Picadillo Cubano (Cuban Ground Beef Dish)

by Erica Dinho on July 5, 2012

This classic Cuban ground beef dish is quick and easy, and is great over rice. It can also be used as a filling for tacos or empanadas |mycolombianrecipes.com

Picadillo Cubano is a simple, but satisfying popular Cuban dish. I like it because it’s easy to prepare and tastes brilliant. The flavors of this dish are incredibly intense and rich. You’ll just have to go and make it yourself to see what I mean.

You’ll love every bite of this dish, I promise.

Picadillo Cubano (Cuban Ground Beef Dish)

This picadillo recipe is a cuban picadillo recipe made with ground beef. You can serve it with rice or use it as a filling for empanadas |mycolombianrecipes.com

Buen provecho!



(About 4-6 servings)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Salt and pepper, to your taste
  • 1 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 1 cup of white wine
  • 1/2 cup of stuffed Spanish olives, cut in half
  • 1/3 cup of raisins

Picadillo Cubano (Cuban Ground Beef Dish)


  1. Place a sauce pan on medium-high heat and add the olive oil.
  2. Add the beef and brown, stirring occasionally, then add the cumin, oregano, bay leaf, onion, bell pepper, garlic and season with salt and pepper.Cook for about 10 minutes more.
  3. Add the tomato sauce, white wine, olives and raisins. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook for about 30 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Remove the bay leaf and serve over plain white rice.
  5. This classic Cuban ground beef dish is quick and easy, and is great over rice. It can also be used as a filling for tacos or empanadas|mycolombianrecipes.com

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Chris July 5, 2012 at 2:32 PM

This may be simple but it sounds so delicious! Great post Erica.


2 Jenn and Seth (@HomeSkilletCook) July 5, 2012 at 3:32 PM

i have some leftover ground beef from our 4th of july party – and now i know what to do with it :) sounds so tasty!


3 Amber @ The Cook's Sister July 5, 2012 at 5:14 PM

What an interesting combination of flavours! I would not have thought to combine olives and raisins in the same dish. Looks fantastic!


4 Miriam July 5, 2012 at 5:18 PM

All of the flavors in this make it magical :)
Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters


5 Belinda @zomppa July 5, 2012 at 8:54 PM

Brilliant is a great description.


6 Brandy July 6, 2012 at 6:22 PM

Do you think I could throw all of this in a crockpot for a couple hours & really let the flavors meld? Sounds yummy!


7 Erica July 6, 2012 at 7:09 PM

Great idea!


8 Juliana July 6, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Wow Erica, such a tasty dish…
Have a wonderful weekend :)


9 Joanne July 7, 2012 at 5:36 AM

I’ve made a vegetarian version of picadillo before with lentils instead of beef! Love the flavor profile.


10 Diane July 9, 2012 at 10:11 AM

love this recipe! especially with yellow rice and black beans!

Joanne, thanks for the lentil version


11 Heydel April 25, 2013 at 8:07 PM

Diane, I see people say things like that all the time but, in Cuba we never mix yellow rice with beans. We found that kind of weird. just FYI. thnx


12 Jen July 16, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Made this yesterday. It is TO DIE FOR!!!


13 Norma-Platanos, Mangoes and Me! September 5, 2012 at 4:27 PM

I also use it for empanadas….love your version…


14 Salazar January 3, 2013 at 8:03 PM

Hola Erica – Lo prepare anoche, quedo delicioso. Muchas gracias por estas recetas.


15 Anne February 12, 2013 at 7:28 PM

I learned how to make picadillo from my Cuban college roommate back in the 60s. I’d forgotten how good it is and made it for dinner tonight. Big hit and great recipe.


16 Veronica January 10, 2014 at 11:10 AM

I made it the other day and it was supper good!!! Thank you for sharing!!!


17 Anonymous March 11, 2014 at 6:26 PM

where is the tomato paste in the recipe?


18 Rose October 5, 2014 at 6:40 PM

I didn’t have raisins or olives but made the recipe with the remaining ingredients. My husband loved it! He had a second helping and then packed the leftovers for lunch the next day. Thank you for sharing!


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