Site Overlay

Arroz Caldo

Arroz Caldo is a Filipino lugaw made with glutinous rice and chicken and flavoured with sliced ginger, minced garlic, chopped onion, chicken stock, chicken broth cube and safflower. This dish is derived from Spanish origin and is localised by Filipinos as time pass by. This porridge is made with glutinous rice cooked in chicken broth. Bits of chicken make this dish meatier and perfect on a cold morning. Try and make one today!


Lugaw is one of the most typical Pinoy breakfast favorites. In breakfast restaurants, lugaw, arroz caldo and goto are always in the menu. What makes lugaw, arroz caldo and goto different? Here is a quick way to know them one by one:

  • Lugaw: It is a simple rice porridge. It is considered as the Filipino version of the Chinese congee but lugaw is cooked with garlic and ginger. It can be topped with toasted garlic and eggs but has typically no mix-ins.
  • Arroz Caldo: Similar to lugaw but the rice is cooked in chicken stock and has pieces of chicken in it. This is always decorated with a variety of toppings like eggs, tofu, pork, spring onions and chicharon.
  • Goto: This is not made with rice. Instead, this is the meat version of lugaw. Beef parts such as the innards and tripe are used as the meat component. This is usually topped with toasted garlic and spring onions.

One similar thing to these soup-like dishes is that they are warm meals which are very fulfilling. Best eaten during the -ber months.

As the Christmas is fast approaching, the weather gets cooler and cooler. This is the season where I prepare warm soupy meals for breakfast. Arroz caldo is one of me and my family’s favorite. It is simple to make and only uses a few economical ingredients. 

What I really love arroz caldo is that it can feed a large family even with just a few cups of rice. I like it best when I top it with a lot of fried garlic and then crush the boiled eggs in it and the small pieces of egg mixes with the porridge.

I remember a funny experience my auntie had when eating my arroz caldo. During this time, I used small pieces of chicken breast. She loved the arroz caldo so much and eat them fast even while hot. We all got curious on why she suddenly frowned. She revealed later that she bit a piece of ginger thinking it was chicken!! We all laughed so hard! Since then, I cut the ginger into very small strips to prevent it from camouflaging as a chicken.

Arroz caldo can really make a family closer together. If you want a hearty meal to serve especially on a cold morning, make some arroz caldo!


Kasubha might be new to some. In english, kasubha is safflower. The two main products produced by this plant are the actual flower and the safflower seed oil.

The flower of the safflower plant is yellow or orange in color and are used as additives to dishes. They are usually used as a natural food coloring which can give a yellow to orange hues. Aside from these, they are believed to have some health benefits.

It is important to know that safflower and saffron are not the same. Though they might look similar, saffron is much more expensive and are harder to plant and cultivate than safflower.


Making arroz caldo is super easy and will be done in a blink of an eye. With just few ingredients, you can make a warm hearty meal for the whole family.

Gather your ingredients and chop your aromatics beforehand. Saute your aromatics with the chicken. Add your glutinous rice and chicken broth cube for more chicken-y flavor.

Let me share a quick experience when I tried using dinorado and sinandomeng rice instead of the glutinous rice. It cooks a bit faster but is not that sticky and mushy. You can still make it work but I highly suggest using sticky rice for the soft and mushy texture.

Pour the water or chicken stock to cook the rice. After a few minutes, we will add an unusual ingredient which will make the arroz caldo extra appetizing and pleasing to the eye. Add the kasubha or safflower and stir gently. Instead of food coloring, we will use of this natural ingredient. This will change the color of the arroz caldo to a light yellowish color. Not all of them will melt and mix with the lugaw so there will be mini bits of it.

Adjust the water or stock depending on how soupy you want your arroz caldo to be. I like mine in the middle of soupy and mushy so I added just a little bit more. Do a taste test and make a final adjustment on the taste. If you can taste the chicken then that’s already good. Do not put too much fish sauce since it can be added right before eating.

Serve the arroz caldo in a large serving bowl. You may prepare other toppings which you can eat together with the arroz caldo. Some of the best ones are fried tokwa, pork, chopped spring onions, toasted garlic and of course, boiled eggs. Enjoy!

Arroz Caldo

Course: Rice Recipes, Soup Recipes




  • 1 cup glutinous rice

  • 300 grams chicken (cut into small pieces)

  • 1 chicken broth cube

  • 1 thumb-sized ginger (sliced)

  • 4 cloves of garlic (minced)

  • 1 medium onion (chopped)

  • 5 to 7 cups water (or chicken stock)

  • 1 tablespoon safflower

  • oil (for sauteing)


  • Heat some oil in a pan. Saute the ginger, minced garlic and onions until aromatic and light brown.
  • Add the chicken and saute for a few minutes until it changes color. Season with some ground black pepper and fish sauce. Saute until the aroma subsides.
  • Add the glutinous rice and the chicken broth cube. Mix gently.
  • Pour the water or chicken stock. Stir gently. Cover the pan and let it simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Stir from time to time.
  • Halfway of cooking, add the kasubha. Add more water or chicken stock depending on how soupy you like your lugaw.
  • Let the lugaw simmer until the rice is completely cooked and the arroz caldo is thicker.
  • Transfer the arroz caldo to a serving bowl. You may top it with boiled eggs and chopped spring onions. Eat it while it’s still hot! Enjoy!

Arroz Caldo Recipe (TAGALOG)


  • 1 tasa ng malagkit na bigas
  • 300 grams ng manok (hiwain ng malilit)
  • 1 chicken broth cube
  • 1 luya (hiniwa)
  • 4 butil ng bawang (hiniwa ng maliliit)
  • 1 sibuyas (hiniwa)
  • 5 – 7 tasa ng tubig (o pinagpakuluan ng manok)
  • 1 kutsara ng kasubha
  • mantika (panggisa)


  1. Magpainit ng mantika. Igisa ang luya, sibuyas at bawang ng ilang minuto hanggang maging light brown.
  2. Ilagay ang mga manok at igisa hanggang mag iba ang kulay. Budburan ng paminta at lagyan ng konting patis. Hayaan itong maluto hanggang mabawasan ang amoy.
  3. Ilagay ang malagkit na bigas at ang chicken broth cube. Haluin ng konti.
  4. Ilagay ang tubig o pinagpakuluan ng manok. Haluin. Takpan ang kawali at hayaan itong maluto ng 15 – 20 minuto. Haluin paminsan-minsan para hindi masunog ang ilalim.
  5. Kalagitnaan ng pagluluto, ilagay ang kasubha. Dagdagan ng tubig kung gusto mo ng medyo masabaw.
  6. Lutuin lang ito hanggang maluto na ang kanin at kapag lumapot na.
  7. Ilipat ang arroz caldo sa serving bowl. Lagyan ng nilagang itlog at spring onions. Kainin habang mainit pa. Enjoy!
Follow by Email