Instant Pot: Filipino Chicken Adobo

For some, it's mac & cheese. For others, it might even be mashed potatoes. But for me, my ultimate comfort food is Filipino Chicken Adobo. This is the dish I ask my mom to make when she visits from the Philippines because she definitely makes it unlike no other. But in the interim of her visits, making my beloved dish in a pressure cooker will come pretty close! Tender, juicy chicken does so well under pressure with the soy, vinegar and aromatics...

I'm pretty particular about Chicken Adobo, considering my parents were caterers. It's not just about throwing any particular ingredient into a pot and yielding a great dish. I feel that the technique and quality of ingredients make all the difference in preparing Filipino cuisine and this is no exception. The pressure cooker does a wonderful job locking in flavors and having the chicken really absorb everything in such a short time. The traditional method is low and slow... but converting the recipe for the Instant Pot was a great alternative!

Instant Pot: Filipino Chicken Adobo
original Joelen recipe



2 pounds bone in chicken thighs & drumsticks
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, minced
1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari (I use Filipino soy sauce, such as Silver Swan brand)
1 teaspoon black peppercorn
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 bay leaves
2/3 cup distilled white vinegar (I use Filipino cane vinegar)

In your Instant Pot:

Plug in the IP.

Press SAUTE and add oil and garlic, cooking until garlic is golden brown. 

Add onion and cook until softened. 

Add chicken, soy sauce, vinegar, peppercorns, ground black pepper and bay leaves, tossing to coat. 

Secure the lid of the IP and ensure the valve is set to SEALING.

Press MANUAL and adjust the time to 8 minutes on HIGH pressure.

The display will reflect ON while the IP comes to pressure. Allow a few minutes for your IP to come to pressure.

Once at pressure, the display will reflect 8 (the number of minutes you initially set) and will begin to countdown to 0 minutes.

When the IP beeps after pressure cooking for 8 minutes, allow your IP to naturally release pressure for 10 minutes. While naturally releasing pressure (also known as NRP or NR), the display will reflect numbers counting up from 1. The numbers indicate how many minutes the IP has stopped cooking since it beeped (or how many minutes it has been naturally releasing pressure).  No need to touch your IP while it naturally releases pressure.

When the display reflects 10 (which is 10 minutes since the IP has beeped), turn the setting on top of your IP to VENTING. Doing so allows the IP to quickly release pressure (also known as QRP or QR). I use a wooden spoon to carefully turn the setting to avoid close contact with the potential steam. You may also want to turn your IP away from cabinets to allow the released steam to escape freely. The pin at the top of your IP will drop when all pressure has been released and it's safe to open.

Using tongs, remove the chicken from the IP and serve over rice.


  1. Do you remove the skin? I've been looking for an Adobo recipe and look forward to trying this. I plan to sub boneless skinless thighs.

  2. This looks delicious �� I downloaded into my Paprika app. Thank you!

  3. This looks delicious 😋 I downloaded this into my Paprika app. Thank you!

  4. what if i use frozen chicken? same cooking time?

  5. You have to add 5 minutes to the cooking time when using frozen chicken, so 13 mins cooking, then natural release for 10 minutes. :-)

  6. I've made this twice using boneless thighs... I LOVE YOU FOR POSTING THIS! I'd never had chicken adobo before, and now it's my favorite chicken dish