BBQ Chicken Abodo


Grilling season is upon us, so why not whip up some delicious BBQ Chicken Adobo. Chicken Adobo is a traditional dish from the Philippines, where chicken gets marinated in a vinegary sauce and cooked slow on the stove top. Adobo literally translates to “to marinade” and we kept that process in our recipe, we simply changed the cooking method.

Most of us have jobs, yeah? Well, we’re here for both the busy working peeps and those with a bit more time on their hands. There are two ways to cook/marinate this chicken. In the first method, the chicken gets marinated before the grill, and the second? AFTER the grill. Sounds strange and a bit unusual, but it works as well! Plus, you only need to marinade for 15 minutes afterwards, where you should do an hour to 2 hours marinating before cooking.

Important note about this marinade: it’s very acidic, there is a ton of vinegar in it. This means you should not marinate for over 2 hours. If you do, the meat will become tough as the proteins begin to change. Trust us, we have made the mistake before.

Another note: we used coconut vinegar for this recipe, but it is sometimes hard to find and apple cider vinegar works just as well. You’ll also see many recipes using plain white vinegar, but coconut and apple cider have more flavour, so use those if you can. We recommend you use a raw, unpasteurized variety, such as Healthy Buddha coconut vinegar (Coleman’s & Amazon carry it) or Bragg’s apple cider vinegar (not sponsored – we just like them).

Oh, and if your BBQ has a side burner, use that to reduce the marinade, or your house will smell like you are making pickles. We hope you like this as much as we did! Let us know on social media, give us a comment or a tag if you make it!!


BBQ Adobo Chicken

A summer version of the Philippine classic: tangy marinated chicken thighs cooked on the BBQ – with two ways to marinate!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 6 people


  • 2 pounds bone-in skin-on chicken thighs or breasts
  • 2/3 cup coconut vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 6 cloves garlic minced for more garlic flavour, or smashed and left whole
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 4 dried bay leaves
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric optional
  • 2-3 green onion chopped (for serving)
  • salt


Marinating Before Cooking

  • Combine all ingredients, except chicken & green onion, in a large bowl. Trim the chicken of excess skin and fat on the bottom, then add to the marinade. Leave for 1-2 hours, but do not go over 2 hours. Once enough time has elapsed, remove chicken to a plate and boil the marinade to reduce until it coats the back of a spoon. Pat chicken dry with a paper towel.
  • Preheat BBQ to Medium-low heat. Clean the grill, then oil well. Grill chicken on the BBQ with the lid down, basting occasionally with the reduced marinade. Keep an eye on it closely, as the fat in the chicken can cause the fire to flare up. Remove from heat when a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken (not touching the bone) reads 165F, about 30 minutes. Serve sprinkled with green onion and some roasted potatoes or rice on the side.

Marinating After the Grill

  • Trim chicken of excess fat and skin from the bottom, then sprinkle all sides generously with salt. Leave on the counter for 15-30 minutes. While chicken is resting, combine marinade ingredients and boil on the stove until it reduces slightly.
  • Preheat BBQ to Medium-low heat. Clean the grill, then oil well. Pat chicken dry, then grill chicken on the BBQ with the lid down, turning occasionally, until the skin is crisp and an instant read thermometer reads 165F, about 30 minutes. Remove chicken from grill and pour marinade over chicken. Let rest in marinade for 15 minutes to 1 hour, gently reheating before serving. Serve with chopped green onion and your favourite sides, we like roasted potatoes or rice.
Keyword bbq, bbq chicken thighs, chicken abodo, coconut vinegar, Filipino, garlic, grilled chicken, philippines, soy sauce, summer

The recipe is credited to Nicole and Katherine – The former owner of