Filipino Comfort Soup: Tinolang Manok


Tinola is a traditional Filipino ginger-garlic based broth.  It’s a true comfort food for Filipino households — our version of chicken noodle soup, I’d say.  I recently picked up this simple but dynamic recipe for tinolang manok (chicken tinola) from  (My adjustments marked with asterisks.)


2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs*
salt and pepper, to taste
1 small onion
3  cloves garlic
2 tablespoons of ginger root, zested
3 tbsp. patis (fish sauce)
1/2 of a chayote, peeled and cubed*
6 baby potatoes, peeled and halved (optional)*
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 cup water
1 chicken bullion cube (optional)*


1. In a medium-sized pot, saute onion, garlic, and ginger in oil for 30 seconds over medium heat.

2. Add chicken.  Season with salt and pepper.  Saute until chicken turns white.  Add fish sauce.

3. Cover and simmer until chicken is almost completely cooked. (7-10 mins).  At this point, the juices from the chicken will be coming out — the base for the broth.


4. Add water.  You want to have enough broth to serve, but try not to dilute chicken taste with the water.  If this happens, season with a chicken bullion and/or more patis.

6. Add chayote and potatoes.  Simmer for 5 minutes, or until chayote and potatoes are tender.

Serve over rice.  Yields about 6 servings.

Don’t be stingy with the amount of ginger; it makes the whole dish come together!
– You can also substitute the baby potatoes with largely cubed russet or red potatoes.
– Chayote is part of the squash family and looks like this:

chayote You can also substitute chayote with green papaya or winter melon.

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