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Pinoy Street Food

“The Philippines is a beautiful country with delicious street food that will give you a unique culinary experience. These foods vary in taste, texture, and color and each region has its own variety. We have curated a list of 12 famous Filipino street foods, including their ingredients and preparation methods, so that you can learn how to make them and try them for yourself. Get ready to indulge in the exciting and explosive flavors of Filipino street food!”

Ingredients: Fertilized duck egg Preparation: Boil the fertilized duck egg until cooked (usually around 18-20 minutes). Serve with a side of salt and/or vinegar for dipping. Balut is a fertilized egg with a partially developed embryo inside.
Ingredients: Chicken or pork intestines Preparation: Clean the intestines thoroughly, then skewer them on bamboo sticks. Grill or barbecue the isaw over hot coals until cooked and slightly charred. Serve with a spicy vinegar dip.

Kwek-Kwek: A Delightful Filipino Street Food

Kwek-Kwek is a popular Filipino street food that brings joy to the hearts and palates of many locals and tourists alike. This delightful snack is a unique twist on the classic boiled quail eggs, transforming them into mouthwatering and colorful treats. Whether enjoyed as a quick snack on the go or savored as a special treat during festivities, kwek-kwek is a must-try delicacy that captures the essence of Filipino street food culture.

1. Origins and History:

Kwek-Kwek is believed to have originated from the Chinese community in the Philippines. The name “kwek-kwek” is an onomatopoeic term, imitating the sound of quail birds. Over time, it has become a beloved street food across the country, especially in urban areas where street food vendors and small eateries thrive.

2. Ingredients:

The main ingredient of kwek-kwek is quail eggs. Quail eggs are smaller than chicken eggs and have a distinct flavor that works well with the dish. The eggs are typically boiled first and then peeled before they are coated with a batter and deep-fried. Apart from quail eggs, the other essential ingredients include:

a. Batter:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon annatto powder (for color, optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of ground black pepper

b. Seasoning:

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika (for a mild heat, optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

c. Cooking oil:

  • Sufficient amount for deep frying (vegetable oil or canola oil works well)

3. Preparation:

a. Boiling the quail eggs:

  • Gently place the quail eggs in a saucepan and cover them with enough water.
  • Bring the water to a boil and let the eggs cook for about 5 to 6 minutes.
  • Remove the eggs from the boiling water and cool them down before peeling off their shells.

b. Preparing the batter:

  • In a mixing bowl, combine all the batter ingredients (flour, cornstarch, water, baking powder, annatto powder, salt, and pepper).
  • Stir the mixture until a smooth, lump-free batter is achieved. The batter should have a thick but pourable consistency.

c. Seasoning:

  • In a separate bowl, mix the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, black pepper, and salt. This seasoning will add depth and flavor to the kwek-kwek.

d. Coating the quail eggs:

  • Dip the boiled and peeled quail eggs into the seasoned mixture, making sure each egg is evenly coated.

e. Frying the Kwek-Kwek:

  • In a deep frying pan or pot, heat the cooking oil over medium-high heat.
  • Carefully drop the coated quail eggs into the hot oil, a few at a time, to avoid overcrowding.
  • Fry the eggs until the batter turns golden brown and crispy, typically taking around 2-3 minutes.
  • Remove the kwek-kwek from the oil and place them on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb any excess oil.

4. Serving:

Kwek-Kwek is often served with a tangy and slightly sweet dipping sauce. The most common sauce is made by mixing vinegar, soy sauce, minced garlic, chopped red onions, and a touch of sugar. The combination of the crunchy exterior and the soft, flavorful quail eggs inside, paired with the dipping sauce, creates a delightful explosion of flavors.

5. Variations:

While the classic kwek-kwek recipe described above is the most popular, there are some variations that cater to different tastes. For example, some vendors offer a spicy version by adding chili powder or hot sauce to the batter. Others might experiment with different colors for the batter, using ingredients like ube (purple yam) or squid ink to create a unique visual appeal.

Kwek-Kwek is not just a beloved Filipino street food; it represents the vibrant and diverse culinary culture of the Philippines. Its simplicity, yet delightful taste, has made it a staple in the hearts of Filipinos and has won the hearts of many visitors to the country. So, next time you find yourself wandering the bustling streets of the Philippines, make sure to grab a plate of kwek-kwek and experience the joy it brings to those who savor it.

