How To Cook The Best Lengua (Ox Tongue with Creamy White Sauce)

Are you looking for something rich and classic beef recipe yet with simple steps to follow? Then, it’s time to learn how to cook Lengua. Indeed, this is an all-time favorite recipe that people always look for whenever there is a food feast.  

Ages ago, people considered the tongue of an animal as something exotic. Who might have thought that the organ for the sense of taste would become a delicious dish? That’s why it’s hard to believe such a good recipe has some simple to follow procedures. 

For this reason, we might help you in your quest to cook classic recipes with this featured recipe. We have provided here some relevant information and insights in coming up with the Best Lengua. 

What is Lengua (Ox Tongue) Recipe

(Photo Credits To: home foodie)

The word Lengua comes from Spanish, which means tongue. In the Philippines, it refers to one of the most sought-after recipes using beef tongue (sometimes pork) dressed with mushroom dressing. 

Most fine-dining restaurants and high-class hotels often serve this meal expensively. The intricate plating, together with the ambiance of the place, makes it cost that much. It seems hopeless for commoners to experience this lovely recipe. 

In that regard, most feasts and social gatherings have always served this recipe. It is so unique that guests would love to eat again and again. All the more if the host would let them take home some leftovers. 

Ironically, the procedure could be simple, but the traditional beef tongue recipes standard is too complicated to recreate. For this reason, relatives and friends find it amazing when you can prepare these recipes at home and maintain their appeal. They would often ask you to serve it when there are upcoming gatherings or might as well pay you to do it for them when they host their occasion.   

Furthermore, it is likewise excellent if you can also cook the other versions. Indeed, this iconic recipe does not only pertain to the usual version with the immaculate dressing. There are other fantastic recipes for this exotic menu. 

Because of such varieties, exotic recipes may sound continental for many. Hence, most Pinoy recipes books include several versions of these recipes. Besides, your household might have a unique style of preparing this excellent cuisine. 

Indeed, you don’t need to have professional training to recreate your version of these recipes. Most Filipino moms can develop different improvisations and modifications, especially those who grew up with elders who can cook well. Thus, the classic version comes with equally enticing improvements. 

What is the Lengua Creamy Mushroom Sauce made of?

Without a doubt, it is the sauce that made these recipes so famous and smooth to recall. Admittedly, most Pinoys love to put something milky in almost every recipes. Be it coconut milk, processed milk, and other ingredients that can make that silky dressing.

(Photo Credits To: Positively Filipino)

For this dish, the dressing is made up of a mixture of nestle all-purpose and grated cheese. What a lovely combination of pasteurized products. 

But don’t get it wrong, it’s not only the sauce that makes the entire recipes palatable. Instead, it is the excellent mix, match, and blending of the marinated tongue itself, spices, and the flavored dressing. 

Therefore, you must take a good look at how to cook this meal from the beginning. 

Ways to Cook Lengua with Mushroom Sauce Recipe

Down to the meat of these recipes, how do you pull it off? Traditionally, saute the marinated fried tongue (sliced) over minced garlic and diced onions. After some time, mix some mushroom buttons, nestle all-purpose, and grated cheese. 

But that’s easier said than done. Remember, what we are cooking is a beef tongue, meat. We all know that it’s like hell when you eat this meat unsoftened.

Hence, tenderizing meat from time to time is one of the primary purposes of why there are other ways of preparing these recipes.

Pressure Cooker Lengua

Of course, a pressure cooker can soften rubber-like tongue meat. Just place the meat inside, add enough water, and some salt. Cover the lid and wait for a few hours.

Use a fork to check if it is softening. The meat pulls down on its own when it has become mushy.  

Once the meat has been mellowed and thawed, you can proceed with the usual slicing, marinating, frying, and sauteing sequences. Honestly, the quality of the meat adds significantly to the success of your cooking. 

Instant Pot Lengua

Interestingly, you can cut the chase shorter than usual when you use an instant pot in cooking. Orderly prepare all the needed ingredients and mix them well. Make sure to cut the meat into smaller sizes so that it is much easier to thaw it. 

