If you want to make the most out of your tour in a country or region, make sure to try their street food. Why? Street food tells a lot about it’s history while also getting to meet and interact with the locals and be fascinated by their distinct way of life. It’s both a gastronomical and a cultural experience. So what are some delicious Cebuano Street Food?
The island of Cebu, often known as the “Queen City of the South,” the oldest city in the Philippines and recognized for its wide array of breathtaking sites. Both the delectable food and wonderful tourism attractions are highly renowned. Cebu also has its kind of street foods, some may similar to or common to other places too, but Cebu Street Foods hits different.
Cebu’s street food is a filled with delicious and exciting choices. There’s tasty street food in every corner whether you are looking for something sweet, fried, exotic, you name it! Prepare your appetite as we present the…
Appetizing and Exotic Best Cebu Street Food !
(1) Cebu Lechon
The best Lechon in the history of Lechon is believed to be served in Cebu. Because of its juicy flesh and crispy roasted skin, highly well-liked in Cebu cuisine. Cebu is definitely at the top of the list for Lechon! And when it comes to Cuisine, Cebuanos are always proud of their whole roasted pigs.
READ ALSO: Top 15 Best Cebu Lechon
“Balut” is the most popular must-try Filipino street food for tourists. This distinct exotic dish is a fertilized duck egg with a creamy yolk and warm savory soup inside. Balut also has a lot of health benefits such as helping to clean your bloodstream and boosting your immune system.
Tasteatlas calls Balut as popular , though unusual Filipino delicacy and considered a poor man’s meal. It is a hard-boiled duck egg that has incubated for 16 to 25 days in the egg’s shell. Duck eggs typically hatch around 27 to 30 days. So you can bet that the egg contains a partially formed duck embryo. Without that embryo, a boiled duck egg is just Penoy, which is something quite different. It just has a rubbery white component and a yolk with veins.
You will not have difficulty finding a Balut especially if you are in Cebu because mostly all of the streets in Cebu have a Balut vendor.
Do you ever wonder why Balut was sold only at night? It is believed that Balut is an aphrodisiac that’s why it is easier to sell it at night.
SuTuKil is derived from three Cebuano terms; Sugba means to grill, Tuwa means to stew, and lastly, Kilaw which means to be eaten fresh or raw. SuTuKil is loved and liked by both locals and tourists for it is delicious and you will not get bored eating it.
When you enter a SuTuKil area, you just need to choose from a variety of fish and other seafood and have it SuTuKil or any kind of cooking you like in a single fish. Many restaurants in Cebu offer SuTuKil. Cebu is abundant in marine life resources, and the people on the island do have creative minds, they combined it and created delicious dishes in terms of food.
Reef eel or saltwater eel or popularly known as “Bakasi” in Cebu. Bakasi is commonly available in Cebu since the island is rich in marine resources. Bakasi, usually cooked as Linarang, a native Cebuano dish, and the style of cooking fish.
Linarang na Bakasi or Sour Stew with Reef Eel in English is popular in a specific place on the island. Entoy’s Bakasihan in Cordova, Cebu is a famous place where they serve the best Linarang na Bakasi. Since the coastal area of Cordova is abundant with eels it is easy to get the main ingredient of the recipe they need. And Entoy’s Bakasihan was once featured on Netflix’s Street Food Asia Series in 2019.
Try Cebu’s most popular siomai, Siomai sa Tisa! For those unfamiliar, Siomai is a type of traditional Chinese dumpling and is usually served as a dim sum snack.
There are plenty of variations in southeast Asian countries but they are mainly a mixture of ground pork, carrots, celery, onions, egg, sesame oil and wrapped with siomai wrapper. It is also partnered with some “calamondin” sauce which consists of calamansi, chili peppers and soy sauce.
“Saang” is a conch shell that is also known as “spider shell” which insides are usually taken out and put on a stick. It is cooked by grilling or boiling the shells in water which are then picked out for consumption.
But vendors can also use a hammer to break the shells. On its owns, the Saang is meaty and bland that is why it’s paired with some spicy vinegar sauce to balance the freshness of the Saang.
READ ALSO: The Top 10 Best Seafood Resto in Cebu
This Cebuano street food is obviously different from the original Japanese tempura. It is similar to a popular street food in Manila called “Kikiam”. Try this fried treat with “Kinilaw na Guso” which is a raw seaweed dish with onions, tomatoes and ginger!
(7) Banana Cue
In Cebu and other parts of the country, the banana cue is a widely popular and well-known dish. Created with deep-fried, middle-ripe Saba bananas that have covered with caramelized brown sugar. Some people sweeten their banana cues using over-ripe bananas. This is one of several recipes that use bananas. Another one, is Ginang-gang. A skewered grilled bananas, smeared with margarine, and sprinkled with white sugar. It is also one of Cebu’s most well-known banana dishes.
In the province, banana cues are distributed across a community, or the merchants move from home to house to sell them.
As mentioned above, Adidas or Chicken feet is called such due to the three toes resembling the shoe logo. It is not just available in bbq but, it have different ways on cooking it. One recipe of Adidas is Adobo, but mostly it is used as an extra ingredient in some dishes such as soups and other kinds of adobo.
