Puerto Rican Picadillo & Platanos Dulce

I’m excited to share a recipe of my own…yay!

Picadillo is a stuffing like meat and veggie mix that is very flavorful. It is typically a ground beef dish but I can see this easily translating to ground turkey, although I’ve never tried it that way. Our favorite way to eat it is over some white rice with a side of sweet plantains, otherwise known as platanos dulce. I have graduated to jasmine rice and culturally adapted to our mixed Spanish/Asian household lol

One major flavor component to this dish is the use of a base for all our stews, soups, beans, etc. in Puerto Rican cooking called sofrito. It’s really quite simple to make and store (I freeze it in small containers and pull out only as much as I anticipate using that week).

Here is my sofrito recipe:

1 large spanish onion (yellow onion), chopped

2 bunches of cilantro, trimmed of most stems

8 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped

1 red bell pepper, de-seed and chopped

2 green bell peppers, de-seed and chopped

3 plum tomatoes, chopped (I like to squeeze my tomatoes (haha that’s what she said) and get out most of the liquid/seeds before chopping)

1 tbsp salt

1 tbsp black pepper

You take all of this, throw it in the blender, and mix it all up.

It will look like this:

photo 6

Then I freeze it and use it as needed 🙂

Here is my picadillo recipe. You will notice that the sofrito and this recipe have some of the same ingredients BUT it just tastes different when you put it together this way:

1 lb. ground beef

1 small white onion, diced

½ of a green pepper, diced

½ of a red pepper, diced

1 can of diced tomatoes, drained

1 tsp dried oregano

4 cloves chopped garlic

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

½ container of whole Spanish Manzanilla olives with pimento (or I like to buy this packet and I drain it and use it all: Olives Stuffed with Minced Pimentos

1 tbsp of capers, drained

½ cup chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish

3 tbsp of sofrito

1 can tomato sauce, 8 oz


  1. Brown your ground beef and drain all excess liquid
  2. Add all spices and veggies, mix well
  3. Add the can of tomato sauce, cover, reduce heat to medium low and cook for about 15 minutes until the peppers and onions have softened
  4. Add cilantro and cook for another 5 minutes
  5. Add additional salt and pepper to taste

Here are my pics:

Step 1 & 2

photo 1

Step 3

photo 4

I did not take a pic of it in the pan after it cooked, sorry.

Served over rice with a side of plantains (the plantains are ripe and I fry them in a shallow pan in coconut oil):

photo 3