Chicken Afritada, A Filipino Food Classic

This classic comfort food is an easy way to learn how to cook a staple *Filipino cuisine. It has minimal ingredients that you may readily have available in your fridge and pantry.

*Filipino cuisine (Filipino: Lutuing Filipino or Pagkaing Filipino) is composed of the cuisines of 135 distinct ethno-linguistic tribes found within the Philippine archipelago, The style of cooking and the food associated with it have evolved over many centuries from their Austronesian origins (shared with Malaysian and Indonesian cuisines) to a mixed cuisine of Indian, Chinese, Spanish, and American influences, in line with the major waves of influence that had enriched the cultures of the archipelago, as well as others adapted to indigenous ingredients and the local palate. [Source: Wikipedia]


  • 2 lbs. chicken, cut into serving pieces (party wings are good, too)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, cut crosswise
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, mashed with skin
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • *1 can chicken broth (*use the tomato sauce can)
  • 2 large baking potato, cubed
  • 1 large carrot, cubed
  • 1 large red, yellow or green bell pepper, thin slices
  • 4 pieces dried bay leaves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 1-2 whole Serrano peppers (optional)

Recipe Preparation:

  1. Heat olive oil in a pot.
  2. Sauté the onion and garlic.
  3. Add the chicken slices. Continue to saute until the chicken is light brown.
  4. Pour the chicken broth and add the tomato sauce. Stir and let boil. Add the dried bay leaves. Cover the pot and adjust the heat to low. Cook for about 35 minutes or until chicken is cooked. Note: Add water or chicken broth if it starts to dry-up.
  5. Add the potato and carrot. Stir. cover and continue to cook in medium heat for another 8 to 10 minutes. Add the bell peppers, and continue to cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste; along side fish sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar, if desired. I like these three additional seasonings for a bolder taste.  I also like to throw in some Serrano peppers for that added spice, but this is totally optional.
  7. Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve with steamed rice.