Ingredients: Fish paste, flour batter Preparation: Form fish paste into small balls and deep-fry until golden brown. Serve on bamboo sticks or toothpicks and dip in a sweet and spicy sauce.
Ingredients: Ground pork, shrimp, bean sprouts, garlic, onions, soy sauce, spring roll wrapper Preparation: Mix ground pork, shrimp, bean sprouts, garlic, onions, and soy sauce. Wrap the mixture in a spring roll wrapper and steam or deep-fry until cooked. Slice into bite-sized pieces and serve with a dipping sauce made from soy sauce and calamansi (Filipino lime).
Ingredients: Coagulated pork or chicken blood Preparation: Cut the coagulated blood into small cubes and skewer them on bamboo sticks. Grill or barbecue until cooked, then serve with a vinegar and garlic dip.

 Helmet (Adidas, Walkman, and Kanto)

Ingredients: Chicken head, chicken feet, chicken gizzard
Preparation: Clean the chicken parts thoroughly and skewer them on bamboo sticks. Grill or barbecue until cooked and serve with a spicy vinegar dip. “Adidas” refers to chicken feet, “Walkman” refers to chicken gizzards, and “Kanto” refers to chicken head.

Squid Balls: A Tasty Filipino Street Food Delicacy


Squid Balls are a popular Filipino street food that holds a special place in the hearts of many locals. These bite-sized, deep-fried snacks are made from minced or ground squid, mixed with various seasonings and extenders. They are enjoyed as a delicious appetizer, snack, or side dish, often dipped in a savory sauce for an extra burst of flavor. Squid Balls’ combination of tender, chewy texture and savory taste makes them a favorite among both children and adults.


To make Squid Balls, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  1. Squid: Fresh squid is the primary ingredient for Squid Balls. It should be cleaned, gutted, and the skin removed before use. Squid is the star of the show, providing the characteristic flavor and texture of these tasty snacks.

  2. Fish Paste: Fish paste, also known as fish balls or fish cake mix, acts as a binder and helps hold the Squid Balls together. It can be found in Asian grocery stores or can be homemade using fish meat.

  3. Cornstarch or Tapioca Starch: Cornstarch or tapioca starch serves as a thickening agent and gives the Squid Balls their smooth texture.

  4. Eggs: Eggs are used to bind the mixture and add richness to the Squid Balls.

  5. Onion and Garlic: Finely minced onion and garlic contribute flavor and aroma to the Squid Balls.

  6. Spring Onions (Scallions): Chopped spring onions add a fresh and mildly onion flavor to the mixture.

  7. Salt and Pepper: These common seasonings are essential to enhance the taste of the Squid Balls.

  8. MSG (Monosodium Glutamate) – Optional: Some recipes may include MSG for added umami flavor, but it can be omitted if preferred.

  9. Cooking Oil: Any neutral-flavored cooking oil, such as vegetable oil or canola oil, is suitable for deep-frying the Squid Balls.


  1. Prepare the Squid: Clean and gut the squid, removing the ink sac and transparent backbone. Peel off the skin, rinse thoroughly, and pat dry. Chop the squid into small pieces.

  2. Make the Squid Mixture: In a food processor, combine the chopped squid, fish paste, cornstarch or tapioca starch, minced onion, minced garlic, chopped spring onions, salt, pepper, and optional MSG (if using). Pulse until you get a smooth and well-mixed squid mixture.

  3. Form the Squid Balls: Using your hands, take a portion of the squid mixture and roll it into small balls, around the size of a ping-pong ball. Repeat until all the mixture is used.

  4. Fry the Squid Balls: In a deep frying pan or pot, heat the cooking oil over medium heat. Carefully drop the squid balls into the hot oil and fry them until they turn golden brown and crispy on the outside. Fry them in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan and to ensure even cooking.

  5. Drain and Serve: Once cooked, remove the Squid Balls from the oil using a slotted spoon and place them on a plate lined with paper towels to drain any excess oil.

  6. Serving: Serve the Squid Balls hot as they are or with a dipping sauce of your choice. Some popular options include sweet chili sauce, vinegar with garlic and chili, or a combination of ketchup and mayonnaise.

