top of page
  • Mika Leon

Vegan picadillo

I've been cooking a lot of vegetarian items lately and this has become one of the favorites. For a long time at Caja Caliente we barely had any vegan or vegetarian options and I can see how frustrating that was for some people. I've made it a point to work on expanding those options and this recipe will not have you missing meat at all!!! It tastes like the real thing, it's insane! I make veggie picadillo bowls at caja and now have veggie empanadas using this same recipe. Serve it with warm rice or if you're feeling healthy with some warm cauliflower rice.


  • 13 oz. of meat crumble alternative (I use Gardein, as pictured below)

  • 1 small yellow or white onion, finely chopped

  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced

  • 1 1/2 tsp. cumin

  • 2 (8 oz.) cans of tomato sauce - Use Goya salsa de tomato

  • 1/3 cup vino seco + 2 tbsp. (dry white cooking wine, I like the brand Edmundo)

  • 1 packet of Goya (The orange one that says con culantro y achiote)

  • 1/4 cup raisins

  • 1/3 cup chopped olives

  • 1 tsp. Sazon completa (green bottle from "Badia")

  • 2 tbsp. capers + 1 tbsp. of the brine the capers come in

  • Salt & pepper


1. Heat about 3 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat and add your Sofrito ingredients: garlic, onion and bell pepper. Salt and cook down 7-10 min. over medium heat until onions become translucent and soft.

2. Add ground vegan "beef" to your sofrito mix. Cook, while stirring for about 3-4 min. Now add your tomato sauce and orange packet of sazon and stir until all the ingredients are combined and your picadillo becomes a beautiful orange red-ish color. Add your cumin, Sazon completa, capers, brine, green olives & raisins and stir again, add salt & taste.

3. Add your vino seco, stir and bring to simmer on low-medium heat for about 15 min. Serve warm over rice or cauliflower rice which I did below!

bottom of page