Kinilaw na Mackerel

by Ariel Jasa
(Mandaluyong, Philippines)

Kinilaw na Mackerel is one of my go-to dishes when I need to serve something fast without cooking.

The term kilaw or kinilaw technically refers to soaking raw meat, fish or seafood in something acidic such as vinegar or lime juice to cure, just like in making the popular Latin America dish Ceviche.

But the 'kinilaw' term here refers to the flavor associated with the term -- and using canned mackerel instead of raw fish.

For a no-cook canned sardine -- this is how I serve it.

So for my kinilaw na de-lata, I mean Mackerel... I added vinegar and calamansi juice, ginger to cut the fishy taste, onion, chili pepper, salt and ground pepper to taste.

It is so simple yet so good that I am not at all embarrassed to share the recipe.

I always needed extra rice because the sauce by itself is “ulam na”.


1 can Mackerel in Oil (425 gms)
3 pieces Calamansi
3 tablespoon Vinegar
1 piece Onion (chopped)
1 teaspoon Ginger (minced finely)
1 piece Sili pang-sigang or Jalapeno peppers(seeded and chopped)
Salt and pepper to taste


1. Pour contents of a can of mackerel in a bowl, including the sauce.

2. Cut into desired serving size, and discard any fish bone (not good eats even though they are soft enough to chew and digest).

3. Mix with all the other ingredients.

4. Season with salt and pepper.

5. Serve with white rice.

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