Lechon Manok (Filipino Style Roasted Chicken)

Lechon manok is a roasted whole chicken over live charcoals. Compared to oven roasted chicken, charcoal roasted ones have a distinct smoked flavor and aroma.  This is a popular Filipino roasted chicken and there are already many lechon manok food stand selling this. But I think a home made lechon manok will taste better. The preparation of this lechon manok is a little tedious. You have to mix all the spices and herbs in a pot and then boil it. Afterwards you will extract the juice and use a syringe to inject it in the chicken. This will serve as the marinade. Good thing if you already have a charcoal spit rotisserie in your backyard but in case you don’t, you can improvise using a bamboo stick about an inch wide as the spit. Then a large metal basin for putting your live charcoals. Put a piece of metal rod above and center of the basin to support the other end of the bamboo stick (see photo below).



Cooking Lechon Manok

An improvised rotisserie using bamboo sticks and metal basin


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How To Cook Lechon Manok (Filipino Style Roasted Chicken)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Chicken Recipe
Cuisine: Filipino
Serves: 2 to 3 servings
For the lechon manok
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. anise seeds
  • 4 stalks of lemon grass or tanglad
  • 1 medium size onion, quartered
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup chicken soup stock (or chicken bouillon cube dissolved in 1 cup hot water)
  • 1 whole medium size dressed chicken
For the lechon manok sauce:
  • ½ kilo fried chicken liver
  • 2 medium sized onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup vinegar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. bread crumbs
  • 1 head garlic
  • ½ tsp. all spice powder
  • 1 Tbsp. ground black pepper
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • salt to taste
For the lechon manok:
  1. Put chicken stock in a saucepan and let it simmer.
  2. Add the ingredients anise, lemon grass, onion, salt, sugar, garlic and cover.
  3. After a few minutes turn off the heat and set aside.
  4. Strain the soup stock and reserve the spices. This will be used later to stuff the chicken.
  5. Get a big syringe and inject the chicken with the soup stock.
  6. Let the chicken marinade overnight in the fridge.
  7. Slowly grill the chicken over the live charcoal and baste with the oil and soup stock mixture.
  8. Grilling time will take about 2 to 3 hours depending on the size and weight of the chicken.
  9. Chicken is done when clear juice comes out of the chicken when you make a cut on the thigh part.
  10. Cook it until the meat is tender and the skin is brown. Serve with lechon manok sauce.
For the lechon manok sauce:
  1. Put all the ingredients together in a blender (except the all spice powder) until it becomes a puree .
  2. Pour the mixture in a saucepan and simmer for about 15 minutes or until the liver is already cooked and the sauce thickens.
  3. Turn off the heat then add the all spice powder. Mix well and set aside.




Lechon Manok