Adobo Meatballs Recipe


Last Updated on

We live in an Adobo-crazed country, and for good reason.Like this Adobo Meatballs, Preparation is simple, it does not cost much to make a batch that will easily feed a family, and the ingredients are readily available – just good quality meat, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, cracked peppercorns, and water. That’s it. Nothing too fancy.

Adobo Meatballs Recipe

Time and heat take care of the rest – the longer you braise it, the better it tastes. In the end, you get rewarded with tender meat that is equal parts salty and sour. And the great thing about Adobo is that it is perfect for storage and even better when you eat it a day or two after you cook it. It won’t spoil, as long as it is stored in a cool, dry place.

After a while, however, Plain Adobo can get boring, so it comes as no surprise that people look for alternative ways to serve what has been touted as the Philippines’ national dish. Arguably, Adobo, in its many incarnations, remains iconic and always delicious. One way to jazz up your usual adobo dish is to turn it into meatballs.

Adobo Meatballs Preparation Tip

Adobo Meatballs may sound a little weird, but it works. You get to enjoy the adobo taste that you love so much, but with a different texture and presentation. This is perfect for when you have lots of leftover adobo (and admit it, this is almost always the case). It is also an ideal make-ahead dish because you can prepare the adobo days before, stick it in the fridge, and just transform it into meatballs when you need it.

Adobo Meatballs


Adobo Meatballs Recipe

Adobo Meatballs
  • Author: Recipe ni Juan
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 15 1x
  • Category: Beef


For the Meatballs:

  • 1 pound (1/2 kilo) of lean ground beef
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • ½ tsp of pepper
  • 2 cloves of crushed garlic
  • ½ cup of bread crumbs
  • 1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce
  • 57 drops of tabasco sauce
  • 2 tbsp of ketchup
  • 1 egg

For the Adobo Sauce:

  • 1 cup of beef broth
  • 3 tbsp of white vinegar
  • 56 tbsp of soy sauce
  • 4 whole cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 1 large chopped tomato
  • ½ an onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp of sugar
  • 3 bay leaves
  • ½ tsp of pepper or pepper corns
  • ¼ tsp of hot pepper flakes or 1 chopped chili


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Place the ground beef in a mixing bowl.
  3. Add in the breadcrumbs, egg, ketchup, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, tabasco, salt, and pepper. Using a wooden spoon, mix until partially combined.
  4. Mix all of the ingredients into the meat.
  5. Spray the baking sheet with baking spray.
  6. Scoop up a handful of the mixture (a couple of tablespoons) and roll it into a ball.
  7. Place the meatball on the baking sheet and repeat the process for the rest of the mixture.
  8. Place the meatballs in the preheated oven and bake them for about 25 minutes.
  9. In the meantime, pour some oil into a pan over medium-high heat.
  10. Add in the onion, garlic, and tomato.
  11. Saute and stir for 2 or 3 minutes until the tomato is soft.
  12. Add in the beef broth, soy sauce, vinegar, bay leaves, pepper corns, hot pepper flakes, and sugar. Allow it to come to a boil. Do not stir it.
  13. After a boil, give it a stir. Add the meat balls in and spoon some of the sauce over them.
  14. Reduce the heat to medium and allow it to simmer, occasionally spooning some sauce over the meatballs, for about 15 minutes.
  15. Put the meatballs on some steamed or fried rice and spoon the sauce over the top.
  16. Serve and enjoy your spicy meatballs adobo.


You can follow this Video on how to Cook Adobo Meatballs (Note: Not my Own Video)

As with normal Adobo, this works very well with lots of hot white rice. And like normal meatballs, it goes well with ketchup or, if you are feeling adventurous, why not have it with sweet chili sauce? You can even take it up a notch and serve it on top of spaghetti with adobo sauce. The possibilities are exciting.
Leave your comment below if you have any questions and ideas regarding the recipe. Please like our Facebook Page for more updated Recipes.

Join our list

Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox.

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here