READ ALSO;Things to Do When In Cebu
Chicken heads or commonly known by locals as Helmet can be seen usually in Barbeque stalls. The common recipe for the chicken head is grilled, adobo, or deep-fried. The process of cooking this is the same as the process Isaw has; cleansing, marinating, and removing all except for the brain and eyeballs. It is best paired with a spicy sawsawan and a bottle of coke.
(10) Kwek Kwek
“Kwek-Kwek” is basically an egg waffle made by deep-frying quail egg that’s coated in an appetizing orange batter. It has three sauce variety so it’s up to you whether you’d want it sweet, spicy or a combination of both!
One of Filipinos’ favorite dishes. Lumpia usually seen on occasions and even adopted and become one of the famous street foods. Made from a thin pastry skin, known as the “lumpia wrapper,” that encloses either savory or sweet contents.
Lumpia, originally composed of ground pork, carrots, onions, cabbage, ginger, garlic, and soy sauce. Either the mixture scooped into compact balls or sautéed in a pan as a pre-cook.
(12) Dynamite Lumpia
This Cebuano street food is a deep fried egg roll made of green chili stuffed with cheese, ground pork or both! Don’t worry it’s not crazy spicy! If it gets overwhelming to you, pair it with “Puso” which is a hanging rice wrapped in coconut leaves.
(13) Chicken Skin
Another famous street food is Chicken skin. It is batter-coated chicken skin that has deep-fried till it is crispy and golden brown. One of the most popular street foods is this chicken skin since it’s affordable and filling, making it a favorite among students and people trying to save money. It is also best to pair with rice if you want a great meal.
(14) Fried Isaw
“Isaw” is a street food made of pig or chicken intestines. It is commonly grilled but the real flavor of the Isaw comes out when it’s deep-fried like this!
(15) Puto’t Sikwate
“Puto’t Sikwate” is both a street food and a comfort food. It is a “Puto Maya”, a rice cake from Cebu made from glutinous rice, milk and ginger and wrapped in banana leaves. It is served with a hearty hot chocolate called “Sikwate”.
(16) Sweet Corn
For those who are unfamiliar, sweet corn is a kind of maize. This kind contains more sugar than others. One of the Philippines’ main exports is corn.There are many ways on how to sell sweet corn, the most common is the cheesy sweet corn and boiled sweet corn.
Placed in a plastic cup combined with cheese powder and condensed milk, then you can have your cheesy sweet corn.
Skewered boiled sweet corn is one of your must-try street food. Similar to Cheesy sweet corn, it may found on any street.
Although it is more popular on highways, particularly the Trans Central Highway, which tourists like to go to because of the beautiful stop-over places.
Ngohiong or popularly spelled as “Ngo-Yong,” a is a popular delicacy in Cebu. This deep-fried Cebuano street food is a spring roll filled with ubod, singkamas, garlic, onion and special seasonings! It is dipped with special spicy Ngohiong sauce. Make sure to grab a lot of puso!
Ngohiong can easily found for it is available in many local food stalls and Karenderia. Even in Pungko-Pungko, a famous food stall in Cebu that offers various fried foods and other street foods.
(18) Fish Balls
It is quite famous among students and other people, fish balls are one of the common street foods. That’s why it is not that shocking if many people will go to a street food stall and buy some.
Fishballs are ground fish that has been flattened and skewered before deep-frying. They mostly made from pollock or cuttlefish and a lot of flour. Fish ball is one of the cheapest street foods that you can buy for P 5.00 or P 10.00.
Try Cebu’s very own, Sol’s Halo-Halo! Halo-Halo summer or not, is always a delight! This vibrant cup of Sol’s Halo-Halo is made of milky shaved ice, fresh fruits, sweet beans, colorful gelatine cubes, crunchy cereals all topped with rich Ube ice cream or any flavor of your choice!
Be an adventurous eater and try this exotic street food, “Lansiao”! It’s a mild spicy braised soup filled with chopped male horse or cow testicles. Pair it with cooked “Bugas Mais” or corn rice! Lansiao is also believed to be an energy booster that enhances mood and aphrodisiac properties.
This appetizing rice bowl is surrounded with siomai, hard boiled eggs, chicharon and a cup of rice topped with spicy chili sauce! It’s basically an indulgence of your Filipino favorites!
A Cebuano version of Chicharon Bulaklak and pork crackling and one of the popular street foods on Cebu Island. Ginabot, made from the pork intestines and better paired with Puso, a Cebuano term for woven-leaf pouches of rice, and then add a bottle of cold Sparkle or Mountain Jew, and you have your full meal. Also commonly used as pulutan and best paired with a beer.
Ginabot is also available in Pungko-Pungko stalls, some claim it tastes similar to fried chicken but with rougher textures due to the combination of a crispy surface and chewy, juicy within. It is frequently served with a dip made of vinegar, crushed red onions, smashed garlic, salt, and chili pepper.
(23) Tuslob Buwa
Taking the number one spot of our list is the Tuslob Buwa! “Tuslob buwa” means “dipping in bubbles” but the bubbles are actually an exotic Cebuano ingredient. It is made from cooking pork liver with pig brains as the base.
The it is given flavor with the shrimp paste, onions, garlic, fish sauce and oil. While it’s fresh from the pan, you dip your puso in the bubbly paste to enjoy! Careful though, as it is hot!