Our version of this Cuban classic mixes ground beef with a highly seasoned tomato sauce, fried potatoes, raisins, and green olives — and an untraditional dash of hot sauce. Whether you serve it over rice, with corn tortillas, or stuffed into roasted peppers, picadillo is a deeply satisfying dish.

Active Time:
45 mins
Total Time:
45 mins
4 servings


  • 1 1/4 pounds ground beef

  • 1 large onion, chopped

  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/2 cup beer

  • 1 1/3 cups drained canned chopped tomatoes (one 15-ounce can)

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons ground coriander

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon Tabasco sauce

  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil

  • 1 pound baking potatoes (about 2), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 1/2 cup raisins

  • 1/2 cup quartered and pitted green olives


  1. In a large stainless steel frying pan, cook the ground beef until it is no longer pink. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic, and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften, about 3 minutes.

  2. Stir in the beer, tomatoes, tomato paste, cumin, coriander, salt, black pepper, and Tabasco sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, in a large nonstick frying pan, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Add the potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes.

  4. Add the potatoes, raisins, and olives to the meat mixture. Cook, covered, until the potatoes are just done, about 10 minutes longer.

    William F. Dickey II

Suggested Pairing

Northern Rhône reds need robust culinary foils, and this sturdy picadillo is up to the task. Look for a St.-Joseph or Crozes-Hermitage — or, if you want to splurge, a Hermitage or Côte Rôtie. Otherwise, a beer will be just fine.

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