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The foods of Puerto Rico
Las comidas puertorriqueñas
Recetas Caseras

Home made recipes

Welcome to our webpage dedicated exclusively to feature the best cooking recipes in the world.  You are invited to share your favorite Puerto Rican home-made recipes with other people knowledgeable of the culinary arts of the beautiful island paradise Puerto Rico.
"PUERTO RICO has the kind of food I crave, bursting with bold flavors dominated by meat, salt and crunch. The dishes you expect, like crispy pork, salty plantains and infinite variations on the beans-and-rice theme, are as good as they get. And the specialties you may never have tried, like bacalaítos, mofongos and alcapurias, are unforgettable.  This is not nouvelle cuisine, thank goodness, and fat-phobic mainlanders will have to loosen up a bit. There are no little heart-healthy signs on the menus, and no assurances that frying is done in canola oil, vegetable shortening, corn oil, or even lard. Most meals come with a tiny salad of iceberg lettuce - hey, it's refreshing - and scarce tomatoes; unless you count beans, plantains and a variety of starchy roots, you are not going to see much in the way of vegetables.  But if you go to the right places, you will eat more than you plan to, enjoy it more than you can imagine, and regret it not at all. This is food with a sense of place, cooking that stubbornly refuses to change, remaining true to its roots, a unique combination of West African, Spanish, Caribbean and American.  When I was planning my trip, almost everyone familiar with Puerto Rico knew of a place with memorable fried pork bits, or ham croquettes or goat fricassee. That's a good sign, and those kinds of places are easy to find here in the enchanted island paradise PUERTO RICO."  By MARK BITTMAN writes for the Dining section of The New York Times.

Send your recipes

We welcome and will feature the most recent recipes submitted by our contributor friends

Our very own Playa Azul Piña Colada
(the key ingredient is heavy cream to taste)

crema de coco (cream of coconut); Puerto Rico Rum (clear); pineapple juice (unsweetened); pineapple slices; maraschino cherries; heavy cream or milk.

in a blender pour some ice cubes, add 1 part of cream of coconut and 3 parts of pineapple juice and a touch of cream or milk to taste.  Mix well until ice is crushed, add more ice if needed, add rum to taste or serve without rum; serve in a tall glass with a half a slice of pineapple and a cherry and a straw.  Enjoy it under the sun!

Cafe Real de Puerto Rico
much better than StarBricks
don't be fooled with coffee beans grown in third world countries

Ingredients:  Cafe Real Puerto Rican style roasted ground coffee grown in the mountains of Maricao, Puerto Rico - we do not recommend the supermarket brands like Yaucono, Cafe Rico, Cafe Crema, etc., because there is no way to know the origin of the beans they use for their blends.  Make sure you get CAFE REAL

Procedure:  in a small casserole pour 2, 3, 4, or 5 cups of water (depending on how many cups you are making) and to that, add a little more water to replace the evaporated loss.  Measure 2, 3, 4, or 5 heaping tablespoons of 'Café Real de Puerto Rico®' and set aside; at this time you should take care to close the coffee bag put it in an airtight container and put it back in the refrigerator or freezer.  Heat the water to its boiling point.  As soon as the water starts boiling; you will see raising bubbles from the bottom of the casserole add the coffee to the water and stir to mix well with the water.  Lower the heat to low-medium and allow the coffee to cook in the boiling water not more than 1 minute.  Turn the heat completely off and let the casserole stand on the burner simmering for another minute to two minutes while you stir the coffee occasionally.  The good thing about this is that you do not need any expensive fancy urns or coffee makers to make this excellent brew.  Now here comes the good part; you are welcome to use a sock or any cloth, preferably cotton, to drain or filter the brew right into your cup.  I highly recommend the Puerto Rico style inexpensive 'colador'.  The important thing is not to allow the coffee ground to get into the cup of coffee..... there!  Buen Provecho! Enjoy your coffee and spread the word!

Carnes - Meats


2 pounds of either beef or pork cubed
2 green platanos peeled and grated
1 tablespoon of garlic plus 1 teaspoon
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of adobo
1 can tomato sauce
1/2 cup of homemade sofrito
9 olives with some juice

Wash and marinade meat overnight. Remove
from fridge 1 hour before cooking.
In a pot, add olive oil and garlic and
sautee for 20 seconds. Add sofrito and
olives and simmer for 2 minutes. Add
remaining ingredients except meat and
platanos and simmer for a few minutes
in a little water. Then add meat with
enough water to cook meat and cook for
1 1/2 hours. While meat is cooking,
take grated platanos and add salt,
pepper, some adobo and the teaspoon of
garlic and some olive oil and mix well
forming a paste. Make golf ball size
out of masa and put on a plate and
put in fridge til ready to use. Once
meat is almost done, drop each bollo
one at a time into simmer pot and let
cook for 20-25 minutes. Serve with rice.

