Adobo is the Philippines’ national dish, and it’s not hard to see why: it’s tangy, savory, a little bit sweet, and immensely satisfying. While the protein matters a little bit, it’s the sauce that’s magic: a simple blend of garlic, soy, acid, fond, and fat that’s so much more than the sum of its parts.
Internationally, chicken adobo is the most popular variant, but over where the dish originates, pork adobo (or even a mix of chicken and pork) is just as popular and it’s always a close race to see which one people prefer.
This is the easiest weeknight version of adobo possible: just 6 ingredients, almost no prep time, and dinner will be ready in under an hour. You probably already have everything but the pork chops in your pantry. The secret ingredient in this dish is the lemon, which brightens up the dish and, I don’t know about you, but I’d rather buy one lemon than a whole bottle of vinegar any day.
Classically this dish uses pork belly or shoulder, but both are not very weeknight-friendly, so here I’ve subbed pork chops instead. Pork chops are cheap, easy to find, and cook fast, so I think they’re the perfect choice here. You can also use pork belly, shoulder, chicken, or all of the above. The steps are the same no matter which protein you use – it just might take longer before the meat is tender.
What do you need?
A pot with a lid. A cheap garlic press will make life great.
How do you serve it?
Serve over rice.
Super Easy Weeknight Pork Chop Adobo Recipe
- 1lb pork chops
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoons sugar
1. Season the pork on both sides.
2. Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a small saucepan or pot and lightly brown the pork chops over medium heat, working in batches if needed. Don’t be afraid to crowd the pan as long as your chops fit on a single layer – it will cut down on the splatter.
3. Add more oil if needed and fry the garlic for 1 minute.
4. Add the lemon juice, soy sauce, bay leaf, and sugar to the pan. Gently scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to deglaze.
5. Layer the chops and any juices in the pan, then cover with enough water to just cover the top pork chop. Partially cover with a lid and simmer for 40 minutes, or until pork is tender. When done, taste and adjust seasoning – you may need to add another teaspoon of sugar depending on your tastes.
Welcome to Dinner & Chill, a new series focusing on quick & easy weeknight dinners with easy to find ingredients, no special equipment, low prep, and low effort. Less shopping, less chopping, less mopping, more eating.