Caribbean Beef Stew (Carne Guisada)

Caribbean Beef Stew (Carne Guisada)

The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 2 hrs 30 mins
Total: 3 hrs
Servings: 6 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
566 Calories
20g Fat
43g Carbs
54g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
×
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6
Amount per serving
Calories 566
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 20g 26%
Saturated Fat 7g 34%
Cholesterol 135mg 45%
Sodium 1460mg 63%
Total Carbohydrate 43g 16%
Dietary Fiber 11g 38%
Protein 54g
Calcium 247mg 19%
*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.)

Carne guisada means "stewed meat" in Spanish, but the simple translation doesn't do this dish justice. Even the toughest cuts of beef will fall apart with the low, slow simmering action of this Dominican stew. The juices from the vegetables cook down into a thick sauce that's delicious, making a perfect, warming meal on a cold winter's night. Some regional versions of carne guisada use chicken or pork instead of beef. You can experiment to find the variation your family likes best or to accommodate anyone who prefers not to eat beef. 

"This recipe has a lot of flavor with pantry staples you probably already have on hand. The prepping part is pretty easy and the rest is just simmering on the stovetop. A perfect option for a family dinner on cold nights!" —Tara Omidvar

Caribbean Beef Stew (Carne Guisada)
A Note From Our Recipe Tester

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds beef stew meat cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large cubanelle or green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 4 ajíes dulces, small sweet peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 cups cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano 
  • 1/2 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon salt, more to taste
  • 3 large carrots, chopped
  • 1 15-ounce can peas
  • 1/2 pound potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 12 Spanish pimento-stuffed olives 
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • Pepper to taste

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Caribbean Beef Stew (Carne Guisada) ingredients

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

  2. Brown the stew meat in the olive oil for about 20 minutes in a large soup pot over medium heat.

    Brown the stew meat in the olive oil

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

  3. Add the cubanelle pepper, ajíes dulces, onion, garlic, cilantro, vinegar, oregano, tomato sauce, 1 cup water, bay leaves, and salt.

    meat with the cubanelle pepper, ajíes dulces, onion, garlic, cilantro, vinegar, oregano, tomato sauce, bay leaves, and salt in a pot

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 1 hour. The juices from the vegetables and tomato sauce should cook down into a thick sauce. You can add more water if the sauce seems to be getting too thick.

    meat mixture cooking in a pot

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

  5. Turn the heat to medium after 1 hour. Add the last seven ingredients: the carrots, peas, potatoes, olives, capers, salt, and pepper to taste.

    stew cooking in a pot

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

  6. Reduce the heat to low when the stew begins to boil. Continue cooking over low heat for 1 more hour.

    Caribbean Beef Stew (Carne Guisada) in a pot

    The Spruce / Ahlam Raffii

Tips

  • Serve the stew alone or with white rice, tostones, and a tossed salad.
  • "Tougher" cuts such as boneless beef chuck are fine for this recipe. There's no possibility that it won't melt in your mouth when the stew is done. 
  • Ajíes dulces are small sweet chili peppers. You can often find them in Spanish and Latin American markets. You can leave them out if they're not available to you locally, or substitute pimientos.
  • This beef stew is traditionally prepared in a cooking pot called a caldero, but you can use any heavy pot. 

Recipe Variations

  • For a Puerto Rican touch, substitute 2 tablespoons of the tomato sauce with 2 tablespoons sofritoa tomato-pepper-garlic-onion-herb sauce. You can find prepared sofrito in most large markets. 
  • Some regional versions of carne guisada use chicken or pork instead of beef. You can experiment to find the variation your family likes best or to accommodate anyone who prefers not to eat beef.

Recipe Tags: