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PIONONOS de Picadillo

Prep Time:  |  Cook Time:  |  Servings:  |  Calories:

<p>Piononos are a street food snack you'd find at beachside snack shacks called <em>kioskos </em>in Puerto Rico. They're made with a flavorful picadillo (ground beef filling), wrapped in thinly sliced ripe plantains, <span>Sargento® Shredded 4 Cheese Mexican Natural Cheese </span>battered and deep fried right before your eyes! Because the batter and deep frying can sometimes feel heavy, this recipe makes miniature versions in the oven with the convenience of a muffin pan.</p>

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F.
  2. Slice your ripe plantains into 4-5 thin strips.
  3. Over medium-high heat in an 8-inch skillet or pot, shallow fry your plantains in 2 tablespoons of oil until they are golden brown, 2-3 minutes. Remove from the oil and set aside on a plate lined with paper towels. Sprinkle salt on the plantain slices.
  4. Over medium-high heat in a medium-sized pot or pan, saute your ground beef until browned, 10-12 minutes. Add in tomato paste and saute for 1-2 minutes. Add in sofrito, sazon and olive brine. Saute for 8-10 minutes. Add in 1/2 cup of shredded cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Set your mixture aside and allow to completely cool.
  5. Add a ½ teaspoon of water into your eggs and whisk. Set aside.
  6. Using a nonstick standard muffin pan, place a pinch of shredded cheese at the bottom of your tin molds. Cut one of the thin slices of plantain into 4 pieces. Then add one of those pieces at the bottom of your muffin mold, on top of the cheese and mush it down with your fingers. This way you're spreading the plantain enough to cover the entire bottom of the mold.
  7. Then add your long slice of cooked plantain in the muffin tin slot, ensuring it hugs the walls of the muffin mold, creating a plantain wall. This should create a plantain cup. Press some shredded cheese between the plantain and the rim of the muffin slot. The cheese is gonna fuse with the plantain. Add in 2 teaspoons of your ground beef mixture into the plantain cup. Then pour in about a tablespoon of egg. Top with 3-4 tablespoons of shredded cheese. Place your piononos in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Let rest for 5 minutes. Serve.

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