Picadillo: Super Easy Ground Beef Recipe

Posted on Apr 5 2014 - 12:12am by Susan Bewley

Picadillo Recipe
Do you have certain comfort foods that everyone in your family enjoys? For my husband and I both, we have a few foods we grew up enjoying. For me, this consisted of a variety of Italian and western European dishes. It was actually quite interesting eating with my husband’s family when we first started dating.  Normally, when people say ‘interesting’ this is a bad thing, but not with his family. His mother is a fantastic cook, and actually made many dishes that I wanted the recipe for once we were actually living together. One dish that I have greatly enjoyed making for us is his mother’s picadillo recipe.

Never had picadillo? If you are like I was years ago, you are likely wondering, “What the heck is picadillo?” This dish has Spanish roots and is actually a very tasty, simple dish. With a mixture of sweet spices, raisins, and ground beef, it is a savory and slightly sweet dish like no other. Normally we eat it over rice, but I haven’t really found many ways it doesn’t taste good. We also love eating it wrapped in tortillas. Knowing that many of you love quick, healthy dishes, I thought I would share with you one of our family favorites. Once you have tried this dish you will likely have a new family favorite – and you don’t have to tell people it’s easy!

4.9 from 7 reviews
Picadillo - Super Easy Ground Beef Recipe
Picadillo is a delicious Spanish dish that has a sweet flavor, consisting of a variety of different vegetables. Traditionally, this is served over rice but we found it is also very tasty in tortillas and over nachos!
Cuisine: Spanish/Latin
Recipe type: Dinner
Serves: 4-6
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • 1 lb Ground Beef
  • 1 Large Yellow Onion
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic (I use jarred garlic)
  • 3 Roma Tomatoes
  • 1 Green Pepper
  • ½ Cup Raisins
  • ½ Tsp Salt
  • 2 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 2 -3 Tsp Ground Clove (I use a mortar & pestle to grind my own whole cloves down)
  • ½ Cup Sliced Pimiento-Stuffed Olives (aka Salad Olives)
  • Precooked Brown or White Rice.
  1. Chop tomato, green pepper, and tomatoes with a sharp knife. Set aside.
  2. In a large pan (10 - 12 inches), cook the ground beef and garlic on medium heat until the beef is thoroughly cooked.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes, chopped green pepper, chopped tomatoes, raisins, salt, cinnamon, and clove to the pan. Cook for five minutes, stirring constantly to make sure all the vegetables are evenly cooking.
  4. Lower the heat to low and cover. Cook for 12 minutes.
  5. Remove cover and mix in the olives. Cook for another 2 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and stir the picadillo. Server hot over rice.


Now that I have shared with you one of my family’s favorite comfort foods, what are some of yours? Make sure to tell us in the comments below. Also, make sure to tell us what you think of this recipe! We always love to hear your thoughts!


Susan Bewley is a professional writer who has been writing content online & in print format for over 10 years. As well, she is an alumni of the University of Louisville with a Masters Degree in Special Education. When not working as an online business consultant or ghost writing, she can be found writing on Budget Earth, on her own novel, or working with various entities in the pet industry.

27 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Shannon April 5, 2014 at 3:16 am - Reply

    This sounds really good but I would most likely use seitan or Boca crumbles if I made it since I am a vegetarian. My husband isn’t and he loves spicy food. He says it makes him feel fuller, faster. He likes to quote Pulp Fiction “……my girlfriend’s a vegetarian which pretty much makes me a vegetarian.”

    • Susan Bewley April 5, 2014 at 2:20 pm - Reply

      LOL!! I bet it would be delicious with Boca Crumbles! My sister Demelza is a vegetarian and I doubt she ever thought of that! I will have to share that with her!

  2. Waldemar Mopera III April 5, 2014 at 8:25 am - Reply

    This recipe looks delicious i would definitely try this.

    • Susan Bewley April 5, 2014 at 2:18 pm - Reply

      I hope you enjoy it! My family LOVES it!

  3. Denise Gabbard April 6, 2014 at 3:50 am - Reply

    Have never heard of this– definitely going to try it, though nobody around here likes green olives– deal breaker, you think? Or still good without?

    • Susan Bewley April 6, 2014 at 3:58 am - Reply

      It is still good without. My husband’s family had one person who hated them, so I’ve tried it both ways. 🙂

  4. Kimberly B April 9, 2014 at 7:32 pm - Reply

    I’ve never tried this before but it sounds really good. Going to give it a go soon.

  5. Babette April 12, 2014 at 8:29 am - Reply

    Looks easy, yummy, and delicious!

  6. Dorothy Teel April 16, 2014 at 10:01 am - Reply

    This does sound good, I don’t think that I have ever tried anything like this Picadillo worry about the green olives in it, but perhaps hubbywill try it if I make it without, thank you for sharing this recipe.

    • Susan Bewley April 16, 2014 at 11:12 pm - Reply

      You can make it without the olives. My inlaws used to do it all the time 🙂

  7. Wanda Tracey April 20, 2014 at 12:20 am - Reply

    This recipe is new to me in that I have neverheard of it.This sounds really interesting though and I am curious how it will taste because of the spices in it.Thanks for sharing it.I will be trying it soon.

  8. suzanne April 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm - Reply

    This looks good. I have too many comfort foods. I like cornbread and buttermilk, beans cooked with plenty of fatback, stewed potatoes, anything that my grandmother use to make.

  9. Denise Taylor-Dennis April 30, 2014 at 8:00 am - Reply

    This sounds and looks delicious, I would have to omit the bell pepper since I’m allergic but otherwise it would be a great recipe for me.

  10. Birdiebee April 30, 2014 at 11:44 pm - Reply

    This recipe looks and sounds delicious. I am always looking for new recipes to try to get out of making the same old thing all of the time.

  11. nancyfancypink May 3, 2014 at 9:11 pm - Reply

    This sounds really good! I bet it would be good wrapped in tortillas or lettuce like wraps.

    • Susan Bewley May 4, 2014 at 1:23 am - Reply

      It is WONDERFUL in tortillas. That is our second favorite way to eat it!

  12. Terri S May 23, 2014 at 7:54 am - Reply

    This looks so good. I can’t wait to make it! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  13. Dorothy Boucher June 11, 2014 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    wow ‘ i make this already and i add this into a pie shell, some i add cheese, so good and thanks for share

    • Susan Bewley August 4, 2014 at 11:10 pm - Reply

      Dorothy, I never considered making it a pie! That sounds really good and I’m so glad you liked it!

  14. Faith August 17, 2014 at 7:04 am - Reply

    One of my favorite recipes of all time!

  15. Cami August 20, 2014 at 9:21 pm - Reply

    This looks so good! I love picadillo but I didn’t think it was this easy to make. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  16. Maryann D. October 2, 2014 at 6:34 pm - Reply

    This looks tasty and delicious! I would make it and put in some tacos or use with chips too.

  17. Tina Wylie October 28, 2014 at 7:51 pm - Reply

    this sounds delicious. Think I will try it as a wrap.

  18. lisa November 7, 2014 at 12:34 pm - Reply

    I haven’t tried it. The recipe does have an interesting blend of flavors. This sounds like something new to try. I’m stuck in a rut as far as meals go.

  19. Rose Reeder November 8, 2014 at 7:24 am - Reply

    This recipe looks delicious I would probably try.

  20. Sarah Matos November 8, 2014 at 10:51 pm - Reply

    I was just looking at a recipe similar to this. Will be trying it soon at the request of my hubby

  21. BILL HOFF May 29, 2015 at 9:00 pm - Reply

    We are always looking for different ways to prepae ground beef…

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