Bulalo (Bone-in Beef Shank Soup)

Bulalo is basically beef shank soup with bone marrow still intact inside the bone. This is a very popular dish that is served in special occasions but you can order this dish in Filipino restaurants and fast foods all the time. My favorite part of bulalo is the tendon with the meat attached to the bone but what is really important in and what give the real flavor is the bone marrow. Just don’t eat too much of it because it is really high in cholesterol.


How to Cook Bulalo
Prep time
Cook time
Total time

Recipe type: Beef Recipe
Cuisine: Filipino
Serves: 4 servings
  • ¾ kilo bulalo (bone-in beef shank)
  • 1 whole onion
  • 1 whole garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 7 peppercorns
  • salt to taste
  • 2 bunches of pechay (Chinese cabbage or pei tsai)
  • ½ head of cabbage (Napa variety)
  • ¼ kilo of potatoes
  • 1 large carrot
How to cook bulalo :
  1. When buying in a supermarket ask the meat vendor cut the shank crosswise into 1½" thick pieces.
  2. The best way to do this is to have it cut with an electric meat saw.
  3. Place the beef shanks in a large casserole. Cover with water.
  4. Add the whole onion, garlic (pierced in several places with a sharp pointed knife), bay leaf and peppercorns.
  5. Season with salt. Set over high heat and bring to a boil, removing scum as it rises.
  6. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for two hours or until the beef is fork-tender.
  7. Alternatively, pressure-cook for one hour and 30 minutes.
  8. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the beef shanks and arrange at the center of individual soup bowls.
  9. Strain the broth. Reheat to boiling point. Peel the carrot and potatoes and cut into chunks.
  10. Core the cabbage and cut in half. Trim the ends of the pechay.
  11. Add the carrots to the broth and simmer for 5-7 minutes.
  12. Add the potatoes and cabbage leaves and simmer for another 8-10 minutes.
  13. Lastly, add the pechay leaves and simmer for another 3 minutes.
  14. Scoop the vegetables out and arrange around the bulalo.
  15. Pour in hot broth and serve at once.


Beef Bulalo