Place all the ingredients inside the instant pot and set it for 3-4 hours. When it’s over, pierce the meat to check if it has mellowed well and good. If it turns outright, you can already serve the newly cooked recipes. 

Variations of the Filipino Beef Tongue Recipe 

As introduced, it has other varieties that are as captivating as the original. Find out some of these versions and take courage in trying them as well.

Lengua with Cream Mushroom White Sauce

(Photo Credits To: Pinoytambay)

Indeed, the classic version is the most popular among the others as most occasions serve this as a main course. As previously mentioned, the classic Beef Tongue Recipes is indicated by a dressing. Thus, this one is our main feature.

But, aside from Nestle all-purpose and cheese, some people include butter to make the dressing thicker. 

Estofado Recipe

(Photo Credits To: Cooking Pinoy Recipes)

Lengua Estofado is a stew mixed with tomato, sugar, soy, and vinegar. This version is a hybrid integration of Spanish and Pinoy recipes. On the one hand, soy, vinegar, and sugar are typical among Pinoys, while diced tomatoes are Spanish. 

Furthermore, green olives and bay leaves make this version more flavorful. More specifically, the meat absorbs the ingredients more when cooked using a pressure cooker. 

En Salsa Criolla (Colombian-Style)

The en Salsa Criolla is a traditional Colombian recipe that also uses a cow’s tongue flavored with Rumba. Such a blending is exquisitely flavorful, wherein you can match it with hot steamed rice and cabbage salad. Thus, it also suits family feasts and other social events.  

However, en Salsa Criolla varies in many countries where it is known. Nevertheless, this version of an exotic menu is easy to do, as the classic style. And indeed, you might get hooked when you try this at home, even for once.

Mexican Tongue Tacos


(Photo Credits To: Serious Eats)

You might find it bizarre to learn that you can use ox tongue in dressing your favorite tacos. Similarly, ordinary tacos in Mexico have beef tripe and tail. But, they have this famous Tacos de Lengua, which is a big hit when they have it in their meals. 

Fortunately, this version has become popular also in the Philippines. Although, at times, it is confusing to distinguish if it is a version of lengua or tacos. Nevertheless, it is worth noting to try our favorite exotic recipes as a taco filling. 

Interestingly, this variant is simple to prepare, like the classic, exotic recipes. The Mexican Tacos are prepared by mixing a perfectly boiled shredded tongue, some spices, salt, and salsa and spread into a taco shell. Finally, turn it into a hot meal by warming it up in a microwave oven.  

Mexican Boiled Beef Tongue Recipe

(Photo Credits To: What’s Cooking America)

This recipe is another Mexican-inspired variation of this dish. Restaurants rarely serve this meal; that’s why it could be affordable. 

When this Mexican Boiled Beef Tongue was introduced in the Northern part of Mexico, most people did not quickly figure out its purpose. They assumed that it was just a plain slow-cooked roasted beef. But eventually, the appealing lusciousness revealed its mystery. 

Gradually, it has become known to the Hispanic culture. Most of the time, people pair salad with this food just like any other meat cuisines. Also, it is one of the most frequently ordered foods for takeout. 

You can rarely see these Recipes on many restaurant menus or many dinner tables at home, but these recipes are quite affordable and effortless to cook. Same as other expensive beef of any cuts, and on occasions even well.

Cooking wise, you might want to use either a pressure cooker or an instant pot. Indeed, another simple meal to prepare.

Chinese Tongue Salad Recipe

(Photo Credits To: scmp)

This recipe is a great Asian reinvention of Mexican recipes. This salad also uses a well-marinated tongue in cuisine wine mixed with herbs, Sichuan peppercorns, spices, and cinnamon. Plus, it is also dressed with chili oil and soy sauce.

This recipe is also flexible so that you can level it up by dipping it into a hot relish or other flavored seasonings. Perfect for serving while it is warm and cozy.


Despite the simplicity of the preparation, mistakes in cooking are inevitable. Luckily, there are some ways to fix it when you accidentally encounter one or two. 

