Tapa Frita

Tapa Frita is a Filipino dish where thinly sliced pork similar to tapa cut is cooked with tomato sauce, carrots, potato, pickles and cheese.

I guess you would know by now that one of this blogs mission is to unearth Filipino recipes that are either heirloom, unpopular and/or long forgotten, hence once in a while even if you are expert in the Filipino cuisine you would see odd recipes that looks something new but in fact they were just hiding in someone else’s old closet and needs to be shared to the world and document the recipe along the way. Our recipe today is one great example of it, when you search online, there are no recipes or even a short description associated with it, what you will find are three Instagram hashtags for it and a mention on two different websites (as of this writing). Of the three Instagram posts only one looks like the real tapa frita and from the two sites I had mentioned there is only one photo.

I had heard of this dish many years ago back in the Philippines, in fact it is one of the popular carinderia items on the eatery I used to go before back in High School. I was trying to recall them, and I know it is cooked like menudo but with cheese and pickles, luckily as I was liking pictures on Instagram, I saw this dish, named but was not hash tagged and that made my recollection more concrete.

So what is Tapa Frita? I guess the best definition for this is it’s a dish prepared like Menudo with Cheese, Kaldereta without the Chilli and sliced like a Pork Tapa Slice then ingredients like pickle, carrot and potato are also present. Some will argue, it is just a gloried Menudo and my answer to that is if it’s the same then why it does not taste similar? Because this one is cheesy, sweet and tangy which a menudo is definitely not. As for the history until now I am searching for it and if someone out there knows about this let us know from the comments below so we can share it to the whole world.

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Tapa Frita

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 3 reviews
  • Author: Raymund
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Filipino


Tapa Frita is a Filipino dish where thinly sliced pork similar to tapa cut is cooked with tomato sauce, carrots, potato, pickles and cheese.


  • 800 g pork scotch, cut into long thin strips
  • 1 large potato, cut into long thin strips
  • 1 large carrot, cut into long thin strips
  • 225 g can green peas
  • 3 tbsp pickle relish
  • 1/2 cup grated processed cheese + more for topping
  • 1 medium sized red onion, diced
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste
  • 3 large red tomatoes, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pcs bay leaves
  • 1 tsp rubbed basil
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • fish sauce
  • oil


  1. On at pot sauté garlic and onion in oil.
  2. Add pork and brown on all sides.
  3. Add chicken stock and bay leaves. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Add potatoes, carrots, tomatoes, pickle relish, grated processed cheese, basil and tomato paste.
  5. Simmer for 15 minutes in medium heat.
  6. Add green peas then simmer for 5 more minutes.
  7. Flavour with fish sauce and season with freshly ground black pepper. Top with grated processed cheese then serve.


12 Responses

  1. Looks like a perfectly satisfying, comforting and delicious everyday meal!

  2. This looks fantastic, Raymund. While I love Menudo, I think I’d like this even more!

  3. Thank goodness for you, Raymund! You serve a very valuable role in keeping Filipino recipes alive!

  4. Such a hearty stew full of flavor! My family would enjoy it a lot!

  5. Such a hearty stew full of flavor! My family would enjoy it a lot!

  6. I love anything with pickles, and this sounds like such an easy, comforting combination! Great for cooking on a budget, too. I’ll have to try veganizing it.

  7. Balvinder says:

    It’s important to keep the traditional recipes alive, that’s fun of food blogging. Tapa Frita sounds really heartwarming dish!

  8. I’ve never heard of it but it looks so satisfying and savoury!

  9. While I’ve never heard of Tapa Frita, I do say that this looks rather tasty! The pickles in there threw me off at first, but I can see how the tartness would work with the other flavors. Well done recreating this one!

  10. This looks terrific — SO full of flavor. Really neat dish — and definitely different. Thanks.

  11. sonia says:

    The recipe is looking great and so flavorful. This is a new combo for me and shall give it a shot. Thanks

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