Vegetarian Cuban-style Picadillo

A staple in many Cuban households, this is one of the few dishes I learned to cook for myself in college because it is comforting and cozy. When I became vegetarian, I didn’t eat it for many years, but I recently made a veggie version! My husband says it’s better than the meat one they serve at my house (shhh).

  • Olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 medium green pepper
  • 1 packet of Beyond Beef – Plant-based ground
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3/4 cup canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4+ cup dark raisins (depending how much you like them)
  • 1/2+ cup pimiento stuffed green olives (depending how much you like them)
  • salt
  1. Chop onions, garlic, and green peppers (I like them small because as a kid I would pick them out).  In a large deep pan, heat oil and cook onions and garlic for a couple of minutes.  Add green peppers and cook until they start getting soft. 
  2. Add ground Beyond Beef and cook until slightly brown.  (Beyond beef is different from regular beef, so no need to drain, and be careful to not overcook or it will get gummy).  
  3. Add white wine, crushed tomatoes, and salt.  Stir occasionally until the liquid has mostly evaporated and the ingredients come together. 
  4. While that is cooking, chop olives in half or smaller depending on your preference.  Add olives and raisins and stir. 
  5. Serve over brown rice.  I like to sometimes add corn kernels as well. 
We paired this picadillo over rice with an avocado salad!

Picadillo will always remind me of meals at home around the dinner table. The funny thing about picadillo is that it always tastes completely different depending on the person who makes it. Some people make it with more tomato sauce, so it looks bright red, and some people don’t like it with olives or raisins. Even though this recipe is different from my mother’s, my grandmother’s, or even the ones found in La Carreta in Miami, I found a way to make this one mine: vegetarian, sweet with raisins, and salty with olives!

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