Filipino Tamales Recipe

April 6, 2017
(Last Updated On: November 1, 2018)

How to cook Filipino Tamales

The great thing about food is that it flexible. There are many different kinds of variations of different kinds of food in different countries. One dish in Mexico that we have adapted here in the Philippines is the Tamales. Filipinos liked the mexican style too, but we also added our own flavor and culture in it.

For those of you who are new to this, the Filipino Tamales is actually a combination of rice, rice flour, coconut milk,  garlic, chicken, and many other kinds of protein. It really is quite an identical recipe but since not all Mexican ingredients are found here, Filipinos made used of is found here. And because of all the substitutions that were done, the Tamales has hit the right spot in the palette of many Filipinos.

Filipino Tamales Recipe

Going on a reunion, planning a grand feast for your family or looking for something to share during a festival? The Filipino Tamales Recipe would be a great choice.

Try the recipe and see for yourself how delectable it is.

Filipino Tamales by Filipino Recipes Portal:

Filipino Tamales Recipe

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Filipino Tamales Recipe

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Chicken
Cuisine: Filipino
Servings: 10 servings
Author: Eduardo Joven -


  • 1/4 kilo chicken fillet
  • 1/8 kilo shrimp peeled and cooked
  • 1 tablespoon Canola oil
  • 1 small onion peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 4 cups coconut milk
  • 1 cup chicken broth reserved from cooking the chicken
  • cups rice flour
  • 1 tablespoon atsuete powder diluted in 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon smooth peanut butter
  • 3 pcs hardboiled eggs peeled and quartered
  • salt and pepper to taste

For wrapping Tamales:

  • 10 pieces 8 x 8 inches banana leaves
  • kitchen twine


  • In a saucepan add chicken and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil, remove the scum that may float on top. When broth has cleared, season with salt and pepper to taste. Lower heat, cover, and simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • Drain chicken, reserving about 1 cup of the broth. Allow chicken to cool to touch and then flake.
  • In a pan over medium heat, heat oil.
  • Add onions and garlic and cook until softened. Add coconut milk and broth and bring to a gentle boil. Slowly add rice flour, whisking vigorously to prevent lumps. Cook, stirring regularly, for about 2 to 3 minutes or until smooth and resembling a thick paste.
  • Separate ⅔ of the mixture into one bowl and the remaining ⅓ to another bowl. To ⅓ of the mixture, add the dissolved annatto and the peanut butter. Stir until well combined and evenly colored.
  • Wash banana leaves and with a paper towel, wipe down any grit or dirt. Briefly pass through gas flames or soak for a few minutes in hot water until softened and more pliable.
  • Scoop about 2 tablespoons of plain mixture on banana leaf and spread to about 3-inches wide. Scoop about 1 tablespoon of the colored mixture onto plain mixture and spread across top. Top with eggs and flaked chicken.
  • Fold banana leaves over tamale mixture to fully enclose. Tie with kitchen twine to secure. Arrange prepared tamales on steamer basket and steam for about 20 to 30 minutes or until cooked. Alternatively, arrange tamales in a pot and add enough water to cover. Over medium heat, boil for about 20 to 30 minutes. Gently remove tamales from heat and let stand for 1 or 2 minutes to set a little. May be served hot or cold.

Filipino Tamales Recipe



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  • Reply


    March 6, 2018 at 1:52 am

    This tamales recipe looks good.

  • Reply

    Babes Flores

    November 14, 2017 at 8:16 pm

    I’ve been looking for tamales in the market for so long. I used to eat tamales when I was a kid. Thanks to your wonderful pinoy recipe.

  • Reply

    Lauryn R

    April 21, 2017 at 7:06 pm

    I lover tamales! This sounds like a delicious twist, thanks for sharing!

  • Reply


    April 16, 2017 at 5:29 am

    My kids love Tamales but I’ve never tried making them myself!

  • Reply
    April Monty
    April 14, 2017 at 3:05 pm

    These look really good my guys would so love them,must make them

  • Reply

    Margaret S Porter

    April 11, 2017 at 7:02 am

    These look easy to make!

  • Reply

    Kimberly Flickinger

    April 10, 2017 at 10:01 pm

    I honestly have never cooked or eaten tamales, definitely a food that I need to put on my bucket list. Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply

    Sarah L

    April 9, 2017 at 11:31 pm

    An interesting twist on tamales.

  • Reply

    Calvin F.

    April 9, 2017 at 3:11 pm

    Looks like chinese sticky rice in banana leaf, but with a twist!

  • Reply

    Rachael DeBates

    April 8, 2017 at 5:24 pm


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