Basic Sofrito

Basic sofrito recipe

The Spruce

  • Total: 15 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 quart (8 servings)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
50 Calories
0g Fat
11g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 quart (8 servings)
Amount per serving
Calories 50
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 9mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 11g 4%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 2g
Calcium 50mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Sofrito (also know as recaito in Puerto Rico) is the secret ingredient in many Latin Caribbean dishes like alcapurrias, and it's easy to make. It's a versatile, aromatic puree of tomatoes, peppers, cilantro, onions, and garlic. You may use a food processor or blender to get the desired results.

During harvest season, you can use your summer garden produce or buy veggies at the peak of flavor from the farmers market to make and freeze sofrito for use throughout the year. Spending just a little time in the kitchen will be a good investment for having your fresh and healthy sofrito for future recipes.

You'll need a knife for chopping, a cutting board, food processor, and storage jars for this recipe. This variation doesn't require any cooking. The word "sofrito" is Spanish and means to lightly fry something, such as by sautéing or stir-frying. But this refers to how it is used in a recipe rather than how it is made. It's often the first thing to go into the pan or cooking pot and can be sautéed to bring out the flavors of the aromatics. 

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Ingredients

  • 2 medium green bell peppers (stemmed and seeded)
  • 1 red bell pepper (stemmed and seeded)
  • 2 large tomatoes
  • 2 medium onions (peeled)
  • 1 head of garlic (peeled)
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 bunch fresh parsley leaves

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Sofrito recipe ingredients
    The Spruce
  2. Chop the ingredients into sizes that are small enough to fit into a food processor ​or blender. You don't have to dice them finely as you will be processing them. Focus on removing the seeds and any tougher stems that might leave grit in the finished sofrito.

    Chopping garlic and onion
    The Spruce
  3. Place the chopped ingredients into a food processor or blender. You can process in batches if your food processor isn't big enough to accommodate everything at once.

    Put chopped ingredients into a blender
    The Spruce
  4. Blend all ingredients well. You want the finished sofrito to be finely processed. If you're not familiar with sofrito, think of it as being the consistency of pesto, a thick paste.

    Blend well
    The Spruce
  5. Once blended, your sofrito is ready to use. For immediate use, store the sofrito in a glass container. Plastic containers are not ideal because plastic will absorb the odor of garlic and onions.

    Fresh sofrito in jars
    The Spruce
  6. Use the sofrito with rice, stews, beans, or protein and enjoy.

Tips

  • If you find it necessary to add liquid, you may add water or olive oil a tablespoon at a time while blending. Use as little liquid as possible, because you don't want the sofrito to be too runny. The tomatoes will provide some juice, so you may want to ensure they are in the mix before adding any liquid.
  • For future use, you can freeze the sofrito to use at any time. Depending on how much you use in a recipe, you may want to freeze it in 1/4 to 1/2 cup portions or freeze it in an ice-cube tray for 2-tablespoon cubes. After the cubes are frozen, place them in a freezer bag. They should be good for up to a year frozen.