Picadillo can be found all over Latin America, the Caribbean and even the Philippines. Its ingredients vary from region to region, and probably from chef to chef. Our Cuban-style picadillo is made with ground beef. We also add raisins, fresh chillies, capers and green olives to make it a little sweet and spicy, as well as salty and tangy. An exciting mid-week meal that’s easy to prepare.

Cooking: 45 mins 

Serves: 4

Difficulty: easy



  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 small red pepper, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 600g minced beef
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 50ml dry white wine
  • 50ml Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 2–3 fresh chillies, sliced (adjust to taste)
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 large potato, peeled and cut into 1cm cubes
  • 75g raisins
  • 100g pimento-stuffed green olives, halved
  • 50g capers
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander or parsley, chopped (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat.
  2. Add the chopped onion and red pepper and sauté until softened (about 5 minutes).
  3. Next, add the garlic and fry for another minute or so.
  4. Add the beef and cook until no longer pink (about 10 minutes), stirring and breaking up the chunks.
  5. Then mix in the bay leaves and cinnamon stick, followed by the sugar, white wine, Worcestershire sauce, oregano, cumin and chillies.
  6. Cook for about 5 minutes to let the liquid reduce.
  7. Stir in the tomatoes, potato cubes, raisins, olives and capers. Then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 15 minutes (until the potato cubes are soft).
  8. Season with a little salt and black pepper, and remove the cinnamon stick and bay leaves.


Garnish with chopped coriander or parsley, and serve with rice, fried plantains and a small salad.


Tip: Picadillo also makes a great filling for tacos or empanadas!



Fancy a traditional British comfort food instead? Check out our mince and tatties recipe.