I love to eat, and I love to eat real food! I refuse to eat salad or veggies with chicken every day — I refuse to cut things I love out of my nutrition. I stand tall for balance! I stand tall for establishing eating habits that can be sustained long-term and for real life! So, I’m always looking to take Cuban dishes, which remind me of my childhood, shake them up, and make them as clean as possible!

Here’s a family-favorite and a Cuban classic recipe “Beckified” and made to my clean eating and Portion Fix portion control standards. There’s an overload of veggies because I roll like that! Hint Hint: I love to add butternut squash for an unexpected twist!

I use my Ninja Slow Cooker, which is one of my favorite appliances ever because it allows me to brown the meat right in the slow cooker! But you can always brown the meat first on the stovetop before transferring to the slow cooker. Don’t worry about it being cooked through it will cook while in the slow cooker!

Healthy Slow Cooker Cuban Style Picadillo [Recipe]
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Cuisine: Cuban
Serves: 11
  • 2 lbs 93% lean grass-fed ground beef (or ground turkey)
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 1 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 plum tomatoes, quartered
  • 8 oz can organic tomato sauce, no salt added
  • ¼ cup green olives with brine (I prefer more like ½ cup olives)
  • 4–6 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ½ cup white cooking wine
  • ½ cup water
  • ¼ cup minced cilantro
  • 1 cup diced butternut squash
  • Himalayan salt and fresh pepper, to taste
  1. Brown the meat in my Ninja 3:1 slow cooker. (If you don’t have one, you can use a large deep skillet on medium-high heat.) Season the ground beef with salt and a little pepper. Use a spatula to break the meat up into small pieces. I prefer tiny little pieces so take it like an extra arm workout! Once meat is no longer pink, drain all the liquid from pan.
  2. Add onions, garlic, and the diced red bell peppers to the meat, mix well and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until the onions are translucent.
  3. Switch Ninja over to the slow cooker function (or transfer the meat to the slow cooker.) Add the plum tomatoes, cilantro, tomato sauce, ½ cup water, ½ white cooking wine, ¼ cup olives. I usually add some of the brine from the olive jar for added flavor, then add the spices. Don’t be afraid to pile on the cumin. Mix all the ingredients and cover.
  4. Set slow cooker to HIGH for 3 to 4 hours or LOW for 6 to 8.
  5. hours before it’s done, add the diced butternut squash and mix well.
  6. Discard the bay leaves and serve over jasmine or brown rice. Other favorite sides are ½ serving black beans, avocado and some asparagus or brussel sprouts for added greens!
Tip: If once the dish is done, you find it too watery, you can switch the Ninja slow cooker back to the stovetop function and medium heat, uncovered, to dry it up a bit.

Portion Fix Container Count:
1 Red
1 Yellow
1 Green
1 Orange
1 tsp
0.5 P
Nutrition Information
Serving size: ½ cup Calories: 207 Fat: 8.5 Saturated fat: 3.5 Carbohydrates: 5 Sugar: 3 Sodium: 447 Fiber: 1 Protein: 28 Cholesterol: 74

Recipe Inspired By: SkinnyTaste, Crock Pot Picadillo

Slow Cooker Cuban Style Picadillo (Ground Beef)