Ropa Vieja Recipe with Cuban Hot Sauce

Classic Ropa Vieja Recipe with Cuban Hot Sauce

Mario Cruz
Ropa Vieja, a traditional Cuban dish, translates to "old clothes" in Spanish. This hearty and flavorful dish features tender shredded beef simmered in a rich tomato sauce with vibrant vegetables and aromatic spices. It's perfect for a comforting meal served with rice or tortillas. To kick it up a notch, we’re adding a splash of Cuban Hot Sauce from Barbaro Mojo for an extra layer of deliciousness. Follow this easy recipe to bring a taste of Cuba to your kitchen!

Ropa Vieja ingredients with Cuban Hot Sauce


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 pounds beef flank steak (brisket or top round)
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 small onion, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
  • 1.5 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 sprig of rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar or juice of 1 lime
  • 1-2 tablespoons Cuban Hot Sauce from Barbaro Mojo


    1. Brown the Beef: Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the flank steak on each side, about 4 minutes per side.
    2. Combine Ingredients: Transfer the browned beef to a slow cooker. Pour in the beef broth and tomato sauce, then add the onion, bell pepper, garlic, tomato paste, cumin, paprika, rosemary, cilantro, olive oil, and vinegar, Stir until well blended.
    3. Cook:
      • Slow Cooker: Cover, and cook on High for 4 hours, or on Low for up to 10 hours.
      • Oven: If making in the oven, bake at 325°F for 4 hours, then reduce to 250°F and continue cooking until the beef is tender.
    4. Shred and Serve: When ready to serve, shred the meat using two forks. Re-season with salt and pepper if needed, and add Cuban Hot Sauce from Barbaro Mojo to taste. Serve the shredded beef with warm tortillas or over a bed of rice.

Tips for Perfect Ropa Vieja

  • Choose the Right Cut: Flank steak, brisket, or top round are ideal for this recipe as they become tender and flavorful when slow-cooked.
  • Slow and Low: Cooking the beef slowly allows it to absorb all the flavors from the sauce and spices, resulting in a more tender and delicious dish.
  • Customize Your Veggies: Feel free to add more vegetables like carrots, peas, or olives to make the dish even more nutritious and flavorful.
  • Add Heat: The Cuban Hot Sauce from Barbaro Mojo adds a delightful kick to this dish. Adjust the amount to your heat preference.

Serving Suggestions

Ropa Vieja is traditionally served with white rice, but it's also delicious with:

  • Warm tortillas for a Cuban-inspired taco night
  • Black beans and fried plantains for a full Cuban feast
  • A fresh green salad for a lighter meal

    Enjoy this classic Cuban Ropa Vieja, and bring the vibrant flavors of Cuba to your dinner table!

    Final Thoughts

    Ropa Vieja is a fantastic dish that combines simplicity with rich, complex flavors. Its slow-cooked tenderness and fragrant spices make it a family favorite that's sure to impress. Whether you're new to Cuban cuisine or a seasoned pro, this recipe is a must-try. Enjoy the warmth and comfort of Ropa Vieja, and share it with those you love.

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