Instant Pot Chicken Adobo

The classic Filipino dish – Chicken Adobo – marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns and garlic then cooked in the pressure cooker (instant pot).


The classic Filipino dish - Chicken Adobo - marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns and garlic then cooked in the pressure cooker (instant pot). Easy-peasy deliciousness!


I have lost count with regard to the number of adobo recipes I have! This is the latest and probably the 5th! Well, we love chicken adobo so much that I want to try all the different versions.

I have my own classic adobo, our helper’s awesome adobo, Chinese-style adobo, slow cooker adobo and then this — a pressure cooker version. And this time, I am talking mainly about chicken adobo — pork adobo is equally as popular and for me, equally delicious!


The classic Filipino dish - Chicken Adobo - marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns and garlic then cooked in the pressure cooker (instant pot). Easy-peasy deliciousness!


So why an instant pot version? Well, I received an instant pot as my birthday present from my mother in law so I had to make sure I use it a lot. The first recipe I tested here was chicken, It was a Filipino recipe and it worked well and hubby loved it so why not try Chicken Adobo?

I thought I’d give it a try and see if it would work. Sometimes, I am just not in the mood to engage in a very long and slow cooking and for those days I have my instant pot to the rescue!

It’s quite simple really. I marinate the chicken overnight to ensure it absorbs all the flavor. I even bruise or poke the chicken in parts so the marinade is fully incorporated.



The next day, I simply brown the chicken which amazingly can be done in the instant pot itself — yay! Pour back the marinade in with the chicken and cook for about 15 minutes! Voila – chicken adobo in less than an hour.

If you don’t fancy browning the chicken I suggest using chicken without skin – I brown so it’s not too greasy and for extra flavor but it’s a matter of preference. I suggest using darker meat as that’s what we use for traditional adobo and I think better because it’s more flavorful, but who knows – I may try chicken breasts next time, too! And certainly, don’t forget the rice!


The classic Filipino dish - Chicken Adobo - marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns and garlic then cooked in the pressure cooker (instant pot). Easy-peasy deliciousness!


If you like what you see and would like to receive new recipe updates, we’d love you to subscribe to our posts or join our site. Needless to say, we’d love you to like us on Facebook and Instagram, too where you can get more recipes and updates. Thanks and happy browsing!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Click the above icon to print. To remove images for easy printing, simply click on each photo.

Instant Pot Chicken Adobo

By: Manila Spoon
Published: 04/25/2017

The classic Filipino dish – Chicken Adobo – marinated in vinegar, soy sauce, peppercorns and garlic then cooked in the pressure cooker (instant pot). Easy-peasy deliciousness!


  • 1/2 cup white Vinegar (preferably the Filipino Cane Vinegar like Datu Puti)
  • 1/3 cup Soy Sauce (gluten-free if on that diet)
  • 1-2 teaspoons Oyster Sauce (optional or use wheat-free if doing gluten-free)
  • 1 Whole head Garlic, cloves separated, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons whole Black Peppercorns
  • 3-4 lbs Chicken pieces like drumsticks and thighs
  • 2 Tablespoons Oil
  • 3 Bay leaves
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar or to taste (optional, leave out if doing low-carb)


  1. Make the marinade by combining the vinegar, soy sauce, oyster sauce (if using), garlic and peppercorns in a large bowl or pot. Add the chicken pieces. Bruise or poke the chicken using a metal skewer for better absorption of flavors. Marinate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
  2. Set your instant pot to saute. When hot add the oil. Brown the chicken in batches.
  3. Remove the chicken pieces to a plate. Add a little more oil if needed then saute the chopped onion until starting to brown. Pour in the marinade and scrape the bottom of the pan to remove the brown bits. Add the bay leaves and sugar (if you fancy a slightly sweeter adobo but leave out if doing low-carb). You may also add a little water if you want more sauce unless you prefer a dryer adobo. Stir.
  4. Return the chicken pieces to the pan, cover and cook. I use the poultry setting – about 15 minutes. I allow the natural release before opening but you can also do the quick release when the cooking time is over. Serve immediately with rice on the side!

Yield: 6-8 Servings
Prep Time: 00 hrs. 15 mins.
Cook time: 00 hrs. 30 mins.
Total time: 45 mins.
Tags: Chicken, Adobo, Filipino, Asian, Food, Gluten-free, Easy Recipe



  1. April 28, 2017 / 5:14 pm

    Abigail, I really like the flavors in your dish. The pressure cooker is the perfect cooking vessel to get a super tender cut of meat and get all the flavor in there.

  2. April 28, 2017 / 6:33 pm

    Okay, so I've seen so many awesome looking recipes using an Instant Pot lately. I really need to get one of these soon.And your recipe looks incredible.

