Laing (Taro Leaves in Coconut Milk) Recipe

laing plated on banana leaves placed in a coconut husk
  • Updated as of Feb 26, 2023 by Camille Georgia Uy.

Laing is a Filipino dish that is made by simmering laing, also known as taro leaves in English, in bagoong alamang or shrimp paste, siling labuyo or bird's eye chili, and gata or coconut milk. This earthy, coconutty, and spicy dish originates from Bicol, where it is more popularly known as pinangat!

While pinangat and laing are made from the same ingredients - taro leaves, chili, coconut milk, the big difference is that pinangat, the original dish from Bicol, is a vegetarian dish. Laing, especially in Metro Manila, is usually cooked with pork. This laing recipe is sure simple to follow and uses readily-available ingredients from the grocery, so you can have a fuss-free taste of Bicol at home.

Table of Contents

How to Serve Laing

How to Cook Laing

Tips to Make the Best Laing

Laing Storage Tips

How to Make Laing Recipe Video


Laing Recipe

How to Serve Laing

Laing is considered to be a common Filipino ulam dish, and is best enjoyed with rice. If you're not big on rice, eating it with puto or toasted bread works, too!

The taro leaves in this dish become soft and tender once it's cooked, so serving laing with a crunchy ulam dish can create a delicious contrast in texture: try it with lumpiang shanghai, or even with your favorite fried chicken recipe. It is also excellent when served with grilled food, like liempo or grilled seafood.

How to Cook Laing

To cook laing, begin by cooking pork belly strips in a pan with water until all liquid has evaporated and the pork fat has started to render. Then, add shrimp paste, garlic, coconut milk, and ginger to the pan and stir for 2 minutes. Next, add taro leaves and let them absorb the coconut milk for 10 minutes without stirring. Add coconut cream, green chilies, and bird's eye chilies and let it boil for another 10 minutes. Serve warm with rice and other dishes. Additional chili can be added for preference.

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Tips to Make the Best Laing

1 Simmer the taro leaves for a long time so it doesn't get you itchy.

Taro leaves have toxins that can cause itchiness - if these aren't neutralized by heat. This applies to both the fresh and dried kind of taro leaves! So, make sure to cook taro leaves for at least 30-45 minutes to ensure that you get smooth, creamy laing that won't leave you feeling itchy after you eat it.

2 Make your laing as spicy or as mild as you like.

Bicolano food are known for having coconut milk and chili, but that doesn't mean it has to be spicy all the time! You can put as much or as little siling labuyo in laing. If you want a mild kick, you can also switch it out with green finger chilies or siling pangsingang.

3 Make it creamier with coconut cream or kakang gata.

Laing isn't complete without gata or coconut milk, which gives it a unique, slightly sweet, and creamy taste. However, if you want to make laing creamier and up that coconut flavor, you can add coconut cream or kakang gata!


How to Store Laing

1 Laing tastes better the longer it is stored.

Laing is one of the dishes that not only keeps well in the refrigerator; the flavors actually marinate and intensify the longer you store it! Of course, this doesn't mean you can refrigerate laing indefinitely: it will only be good to eat for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

2 You can freeze laing for up to a month.

For longer storage, laing can be frozen in an airtight container for up to a month. To reheat, simply let it thaw and pop it in the microwave or heat it over a stove top.

Watch: How to Cook Laing Video


Laing (Taro Leaves in Coconut Milk) Recipe

Prep Time
10 mins 
Cooking Time
40 mins 
Ready In
50 mins 
Cooking Method

Laing (Taro Leaves in Coconut Milk) Ingredients

How to make Laing (Taro Leaves in Coconut Milk)

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