Sizzling Bulalo Recipe (Bulalo Steak with Gravy)

Bulalo is one of the foundational recipes in Filipino cuisine. It’s a beef soup usually associated with rainy days and comfort food, but you can definitely have this dish any time you wish. Its rich broth is made by boiling bone-in beef shanks. The collagen and fat in the bone marrow melts away giving the broth its incredibly rich flavor, alongside some vegetables and leafy greens like pechay and corn.

Origins of Bulalo

Bulalo can be traced back to the pre-Hispanic period, when boiling, grilling, steaming and roasting were established methods of cooking. There are different claims as to where in the Philippines it originated: some will say Batangas, some will say Cavite, some will say Tagaytay. Though many sources do claim that bulalo comes from Southern Luzon.

(Source: 196 Flavors)

Now, Filipino cuisine has come a long way, and with that many recipes have evolved over the years. You can find many modern Filipino restaurants serving innovations of traditional Filipino recipes. All of these are amazing in their own right. This “sizzling bulalo” is basically turning the soup into a rich gravy, and browning the beef shanks a little further. Whereas bulalo soup has a delicate beefy flavor, this sizzling bulalo’s flavors are intensified.

How to Make Sizzling Bulalo



  • 500g beef shank
  • 2 tbsp of kosher salt
  • 2 bulbs of garlic cut in half
  • 2 onions cut in half
  • Enough water to cover

Chili Garlic Oil

  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup chilli flakes


  • 1 large white onion
  • 1/4 of a cabbage
  • 4 long red peppers
  • 4 tbsp chili garlic oil


  • 4 tbsp of fat from skimmed broth
  • 2 tbsp chili garlic oil
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • worcestershire
  • fish sauce
  • garnish: thai basil, sliced scallions
  1. Season beef shank with salt on both sides. Sear both sides until browned.
  2. In a pot of boiling water, add the beef shank. Add salt, onions, and garlic. Simmer for 3 hours, covered.
  3. Strain the broth. Put the beef shank and brother in an airtight container and leave it in the fridge overnight. You’ll see that the fats and gelatin have come to the surface. Skim these off and set aside.
  4. Make the chili garlic oil by heating olive oil and butter in a pan. Once melted, add garlic. Cook until aromatic then add chili flakes. Simmer for 10 minutes and then set aside.
  5. Roughly slice cabbage and onions, set them on a baking tray along with the red peppers. Drizzle the chili garlic oil over the vegetables and roast in the oven at 220C until charred, around 15-20 minutes.
  6. In the same pan used to cook the chili oil, add a tablespoon of the fat you saved from the broth. Add chili garlic oil and simmer. Once bubbling, add flour and whisk until well incorporated. Add beef broth and bring to a simmer. Add worcestershire sauce, fish sauce, black pepper, and salt. Adjust according to taste.
  7. Add in the beef shank and baste it with the gravy. Pop it in the oven at 220C until beef shank has browned (timing will depend on the size of your beef shank).
  8. Serve sizzling bulalo with roasted vegetables, garnish with sliced scallions and thai basil.
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