Philippine Cooking Ingredients

Philippine Ingredient Substitutions

Alogbati - Malabar spinach

Ampalaya - bitter melon

Dahon ng sili - chili pepper leaves

Gabi - taro

Kabute - fungus

Kamote - sweet potatoes

Kamoteng Kahoy - cassava

Kangkong - swamp cabbage

Labanos - white radish

Labong - bamboo shoots

Malunggay - horseradish tree

Munggo - mung beans

Pechay - bok choi

Puso ng Saging - Banana blossoms

Sigarilyas - winged bean

Singkamas - Jicama

Sitaw - string beans

Talong - egg plant

Toge - bean sprouts

Ube - purple yam

Upo - winter melon


Atis - Sweetsop (sugar apple?)

Bayabas - Guava

Balimbing - Carambola

Cacao -

Chico - ?

Mangga - Mango



Sampalok - Tamarind

Tubo - Sugar Cane


Atsuete - Annatto

Kinchay - Asian celerey

Luya - fresh ginger

Murang sibuyas - spring onions

Sili - chili peppers

Tanglad - lemon grass

Here are some ingredients or types of foods that only Filipinos could love. :-)

Gulaman - agar-agar

Bagoong - fermented small shrimps or anchovies


Lumpia WrapperItlog na Maalat - salted eggs

Pancit - Philippine pastas

Patis - condiment made from fish drippings

Balut - embryonated duck eggs

Goto - tripe

Tainga ng Baboy - pig ears

Pata - pig hocks and pig feet

Achara-pickled fruits or vegetables served as a relish with grated green papaya or sauerkraut.

Achuete or Achiote-annatto seeds used to give food a reddish color. Seeds are soaked in water to extract the color. Usually available in bottles in most supermarkets or Hispanic food stores.
Adobo-a generic term of cooking meat, fish or vegetables in garlic, vinegar, soy sauce and pepper. It is the name of the dish as well as the style of cooking.
Alimasag-a variety of crab with large pincers.
Apritada-meat dish with tomato sauce and vegetables; a Spanish-influenced dish.

Arroz-Spanish word for "rice."
Asado-a meat dish cooked with romatoes, onions and other seasonings.

Baboy-Tagalog term for "pork" or "pig."

Bagoong-salty, fermented sauce or paste made from small shrimps or fish, used as an accompaniment to main dishes; also known as ancovy sauce. It is available regular or sauteed.

Buko-a young coconut.

Calamansi-a small limelike fruit found in the tropics. Lemon is the best substitute.

Caldereta-goat-meat stew.

Camaron rebosado-shelled shrimps (with tail on) dipped in a batter and deep fried.

Cassava-an edible, starchy root used in making bread or tapioca.

Chicharon-crisp fried pork rind or skin.

Chorizo de Bilbao-Spanish sausage used for flavoring dishes.
Dilis-long-jawed anchovy.

Embutido-ground meat roll, usually made with ground pork stuffed with ham, pickles, eggs and raisins.

Empanada-meat turnover with ground beef, chopped olives, raisins and a slice of hardboiled egg.

Empanadita-small turnover with honey and nuts.
Ensalda-Spanish term for "salad."

Escabeche-fish in sweet-and-sour sauce.
Estofado-stewed meat dish cooked with vinegar, sugar and other spices.

Frito-Tagalog term for "fried."
Flan-custard made of milk and egg yolks.
Fritada-see Apritada.

Gallina-Spanish word for "chicken."

Gata-Tagalog word for "coconut milk."

Ginataan-method of cooking food in coconut milk.

Guisado-Tagalog word for "sauteed."

Hamon-Tagalog spelling of the Spanish word for ham (jamon).

Inihaw-Tagalog term for "charcoal-broiled."

Kangkong-green, smooth-leafed vegetable native to the Philipines. It has a flavor that is milder than spinach and a texture similar to watercress.

Kare-Kare-Philippine meat-vegetable stew with ox tail, beef or tripe, eggplant, banana buds and other vegetables cooked in peanut sauce and ground toasted rice

Kawali-Tagalog word for "snails."

Kutsay-Tagalog word for "leeks."

Labong-Tagalog word for "bamboo shoots."

Leche flan-leche is the Spanish word for milk; a milk and egg yolk custard.

Lechon-roast suckling pig.

Lengua-Spanish word for "tongue."

Lomo-Beef loin

Longaniza-native sausage.

Lumpia-Philippine egg rolls

Manok-Tagalog word for "chicken."

Mechado-meat into which long strips of fat have been inserted, then simmered in tomato sauce and spices.

Menudo-diced pork and liver stew with vegetables
Merienda-afternoon tea.

Miki-rice noodle.

Misua or Miswa-threadlike wheat noodle; a vermicelli
Misu-soybean paste

Mongo-mung beans.

Morcon-beef meat roll stuffed with eggs, ham, pickles and sausages.

Nilaga-Tagalog word for "boiled."

Paksiw-fish or meat cooked in vinegar, garlic and hot cooking peppers.

Pansit-noodle dish.

Pastillas-sweets in the form of little bars made of milk and sugar, with or without nuts.

Patis-very salty, amber-colored, thin liquid extract from salted and fermented seafood (usually fish). Very similar to the Vietnamese nuoc mam and the Thai nampla, which may be substituted.

Pesa-fish or meat dish with vegetables simmered with fresh ginger.

Pipino-Tagalog for "cucumber."
Pochero-dish of boiled beef, chicken, dumplings and vegetables, which is similar to the Spanish cocida.
Pusit-Tagalog word for "squid."

Puto-steamed rice cake.

Relleno-Spanish word for "stuffed;" used for any stuffed dish.
Salabat-ginger tea.

Sili-long green cooking pepper.

Sinigang-sour soup dish of meat or fish with vegetables, seasoned with tomatoes, onions and lemon juice.


Sitao-string beans, a yard-long bean.

Sotanghon-transparent bean noodles; also known as cellophane noodles.

Sugpo-giant tiger prawn.

Talaba-Tagalog term for "oyster."

Talong-Tagalog term for "eggplant."

Tapa-dried meat cured with salt and vinegar.

Tausi-black soy beans, salted and fermented.

Tinola-fish or meat dish flavored with ginger.

Togue-bean sprout.

Tokwa-soy bean cake.

Tulya-freshwater clams.

Ubod-hearts of palm.

Upo-Philippine gourd.

Yema-Spanish for "egg yolk."

Philippino Ingredient Substitutes

Achuete, atsuete, 1 tbsp ..... 1/8 tsp. red food coloring or (used in pancit molo) ..... 2 tsp paprika

Bulaklak ng saging .... dried lily blossoms available at most Chinese stores

Chorizo de Bilbao .... Pepperoni, garlic sausage or oxford sausage

Gabi ..... Yam

Kalamansi ..... Lime or Lemon

Kamias ..... Lemon juice or rhubarb

Kangkong ...... Watercress or spinach

Labanos ..... Red or white radish

isua ...... Very fine noodles (vermicelli)

Singkamas ....... Turnips

Talbos ng Ampalaya ...... Watercress or spinach

Talbos ng sili ..... Spinach
World Cuisines: