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    Picadillo Soup

    Picadillo Soup! A delicious and very unique twist on the traditional Picadillo, turning it into a hearty and warming soup! Picadillo, a classic dish in Latin American cuisine, is made with ground beef and a variety of vegetables, known for its delicious flavors.

    This soup version elevates the traditional Picadillo by incorporating a rich broth and more veggies, making it a more substantial and spoon-worthy version of the classic.

    Discover a unique twist on the classic Picadillo with this hearty and savory Picadillo Soup recipe. Packed with flavors and perfect for cozy nights!

    We are big fans of Picadillo, and have been cooking it for years. Today we thought why not convert our favorite meal into a comforting soup for these cold nights in Florida… and that’s how this Picadillo Soup was born.

    This dish shows how traditional recipes can be changed into new dishes while still keeping their original flavors and character. It’s a nourishing and satisfying meal that’s packed with flavor and texture.

    Serve it with Mexican rice, cilantro, lime, avocado, and corn tortillas and you are all set up for one great meal.

    Close up angled shot of the bowl of soup.

    What is Picadillo?

    Picadillo is a traditional dish found in various Latin American and Filipino cuisines. It’s essentially a ground meat hash, usually made with beef, though ground pork or chicken can also be used.

    In terms of cooking style, it can almost be described as a thick stew, simmering in a sauce until the meat is tender and succulent. The flavors can vary quite a bit depending on the region, as well as household to household.

    One of the most popular, and earliest, recipes on GypsyPlate is our Puerto Rican Picadillo, which is generously seasoned with sofrito, adobo and sazon, the trinity of Puerto Rican seasonings. It also has a touch of brininess from green olives.

    Another of our favorites is Filipino Picadillo, or Giniling, which has eastern flavors from soy and fish sauce, along with a touch of sweetness from raisins.

    Our Mexican Picadillo gets its seasoning from chipotle peppers and some other Latin staples. It also packs plenty of veggie power from potatoes, onions, bell peppers, carrots, peas and tomatoes.

    Picadillo is incredibly versatile and can be served in multiple ways: as a filling for tacos or empanadas, alongside rice and beans, or even as a main dish on its own. Its ease of preparation and rich flavor profile have made it a beloved meal in households across the regions where it’s traditionally made.

    Large white dutch oven full of Mexican ground beef and vegetable soup.

    Ingredients Needed

    • Olive Oil: A staple for sautéing. You can also use any other neutral flavored oil.
    • Ground Beef: The main protein. Choose lean ground beef for a healthier option, but a little fat can add flavor.
    • Onion, Green and Red Peppers, Carrots, Potato, and Jalapeño: These vegetables add crunch, sweetness, color, and a slight heat. They’re essential for a well-rounded flavor.
    • Garlic: Always a must.
    • Tomato Sauce: Provides the base for the soup’s liquid, giving it tangy flavor.
    • Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce: These add a smoky heat and depth. Adjust the amount based on your spice preference.
    • Cumin and Oregano: Classic spices that are essential for the dish’s signature flavor profile.
    • Beef Broth: Enriches the soup, adding a savory depth. You could also experiment with chicken or vegetable broth.
    • Frozen Peas, Zucchini, and Corn: These veggies are added towards the end.
    • Salt: Adjust according to taste.

    Picadillo Soup Recipe

    1. Cook Vegetables: In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil and sauté the onion, bell peppers, carrots, potato, and jalapeño until they begin to soften.

    Vegetables sautéing in a dutch oven.

    2. Cook Beef and Add Base: Add the garlic and ground beef to the skillet, seasoning with salt. Continue cooking until the beef is no longer pink.

    Ground beef cooking with diced vegetables in dutch oven.

    3. Add Sauces and Broth: Mix in the tomato sauce and chipotle peppers with their sauce. Season with cumin and oregano, then pour in the beef broth. Simmer until the potatoes are nearly tender.

    The dish after adding sauces.

    4. Finish with Remaining Vegetables: Add zucchini, peas, and corn into the skillet. Cook until all vegetables are tender to your liking.

    5. Adjust Seasonings: Taste the soup and adjust salt or seasonings as needed. Skim off any excess oil from the top.

    The final product.

