How To Cook Tocino

How To Cook Tocino: A Delicious Filipino Dish

Tocino is a popular Filipino dish known for its distinctive sweet and savory flavors. Made from marinated pork or chicken, this dish is perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. If you want to learn how to cook tocino at home, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we will provide you with step-by-step instructions on how to prepare and cook this delectable Filipino favorite. So, let’s get started!

– 1 kg of pork or chicken (preferably with fat, thinly sliced)
– 1 cup of pineapple juice
– 1/2 cup of brown sugar
– 1/4 cup of soy sauce
– 4 cloves of garlic (minced)
– 1 teaspoon of salt
– 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
– 1/4 teaspoon of red food coloring (optional)

Step 1: Marinate the meat
In a bowl, combine the pineapple juice, brown sugar, soy sauce, minced garlic, salt, pepper, and red food coloring (if using). Mix well until the sugar has dissolved. Place the sliced pork or chicken into the marinade and make sure they are well-coated. Cover the bowl or transfer the mixture into a resealable plastic bag. Let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight for best results.

Step 2: Cook the tocino
Heat a non-stick skillet or frying pan over medium heat. Once hot, remove the marinated meat from the refrigerator and place them in the pan, making sure not to overcrowd. Cook for about 5-7 minutes on each side or until caramelized and slightly charred. The natural sugars from the marinade will create a beautiful glaze on the meat. Flip the tocino occasionally to ensure that they cook evenly. You may cook the tocino in batches if needed.

Step 3: Serve and enjoy
Once cooked, transfer the tocino to a serving plate. For an authentic touch, serve it with steamed rice, fried garlic rice, or scrambled eggs. You can also add a side of fresh tomatoes or atchara (pickled papaya) to balance the flavors. Enjoy the sweet, tender, and flavorful tocino with your family and friends!


Q: Can I use chicken instead of pork?
A: Yes, you can use chicken as a substitute for pork. Chicken tocino is a healthier option and tastes just as delicious.

Q: What if I don’t have pineapple juice?
A: Pineapple juice contributes to both the flavor and tenderness of the meat. However, if you don’t have pineapple juice, you can use calamansi juice or lemon juice as a substitute.

Q: Can I freeze marinated tocino?
A: Absolutely! After marinating, you can store the tocino in airtight containers or freezer bags and freeze them for future use. Marinated tocino can last up to 2 months in the freezer.

Q: Can I cook tocino using the oven?
A: While traditionally cooked in a skillet or frying pan, you can also bake the tocino in the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius) and place the marinated meat on a greased baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until cooked through, flipping halfway.

Q: What should I do with the leftover marinade?
A: You can reuse the marinade but make sure to bring it to a boil first to kill any bacteria from the raw meat. Once boiling, you can use it as a glaze for the cooked tocino or as a dipping sauce.

Now that you know how to cook tocino, it’s time to put your skills to the test. This Filipino dish will surely be a hit at your next family gathering or brunch with friends. So, gather your ingredients, follow the simple steps listed above, and savor the mouthwatering flavors of homemade tocino. Happy cooking!

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