Receta por cortesia de Andy


5 Pound pork shoulder
2 tablespoons of chopped garlic
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons of adobo con comino
1 whole lemon
2 tablespoons of oregano

Wash and marinade pernil overnight.  Remove from fridge 1 hour before cooking. In a large pot, add water and let come to a boil. Stick a thin knife in between the skin and meat and separate a bit. Add pernil to simmering water and let cook for 2 hours. Pre-
heat oven or broiler to 500 degrees.  Carefully remove pernil and place in a oven dish under broiler and let crisp up on all sides. Keep an eye so that it does not burn. Don't throw away the water that the pernil cooked in! Instead make some arroz con gandules or make a gravy for the pernil. YUMMY!!  Let pernil cool before carving.

Poultry dishes


4 Chicken breast boneless and skinless
2 potatoes peeled and cut into cubes
3 carrots peeled and cut into cubes
A handful of angel hair (fideos) pasta broken up
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup of sofrito
9 olives
1 PACKET OF food seasoning CON Culantro y ACHIOTE
1 tablespoon of chopped garlic
1 can tomato sauce

Wash and season chicken. In a pot, add olive oil and sautee sofrito and garlic for 3 minutes. Add olives and tomato sauce and a little water and simmer for 2 minutes. Add chicken back with remaining ingredients exept Fideos, potatoes and carrots. Add enough water or broth to cook soup in and cook for 45 minutes. Add fideos, potatoes and carrots and cook another 20 minutes. This is a good soup for sick people or people suffering from a hangover!


5 Caderas y 5 patas
Sal y pimienta al gusto
1 cucharada de ajo picado
1 cucharadita de adobo por presa
1 limon

Lavar y sazonar bien las presas y dejar al lado  por 1 hora. Pre-calentar el horno a 350 grados. En un plato de horno poner cada presa y meter al horno.  Cocinar por 45-50 minutos. Servir con arroz, habichuelas, ensalada y tostones.

Rice dishes

Arroz con gandules en leche de coco
2 tazas de arroz
1/4 taza de aceite de oliva
1/4 libra jamón picado
1/4 taza de sofrito
1 cdta. de ajo triturado
1 lata 15 oz. de gandules
1 taza leche de coco
1 taza de caldo de pollo
1 sobre de sazón con culantro y achiote
sal a gusto
- En una cacerola hechar el aceite de oliva
- Caliente y añada el jamón hasta que quede dorado
- Añadir el sofrito, el caldo de pollo, cdta. de ajo y los
- Cocinar por 2 ó 3 minutos
- Añadir el resto de los ingredientes
- Sazonar a gusto 
- Cocinar por 20 a 25 minutos
RECETA por cortesia de LUCY


3 tasas de arroz
1 lata de gandules
1 tasa de chorizo espanol
1/2 tasa de sofrito casero
Sal y pimienta al gusto
1 cucharada de ajo picado
1 lata de salsa de tomate
1 paquete de sazon con achiote

En una caserola, agregue aceite de oliva y chorizo y sofrie por 2 minutos luego remueva. Anada ajo y sofria por 20 seg.  Agregue sofrito y salsa de tomate y un poco de agua y cueze por 3 minutos.  Hechar los sazones y los gandules con 3 tasas de caldo o agua y dejar que cueze por 5 minutos. Anada el arroz y mezcle bien. Dejar cocinar por 40 minutos.

Beans dishes


1 PACKET OF food seasoning CON Culantro y ACHIOTE

In a skillet, add olive oil and garlic and sautee for 20 seconds. Then add ham or chorizo and brown for a few minutes. Then add sofrito, seasonings and tomato sauce with a little water and simmer for 3-5 minutes. Then add broth and beans and let cook for 30  minutes. At the end of 30 minutes raise heat high and stir to thicken beans.
RECETA por cortesia de Andy


1 Can of gandules
2 cups of cooked white rice
1/2 cup of sofrito
1 tablespoon of chopped garlic
Salt and pepper
1 PACKET OF food seasoning CON Culantro y ACHIOTE
1 teaspoon of cumin
9 olives with some juice
2 cans of broth
1 can of tomato sauce

In a pot, add olive oil and sautee garlic and sofrito for a few
minutes. Add seasonings and olives and tomato sauce and simmer for 1 minutes. Add gandules and remaining ingredients with
the exception of the rice and simmer for 40 minutes. Add rice and mix well and simmer another 5 minutes. Let sit for a few minutes before serving.  Note: If too dry, add a little more hot broth. If too wet, turn up heat to reduce stock. You can use anything for the asopao from just plain rice to seafood or meat.

Platanos y Guineos Specialties

Guineitos en Escabeche
5-6 guineos verdes
2 cebollas medianas cortadas en rebanadas.
pimienta entera 
sal a gusto
2-3 hojitas de laurel
1 taza de aceite de oliva
1/2 taza de vinagre blanco
2 litros de agua
sal a gusto
1/4 taza de leche

En una olla grande ponga el agua y leche a hervir y sazonela a
gusto con sal. Dele una tajada a la cáscara de los guineos y
añadalos a la olla.
Hierva por 15 minutos. Escurra.
Pele los guineos y córtelos en rebanadas de 1/2 pulgada.
Añada la cebolla, pimienta, hojas de laurel y sazone a gusto con
sal. Deje reposar en la nevera una hora y sirva con Chuletas
fritas o con costillitas al carbon....mmmm!!!