Squid Balls are a delectable Filipino street food that delights with their tender, chewy texture and savory taste. These bite-sized snacks are enjoyed by locals and tourists alike, whether as a quick treat on the go or as a flavorful addition to a meal. The simplicity of the ingredients and the ease of preparation make Squid Balls a favorite among home cooks and street food vendors alike. If you ever get a chance to try Squid Balls, don’t miss the opportunity to experience this tasty and satisfying Filipino delight!

Halo-Halo: The Colorful Filipino Dessert Delight


Halo-Halo is a well-loved and iconic Filipino dessert that translates to “mix-mix” in English. As the name suggests, it is a delightful concoction of various ingredients, textures, and flavors, all combined into a refreshing and colorful dessert. This chilled dessert is especially popular during the hot and humid summer months in the Philippines, offering a delightful way to cool down and indulge in a medley of sweet treats.


The ingredients for making Halo-Halo can vary, but the following are common components found in this delicious dessert:

  1. Shaved Ice: Shaved or crushed ice serves as the base of Halo-Halo, providing the refreshing and cooling element to the dessert.

  2. Evaporated Milk: Evaporated milk is poured over the shaved ice to add creaminess and a rich dairy flavor to the dessert.

  3. Sweetened Condensed Milk: Sweetened condensed milk is drizzled over the top of Halo-Halo to add sweetness and thickness to the dessert.

  4. Ube Halaya: Ube halaya, or purple yam jam, is a quintessential Filipino ingredient that adds a vibrant purple color and a unique sweet flavor to Halo-Halo.

  5. Sweetened Bananas: Sliced or diced sweetened bananas, often cooked in caramel or syrup, contribute a delicious and soft texture to the dessert.

  6. Sweetened Langka (Jackfruit): Sweetened jackfruit provides a tropical touch and chewy texture to the Halo-Halo.

  7. Sweetened Saba (Plantains): Sweetened plantains add a delightful banana flavor and a soft, caramelized texture to the dessert.

  8. Sweet Potato (Kamote): Sweet potato cubes, cooked and sweetened, offer a delightful orange hue and a starchy, sweet taste to the mix.

  9. Jelly or Gulaman: Cubes of colorful jelly or gulaman, made from agar-agar or gelatin, add a bouncy and playful texture to Halo-Halo.

  10. Kaong (Sugar Palm Fruit): Kaong, a small translucent fruit from the sugar palm tree, adds a chewy and sweet element to the dessert.

  11. Macapuno: Macapuno, which is a type of sweetened coconut, contributes a luscious and creamy texture to Halo-Halo.

  12. Pinipig (Rice Crispies): Pinipig, or pounded young rice, provides a crunchy and unique texture to the dessert.

  13. Leche Flan: Leche flan, a Filipino-style custard, adds a rich and velvety texture to the mix.

  14. Ice Cream (Optional): Some versions of Halo-Halo include a scoop of ube or any other favorite ice cream flavor, enhancing the creaminess and sweetness of the dessert.


To make Halo-Halo, the shaved ice is first placed at the bottom of a tall glass or bowl. Then, the various sweetened fruits, jellies, and other ingredients are layered over the ice. Each layer is carefully arranged to create an enticing and colorful presentation. Finally, evaporated milk and sweetened condensed milk are drizzled over the top, and a scoop of ice cream can be added if desired. Before enjoying the dessert, the entire mixture is thoroughly mixed together, hence the name “Halo-Halo,” to ensure that every spoonful is a delightful combination of flavors and textures.

Halo-Halo is a celebration of flavors and textures, creating a harmonious blend of sweet and refreshing ingredients that make it a beloved Filipino dessert. It is more than just a treat; it’s a cultural experience that brings people together during hot summer days or any time when they want to indulge in a delightful, multi-layered dessert. If you have the opportunity to try Halo-Halo, don’t miss the chance to experience the colorful and delicious delight of this unique Filipino dessert.

Banana Cue: A Filipino Sweet Delight

Introduction Banana Cue is a popular and delightful Filipino snack that’s enjoyed by people of all ages. It is a sweet and satisfying treat made from ripe saba bananas coated in caramelized brown sugar. Sold in street food stalls and local markets across the Philippines, Banana Cue is a simple yet beloved comfort food that brings smiles to many faces.

