sized pieces can become a great finger food. A plateful of lumpiang shanghai can also be shared with an entire table full of people as the shots make its rounds without the food running out fast. Plus you can easily make it at home, although the preparation of this dish can be time-consuming, its delicious flavors are well worth it.
See also: Shrimp Lumpia Shanghai
Top 10 Pulutan of the Philippines. (2013, October 9). Retrieved from https://www.choosephilippines.com/eat/local-flavors/730/pulutan-101/
Simsim, F. (2011, August 3). Top 10 all-time favorite Pinoy beer matches (pulutan). Retrieved from https://www.wheninmanila.com/top-10-all-time-favorite-pinoy-beer-matches-pulutan/