  3. April 28, 2017 / 9:14 pm

    Wow. such an amazing mix of flavor here. That colors on the chicken looks so pretty! Your recipe sounds so easy. can't wait to try.

  4. April 29, 2017 / 1:19 am

    I hear ya – I also love all versions of chicken adobo that I have tried, and I have tried A LOT! 😉 I have yet to jump on the Instant Pot bandwagon but this recipe is making me think I should get one. Amazing that you get such a flavorful looking dish in just 15 minutes! That's awesome!

  5. April 29, 2017 / 4:47 am

    what a comforting dish chicken is always a great option and yours looks tender and flavorful. Need to try the instapot.

  6. April 29, 2017 / 2:27 pm

    Wow, this dish is right up my alley! I love the flavors you've put together. I also prefer using the dark meat chicken with skin. So much flavor. I can't believe you made this dish in less than an hour!

  7. April 29, 2017 / 5:19 pm

    I've only used my Instant Pot a few times, but it is great. 5 adobo recipes?! I gotta check them all out. This one looks tasty!

  8. April 29, 2017 / 6:52 pm

    I've seen so many great pressure cooker recipes lately this being one of them! Until I get one for myself I'll have to check out your slow cooker version.

    • Lora Miranda
      March 18, 2018 / 10:39 pm

      May I have the slow cooker version please?

      • abigail
        March 22, 2018 / 4:07 pm

        If you go to the Filipino Recipe Index, you will find the link to the slow cooker version or simply key in “slow cooker chicken adobo” on the search box under my photo on the right hand side and then it should find the recipe for you. Thanks!

  9. April 29, 2017 / 11:01 pm

    This chicken looks moist and delicious. Love the spice profile…heat is always good. Perfect for a busy weeknight, and hopefully some leftovers for lunch (or another dinner).

  10. April 30, 2017 / 3:02 pm

    Love the adobo sauce and I have been looking forward to trying one at home. I might use the vegetarian oyster sauce or skip it and try the sauce. Instant pot is sitting in my kitchen and it still intimidates me. I have to get over that and start using it more.

  11. May 1, 2017 / 12:43 am

    Look at that juicy chicken pieces dunked in that flavorful sauce!! I love Chicken Adobo but never tried making them at home. Your recipe looks really easy and I'm saving for trying soon 🙂

  12. May 1, 2017 / 3:48 am

    Yum, this sounds amazing! Love that it is made in the instant pot – those things are magical 🙂

  13. May 1, 2017 / 1:47 pm

    I want an instant pot! Especially after seeing this post! Man this looks delicious!

  14. May 1, 2017 / 5:02 pm

    Absolutely delicious. The meat looks so tender and flavorful. Love the sauces you used here – soy and oyster sauce combo gives most amazing flavor. Lovely recipe Abby. Mouthwatering pictures 🙂

  15. May 1, 2017 / 8:02 pm

    Instant pot chicken adobo looks delicious so juicy and tender with great sauce. I need to give it try looks perfect meal with a bowl of rice.

  16. May 1, 2017 / 8:22 pm

    We love anything adobo! In fact we make our own adobo sauce and the chicken looks wonderful. I will certainly try your recipe. Unfortunately we don't have an Insta-pot but I figure I can make it in my Dutch oven. Can't wait to make it.

  17. May 1, 2017 / 9:02 pm

    Now a days I am addicted for instant pot you has come out well. Sauce looks flavourful I will tryingvusing it with some veggies

  18. May 2, 2017 / 1:34 am

    I so need to use my instant pot more, especially as summer heats up in Phoenix! Slow cooking meals takes too long, but this… this could be a winner!

  19. Anonymous
    July 11, 2017 / 9:27 pm

    Any substitute for the oyster sauce if allergic to fish and seafood?

    • July 24, 2017 / 2:27 am

      There is a vegetarian version of this made from mushrooms so you may want to google that.

  20. Karen
    February 20, 2018 / 8:45 pm

    I made this tonight and it’s delicious

    • abigail
      February 20, 2018 / 9:13 pm

      I am so happy to know you enjoyed this!! Thank you for letting us know. 🙂

  21. Allie
    March 20, 2018 / 2:08 pm

    I don’t have an instant pot! I want to try this chicken adobo. So, can you give me an alternative method 0f cooking. Thank you.

    • abigail
      March 20, 2018 / 10:33 pm

      I have several versions of Chicken Adobo in the blog – slow cooker, chinese-style and classic Adobo. Please refer to my Filipino Recipes Index and click on the link on the name of the recipe you wish to try and that should lead you to the recipe itself. Thanks!!