Ingredients: To make Banana Cue, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  1. Saba Bananas: Saba bananas are a variety of small, stout, and starchy bananas commonly found in the Philippines and other Southeast Asian countries. They are perfect for frying because of their texture and sweetness.
  2. Brown Sugar: Brown sugar is the key ingredient for creating the caramelized coating that gives Banana Cue its characteristic sweetness and crunch.
  3. Cooking Oil: Any neutral-flavored cooking oil, such as vegetable oil or coconut oil, is suitable for frying the bananas.
  4. Bamboo Skewers: Bamboo skewers are used to impale the bananas, making them easy to handle while frying and serving.


  1. Peel and Skewer the Bananas: Start by peeling the saba bananas and then skewer them onto the bamboo sticks. Typically, two or three bananas are skewered on each stick, depending on their size.
  2. Prepare the Caramel Coating: In a wide, deep frying pan or wok, add the brown sugar and melt it over medium heat. Allow it to melt completely and turn into a thick, gooey caramel sauce.
  3. Fry the Bananas: Carefully dip each skewered banana into the hot caramel sauce, making sure it is evenly coated. Remove any excess caramel drips before placing the bananas back into the pan. Fry them in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan, ensuring they cook evenly.
  4. Coat the Bananas: As the bananas fry in the caramel, use tongs to gently turn them, ensuring all sides are evenly coated and caramelized. The caramel should become dark golden-brown, giving the bananas their signature glossy appearance.
  5. Cool and Serve: Once the bananas are fully coated and caramelized, remove them from the pan and place them on a tray lined with parchment paper to cool. The caramel coating will harden as it cools, giving the Banana Cue its delightful crunchy texture.
  6. Serve and Enjoy: Once cooled, the Banana Cue is ready to be served. Enjoy this sweet treat as a snack or dessert, either on its own or with a scoop of ice cream for an extra special treat!

Banana Cue is a beloved Filipino dessert/snack that showcases the simplicity and charm of Filipino street food. With just a few basic ingredients and a straightforward cooking process, it delights the taste buds with its sweet, crunchy, and satisfying flavor. Whether enjoyed on a sunny day at the beach or as a comforting treat during rainy days, Banana Cue is sure to bring joy to those who savor its deliciousness.

Turon: A Delicious Filipino Banana Spring Roll


Turon, also known as “Banana Spring Roll” or “Banana Lumpia,” is another delightful Filipino snack loved for its sweet and crispy goodness. Like Banana Cue, it is a popular street food that can be found in many local markets and food stalls throughout the Philippines. Turon is a unique combination of saba bananas, brown sugar, and jackfruit wrapped in spring roll wrappers and deep-fried to perfection. It is a beloved treat that brings together the flavors of banana, caramelized sugar, and a hint of jackfruit.


To make Turon, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  1. Saba Bananas: Saba bananas, which are commonly used in Filipino desserts, are the best choice for Turon due to their starchy and firm texture.

  2. Brown Sugar: Brown sugar is used to add sweetness to the bananas and create a caramelized coating when fried.

  3. Jackfruit: Fresh or canned ripe jackfruit is often added to Turon to enhance its flavor. It provides a subtle tropical taste that complements the banana well.

  4. Spring Roll Wrappers: Spring roll wrappers, also known as lumpia wrappers, can be found in most Asian grocery stores. They are thin, rectangular sheets made from flour and water, perfect for wrapping the bananas.

  5. Cooking Oil: Any neutral-flavored cooking oil, such as vegetable oil or canola oil, is suitable for deep-frying the Turon.


  1. Prep the Ingredients: Peel the saba bananas and slice them in half lengthwise. Cut the jackfruit into thin strips. Prepare a bowl of water and a brush for sealing the spring roll wrappers.

  2. Coat with Sugar: Lay a spring roll wrapper on a clean, flat surface. Place a piece of banana near the edge of the wrapper, add a few strips of jackfruit, and sprinkle brown sugar on top. Roll the wrapper over the filling, tuck in the sides, and continue rolling tightly until you have a neat cylinder. Seal the edge with a bit of water to keep it from unraveling.

  3. Repeat the Process: Repeat the process with the remaining bananas, jackfruit, and wrappers until you have made as many Turon as desired.

  4. Heat the Oil: In a deep frying pan or pot, heat the cooking oil over medium heat. You can check if the oil is hot enough by inserting the end of a wooden spoon into the oil. If it bubbles around the spoon, it’s ready for frying.

