All The Pinoy Food Combos We Love

"Dirty ice cream" in pandesal, anyone?

Admit it. You too probably have enjoyed some weird food combinations that only you would love. That’s not to say it’s not delicious and satisfying. In fact, there are many food pairings that you might enjoy that others enjoy, too.  

Here are some popular Pinoy food combos:

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1 Kape + Pandesal 

One of the greatest pleasures of growing up was learning that pandesal dipped in steaming hot kape was a satisfying and delicious breakfast. This simple meal was the start of many mornings for many Pinoys. The food pairing is delicious for good reason: each enhanced the flavor of the other. The nutty notes from the coffee complemented the salty-sweetness of the pandesal. If doughnuts and coffee are a snack combination that’s readily accepted, why not our slightly sweet local pandesal

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2 Tasty Bread + Butter + Sugar 

When you have toast, it’s normal to spread on the butter. This is done in many countries, not just ours. However, our sweet tooth is responsible for this food hack: we don’t just slather on the butter on our toasted tasty bread. We sprinkle on the sugar, too. When the buttery taste isn’t enough, the clean, sweet flavor is enough of a sugar rush to start the day on a great note.   


Pandesal + Sorbetes 

Also known as the ice cream sandwich, this classic merienda street food commonly saw school kids swarming the sorbetero. Ice cream cones can be satisfying but stuffing the ice cream into soft and milky buns makes it better.  Even Singapore has their version using rainbow bread

4 Condensed Milk + Pandesal

Anyone who loves the condensed milk flavor has probably tried this combination out, too. Condensed milk is sweet, milky, and sticky enough to cling and soak into the soft pandesal. You can dunk it in to control how much (or how little!) you want on your bread or you can tear into its center to liberally drizzle it on the inside so it can soak right through the bread. 

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5 Pancit + Bread

Starch served with another starch is not recommended in the usual food pyramid. It’s usually got more variety than that! However, you can’t deny that when it comes to the pasta, that’s just the way it’s done. After all, you serve Italian pasta dishes with garlic bread all the time so pancit, even if it’s the instant pancit canton, eaten with a slice of bread is a perfectly delicious pairing, too. 

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6 Pandesal + Milo

Milo is a classic powdered chocolate drink. If you loved eating this with a spoon straight from the canister rather than dissolving it in milk or water to drink, you’re not alone. You may even have stuffed this delicious powdered stuff into your pandesal!

Before the hazelnut-chocolate spread came to our shores, this was the instant chocolate “spread” we used in our pandesals. It delivered the milky chocolate taste we want to eat while the pandesal served as the creamy backdrop. If it melted into the toasted pandesal, even better! 

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7 Dinuguan + Puto

How did anyone think to pair this stew with steamed rice cakes? We owe whoever did a huge “Thank you!” Dinuguan and puto is a classic combination that just doesn’t feel quite complete with one served alongside the other. The thick blood stew with its tangy, irony, and savory is actually the perfect consistency to cling and soak into the fluffy and slightly sweet puto. If you’ve never dunked puto into your bowl of dinuguan, you are missing out on a Pinoy combo that’s well-loved for a reason!   

What’s your favorite Pinoy food combo?



Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on by submitting your recipe here!

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