    6. Serve: Serve the soup alongside Mexican rice, garnished with cilantro, lime, avocado slices, and corn tortillas for a complete meal.

    Two bowls full of this soup, served with Mexican rice and garnished with lime slices.

    Alpana’s Tips

    • Ingredient Prep: Chop all your vegetables to a uniform size to ensure even cooking. Having everything prepped before you start cooking makes things go smoother.
    • Chipotle Peppers: These can be quite spicy. Start with a small amount and adjust according to your heat preference. The adobo sauce adds a nice smoky flavor, so even a little can go a long ways.
    • Broth Quality: Use a good quality beef broth for the best flavor. If you have homemade broth, even better!
    • Fresh Herbs: While dried oregano is specified, adding fresh herbs like cilantro or even a bit of parsley before serving can brighten up the dish and add a pop of color.
    • Leftovers: This soup tastes even better the next day as the flavors have more time to meld together. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.
    • Freezing: Picadillo soup freezes well. Cool the soup completely before transferring it to freezer-safe containers, leaving some space for expansion. It can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

    Possible Variations

    1. Turkey or Chicken Picadillo Soup: Use ground turkey or chicken for a lighter, leaner version.

    2. Spicier Soup: Increase the amount of jalapeño or add diced habanero peppers for an extra kick.

    3. Rice-Included Picadillo Soup: Add rice directly into the soup for a one-pot meal, making it even more filling.

    4. Hearty Bean Picadillo Soup: For a fiber-rich and hearty option, add beans such as black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, or chickpeas to the soup.

    5. Vegetable Variations: Feel free to add or substitute vegetables based on what you have on hand. Mushrooms, green beans, chayote, and sweet potatoes go well here.

    Slightly more zoomed out photo of the soup.

    So what are you waiting for? This version of “Picadillo turned into a soup” is truly special! It keeps all the great tastes of the original dish but get transformed into a very novel ground beef soup idea.

    It’s easy to make, full of flavor, and sure to be a hit with everyone.

    Picadillo Soup, on our Gypsy Plate… enjoy!

    The bowl of picadillo soup atop the Gypsy Plate.

    More great Latin soup recipes!
    Albondigas Soup
    Caldo de Pollo
    Caldo de Res
    Sopa de Fideo
    Asopao de Camarones
    Asopao de Pollo
    Birria Ramen

    Featured image for picadillo soup recipe.

    Picadillo Soup

    Yield: 4-6 servings
    Prep Time: 10 minutes
    Cook Time: 40 minutes
    Total Time: 40 minutes

    Discover a unique twist on the classic Picadillo with this hearty and savory Picadillo Soup recipe. Packed with flavors and perfect for cozy nights!


    • 2 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1.5 pounds ground beef
    • 1 medium onion, diced
    • 1 small green pepper, diced
    • 1 small red pepper, diced
    • 2 carrots, diced
    • 1 medium potato, diced
    • 1 jalapeño, finely diced
    • 4-5 garlic cloves, finely diced
    • 1 15oz can tomato sauce
    • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce + 1 Tbsp adobo sauce
    • 1.5 tsp cumin powder
    • 1 Tbsp oregano
    • 4 cup beef broth
    • 1 cup frozen peas
    • 1 small zucchini, diced
    • 1 cup corn
    • salt, to taste


    1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Sauté onion, bell peppers, carrots, potato and jalapeño for 5 minutes.
    2. Add garlic, ground beef, and salt. Sauté till beef is no longer pink.
    3. Add in tomato sauce, chipotle peppers, and adobo sauce. Mix well. Add cumin, oregano, beef broth. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until potatoes are almost tender.
    4. Add zucchini, peas and corn and cook until all the veggies are tender to your liking, about 10-12 minutes. Skim off any excess fat or oil from the top. Taste and adjust the seasonings.
    5. Serve it with Mexican rice, cilantro, lime, avocado and corn tortillas.
    Nutrition Information
    Yield 6 Serving Size 1
    Amount Per Serving Calories 490Total Fat 26gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 14gCholesterol 101mgSodium 1243mgCarbohydrates 28gFiber 6gSugar 9gProtein 38g

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

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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