  5. Fry the Turon: Carefully place the wrapped Turon into the hot oil, seam-side down, to prevent them from opening during frying. Fry them in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Cook until the wrappers turn golden brown and crispy, and the sugar caramelizes.

  6. Drain and Cool: Once the Turon are cooked, remove them from the oil using a slotted spoon and drain any excess oil on a plate lined with paper towels.

Turon is a delightful Filipino snack that highlights the sweet and comforting flavors of saba bananas, caramelized sugar, and jackfruit, all wrapped in a crispy spring roll wrapper. This tasty treat is a favorite among Filipinos, and it’s not hard to see why! Enjoyed as a midday snack, dessert, or even on special occasions, Turon is sure to please anyone with a love for sweet and crunchy treats. So, the next time you want to indulge in a little taste of the Philippines, try making some Turon and savor the deliciousness of this Filipino classic!

“Chicken Proben” is indeed a popular Filipino street food, and it is essentially a variation of “Isaw,” which was mentioned earlier. Chicken Proben is made from chicken’s proventriculus, also known as the gizzard lining. It is a flavorful and chewy delicacy that is loved by many Filipinos.

Here’s a recipe for making Chicken Proben:

Chicken Proben (Filipino Street Food – Chicken Gizzard Lining)


  • 500 grams chicken proben (gizzard lining)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup vinegar (preferably cane vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Bamboo skewers, soaked in water (for grilling)
  • Cooking oil, for brushing


  1. Prepare the chicken proben: Clean the chicken gizzard lining thoroughly, removing any debris or excess fat. Cut the proben into manageable pieces, about 2-3 inches long.
  2. Marinate the proben: In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, vinegar, minced garlic, minced ginger, ground black pepper, brown sugar, and salt. Mix well to make the marinade. Add the chicken proben to the marinade, ensuring that each piece is coated. Cover the bowl and let the proben marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or preferably overnight to enhance the flavor.
  3. Skewer the proben: After marinating, thread the chicken proben onto the soaked bamboo skewers. This will make it easier to handle while grilling.
  4. Grill the Chicken Proben: Preheat the grill or barbecue over medium-high heat. Brush the grill grates with a little cooking oil to prevent sticking. Place the skewered Chicken Proben on the grill and cook each side for about 3-5 minutes or until they are fully cooked and slightly charred. You can also baste the proben with the leftover marinade while grilling for extra flavor.
  5. Serve and enjoy: Once the Chicken Proben is cooked, remove them from the grill and serve them while hot. They are commonly served with a dipping sauce made from vinegar, soy sauce, chopped onions, and red pepper flakes, but you can use any dipping sauce you prefer.

Chicken Proben is a delightful and savory street food that’s perfect for gatherings or as a snack. Enjoy this delicious Filipino treat!

Filipino street food is a delectable array of culinary delights that offers a taste of the nation’s rich culture, history, and creativity. It represents the heart and soul of the Philippines, embodying the vibrant and diverse essence of the country’s street culture.

From the sizzling skewers of isaw to the mouthwatering aroma of balut, Filipino street food encompasses a wide range of flavors, textures, and ingredients. Each delicacy tells a unique story, reflecting the influences of the Philippines’ multi-cultural past and its own indigenous traditions.

In bustling city streets, bustling marketplaces, and local fiestas, street food vendors create an experience that goes beyond satisfying hunger. It’s a sensory journey, filled with the sounds of sizzling grills, the enticing scents of various spices, and the vibrant colors of the food on display.

Not only does Filipino street food captivate the taste buds, but it also fosters a sense of community and togetherness. People from all walks of life gather around these culinary hubs, sharing stories and laughter over a plate of their favorite street food.

Filipino street food is an essential part of the cultural tapestry that defines the Philippines. It serves as a bridge between generations, connecting the past to the present, while also continuously evolving with contemporary influences.

The adventurous foodie can discover not only traditional favorites like kwek-kwek, taho, and banana cue, but also modern twists and fusions that showcase the ingenuity and adaptability of Filipino cuisine.

Whether you’re a local or a traveler exploring the Philippines, sampling its street food is a must. It offers a glimpse into the heart and soul of the Filipino people, leaving a lasting impression that will continue to resonate long after the last bite is savored. So, as the sun sets and the city comes alive, immerse yourself in the colorful world of Filipino street food, and let your taste buds embark on a delightful adventure of discovery.