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Quick Sofrito recipe made with Seasonal Produce

Updated: Sep 30, 2023

Introducing sofrito

You just got home from grocery shopping at Mercado Popular, arms full of your huge haul of fresh, seasonal produce. As you unpack your grocery bags, you think you are in the mood for something new, but easy to make with all these fresh, colorful veggies. We have you covered with this quick, easy, and delicious sofrito recipe that everyone in your home will love.

So you’re wondering, what is sofrito? Sofrito is a Spanish word, meaning stir-fry. Homemade sofrito is used as a base to add flavor to many different delicious recipes. Sofrito is commonly stir-fried in a bit of olive oil before using in a recipe. It is a quick, delicious base made with fresh herbs and veggies.

Sofrito is often found in Latin American, Spanish, Italian, Caribbean, Cuban, and Puerto Rican cuisine. It is also common in the Dominican Republic. There are variations of sofrito depending on where you look and what flavors you want. You can try a Spanish sofrito recipe to add flavor to your favorite Puerto Rican food or add a punch of flavor to your arroz con gandules (rice with peas). Sofrito ranges in various colors from green to orange to red and can taste mild, spicy, or somewhere in between.

The main ingredients in sofrito recipes

Homemade sofrito consists of aromatic fresh veggies cut into small pieces and sautéed or braised in olive oil. Some common recipes also consist of garlic cloves, onions, red bell pepper, and/or green bell pepper. A wide range of peppers can be used in sofrito, which makes it a good recipe for a lot of your seasonal produce.

In the Dominican Republic, cubanelle peppers and Aji Dulce Peppers are common in sofrito recipes. Aji dulce peppers are not widely available in the US, so if you can’t find aji dulce, you can also use cubanelle peppers instead.

Puerto Rican sofrito is often referred to as recaito, typically using ingredients such as culantro, garlic, green peppers, and ají dulce.

You will be surprised to see how many delicious recipes you can make using your sofrito.

Five things you can do with Sofrito

You are here because you are a fan of delicious recipes that require little prep time but pack big flavor! This sofrito recipe will provide that and more. Here are some of the other delicious recipes you can use your sofrito in.

  • Use sofrito as your base in soups

  • Add flavor to your stews

  • Add more flavor to rice dishes like arroz con gandules (rice and peas) or arroz con pollo (rice and chicken)

  • Spice up your ground beef picadillo with sofrito

  • Use to make a flavor-packed tomato sauce

Now, let’s get to why you are here.

Sofrito Recipe

Prep time - 10 minutes

Serving size - 3 - 4 cups

Total time - 25 minutes

1 green bell pepper

1 red bell pepper

1 large yellow onion or red onion

1 garlic clove minced

1 bunch of cilantro

1 large tomato (optional)

Adobo seasoning (optional)

Sazon seasoning (optional)

Instructions

  1. Chop all veggies coarsely

  2. In a large skillet, add olive oil to medium heat. Add the chopped onions and saute for about 5 minutes. Add the peppers and minced garlic clove. Stir and saute chopped veggies for about 5 more minutes, until veggies release their aroma, or until the tomatoes are softened.

  3. Allow sofrito to cool.

  4. For a smoother sofrito base, blend sauteed veggies together in a food processor until the mixture is smooth like a puree.

  5. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and this sofrito recipe can last up to two weeks.

  6. Freeze in ice cube trays, then pop them into freezer storage bags to use later. Your cubes will last up to 6 months in the freezer.

More Options

Try some of these alternative options for a different flavor.

  • For a bolder flavor, try substituting cilantro for 1/2 a bunch of recao or culantro. Culantro is a stronger flavored herb common in Puerto Rican cuisine and widely used in the Dominican Republic.

  • Use coriander if you don’t have cilantro or culantro but still want the added flavor.

  • You can use aji dulce peppers or sweet peppers if you have them.

  • Add dried oregano, salt, and/or adobo to add more seasonings to your sofrito.

  • Annatto is another option you can use for extra flavor, color, and aroma.

Your new sofrito recipe is sure to become a staple in your home. Play around with the different recipe styles to use your fresh seasonal produce. Enjoy!

Want more fresh food resources? Download the guide to grow and make your own salsa.


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