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Mexican Picadillo. This quick and easy dinner recipe comes together with minimal ingredients. Ground beef and potatoes are simmered in a tomato sauce. Serve this dish up with some rice and fresh flour tortillas for a complete meal. 

Overhead of picadillo on a white plate served with cilantro lime rice and flour tortillas.


What is Mexican Picadillo? 

A classic, nostalgia inducing meal with ground beef and potatoes. This is one of those dishes that is so easy to customize, and everyone has their own way of making it. It’s pure comfort food. This recipe is a basic version. With some ideas of ways you can easily customize it to make it just right for you and your family. 

This Picadillo is commonly served on tortillas. I love loading this into fresh flour tortillas. But it’s also so good in fried corn tortillas. Or served over some cilantro lime rice

How to make:

  1. Cook the ground beef most of the way, doesn’t need to be fully cooked.
  2. Add in diced bell pepper, onion, and potatoes. Continue to cook over medium heat.
  3. Stir in tomatoes, beef broth and spices. Cook with lid on for 10 minutes.
  4. Cook an additional 10 minutes with the lid off. Most of the liquid will be absorbed or evaporate.
Step by step how to make Picadillo in a skillet, sautéing ground beef with potatoes, bell pepper and onion. Adding tomato sauce, broth and spices, bring to a simmer, and after cooking.


  • Swap the tomato sauce for 4 Roma tomatoes blended or finely diced.
  • Add in peas and carrots, or other vegetable of choice.
  • Use beef bouillon instead of beef broth.
  • Use jalapeno or other chili instead of bell pepper for more heat.
  • Add more broth/tomato sauce to make this more of a stew.
Mexican picadillo on a white plate with sauce pooling underneath.

More Easy Dinner Recipes:

Mexican Picadillo

4.99 from 483 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: Serene
Mexican Picadillo. This quick and easy dinner recipe comes together with minimal ingredients. Ground beef and potatoes are simmered in a tomato sauce. Serve this dish up with some rice and fresh flour tortillas for a complete meal. 
Plate with rice and ground beef picadillo with a flour tortilla.


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • ½ cup onion diced
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 2 cups potato peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce*
  • cup beef broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 bay leaf


  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add ground beef. Cook over medium heat while breaking up the meat. Cook until mostly browned, drain grease and return to heat.
  • Add in diced onion, green bell pepper and potatoes. Continue to cook over medium heat until onion and peppers are softened. Add garlic and cook an additional 30 seconds.
  • Pour in tomato sauce and beef broth. Add in seasonings: salt, pepper, cumin, and coriander. Stir to combine. Add bay leaf.
  • Bring mixture to a simmer, cover and let cook for 10 minutes.
  • Remove lid, stir, and continue cooking with the lid off for an additional 10 minutes or until potatoes are softened and most of the liquid is gone.
  • Serve warm with flour tortillas and rice.




Additional Vegetables: if adding additional veggies (peas, carrots, etc.) add them in with the tomato sauce and beef broth. Let simmer to soften and absorb flavor. 
Tomatoes: can use fresh Roma tomatoes instead of tomato sauce. Either finely dice the tomatoes and saute with the potatoes, onion and pepper to release juices, or blend the tomatoes and add with the beef broth. 
Potatoes: can use russet or gold potatoes. 


Serving: 1 | Calories: 220kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 54mg | Sodium: 862mg | Potassium: 430mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 237IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 36mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Welcome to my kitchen!

Welcome to the House of Yumm!! My name is Serene. I’m the food photographer, recipe developer, and official taste tester around these parts.

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Recipe Rating


  1. I’ve never commented on a recipe before, but I had to make an exception for this one. It’s so simple but absolute perfection. Makes me cry tears of happiness. God bless!

  2. I have made this 4 times already. It is so good brings me back to my childhood when my dad made it.

  3. Amazing! So much more simple than other picadillo recipes I’ve tried before and so much better. My wife is sick of hearing me talk about how delicious this dish is. 
    I buy raw flour tortillas from HEB to make tacos with this. Add a little refried beans and sour cream…. Perfection! 
    Whoever came up with this recipe, Thank you
    PS.. this recipe is perfect for freeze drying. 

  4. Me and my family LOVE this recipe. It is such an easy recipe and fun to have the kiddos help make. We do both the rice and flour/corn tortillas. I added in Adobo spice, carrots, peas and corn and it all was amazing. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  5. This is a great recipe, very flavorful and easy to make. I did forget to put the potatoes in with the onion and green pepper and was afraid they weren’t going to soften but I did add them with the sauce and still turned out soft after the first 10 minutes. Btw what is the serving size? 

  6. I have made this twice and both time my kiddos beg me to make it again! It’s super tasty and has all the right flavors. I squeezed extra lime in the mix and served it with Spanish rice and a side of tortillas. Thanks for the recipe. It’s a game changer.

  7. I love this recipe! I made mine with jalapeno instead of bell peppers my boys loved it and they are young 11 12 16

    1. Made this for my wife. It was her first time
      eating this and she loved it. I didn’t have everything for this but substituted the green pepper and tomato sauce with a can of Rotel. It turned out mighty tasty. Thank you for this wonderful recipe.

  8. So glad I stumbled on this recipe, my mom used to make this in the 1960’s with canned potatoes and canned long green chilis. I haven’t had it since I was a teenager and can’t wait to make this!

  9. Yummmmm! Made last night and it was a hit! Husband had second serving, which is a compliment.
    Thank you for your recipe, this one’s a keeper!