Abuela’s Real Deal Picadillo Recipe

by Cristina | Last Updated: March 9, 2021

Nothing beats Abuela’s Picadillo. I would say that a good bowl of white rice, covered with picadillo, and a perfectly runny egg on top is arguably one of my most favorite bites on the planet. It’s the reason it has become a Sunday staple in our house.

A couple years ago, I gave you THIS picadillo recipe, which was a family traditional picadillo recipe, but with some changes to keep it a little healthier. I do that from time to time on the weeknight, and don’t get me wrong I love it.

It’s just that sometimes you just gotta let it go. Sometimes you have to throw healthy eating out the window and go big. I’m talking about that meal that brings the family together. A take out the big guns meal. The real beef, the potatoes, the rice. The tradition demands it. For these occasions I thought it was only right to bring out the real deal recipe. Here is the real deal picadillo recipe down to the greasy beef drippings. Enjoy!


How To:

Most recipes call for the potatoes to be chopped and deep fried, but I’ve always found that while delicious it isn’t such a major difference and it’s just easier to bake them.

So the choice is yours if you want to bake, Preheat the oven to 400 and take your chopped potatoes spread them out on a baking sheet and drizzle with one to two tablespoons of oil. Sprinkle oregano, and garlic powder over the potatoes.  Mix it up and throw it in the oven to bake for about 25 minutes or until golden. Make sure to move them around halfway. 

While those are baking, heat oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add the ground beef with salt and pepper. Just get the meat golden brown on the outside. It doesn’t have to be fully cooked through. You just want it to develop some color and flavor. Then remove from the heat and reserve with most of the liquid.  

In that same pot with the drippings from the meat build the sofrito. Add the onion, peppers, cumin, garlic powder, salt and pepper and bay leaves and saute until onion is soft, stirring frequently, about 4-5 minutes and then add in the garlic. Saute another two minutes.  Add ½ cup tomato sauce and stir in with all the vegetables for about a minute.

Raise heat to high and add the browned ground beef and the vino seco. Be sure to mix into the sofrito. Cook together on medium high for 10-12 minutes. 

Then take the heat to medium low adding the pimento stuffed Spanish olives, raisins. Take the potatoes out of the oven and throw them in and simmer for 5 minutes so they absorb some of the juices. Let sit for 15- 20 minutes. If you need some water go ahead and add ¼ cup.  

Taste for salt and pepper. Boom! 

Serve warm: over white rice with fried eggs (juevo frito) over and a side of fried plantains and cuban crackers.

Leftovers Plan: you can throw it into empanadas and freeze