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Bulalo Soup

Recipe by Connie Veneracion
The key to making a good bulalo soup is to use the correct cut of beef. It has to be bone-in shank. How much meat is attached to the shank is a personal choice. But the bone has to be cut crosswise, and the marrow should be intact.
Long and slow cookig is required. Stirring is not a good idea especially if both ends of the bone are open. You really don't want the precious marrow falling out prematurely and melting into the cooking liquid.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine Filipino
Servings 4 people
Bulalo with potatoes and cabbage


  • 1 to 1.5 kilograms bulalo (bone-in beef shank)
  • 1 whole onion
  • 1 whole garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 to 8 peppercorns
  • fish sauce
  • 1 head white cabbage cut into quarters
  • 350 grams potatoes peeled and cut into wedges


  • Place the beef shanks in a thick-bottomed pot.
  • Cover with water.
  • Set over high heat and bring to a boil, removing scum as it rises.
  • Add the whole onion, garlic (pierced in several places with a sharp pointed knife), bay leaf and peppercorns.
  • Stir in two tablespoons of fish sauce.
  • Lower the heat, cover and simmer for two hours (longer, for a more flavorful broth) or until the beef is fork-tender. It is important to taste the broth every half hour or so and adding more fish sauce, as needed.
  • Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the beef shanks and transfer to a tureen or serving bowl.
  • Strain the broth, pour back into the pot and reheat to boiling point.
  • Add the potatoes, cabbage, another tablespoon of fish sauce, and simmer for another ten to 15 minutes.
  • Scoop the vegetables out and arrange around the bulalo.
  • Pour in piping hot broth and serve at once.


Updated from a recipe originally published in May 5, 2009
Keyword Beef, Bone marrow, Soup