      • Kathleen Folks
        April 2, 2018 / 8:23 pm

        I made this with chicken thighs today and mine had alot of juices. It was more like a chicken soup. Not sure what I did wrong. The flavor was really good.

        • abigail
          April 2, 2018 / 11:26 pm

          If you don’t want too much liquid and more flavor – leave out the water. That would have caused the extra liquid and it all depends on how much water content your chicken has as well. The chicken releases a lot of liquid during cooking too that’s why I usually fry the chicken before cooking to remove some of the extra liquid and grease coming from it, too. So I am not sure if you did both ’cause these would explain why you had extra liquid. At any rate, some people prefer a dryer adobo and to achieve that just allow some liquid to evaporate by simmering it longer on the stove top until you get the amount of sauce you prefer. Others prefer a more saucy adobo as that sauce is great to flavor rice. So it’s all a matter of preference. Either way it’s flavorful. Thanks for asking.

  22. Tod
    June 3, 2018 / 11:06 pm

    Well done!
    I’ve live in Hawaii for close to 50 years and this ranks up with some of the best. This is my son’s and wife’s favorite. Thanks, I don’t have to go out to get adobo anymore 🙂
    BTW, I’ve used the same recipe with pork. Excellent!

  23. Samuel
    July 6, 2018 / 6:18 pm

    I not sure of the idea of adding onion to the adobo recipe. I’ve never tried it, might be a good time to experiment with something different.

  24. July 9, 2018 / 2:21 pm

    THIS WAS PERFECT!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you! I hope you don’t mind that I shared this recipe (with a link, of course!) on my new blog. It is so easy and so delicious — even my 15-month-old loved it. Thank you for sharing such a delicious way to introduce our culture to my little guy.

    • abigail
      July 20, 2018 / 3:14 am

      Glad you enjoyed this and thank you for letting us know. Provided the recipe is not copied, as it is protected under copyrights law, sharing is fine and a link back to the website is much appreciated. Thank you!

  25. Simon
    September 21, 2018 / 9:30 am

    I usually prepare adobo with potatoes. Would 15 minutes on high still be enough if I add a couple of cut up potatoes? Thanks.

    • abigail
      December 28, 2018 / 9:43 pm

      I don’t see why it should be a problem.

  26. Steve
    September 22, 2018 / 4:07 pm

    I just made this and it came out pretty good!!

    • abigail
      October 6, 2018 / 8:37 pm

      So glad to know that. Yay!! Thanks for letting us know.

  27. Cathy
    January 27, 2019 / 11:32 am

    I’m just learning how to use my Instant Pot, so when you used the Poultry setting, did you do low or high pressure? I accidentally bought boneless skinless chicken thighs and they obviously did not fry well to start. In fact my pan was full of liquid and I had to drain it before sautéing the onions. It still turned out amazing, but I think next time I will definitely use bone in with skin. Thanks for the recipe!

    • abigail
      January 28, 2019 / 8:58 pm

      I have an older version of Instant Pot so my poultry setting when I use it does it automatically and chooses the best setting for pressure, heat, etc. I don’t remember having to adjust anything at all. Hope it works better for you next time.

  28. KarenB
    February 26, 2019 / 9:28 pm

    Hi Abby. I am making pork adobo and dont know how long to cook it in the instant pot and dont are your recipe? BTW everyone, her adobo recipes, along with EVERYTHING I have made, is absolutely DELICIOUS !

    • abigail
      February 26, 2019 / 10:13 pm

      I haven’t done pork adobo on the instant pot but here’s my suggestion. Use either the stew setting – that way you the instant pot itself will choose the right amount of time for you. If you wish to do it manually, I would suggest between 25-30 minutes on high pressure depending on how big your pork chunks are and how tender you want them. Let us know how it works so next time I can adapt that. Thank you for your kind words. How very sweet!

  29. Arch
    August 15, 2020 / 5:00 pm

    Excellent recipe and easy directions made this dish a regular on the rotation!
    Surprised my Filipina wife and she was VERY IMPRESSED. She said she like it even better than hers!

    Thanks again!

    • abigail
      August 15, 2020 / 7:17 pm

      Yay! So glad to know that Arch! Thanks for kindly letting us know.

  30. Tyler
    January 19, 2021 / 1:19 am

    mmm! I’ve been holding onto this recipe for a while, finally tried it. I don’t think it’s necessary to add any water. Instead of natural release I did a hard simmer with the sauté button for a few minutes to thicken it a bit. I made this dish with my Filipino partner a number of years ago and this seems like a much more traditional version. It’s really good!

    • abigail
      January 19, 2021 / 1:26 pm

      Glad you finally gave this a try and liked it. Yay! Thanks for the tip and for letting us know.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *