Kinilaw na Isda Recipe: A Philippine Exotic Delicacy

Kinilaw is taken from the root word kilaw while kilaw is the method of cooking raw meat through the use of vinegar and citrus juice. Fish, beef, or goat meat can be cooked as kinilaw. However, fish meat is what we commonly use for preparing kinilaw here.

kinilaw na isda recipe

Kinilaw na isda is considered a main dish so it is best eaten with warm steamed rice. This recipe is also great if you’re on a beach vacation. Beer drinkers here in the Philippines also love to eat kilawing isda while they drink beer.

If you’re planning to go on a beach vacation or if you simply want to know how kinilaw tastes, here is the list of ingredients that you need:
  • ½ kilo fish (sliced in cubes and preferrably tuna)
  • 200 mL vinegar
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 small red onion (chopped)
  • 2 thumb-sized ginger (chopped)
  • 1 cucumber (sliced and seeds removed)
  • 10 pcs red bird’s eye chilis (chopped)
  • Salt and vetsin

sliced tuna
Sliced Fish

sliced cucumber
Sliced Cucumber

vinegar with spices
Vinegar with Spices


1) Marinate the fish with lemon juice for 10 minutes.
2) Pour the vinegar on a bowl and add the chopped onions, ginger, and chilis. You may add more or less chilis.
3) Pour the vinegar on the fish.
4) Add salt and vetsin to taste.
5) Add the cucumber then mix.
6) Refrigerate the kinilaw for 30 minutes.

Serve cold!

Cooking Tips:
1) Use only fresh meat as meat will be cooked with the absence of heat.
2) You may also add mayonnaise to improve taste.
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