Chicken Inasal

Inasal means grilled or barbecued; this dish originated in Panay and Negros region in the Philippines.  What makes it different from other grilled chicken is it’s delicious tang and distinct orange color from annatto oil.  The marinade has both vinegar and calamansi juice.. so you can just imagine how sour that is ( it makes my mouth water as I write this) which is good –  it makes the chicken tender and delicious! Other marinade ingredients are also pantry staples ( except maybe for the lemongrass) which makes it really easy to do this at home.

I got the recipe from my latest cookbook purchase, I have my friend to thank (hi Pam!) for recommending it to me, it has so many delectable recipes and insights on Filipino food. I just love it! 🙂
let the chicken marinate for at least an hour or overnight..
..then grill or broil..and enjoy! 🙂

adapted from Kulinarya A Guidebook To Philippine Cuisine

1 whole chicken, quartered or chicken parts ( I used about a kilo)
6 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tsp black peppercorns, crushed
60 ml calamansi juice ( about 10 pcs calamansi; I think lime is the next best thing to use if calamansi is not available in your place)
2 bulbs lemongrass, finely chopped ( optional, this is mainly for the aroma; first time I made this I used leeks, tastes just as delicious in my op)
1/4 cup (60ml) coconut vinegar (sukang puti)
1 tbsp salt

For Basting:
6 cloves garlic, pounded and minced
1/4 cup annatto oil *
skewers or barbecue sticks (optional)

*To make annato (atsuete) oil, use ratio of 1:2 ( annato seeds to cooking oil). Heat oil in a pan, add annatto seeds and stir until the oil becomes red orange in color; turn off heat and set aside to cool. Strain oil and store in the fridge.


In a bowl combine garlic, crushed peppercorns, calamansi juice, lemon grass, vinegar and salt. Place the chicken pieces in the marinade for at least an hour, or overnight. Keep in the fridge until ready to cook.

Make the basting sauce: Heat annatto oil in a pan and saute minced garlic until lightly browned.

Chicken Inasal is cooked over low heat preferably over hot coals but I cooked mine on a stovetop grill, it’s just more convenient and faster for me to do so. Grill chicken skin side first, basting occasionally with annatto oil. The cooking time in the book for the chicken is about 7 minutes  for each side ( or better yet, check for doneness by poking the thickest part of the meat with a knife, if the juices run clear, it’s fully cooked, bone in chicken parts take longer time to cook).

Serve with dipping sauce and garlic fried rice

Thanks for reading..have a nice day!♥

14 Responses to "Chicken Inasal"

  1. Livia Kraner   November 27, 2011 at 2:58 am

    I will have to make them soon and eat them for breakfast. They look so delicious!

  2. Pingback: Au Revoir to Chicken « My Mommyology

  3. laura   April 21, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    btw, instead of sugar you can use soda, sprite or 7-up.

  4. laura   April 21, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    hi olive! im out for an overnight swimming with my family today. i checked out your insal recipe. i got additional tips – i will add sauted garlic to my annato oil. thanks.

  5. Olive   April 13, 2011 at 11:38 pm

    Thanks Kier! I will definitely try that next time I make Inasal 🙂

  6. love2cook   May 19, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    OMG, I love this recipe and am bookmarking it now!!! 😉

  7. Pam   May 19, 2010 at 11:28 am

    hi olive!
    i know you’ll like this book…haven’t tried this one yet but i will soon…looks great! kakagutom….

  8. Cheah   May 19, 2010 at 9:58 am

    This looks really delicious and mouth watering, especially if it’s sour.

  9. Sophie   May 19, 2010 at 2:17 am

    The chicken dish looks so tasty & apart!! Very flavourfull too!

    What is calamansi, dear olive????

  10. msmeanie   May 18, 2010 at 4:17 pm

    I’ve never heard of annatto oil but it sounds like a great addition to this dish!

  11. theUngourmet   May 17, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    I haven’t heard of this but it sure looks delicious with all of that yummy garlic and lemongrass!

  12. Trissa   May 17, 2010 at 4:47 am

    Hi Olive, I’ve got this cookbook as well and love it. I had been eyeing the inasal recipe for sometime but never got around to it – I am glad you did so everyone can see how great Filipino food looks!

  13. Jeannie   May 16, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    Looks delicious! I like the fact that it is sour! 😀 I love sour dishes.

  14. Joy   May 15, 2010 at 8:50 pm

    That looks really good. I don’t believe I had that before. I can’t wait to try this.


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