RECETA por cortesia de Deli Maldonado

Pastelillos de carne de jueyes

Empanadillas a la PlayaAzul

Empanadas, Emapanadillas, Pastelillos de carne - These are some of the names used to call the same delicious empanadilla. In Puerto Rico we have perfected the delicious empanadilla with a wide variety of fillings. You can make them bite size, small or large and we call them pastelillos or empanadillas. Whatever you prefer to call them; it doesn’t matter because basically they are filled or stuffed fried turnovers made with dough and the filling of your choice. The dough can be made with Yuca or flour and the fillings are endless. Here we will do Empanadillas de Cangrejo (crab meat).

First let’s make the dough
By the way you can buy the ready made dough disks from your supermarket freezer section or you can make your own dough. This recipe makes enough dough for ten 6inch empanadillas or thirty six 3inch empanadillas or as many bite size you want to make.
3 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup of extra flour on the side for kneading
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup cold water
1 egg plus 1 egg white
1 teaspoon sherry or cider vinegar
3 tablespoons vegetable shortening

First in a large bowl stir the 3 cups of flour and salt together. In a small bowl mix and beat the water, egg, egg white and vinegar together. Now mix the shortening into the flour mixture until it’s broken up into small chunks. Form a well in the center of the flour and pour the liquid ingredients into the well. Continue to beat the flour into the wet ingredients with a fork until it’s too stiff to mix easily. Now the fun part... take the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and continue to knead the dough until all the flour is uniformly mixed and you have a nice, smooth dough. This part is very important so don’t rush it and keep kneading until you have the consistency of a smooth dough. Now take the ball of dough and wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour or more. Do not refrigerate more than one day; if you do not use the dough in one day make sure you put it in the freezer.

To make the 6inch empanadillas: split the dough in two portions. Take one portion at a time and roll it out on a floured board or table as thin as you possibly can without making holes on the spread out dough. The rolled dough should not be thicker than 1/8 inch thick. You can use a 6inch dish to cut the dough into 6inch circles. You can use beaten egg white to brush the edge of the circle to glue the empanadilla together when you close it. The filling, about 1-2 tablespoonfuls, will be placed slightly off center and on the half of the circle toward you. You can now close and glue the empanadilla by folding the far edge of the dough circle over the filling making a half moon shape and press the edges firmly to form a seal with the gluey beaten egg white. Use the tips of a dinner fork and press down all around the edge of the half circle to make sure they stick together.

To make any size empanadillas. Follow the above method adjusting for size and quantity of filling. You can make the empanadillas ahead of time and refrigerate them until ready to fry. Make sure you place a piece of wax paper between each empanadillas to avoid them sticking together and place them in a cookie sheet or large flat receptacle. You can also freeze them and store them in freezer bags until you are ready to fry them. Make sure to use wax paper between each empanadilla to keep them apart, especially when they defrost and become soft.

To fry the empanadillas. Pour enough cooking oil (canola oil is perfect) into a large heavy skillet to fill ½ inch. Heat over medium heat to about 375° F. Place as many empanadillas into the oil as will fit without touching. Fry, turning once or twice, until browned on both sides and dough is cooked through. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining empanadillas. You may also bake the Empanadillas. Brush them with beaten egg and bake in a 350° F oven until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes for smaller empanadas or 20 to 35 minutes for the larger size.

To make the Crab Filling for Empanadillas
We will make the crab filling with the traditional sofrito-seasoned tomato sauce. Cook the crab meat in the sauce until the sauce is almost gone and the crab meat breaks up into little pieces and bonds with the sauce. You don’t want the crab meat to be too liquid in sauce. Makes about 3 cups, enough to fill ten 6inch empanadillas or thirty six 3inch empanadillas
1 pound lump crabmeat
1 cup tomato sauce
1 packet of sazon with cilantro and achiote
¼ cup good extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup cider vinegar or any vinegar you like
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup of crushed tomatoes
1 medium green or red pepper chopped
1 medium yellow onion chopped
2 or 3 thin stalks of cilantro, chopped fine
2 or 3 garlic cloves chopped
Grated zest of 1 lime and its juice
1 ounce of chili to taste, optional

Start making the sofrito by cooking in a frying pan; add the olive oil and the chopped garlic; add the chopped peppers, onion and the tomato sauce and continue to sauté these ingredients while stirring them often; then add the crushed tomatoes and the vinegar and the chopped cilantro and the packet of sazon and allow all these ingredients to cook for a while add salt and pepper and the grated zest of lime and pour in the juice of the lime and continue to cook to build the sauce for the crab meat. Once all these ingredients have cooked together for a while add the pound of crab meat and continue to stir and cook; if needed you can put in a bit of water to allow the meat to bond thoroughly with the sauce.

There you have both ingredients the dough and the crab meat filling; Buen Provecho!


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