Tuslob buwa
Preparation of tuslob buwa in a modern restaurant setting
CourseSnack, Main dish
Place of originPhilippines
Region or stateCebu City
Serving temperatureHot or room temperature
Main ingredientspig brain, soy sauce

Tuslob buwa (lit.'dip in bubbles') is a Cebuano street food which originated from the barangays of Pasil and Suba in Cebu City.[1]


The first tuslob buwa is believed to have been consumed as early as around the 1950s and is done during the cooking of sinudlan (ground pork sausage) wherein the diners would gather the resulting foam in the frying oil with pusô (cooked rice in coconut leaves).[2]

A second variant became popular around the 1960s that made use of the pork offals (ug ginhawaan na tuslob buwa). After cleaning the offals, it is seasoned with salt, garlic, black pepper, and bayleaf. The offals are then boiled for the preparation for cooking of adobo; the resulting stock from this boiling process would be set aside and be used for tuslob buwa.[1] In the latter part of the 1960s, the sauce of humba would also become popular as tuslob buwa.[1]

The modern recipe became popular around the 1970s and consists of pork brain (otok) sauteed in oil with onion, garlic, and soy sauce.[1] Around 2014, the dish became more widely available with variants beginning to be served in nearby cities of Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue. It is also around this time that it started to be served and be featured in restaurants.[3]

One Cebu City restaurant, Azul, garnered controversy in 2020 for having the name "tuslob buwa" registered before the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines as a trademark. Residents of barangay Pasil and Suba criticized and disputed the eligibility of this trademark registration.[4]


The ingredients are cooked in a wok (kawa) and simmered until the mixture becomes thick and produces bubbles. The dish is served with pusô (hanging rice) which the diners would dip in the prepared tuslob buwa.[4] It is traditionally prepared as a communal food; the street food vendors (pungko-pungko) would cook the tuslob buwa in one wok where several people could share and the diners would pay by the pusô.[5][1]

In popular culture

Barangay Suba in Cebu City first held its Tuslob Buwa Festival on January 9, 2015 and it has since been celebrated annually every January during the Santo Niño festivities.[1][4] On 2024, Barangay Pasil also in Cebu City launched its first ever Tuslob Buwa Festival Official Theme Song.

Tuslob buwa was featured on the Netflix TV series, Street Food in the Cebu, Philippines episode.[6]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f Toring, Romeo Jr. (2015). "Tuslob buwa sa pasil" (MP4). Youtube (in Cebuano). Retrieved March 31, 2022.
    • For the origin of the dish in Pasil and Suba, see 1:25 mark of the video
    • For the sinudlan version, see 1:58 mark of the video
    • For the ginhawaan version, see 3:54 mark of the video
    • For the humba and otok versions, see 5:08 mark of the video
    • For the dining manner, see 6:05 mark of the video
    • For the celebration of the Tuslob Buwa festival, see 11:14 mark of the video
  2. ^ Toring, Romeo Jr. (2021). "Tuslob Buwâ: From Poor Man's Meal to 'Cebuano' Exotic Hotpot Dish" (PDF, text). Academia. p. 65. Retrieved March 31, 2022.
  3. ^ Letigio, Delta Dyrecka (March 6, 2020). "Rama: 'Tuslob Buwa' is a celebration of Pasil and Suba". Cebu Daily News. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c Saavedra, John Rey (March 6, 2020). "Village execs to sue resto over 'Tuslob Buwa' trademark". Philippine News Agency. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  5. ^ "A taste of Cebu's street food". Philippine Daily Inquirer. May 5, 2019. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  6. ^ Radovan, Jill Tan. "This New Netflix Show Proves Cebu's Food Scene Isn't All Lechon". Spot. Summit Digital . Retrieved February 28, 2021.