Jun 03

Filipino Food Culture & Traditions You Must Know Before You Visit

The good geographic condition of the Philippines not just makes food easy to get for farmers, fishermen, and hunters,  but also make it easy to prepare with just simple methods of cooking. The cuisine also has been greatly influenced by a long time of trade with France, Spain, China, United States, and Southeast Asia.

Before visiting Philippines it’s best for you to be more familiar with the Filipino Food Culture & Traditions below:


On daily basis, Filipinos usually consume five meals. It starts with breakfast and is followed with snack called merienda by a 10 am. And lunch is at around 4 p.m which can give people adequate energy to survive until dinnertime. Snacks are served in happy hour , and it is quite normal to end the evening with fruits, sweets, caramel and coconut as the main ingredients . In most urban regions, more focus is applied to dinner; on the other hand residents of poorer, rural communities consume their most significant meals in the middle of the day. In contrast to Western traditions, Filipino meals are mostly served at the same time and eaten with  fingers spoon or fork.


The main ingredient in most Filipino traditions is steamed rice which are accompanied with vegetables and sauces and reused to next meals. Noodles, bread, and corn are also popular in the Philippines due to their flexibility to various forms of food preparation. The seafood usually includes tilapia, bass, grouper, clams and shrimp – chickens and porks are also available for their menu . In Philippines, beef is widely available, but it’s usually served for special events. Coconut is also main ingredient for desserts to soup.

Sauces and Dips

Salty fish sauce, adobo sauce, coconut cream, miso tomato, barbecue sauce, bagoong,  and vinegar are usually put on the dining table for dipping vegetables and meats and also pouring over rice . They are blended with onions, garlic, peppers, limes, cilantro and ginger. Broth made out of chicken or vegetables is often included as well.

Signature Dishes

In exclusive homes or restaurants, Filipinos are usually proud of their foods that show their local resources and food preparation methods. The most popular are Dininding, a traditional food which combines vegetables and seafood, processed meats in adobo sauce , Laksa, Kari-Kari and Estofado, a deep-fried meat served with potatoes. For dessert, they usually consume rice cakes, caramel mustards, and ambrosia salads.

Dining Etiquette

If you are invited to a Filipino family home for dinner, you can prepare a wrapped gift, but remember that most Asian traditions requires that the gift will not be unwrapped until when you have left. Take the guide from your host on when and where to sit and when to start eating the food. Hold a spoon wth the right hand and fork in the left. As meals are served in family style, try not to take something off a platter with the dining utensils – use only the spoons that come with it. Within a few days of being delighted and satisfied with the host’s hospitality, follow up with a message of appreciation.

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