Puerto Rican Food is full of spice and herbs with a combination of flavors beyond your wildest dreams. We’ve collected 12 Easy Puerto Rican Recipes that are authentic and incredibly delicious. Take a deep dive into these dishes and walk into the richness of Puerto Rican cuisines.
What are Some Famous Dishes in Puerto Rico?
It certainly isn’t difficult to find a delectable dish in Puerto Rico, or even make one in your own home! Some of the most popular Puerto Rican dishes are Mofongo, tripleta, empenadillas, rellenos de papa, pernil, and rice and beans. The secret is in the spices that you use in each dish!
What are The Popular Spices in Puerto Rican Cuisine?
A plethora of spices goes into Puerto Rican cuisines making them highly seasoned but not spicy! Popular herbs and spices include oregano, bay leaves, garlic, parsley, cilantro, cilantro, basil, and Caribbean thyme.
Essential Puerto Rican Recipes
- Puerto Rican Pernil (Roast Pork): Pernil, otherwise known as roast pork, is crispy, juicy, and fall-apart tender. Season this dish with garlic and adobo for intense flavor! Your house will smell just as good as this dish tastes!
- Puerto Rican Rice and Beans: Saucy, flavorful, and completely comforting, Puerto Rican Rice and Beans are a must-try! Simmer Goya pink beans in sofrito and tomato sauce with Sazon seasoning, and you’ll be licking your fingers while you cook! Plus if you have any leftovers, this dish is perfect for those meal prep meals.
- Carne Guisada (Puerto Rican Beef Stew): Native to many parts of Latin America, Carne Guisada is a beef stew made with tougher cuts of beef. You must cook in a flavorful broth until the beef is fork-tender. Throw a blend of vegetables and herbs in and it will have a punch of distinctly Puerto Rican flavor.
- Puerto Rican Picadillo Empanadas: This dish is mainly composed of arroz con gandules (rice) and pigeon peas. The key to the delicious flavor in this recipe is aromatic sofrito – a blend of green peppers, onion, garlic, sweet Caribbean peppers known as ajis dulces, and recao. However, it’s the Sazon seasoning and tomato paste that gives the rice its distinctive color!
- Sancocho Soup: A beef stew recipe that makes for a hearty soup with chunks of tender beef, root vegetables and so much more! It’s the root vegetables that set sancocho apart from your typical beef stew, but you will still find your common potatoes, carrots, and celery-like you do in beef stew.
- Pasteles De Masa: If you’re wondering what a pasteles de masa is, then this recipe will not only educate you on that but teach you how to make one. Some would say they’re like tamales in the way that they are wrapped. Masa of pasteles are a mixture of yautia (taro root), green plantain, green banana, and sometimes kabocha pumpkin.
Healthy Puerto Rican Recipes
- Sofrito: A sauce that provides an aromatic experience, it’s mild and sweet with a little bit of a kick. You’ll see it as a popular condiment in many Puerto Rican dishes and other Spanish recipes. Plus, you’ll love how easy it is to make – ready in 10 minutes!
- Healthier Pastelon (Plantain Lasagna): If you’re looking for a healthy option that will serve you and your family, well here it is! This Pastelon puts an incredible twist on your regular lasagna dish! The base of it is a mashed yellow plantain followed by ground turkey picadillo, then seasoned with sofrito, sazón, and adobo. Don’t forget the cheese though, this dish is completed with no-fat mozzarella cheese.
- Bacalao Fish Stew: A popular dish in Puerto Rico, this Bacalao fish stew is easy, and brimming with complex flavors. Containing white, capers, and oregano suggests it’s a Mediterranean twist but the cilantro leans towards Mexico or Latin America. You’ll certainly love the blend of cultures and tastes in this one!
Vegetarian Puerto Rican Food Recipes
- Vegan Arroz con Guandules (Rice with Pigeon Peas): Vegans rejoice! This dish is everything! It’s creamy, hearty, and flavorful. You can make it as a side, or leave it as a delicious main! If you’ve had this dish before, you know that it’s the best rice ever. And if you haven’t? Well, you’re in for a yummy, hearty, and tasty treat!
- Tostones: Puerto Rican Fried Plantains with Rice and Beans: Fried plantains soaked in garlic water – how delicious does that sound? Similar to Taco John’s but so much better with an incredible flavor! Combined with rice and beans, this dish will have you feeling like you’re right in Puerto Rico.
- Mofongo: Puerto Rican Fried Plantains With Seitan: An incredibly flavorful dish made of fried green plantains with broth, pork cracklings, garlic, and oil, and mofongo. With the mofongo typically being popular in Cuba and the Dominican Republic, it uses seasoned seitan to deliver the textures and flavors of this Puerto Rican dish. Serve mofongo on top of cooked rice or with grilled vegetables.
12 Easy Puerto Rican Recipes (Rice and Beans Recipe & More)
- Add oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add sofrito and sauté for about 2 minutes or until fragrant.
- Add ham and stir fry until it starts to caramelize.
- Stir in tomato sauce, beans, chicken stock, and sazon seasoning.
- Add potatoes and season with oregano and adobo seasoning.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes. The potatoes should be tender and completely cooked through.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm over rice and enjoy!