Soup Number 5

Soup Number Five or more commonly spelled as Soup Number 5 is a Filipino soup made out of bull’s testes and testicles, usually served as a pulutan or a hangover cure, it is also considered to be an aphrodisiac.

If you think Rocky Mountain Oysters are too much for your palate, then close this page and move on as our post today is one of the most exotic Filipino dishes we had posted to date. Our recipe today is called Soup Number 5 and why 5 not 2 or 10? Well the story is similar to how Chicken 65 is named, it was its number from the menu. One to Four were chicken, pork, beef, and seafood respectively and Fifth was this item. It was believed that the owner of that restaurant named the soups using numbers so that the items will be discreet as possible and even entice a bit of intrigue since the fifth item is made out of bull’s penis and testicles, OMG! Yes that was the same reaction I had when I learned about this dish at a very young age.

Soup number 5 like most Filipino soups are made by sautéing aromatics and boiling the meat cut for a period of time until they are soft, the only difference to this dish is that it uses a Chinese herb mix called Sibut or Sibot. This herb mix usually contains Chinese traditional herbs like Angelica Root, Rehmannia, White Peony Root, Sichuan Lovage Root and Goji Berries This herb mix gives this soup additional medicinal properties.

This soup is popular in street side eateries of Manila, mainly in places where there is a concentration of Filipino Chinese community like in Binondo and Cebu. Cebu calls this dish lansiao which means male’s genitals in the Hokkien dialect. It was also believed that the origins of this dish was from the first Chinese immigrants of Hokkien Origin

I know this soup is not for everyone, but it was fun to make it, just gathering the ingredients was quite painful specially here in NZ where these cuts are not sold. Add to that the expression on peoples face when you serve it to them, no wonder it was discreetly named Soup Number 5. It’s a means to surprise you when it is served on your dining table.

Now if you had tried the Chinese medicinal soup’s then the flavours are quite near the only difference is that this one like most Filipino soups start with sauteed garlic, ginger and onions which makes it more palatable as the flavour that sauté imparts, kinds of masks the medicinal taste Sibut adds to the dish.

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Soup Number 5

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 5 from 1 review
  • Author: Raymund
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 4 hours 30 mins
  • Total Time: 4 hours 50 mins
  • Yield: 8 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Filipino


Soup Number Five or more commonly spelled as Soup Number 5 is a Filipino soup made out of bull’s testes and testicles, usually served as a pulutan or a hangover cure, it is also considered to be an aphrodisiac.


  • 800 g bulls’ testes and testicles, cleaned and parboiled
  • 200 g beef tendons
  • 8 stalks lemongrass
  • 2 stalks spring onions, chopped then separate white and green sections
  • 1 packet sibot herb mix
  • 4 pcs birds eye chillies, roughly chopped
  • 2 thumb sized ginger, thinly sliced
  • 2 white onions, chopped
  • 1 whole head garlic, minced
  • 4 cups beef stock
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • fish sauce
  • oil


  1. In a pot combine parboiled bulls’ testes and testicles, beef tendons, water, beef stock, lemongrass and sibot herb mix. Bring it to a boil and simmer in low heat covered for 3 1/2 hours or until very tender. Remove the testes, testicles, and tendons, set it aside. Discard lemongrass and sibot then reserve the liquid.
  2. Slice the testes, testicles, and tendons into bite sized pieces.
  3. In another pot, heat oil then sauté garlic, onions, white sections of spring onions and ginger until aromatic and onions are soft.
  4. Add the testes, testicles and tendons and chillies then sauté for 2 minutes.
  5. Pour the reserved liquid bring it to a boil then simmer for 30 minutes.
  6. Bring the heat to high slightly reduce the liquid, the collagen in the tendons will keep it slightly thicker. Season with fish sauce and lots of freshly ground black pepper.
  7. Pour into serving bowls topped with green parts of spring onions.


7 Responses

  1. Sounds like a very nutritious soup and perfect for the winter days. The more I learn about Filipino food, the more I love it!

  2. Eva Taylor says:

    I’ll ride this one out, the ingredients are a little too much for me. I suspect it was originally invented because no part of the animal was thrown out. We are very wasteful in North America. Is the texture chewy or is it more like a pulled meat, falling apart the more you cook it.

  3. Seriously, this is the most unique soup (and herb blend) I have ever seen. I love mountain oysters – we even have a private club here in Tucson call the Mountain Oyster Club – they are always on the menu and are so good!

  4. Katerina says:

    Now this would be a fun soup to serve on Valentine’s Day, Raymund! I can tell you for sure I have never eaten testes before and I am not sure where I’d source them, but this is a very intriguing recipe. Thanks for sharing!

  5. suituapui says:

    Eyewwww!!! I think I’d pass. I love the tendons and the tripe but no, not beyond those, thank you very much! LOL!!!

  6. While I do appreciate using the entire animal, I might have to sit this one out, Raymund. I remember when I first saw bull’s testicles in a supermarket – I was stunned. “People eat those!?” I’m sure this soup was great, but I’m going to take your word on it. haha!

  7. Fascinating! I can’t begin to suggest what would be a good vegan substitute for bull’s testicles, but I still love hearing about this unique specialty, and learning about sibot herb mix. That’s a new one to me, too!

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