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Adobo chicken in a white bowl with rice and green beans on a marble table.
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5 from 5 votes

Slow cooker chicken adobo

This tender slow cooker chicken adobo is a classic filipino dish that has become popular in this part of the world. The chicken is slow cooked in a vinegar based sauce, resulting in tender meat with crispy, caramelized skin.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time6 hrs
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine: Filipino
Keyword: chicken, crockpot, egg free, gluten free, nut free, slow cooker, soy sauce, vinegar
Servings: 4
Calories: 523kcal
Author: Tonje
Cost: Cheap



  • 1 kg bone-in skin on chicken thighs
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 4 tablespoon vinegar
  • 6 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil


  • First, we want to pre cook the chicken. This is technically optional, and you can add the chicken thighs to the slow cooker raw. I think browning them in a pan really helps bring out the flavour, and helps to crisp up the skin as well.
    Heat some oil in a frying pan or skillet, then add chicken thighs. Make sure not to overcrowd the pan. You might want to do this in batches. Cook them on medium to high heat on both sides until the exterior gets a beautiful golden flavour, then set them aside or place them in the slow cooker. Repeat until all chicken thighs are cooked.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together white vinegar (called distilled malt vinegar in the UK), soy sauce, black pepper and sugar in a bowl until combined. Pour the sauce over the chicken.
  • Crush garlic cloves with the side of a knife (don’t chop it).
  • Add chicken thighs, sauce, garlic cloves and bay leaves to the slow cooker. Leave it to cook on high for 4-6 hours, or on low for 8-10 hours. Use a meat thermometer to make sure that the chicken has cooked through before serving. Chicken has to reach an internal temperature of 165°F or 75°C to be considered safe to eat.
  • Remove the slow cooked chicken from the crockpot, carefully to prevent the meat from falling apart. Discard the remaining liquid, bay leaves and garlic cloves. Serve chicken adobo immediately while piping hot.


Can you make chicken adobo with frozen chicken? You can, however you should thaw your chicken before adding it to your crockpot. It is never recommended to cook frozen chicken in a slow cooker. The low temperatures might not cook the frozen chicken thoroughly before harmful bacteria is formed. To safely use frozen chicken, thaw it in the fridge overnight before use.
Can you freeze filipino adobo chicken? Yes! Allow the chicken to cool completely before freezing it in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw frozen chicken adobo in the fridge overnight, then reheat it in the oven or microwave until piping hot.
Storing leftovers Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 days in an airtight container. Reheat in the microwave or oven until piping hot.
Can you make this with other cuts of chicken? Yes. I recommend using bone-in, skin on chicken for the best results. If you use boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts, you might want to reduce the cooking time to prevent the chicken from drying out.


Calories: 523kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 38g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 208mg | Sodium: 1673mg | Potassium: 505mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 166IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 2mg