Last Updated on January 31, 2023 by Anne-Marie
Learn how to make this easy Mexican picadillo recipe with ground beef, chorizo, potatoes, and raisins. Serve on top of rice for a tasty weeknight dinner.
Why this recipe works
Have you ever tried Mexican Picadillo? Its fantastic flavor makes it one of my family’s favorite dinner recipes.
The term picadillo originates from the Spanish word picar, which means to mince. It's also called carne molida con papas or picadillo con papas.
What makes it different from the usual hash-like beef and potato recipe is what’s added to the dish - chorizo, tomatoes, raisins, and spices. Then it’s served on rice, or it can be used as a filling for tacos.
I first made this dish as part of a blogger recipe challenge where I recreated Alessio of Recipe Taster’s recipe for Cuban Picadillo.
Since I didn’t have several ingredients, I came up with this quasi-Mexican version. It’s become a favorite comfort food ever since.
- olive oil
- garlic cloves
- sea salt
- green chili sauce
- ground venison or lean ground beef
- fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- Cooked rice for serving
How to make this recipe
This is an easy and versatile dish you can serve on rice or make into tacos.
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, celery, potatoes, and garlic, and cook until onions start to brown and caramelize. Stir often. Turn down the heat if vegetables begin to burn. About 10 minutes.
2. Add salt, cumin, oregano, and green chili sauce. Cook for 1 minute.
3. Add chorizo, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, spatula, or potato masher. Stir it into vegetables.
4. When the chorizo has browned, add the ground meat. Break up meat and stir into other ingredients.
5. When the meat has browned, add in the diced tomatoes. Stir to combine with other ingredients.
6. Add raisins and stir to combine.
7. Cover the skillet and turn down the heat to low.
8. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes.
9. Serve on top of rice.
10. Store leftover picadillo in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
What kind of potatoes and onions?
You can use yellow potatoes, gold potatoes, white potatoes, or russet potatoes. For fun, you could try sweet potatoes, too.
You can also use frozen precut potatoes from the supermarket. Just measure out what you need for this Mexican dish and store leftovers in the freezer for next time.
You can substitute cauliflower for potato if you’re on a low-carb or keto diet.
You can use yellow onions, white onions, red onions, or sweet onions.
What kind of ground meat?
I used ground venison, but you can use lean ground beef, low-fat ground turkey, ground chicken, or even ground buffalo.
It’s OK to keep the fat content of the ground meat low in this Mexican dish, especially since chorizo tends to be on the fatty side.
Where can I buy chorizo?
You can usually find it in the refrigerated section with the sausage or refrigerated Hispanic foods.
You can make your own if there’s no chorizo at your supermarket for your Mexican picadillo recipe.
Here’s how to make homemade chorizo.
Making authentic Mexican picadillo
Many Mexican picadillo recipes also include peas and carrots.
While I didn’t include that in this recipe, adding a bag of heated peas and carrots to the cooked dish is simple.
It’s also a terrific way to get extra veggies into your meal.
The easy way to make rice
Don’t forget to start your rice cooking before you start working on the picadillo.
For perfect rice, I use a rice cooker. Here are some of the best rice cookers on Amazon.
We love our Zojirushi rice cooker since my kids also use it to steam dumplings.
How to serve
If you’re making picadillo tacos, skip the white rice. Serve on warm corn tortillas, and make this Quick Mexican Rice Recipe as a side dish.
Serve the picadillo for tacos with this Quick & Healthy Horchata Recipe.
Authentic picadillo from around the world
Picadillo Cubano includes peppers, onions, garlic, oregano, cumin, tomato sauce, olives, raisins, and potatoes. Sometimes people add capers. Cuban Picadillo is served with black beans and rice.
In the Dominican Republic, they make a similar dish to the Mexican picadillo. They add a hard-boiled egg and some allspice and serve their version of picadillo on either white or brown rice.
Filipino Picadillo is a soup-like dish made with potatoes or chayote and ground beef. It’s made without green olives or capers and served with white rice, fried plantains on the side, and a fried egg.
More ground meat recipes
Check out these delicious and easy-to-make recipes:
● Make this Easy Homemade Gyros Recipe at home. They’re as tasty as what you get at your favorite Greek restaurant and much healthier.
● My family loves this Gluten Free Shepherd’s Pie. You don’t have to be gluten-free to know that it’s delicious.
● If you’re a meatloaf lover, you’ll enjoy Mashed Potato Stuffed Meatloaf or Gluten Free Meatloaf Recipe with Potato Chips & Carrots.
● Got leftover meatloaf? Make Leftover Meatloaf Sandwiches.
● If you have a smoker, make Smoked Meatloaf. It’s amazing!
Do you love Mexican food? What are your favorite Mexican recipes?
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2/3 cup chopped onions
- 2/3 cup diced celery
- 2/3 cup diced potatoes
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon oregano
- 1 tablespoon green chili sauce
- 8 ounces chorizo
- 1 1/4 pounds ground venison or lean ground beef
- 1 14.5-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1/2 cup raisins
- Cooked rice for serving
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions, celery, potatoes, and garlic, and cook until onions start to brown and caramelize. Stir often. Turn down the heat if vegetables begin to burn. About 10 minutes.
- Add salt, cumin, oregano, and green chili sauce. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add chorizo, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, spatula, or potato masher. Stir it into vegetables.
- When the chorizo has browned, add the ground meat. Break up meat and stir into other ingredients.
- When the meat has browned, add in the diced tomatoes. Stir to combine with other ingredients.
- Add raisins and stir to combine.
- Cover the skillet and turn down the heat to low.
- Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Serve on top of rice.
- Store leftover picadillo in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 413Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 104mgSodium: 627mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 3gSugar: 9gProtein: 31g
Nutritional information is automatically calculated per the ingredients list. Serving size may not be accurate. Please double-check with your preferred nutritional app for the most accurate information.