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Puerto Rican Carne Guisada

This Puerto Rican Carne Guisada is the best beef stew! Savory chunks of beef are simmered in a sofrito gravy until melt-in-your-mouth tender. The potatoes and carrots soak up all the flavor…this is Puerto Rican comfort food at its best!

Puerto Rican Carne Guisada served with rice and sliced avocado

Puerto Rican Carne Guisada Recipe

As many of you know we’re currently stationed in Japan with the Air Force.

Visits back to the States are rare, but I recently got to go home for a few weeks this year and Puerto Rican carne guisada is one of the first dishes I requested from mom!

I can’t believe I’ve never shared this dish on the blog, but today that changes.

Large caldero of Puerto Rican Carne Guisada (Beef Stew)

Nothing says comfort food like a steaming plate of beef simmered in a sofrito based gravy until tender!

Throw in some potatoes to thicken the stew, a little hint of sweetness from the carrots and a pop of salty flavor from green olives.

Serve with rice and avocado. The only thing that could have made this better would be a side of tostones.

Unfortunately, plantains are hard to come by in Japan. If anyone wants to send some I’ll be your best friend forever. 😊

You could even eat this with tortillas and I won’t judge!

I’m half Mexican, so growing up the two cultures were often intertwined.

We’d eat arroz con gandules with our tacos dorados and homemade flour tortillas with our Puerto Rican carne guisada!

I love being a part of so many cultures. ❤️

This post is specifically for Puerto Rican carne guisada. You can find my recipe for Mexican style carne guisada here.

Easy carne guisada recipe - tender chunks of beef in Mexican gravy! Authentic recipe from Texas #mexicanfoodrecipes #mexicanfood #easyrecipe #dinnerrecipes

Carne Guisada Mexican Style

What’s the difference between Mexican and Puerto Rican carne guisada?

The main difference comes from sofrito.

Sofrito is a cooking base used in Puerto Rican cuisine. It’s a blend of vegetables and herbs like garlic and recao that gives every dish a punch of distinctly Puerto Rican flavor.

It’s best to make homemade sofrito if you can.

In Mexican guiso the main seasonings are cumin and onions.

Large caldero of Puerto Rican Carne Guisada (Beef Stew)

Carne Guisada Puerto Rico

First, prepare the stew meat. I recommend any cut of beef chuck or beef round. Cheap meat works well here.

I like bite-sized pieces about 1/2 to 1 inch cubes. The smaller the pieces, the quicker it will cook.

I like to cook this in my caldero. It’s essential for making Puerto Rican rice, but it also has a lot of other great uses.

Browning the beef for Puerto Rican carne guisada

Sear the meat over high heat until brown on all sides. Then add the remaining ingredients except the vegetables.

Cover with water and simmer until tender. This can take 1-2 hours depending on the cut of beef and size of the pieces.

Once the carne is tender, add the potatoes, carrots and olives.

Cubed potatoes, carrots and olives for Puerto Rican carne guisada

I should also note that you can leave these out, or feel free to add other veggies such as yuca or calabaza.

Once again, make sure everything is covered with enough water and then simmer until the vegetables are fork tender (about 30 minutes).

At this point a luscious gravy will have developed. Give the broth a taste and add more adobo if necessary.

Enjoy with rice, aguacate and tostones if you’re lucky enough to get them! Finish the meal off with a slice of flan de queso or flancocho.

Puerto Rican Carne Guisada served with rice and sliced avocado

Puerto Rican Carne Guisada

Yield: 10-12 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes

Puerto Rican Carne Guisada - tender chunks of beef in a succulent gravy flavored with sofrito. Add potatoes and carrots and serve with rice for a complete meal!


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 ½-3 lbs beef stew meat, cubed
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup sofrito
  • 8 oz tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon adobo
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 packet Sazón (optional)
  • 1-2 cups water
  • 1 lb potatoes (about 2), peeled and cubed
  • 1/4 lb carrots (about 2), peeled and cubed
  • ½ cup Spanish green olives or alcaparrado
  • White rice, for serving


  1. Heat the oil in a large 6-quart pot over high heat. Add the beef and brown on all sides.
  2. Add the sofrito and onion; saute for 2 minutes then stir in the tomato sauce, adobo, garlic powder, oregano, black pepper and Sazón.
  3. Add just enough water to cover the meat, about 1-2 cups, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 1-2 hours, or until meat is tender (check after 1 hour).
  4. After meat is tender, add the potatoes, carrots and olives. Add additional water, if needed. Cover and cook for about 30 minutes, or until vegetables are soft.
  5. Taste the stew and season with additional adobo or salt if desired.
  6. Serve with rice.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 304Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 112mgSodium: 331mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 39g

Nutritional information provided is an estimate only. Please consult the labels of ingredients you use for more accurate results.

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a comment below! Or tag @kitchengidget on Instagram with the hashtag #kitchengidget


Wednesday 25th of January 2023

Do you bring back to heat and simmer for the veggies and potatoes?


Thursday 26th of January 2023

You can but I just pop the lid back on and let it do its thing. It should go back to a simmer pretty quickly.


Tuesday 10th of January 2023

Hello, what is a recommended brand for the tomato sauce? thanks!


Wednesday 11th of January 2023

@Rebekah, thanks!


Tuesday 10th of January 2023

Goya is my favorite. It's Spanish-style sauce and it tastes different than regular tomato sauce.


Sunday 6th of November 2022

I like to cook the meat like 2 hours but then the potatoes get too soft. Also I like to add calabasa so what’s the best time to add the veggies ?


Monday 7th of November 2022

You could add the veggies 30 minutes before you're done cooking.


Thursday 9th of June 2022

I’m vegan and change meat recipes to vegan at times. I couldn’t find vegan Beef tips; Can I use extra firm tofu in place of the beef?


Saturday 11th of June 2022

Yes or maybe jackfruit would work too. My vegan family loves seitan but I've never tried it myself.


Sunday 6th of March 2022

Can you put the olive juice to


Monday 7th of March 2022

Sure that would be good.

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