Turkey Picadillo is an easy, one pan recipe that can be on the table in about 30 minutes. Ground turkey, onions, bell peppers, raisins and green olives are simmered in a rich, seasoned, tomato sauce. Serve over rice for a delicious and healthy weeknight dinner.
If you’ve never had Cuban picadillo before, you’re in for a treat! Picadillo has wonderful combination of smoky, earthy spices that are paired with briny green olives and sweet raisins. Most recipes call for ground beef, but today I’m sharing a turkey picadillo recipe. It’s an easy, one pan recipe and it freezes well too.
What is Picadillo?
Picadillo is a traditional dish in many Latin American countries. It consists of ground beef, tomatoes, olives and raisins as well as an array of spices and other ingredients that vary from country to country. The version I’ve created is most similar to Cuban picadillo. Sometimes this version may also include potatoes and capers.
What Do I Need to Make Picadillo?
- Ground turkey
- Yellow onion
- Red bell pepper
- Ground cumin, oregano, smoked paprika and cayenne pepper
- Tomato sauce
- Green olives
- Red wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
How to Make Turkey Picadillo
As I mentioned above, this is a one pan meal and it can be on the table in about 30 minutes. If you meal prep it’s also great because you can freeze it.
- In a large skillet sauté the onion, red bell pepper and garlic in olive oil. Once they’re soft, add in the spices, tomato sauce, green olives and raisins.
- Stir everything together then cover the skillet with a lid and lower the heat letting it simmer for about 20 minutes.
- The final steps are to stir in the vinegar and cilantro. I like to save this for the end because it brightens up the dish and adds fresh flavor.
Some of you may be wondering about the raisins, especially if you aren’t a fan of raisins. I highly recommend that you use them even if you don’t generally like them in recipes. They soften and plump up as they simmer in the meat mixture and they add the perfect pop of sweetness to cut through all the rich, savory and briny flavors.
How to Serve Picadillo
There are so many ways that you can serve picadillo because it’s essentially a hearty meat sauce. Below are some ideas, but use your imagination.
- Over rice or quinoa.
- On top of a baked potato or baked sweet potato.
- As a filling for stuffed peppers.
- Use naan, chips or tortillas and treat it like a dip.
Just like chili or spaghetti sauce, picadillo tastes as good if not better the second day because the flavors have even more time to marinate together. It makes this a great option if you’re planning ahead for the week with meal prep ideas.
More One Pan Recipes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion
- 3/4 cup diced red bell pepper
- 2 cloves of garlic, grated or minced
- 1 pound lean ground turkey
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano, rubbed between the palms of your hands
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup sliced green olives
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 15 ounce can tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- Rice for serving
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Swirl to coat the bottom and add in the onion, red bell pepper and garlic. Sauté for several minutes and then add in the ground turkey and season with salt and pepper.
- Crumble the turkey with a wooden spoon and cook until no longer pink. Add in the spices, olives, raisins and tomato sauce and stir everything together until combined.
- Bring to a simmer, then cover with a lid and lower the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 15-20 minutes. Taste for seasoning and serve over rice.
Nutritional information doesn't include rice.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 332Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 1064mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 5gSugar: 12gProtein: 39g