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15 All-time Popular Filipino Treats During the Holidays

Updated on December 7, 2018

The Christmas holidays brings out the gift-giving spirit in everyone. Philippine Christmas is know as the longest celebration in the world. it actually starts in September and only ends in the first week of January.

Filipinos eagerly await another excuse to lay out the best Christmas dishes and treats during celebrations. Even Filipinos abroad long for the taste of these popular food fares that often hog the centerpiece in noche buena feasts everywhere.

Since it is the season to be jolly again, what better way to celebrate the spirit of the season with the family than sharing these popular Filipino dishes in any party.

1. Fried chicken

All photo credits to Puck777 (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Puck777 (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Filipinos love their chicken either fried, grilled or as the popular dish called 'adobo'. Fried chicken wins overall as the perennial favorite from ages 1 and up. Children and those child at heart love it.

Fried chicken becomes a great addition to the Christmas or New Year's eve dinner for a lot of reasons. One, it is widely available and easy to prepare. If one is too rushed to prepare it, one can find it everywhere in the Philippines from the fastfood restos to the side streets. Second, one can consume it simply with the hands so less dishes to wash.

For those who opt to stay clear of cholesterol-filled pork dishes, this Filipino-style Fried chicken is a great alternative.

2. Grilled tuna jaw

All photo credits to Highlimitzz (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Highlimitzz (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

For the health-conscious and want to steer clear of fatty treats during the holidays, fish is always a good choice. The grilled tuna jaw is one alternative dish that would be a great addition to a dinner during the holiday festivities. Celebrate the holidays with a Tuna jaw grilled to perfection. Tuna jaw is great with rice and as 'pulutan' to beer beverage. It is also best served hot off-the-grill.

3. Kare kare

All photo credits to Kimi (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Kimi (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Kare-kare is known to originate from the Pampanga province, which is located in the central part of the Philippines. It is a a meat with vegetable dish made creamy by using peanut butter to give it a very distinct and sweet flavor. It is best consumed with steaming rice.

4. Crispy pata

All photo credits to Arnold Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Arnold Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

As the name obviously suggests, Crispy Pata is a dish consisting of it is deeply-fried pork meat. The ‘pata’ is one of the choicest or meatiest part of the animal. Most Filipinos love this dish and consider it a treat. The Crispy Pata is best consumed with rice and dipped in a savory sauce. It also goes well with alcoholic beverages.

It might not be the healthiest choice due to its high caloric content and animal fat but if taken once a year, then it will be okay.This is not for those prone to hypertension or those having heart problems as this dish is sinfully cholesterol-laden.

5. BBQ

All photo credits to MVI (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to MVI (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Pork bbq is not only perfect for beach outings, Filipinos also serve these during the holidays feast. Pork bbq is skewered pork meat marinated with a special bbq sauce. Best served off the grill with vinegar mix.

6. Pancit Malabon

Pancit Malabon
Pancit Malabon | Source

Pancit Malabon is a complete dish made of special white noodles topped with a mix of boiled egg, shrimp, bits of chicharon (pork skin bits) and a yellow-colored special sauce. This dish is consumed on its own and is perfect for get-together and parties.


7. Grilled chicken

All photo credits to Jekert Gwapo (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Jekert Gwapo (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Lechon manok is another name for roasted or grilled chicken. It is also very popular dish during the Christmas festivities in the Philippines. It is an all-time favorite because it is very handy and easily available in many street sellers.

8. Lechon Kawali

All photo credits to Manda_wong (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Manda_wong (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Lechon Kawali is another pork dish popular among Filipinos especially during the Christmas season. It is mainly deep-fried and best served on its own or with rice.

9. Paella

All photo credits to Arnold Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Arnold Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

This complete main dish is originally from the Spain but Filipinos gave it a twist of their own to adapt to local tastes. There are a number of variations on this dish but mainly it consist of long-grained rice, shrimps, peas, oyster, and many other ingredients. Best consumed on its own.

10. Leche flan

All photo credits to Arnold I Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Arnold I Inuyaki (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

The leche flan is an all-time favorite Christmas fare. It is actually like a steamed custard cake made from egg yolks, milk, and sugar. Leche flan is best enjoyed as a snack on its own or as toppings to other desserts like the halo-halo or ice cream.

11. Bibingka

A creative commons image
A creative commons image | Source

Bibingka is a native Filipino dessert also referred to locally as 'kakanin'. It is made from ground glutinous rice, coconut milk, sugar ans sometimes with cheese, salted egg and butter topping. It goes perfectly well with coffee or tea.

12. Sapin-sapin

All photo credits to  Eugene Alvin Villar (a Wikimedia Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Eugene Alvin Villar (a Wikimedia Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Sapin-sapin is another popular Christmas fare for the holiday festivities. It is a glutinous rice-based dessert mixed with coco milk, sugar and other ingredients. The colorful wheel of the Sapin-sapin is in itself a sight to behold.

13. Ensaymada

All photo credits to Roland (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to Roland (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Ensaymada is soft bread topped with margarine, cheese and sugar sprinkles. It is perfect to consume on its own or with your favorite coffee.

14. Halo halo

All photo credits to Bingbing (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic )
All photo credits to Bingbing (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic ) | Source

Halo-halo is a cool treat that can be perfect for summer but is also served all year round in local restos. Halo-halo is alsop perfect as a snack during the holiday season. It is a snack consisting of sweetened beans, ube halea, sweet peas, milk and shaved ice. It is best consumed after mixing all the ingredients together.

15. Buko Pandan

All photo credits to dbgg1979 (a Flickr Creative Commons image  Attribution Required)
All photo credits to dbgg1979 (a Flickr Creative Commons image Attribution Required) | Source

Buko pandan is another cool dessert which is very popular next to the halo-halo. It is a mix of 'buko' (young coconut) strips, milk, sugar, ‘pinipig’ rice, jelly and pandan essence. There are many variations to this treat.

© 2010 Shan Moore

Comments

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    • gmmurgirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Shan Moore 

      6 years ago from Philippines

      Hi Janellegems. Good to hear you are also into trying out new dishes from different cultures and I'm glad you like this hub on Filipino dishes. I hope you get to try our dishes too.

    • Janellegems profile image

      Janellegems 

      6 years ago from United States

      I love trying foods from different cultures. This is an awesome list of Filipino foods for Christmas. Thanks for putting together this great hub.

    • gmmurgirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Shan Moore 

      7 years ago from Philippines

      hi glorgeousmom. True, nothing beats enjoying halo-halo on a hot summer day!

    • glorgeousmom profile image

      Glo L Bernadas 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      Halo-halo is one of my favorite palamig and dessert.

    • gmmurgirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Shan Moore 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      Hi lk! Yes, there are a lot but I still have yet to write on milk and alternatives.

    • profile image

      lk 

      8 years ago

      is there any entrees in philippines that are milk and alternatives

    • gmmurgirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Shan Moore 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      Hi PaperNotes! I assume you've tried any of these foods yourself. Eating is such an enjoyable activity especially with these kinds of dishes. Thanks for reading this hub!

    • PaperNotes profile image

      PaperNotes 

      8 years ago

      Wow, my mouth is literally watering as I browsed through the photos of those foods!

    • gmmurgirl profile imageAUTHOR

      Shan Moore 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      Thanks ezmobile! I hope you can try any of them soon!

    • ezmobile profile image

      ezmobile 

      8 years ago from London

      Wow, an amazing list of genuine Filipino food. Looks so good. Thanks.

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