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Quick Recipe for Philippine Bistek – the Filipino Beefsteak

Updated on September 28, 2012
Bistek | Source
Bistek with Rice
Bistek with Rice | Source

Bistek or Bistek Tagalog is a popular Philippine dish that Filipinos love to eat for its succulent strips of sirloin beef made tender in sweet and salty soy sauce and tangy calamansi juice.

The taste of this flavorsome dish, which got its name from the English dish “beefsteak”, is accented even more with the mild sweetness of sautéed onions.

Sometimes, Filipinos throw in fried and quartered potatoes and cooked mung bean sprouts to jazz up the classic Philippine bistek.


Next to its taste, bistek is popular in the Philippines and among Filipinos from around the world because it is tad easy to prepare and cook.

Give or take 55 minutes, your bistek can be ready to serve and eat.

Marinating time for this Philippine dish may take about 15 minutes.

Cooking can be done in about 40 minutes.

Also, unlike many foods that are often eaten with steamed white rice, bistek does not need to be hot when served.

In fact, many Filipinos carry it for lunch when going to school or work, or even when having out-of-town trips during which any newly cooked bistek is sure to lose its warmth.

The real goodness of bistek lies in its tender beef, which packs on lots of savor and aroma.

Unlike other countries’ adaptations of beefsteak, Philippines’ bistek is not served sizzling.

Also it is served with a little sauce – soy sauce with calamansi juice.

Recipe for Philippine Bistek or Bistek Tagalog – the Filipino Beefsteak

Ingredients for Bistek or Bistek Tagalog

  • beef – ½ kilogram; sirloin part; sliced into thin cuts
  • calamansi juice – 5 tablespoons
  • cooking oil – 2 tablespoons
  • garlic – 1 tablespoon; minced
  • onion – 2 pieces; large-sized; cut into rings
  • pepper – 1 tablespoon; grounded
  • potato – 2 pieces; large-sized; peeled and quartered
  • soy sauce – ½ cup
  • water – ¼ cup

Tool for Bistek or Bistek Tagalog

  • plastic bowl for marinating beef

Instructions for Marinating and Cooking Bistek or Bistek Tagalog

  1. In a plastic bowl, pour in calamansi juice and soy sauce.
  2. Place beef.
  3. Add in garlic and pepper.
  4. Mix everything thoroughly.
  5. Marinade beef for 15 minutes.
  6. In a pan set over medium heat, pour in cooking oil.
  7. Place onion rings.
  8. Fry onion rings until transparent.
  9. When onion rings are cooked, drain them and set them aside.
  10. In the same pan, fry potatoes until tender.
  11. When potatoes are tender, drain them and set them aside.
  12. Pour the marinade into the pan.
  13. Allow it to boil for two minutes.
  14. Place the beef in the pan.
  15. Allow it to simmer for about 40 minutes or until the beef becomes tender.
  16. When the beef is already tender, transfer it into a plate.
  17. Top with onion rings and potatoes.
  18. Serve with hot steamed white rice.

Now enjoy your homemade Philippine bistek or bistek Tagalog!

Copyright © 2012 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

Bistek or Bistek Tagalog Philippine Recipe

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    • NornsMercy profile image

      Chace 4 years ago from Charlotte, NC

      Mmmmm...this looks so good! I can't wait to try it.

    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 4 years ago from The Midwest

      The only problem with bistek is it's addictive qualities. It's soooooo good that once you have it on the plate you'll want it at least once a week for the rest of your life.

    • NateB11 profile image

      Nathan Bernardo 4 years ago from California, United States of America

      This was one of my favorite dishes when I used to stay with family, my Filipino side. I've been wanting to find a recipe for it and also the name of it. All I know is I used to eat it up at my Dad's and they just called it Filipino steak. Also I want to learn how to make Filipino Menudo, another one of my favorites. Sweet and savory, love the mixture. Anyway, thanks for this, I've been looking for it.

    • thebeast02 profile image

      thebeast02 5 years ago from Louisiana

      Sounds tasty...looking forward to trying it out!

    • nemanjaboskov profile image

      Nemanja Boškov 5 years ago from Serbia

      I enjoy food very much - both cooking and eating it. and this hub has made me want to make a biftek (Serbian word for bistek)...

      I find it very interesting that our national cuisine is similar to yours, even though we live far, far away from each other :)

    • J.S.Matthew profile image

      JS Matthew 5 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Sounds delicious! My wife makes a similar steak and I love it! Great Hub and recipe! Voted up! (Now I'm drooling...)