  • Add more all-purpose when food tastes too salty. Please do not add water because the tongue, whether beef or pork, becomes watery as it boils.
  • Let your pot heat up for extra 5 – 10 minutes when you think you’re done, but the meat is still rubbery. It’s already tender when the flesh slides down on its own when picked up by a fork.
  • Put some more seasoning, salt, and pepper, when the greasiness turns out flat. 


Did you know that the pork tongue has some essential health benefits contrary to its seemingly disgusting appearance? Similarly, such information is also accurate with some organs and the brain, heart, kidneys, and liver. 

Specifically, the beef tongue is abundant in helpful calories and fatty acids. Likewise, it is also a rich source of choline, iron, vitamin B12, and zinc. Pregnant mothers might also find it beneficial to them as it provides folate and vitamin B6 to ensure fetal health.   


Making these recipes is relatively basic, but it requires extra carefulness to carry-out properly. Follow some fundamental ways below to enhance your culinary exploration of these recipes further.

  • Use fresh meat as the essential requirement in pulling off these recipes. 
  • Tenderize the pork tongue days before the actual cooking.
  • Use larger pots to accommodate larger meat sizes to ensure every part is submerged into the water while boiling.
  • Cut the meat into smaller sizes for a much easier tenderizing process. 
  • Marinate the meat longer to ensure that the seasonings are well-absorbed.
  • Cook it ahead of time for less hassle. Just store it inside the freezer to prolong the shelf life.
  • Thaw the lengua over a pan with low heat and warm it up until it boils. Then stir it well before serving. 

Best Served With

Amazingly, it could be paired with other delectable recipes. Take a glance with some of our suggestions, and decide whether it is a go or a no. 

Steamed rice – undeniably, you might eat tons of rice when you serve these recipes. The cream, the meat, and mushroom fit well. 

Mashed potatoes – one of the favorite side dishes ever, freshly boiled mash potatoes blend well with this beef tongue menu.

Chicken noodles soup – soupy noodles also match well with the beef recipes. It enhances one’s appetite.

Mixed Vegetables – vegetables are indeed an excellent pair with the tongue.

Garlic Bread – you can’t go wrong pairing garlic bread with these exotic recipes. It is also a good alternative for rice. 

Cabbage Salad – The classic Cabbage Salad is a versatile side dish perfect for picnics, dinners, and parties. The dressing based on vinegar is tangy and sweet, making this salad a perfect pair with your main recipes.


Generally, keenness to details, patience, and creativity are the qualities you need to make these recipes right. Cooking this dish is easily done, but it can fail when you lousily prepare it. Although there are easy-fixes, preventions are still better.

Fortunately, we have these recipes prepared for you. Study it well and follow the process. Indeed, you might end up with desirable results. 

Take courage and cook the Lengua. You’ll never know if you can unless you try.

For more delicious recipes, visit Eat Like Pinoy!

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Best Lengua Recipe

A well-known dish in the Philippines, which ox tongue is cooked in creamy mushroom sauce. Delicious and irresistible.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Filipino
Keyword Beef Recipes, Exotic Recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 50 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 192kcal
Cost $5-$20


  • 1 pc Lengua ox tongue
  • 1 pc Onion diced
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Soy sauce
  • 3 cloves Garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup Cooking Oil
  • 3/4 cup Nestle Cream
  • 2 pcs Calamansi extracted
  • 1/4 cup Cheese grated
  • 4 cups Water
  • 1/2 cup Mushroom button


  • Marinate the ox tongue in soy sauce, black pepper, and calamansi extract in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Set aside.
  • Heat oil in a cooking pan. Fry the marinated tongue until brown. Then remove some oil from the pan.
  • On the same pan, saute garlic and onion until cooked. Then put-in the fried tongue and pour in water. Let it boil for about 2 hours or until the tongue softened.
    Note: Add water if needed.
  • Add the mushroom button and nestle cream. Stir and cover for 5 minutes. Then add the grated cheese on top.
  • Transfer on a serving plate. Enjoy!


Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 69mg | Sodium: 326mg | Potassium: 90mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 727IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 1mg
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