Chicken with Pineapple in Coconut Milk

Filipinos have a love affair with coconuts.

The juice of the young coconut is a favorite drink. It’s a naturally sweetened water. The meat of the young coconut is eaten as is straight from the shell, made into pie and other desserts, even scraped into strings and cooked like pasta. The more mature coconut meat is the source of coconut milk and coconut oil. The dried husk can be used as planters for orchids.


  • 3 lbs of chicken. Wash and cut into serving pieces.
  • 1 20 oz can pineapple chunks
  • 1 14 oz can coconut milk. Freshly squeezed coconut milk is good but the canned ones are just as good and more convenient to use.
  • 1 big onion. I like to use sweet onion like Vidalia or Maui onions. 
  • 3-5 garlic cloves
  • 2  jalapeno peppers, cut in strips. Remember the heat is on the seeds and the white membranes, so remove some or you will end up with Bicol Express with Chicken instead!
  • 3 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • salt. Sea salt is supposed to be healthier than iodized salt.
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 3 T oil. I usually use Canola oil for this.


  1. In a bowl, season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the juice from the pineapple and let it marinade for 15 minutes.
  2. Slice the onion. Minced the garlic. Prepare the jalapeno peppers.
  3. Heat a pan in medium heat. Add the oil.  Saute the garlic until slightly brown. Add the onion and cook until it sweats.
  4. Add the chicken pieces but not including the marinade.
  5. Saute the chicken on garlic and onion until slightly brown. Add the soy sauce for color. Add the marinade liquid to the chicken little by little to let the chicken absorb the pineapple juice. Do not cover as it will generate excess liquid. Th
  6. is process should take about 15 minutes.
  7. Add the coconut milk.
  8. Let it simmer for another 15 minutes until the chicken is thoroughly cooked and most of the coconut
  9. milk is absorbed and coconut oil is slightly rendered.
  10. Add the pineapple chunks and jalapeno. Cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  11. The sauce  should taste slightly sweet from the pineapple. Add salt according to taste.
  12. Serve with steamed rice. My family likes this with steamed white rice.

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