Bistek Tagalog Recipe (yaya Choleng’s style)

When I was young, my family would frequently visit my grandparents in Naga. And when we do, my grandmother’s cook, Yaya Choleng, would always cook my favorite Bistek Tagalog.

I would always watch her cook Bistek Tagalog that’s why up to now, it’s still fresh in my mind how she prepares and cook it. And I’m sharing you that Bistek Tagalog recipe below.

Bistek Tagalog is a Filipino dish typically made with onions and thinly sliced sirloin beef strips slowly cooked in soy sauce, and calamansi juice. While “bistek” is a local term for “beef steak” – some Pinoys also use pork.

There are lots of ways and styles that you can cook Bistek Tagalog. But one style of cooking which I grew up with is my Yaya Choleng’s style, which is unique and different from how I know others do it.

This type of Bistek Tagalog is “saucy”. It is best served during breakfast and it should come along with boied eggs.

If you wish to have a dry version, then all you have to do is to simmer the meat until all the liquid evaporates. Also, this dish goes along well with potato chips or ginataang monggo for lunch.

My Yaya Choleng’s Bistek Tagalog recipe:


    • 1/4 kg beef (or pork) sirloin, thinly sliced

  • 4 large kalamansi, juiced and seeds removed
  • 1 tsp of ground pepper
  • 4 large clove of garlic, pitted
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup of white vinegar
  • 1 medium size white onion
  • 1/4 cup cooking oil
  • 1/2 cup water

Cooking Procedure:


    • Mix soysauce, vinegar, pepper, pitted garlic and kalamansi juice and add and mix the beef or pork sirloin slices to the mixture and marinade it for at least an hour.

  • Slice onions to rings and fry to high fire. Saute onions to half cook and set it aside.
  • After an hour of marination, squeeze beef or pork for marinade to be absorb and drip excess to the marinade again then fry to high fire. Beef will eventually darken and hardens again.
  • Lower the fire to the lowest and add the marinade and water and let it simmer for an hour (for the beef) in low fire till beef or pork is tender.
  • Set aside the meat and cook the onions with the marinade sauce in high fire till it simmered. simmer for 2 minutes and pour them over the meat and serve.

Note: You have to defrost beef or pork sirloin completely before putting it into the marinade.

One Response to “ “Bistek Tagalog Recipe (yaya Choleng’s style)”

  1. Charles says:

    Kakagutom. Paborito ko yang bistek lalo na pag madaming onion rings at pritong talong.

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