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Sunny Kwek-Kwek and Penoy

P10 per stick of kwek-kwek (4 pcs.)
P10 for each penoy egg (1pc.)

Malls, along the university belt, near main roads and places with heavy foot traffic

Wikipedia Definition

“Tokneneng, a famous Tempura-like Filipino street food, made by deep-frying orange batter covered hard-boiled eggs. A popular variation of Tokneneng is kwek kwek. The main difference between the two lies in the egg that is used. Tokneneng is traditionally made with quail eggs or "itlog ng pugo", while kwek kwek is made with chicken or duck eggs. Due to their similarities, the two are often confused with some people calling tokneneng "kwek kwek" and vice versa. Tokneneng is usually served with a spiced vinegar-based dip.”


Quail egg is referred to as "kwek-kwek", while the larger egg is referred to as "penoy", and there's also a "balut" version. The orange coating adds a bit of flavor and crunch, but the taste may vary from vendor to  vendor. The other element that gives flavor to this meal is the sauce. You’d usually see them in four varieties, contained in tall slender bottles: regular vinegar with spices, chili vinegar, sweet gravy, and spicy gravy. Again, the flavor of the sauce varies from one vendor to another.

How to eat

Eat it as it is from the stick, try it with rice, or make it your beer buddy. It doesn't matter. Don't forget to savor the creamy core of this scrumptious meal!

For dine in, you can grab a little bowl wrapped in plastic, scoop in some sauce, and grab a stick or two (you can ask them them to re-heat the eggs without additional charge). For take-out, you can either ask for two separate plastic bags, one for the eggs, the other for the sauce; or, you can ask for a plastic drinking cup and put everything there for takeout.

There's usually 3 kinds of sauce that you can find: sweet gravy, spicy gravy, and vinegar. Whether it's kwek-kwek or penoy, I love to put them on a bowl half-full of vinegar as if it were soup. What I love about the vinegar is that they put lots of cucumber and onions into it, which give it a sweet special taste. In addition, I also eat the cucumber and onion to the last bit coz they really taste good!


It is strongly discouraged that you dip the eggs directly into the bottle as courtesy for others, and for hygienic purposes.

This was my regular dinner when I was still a student.
Even now that I'm working, I still regularly have this as my lunch time ulam! =)

Personal Experience

A stick of of kwek-kwek usually costs 10 Pesos (or 12 Pesos if sold within malls), while one large penoy is 10 Pesos. This meal packs enough calories to give you an energy boost. As a former student who grew up along the Recto U-belt, the place that I frequent for this meal is located on the bridge just in front of Isetann Recto (they usually set up from 4pm).

There's a specific vendor in front of Far Eastern University (along Morayta, just past Yellow Cab). Their gravy tastes like teriyaki sauce and has alot of herbs added. You gotta try their gravy!

(Courtesy of

As for home cooked kwek-kwek… I tried to make some, two years ago, based on an online recipe. It was a hell of a disaster and soaked up all the grease into the batter once I cooked it. Whatever I did wrong, I swore that for all the hassle and expenses incurred, I'd rather buy from the vendors than cook one myself! But just in case you like to cook, here's a recipe...

1 dozen peeled hard boiled quail eggs (or chicken eggs)
1 cup flour
1/2 cup water
few drops of food coloring (orange)
salt and pepper to taste
cooking oil

1. Place the boiled quail or chicken eggs and ¼ cup of flour in a clean plastic bag or with zip lock
2. Seal the bag by tying and shake them until eggs are evenly coated with flour.
3. Mix all remaining ingredients except cooking oil.
4. With a fork, mix it to a smooth batter.
5. Dump those little eggs to the batter.
6. Heat enough cooking oil for deep frying in a deep, frying pan.
7. Spoon out those eggs from the batter and chuck it in the hot cooking oil.
8. Wait until the coating turns crispy for about a minute or so.
9. Served best with vinegar with chili and sliced cucumber and seaweed.

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Happy Eating!
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