Recipe – Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew) – Colombian Aji Picante

I found these recipes on  They are both in the “dinners for under $10 section”.  This dinner will be coming to a table near me very soon…  🙂

Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew)

Chunks of beef are simmered in beer with scallions, garlic, tomatoes, cumin and cilantro. Sometimes I make it with just the meat, sometimes I add yucca or potatoes. Serve this over rice with a little aji picante and you’ll have a delicious comfort dish, Latin style!

I get lots of emails telling me how much you all love my Latin dishes. It’s probably what I do best. When I crave beef stew, it’s always this Colombian version I crave. You can use water in place of beer if you prefer. If achiote or sazon isn’t something you can find near you, leave it out, it will still be good!

This is a great recipe for those of you who own a pressure cooker. The meat comes out so tender in half the time. I’ve included directions for those of you who own a pressure cooker. I’ve never made this in my crock pot, but I’m sure it would be great too, I may experiment with it next time I make it, I would probably add less liquid.

Carne Guisada (Latin Beef Stew)

Servings:  5 • Size:  about 1 cup • Old Points:  4 pt • Points+:  6 pts Calories:  192.9 • Fat:  5.3 g • Carbs:  11.5• Fiber:  1.6 • Protein:  23.2 g • Sugar:  1.1 Sodium:  255.5 mg


  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 cup scallions, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 small tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tbsp cilantro, minced
  • 1.5 lb choice round beef stew, cut into small chunks
  • 1/3 cup light beer
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp adobo (or salt)
  • 1/2 tsp achiote (or sazon)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt to taste
  • 10 oz baby red potatoes, halved or quartered


In a large dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add scallions and garlic and sauté about 2 – 3 minutes; add tomatoes, cilantro and a pinch of salt. Cook another 2 minutes, stirring.  Add beef to the pot along with beer, water, cumin, adobo, achiote, bay leaf and salt if needed.  Cover and simmer on low heat 1 1/2 hours.  Test to make sure beef is tender, if not cook another 15 minutes.  Add potatoes and cook until soft, about 20 minutes depending on the size.

For pressure cooker instructions: 

In a large pressure cooker, heat oil over medium heat. Add scallions and garlic and sauté.  Add tomatoes, cilantro and a pinch of salt. Cook another 2 minutes, stirring, about 2 – 3 minutes; Add beef to the pot along with beer, water, cumin, adobo, achiote, bay leaf and salt if needed. Cover pressure cooker; when the lid is locked, reduce heat to low and cook 25 minutes. When the 25 minutes are up, shut stove off. When the pressure from the pot is released, remove the lid, and place the pot uncovered over medium heat. Bring to a boil, add potatoes and cook uncovered until potatoes are soft, about 20 minutes depending on the size.

Makes about 5 cups. Perfect served over 3/4 cup cooked rice.

Colombian Aji Picante

Aji picante is a spicy Colombian hot sauce served with soups, sancocho, stews, rice, beans, empanadas and more. Every Latin country has their own version of a spicy hot sauce, each unique and delicious. This is my mom’s recipe, she never measures when she cooks so it was a bit tricky getting her measurements right. A little goes a long way, you only need to add a few teaspoons to whatever you put this on. To save time, I used my mini food processor.

Colombian Aji Picante

Servings:  20 • Size:  1 tbsp • Old Points:  0 pts • Points+:  0 pts • Calories:  3.2 • Fat:  0 g • Protein:  0.2 g • Carb:  0.8 g • Fiber:  0.2 g


  • 4 large scallions
  • 1 tomato
  • 1-2 small habanero pepper (scotch bonnet pepper would work)
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 oz water
  • salt and fresh pepper

Place all ingredients in a small food processor and pulse a few times.

Posted on February 28, 2012, in Recipes and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

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  1. Pingback: Habanero Pepper Chile | Landscaping - Gardening

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