If you’ve ever tried the classic Puerto Rican dish Mofongo, you likely know that it’s pure comfort food bliss. A mound of mashed plantain cooked in olive oil and seasonings, slathered with a flavorful sauce is just so good! In this traditional, hearty dish, I created a Caribbean style stew, packed with sofrito, vegetables, and red beans. It’s colorful and downright delicious served over the plantains. My recipe for Mofongo with Caribbean Vegetable Stew is completely plant-based (vegan) and gluten-free too.
I have had the good fortune to study about Puerto Rican cuisine on my trips there, and I have fallen in love with this regional food, which features a stunning variety of diverse plant foods. However, I am clearly not an expert on the topic of Puerto Rican culinary traditions—I encourage you to check out the work of my colleague Dr. Sylvia Melendez Klinger, who was born there, to learn more about this vibrant food culture.
During my trips to Puerto Rico, mofongo was always something I could reliably enjoy while eating a plant-based diet, no matter where I was, accompanied with a lovely sautéed vegetable sauce. In California, my whole family has developed a craving for mofongo and we enjoy making this recipe every few months. Every time I spy plantains at my supermarket, I set out to create this delicious dish at home. The art of culinary traditions in Puerto Rico, like sofrito, and Caribbean foods like plantains, yuca, and calabaza, holds a soft spot in my heart forever. I hope you enjoy this recipe just as much as our family does! Check out my step-by-step guide for making it below.
This dish may seem complicated, but it actually goes really quickly and the recipe really does make a meal in one. You can get the whole thing done in about 40 minutes. Try it on a weekend night, when you have a bit more time to spend on shopping and cooking. I healthified my recipe a bit, too—classic mofongo can be drenched in oil and salt, and include pork rinds, too. My 100% plant-based recipe is light on fat, and heavy on flavor. I share my easy, step-by-step directions in this recipe. Enjoy!
Dive into the flavors of Puerto Rico with this classic, comfort food tradition—Mofongo with Vegetable Caribbean Stew—which is plant-based (vegan) and gluten-free.
- ½ large green bell pepper, sliced (use remaining in stew)
- ¼ large onion, sliced (use remaining in stew)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup cilantro, fresh
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small red chili
- 1 teaspoon annatto, ground
- 4 plantains, green (look for these at a Latin supermarket if you can’t find them in your neighborhood market)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon adobo salt seasoning (buy prepared, or mix equal parts salt, paprika, black pepper, oregano, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, and chili powder)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Make sofrito by placing all sofrito ingredients in a food processor or chopper and processing until finely chopped, but not liquefied. Alternatively, chop by hand very finely.
- Make stew by heating 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large skillet or saucepan. Add sofrito and sauté for about 3 minutes.
- Add bell pepper, onion, and squash and sauté for an additional 8 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, and beans. Cover and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes until thickened and tender. Season with salt as needed.
- While stew is cooking, prepare mofongo.
- Peel plantains by slitting the peels and peeling off the skin, (plantains don’t peel as easily as bananas) and then slice.
- Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet until very hot. Add sliced plantains.
- Cook plantains, turning over to cook both sides with tongs, for about 4-5 minutes, until the plantains turn dark golden-yellow in color, but not brown.
- Remove cooked plantains and place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain off excess oil.
- Place cooked plantains in a medium bowl with adobo seasoning and garlic and mash until soft, but with chunks remaining.
- Fill 4 small soufflé cups or ramekins with plantain mixture and pat firmly.
- To serve, turn out formed mofongo on a dinner plate, and serve with a generous portion of stew.
- Makes 4 servings (about 3/4 cup mofongo + 1 1/2 cups stew per serving)
- Category: Entree
- Cuisine: Caribbean
- Serving Size: 1 serving
- Calories: 378
- Sugar: 35 g
- Sodium: 151 mg
- Fat: 14 g
- Saturated Fat: 2 g
- Carbohydrates: 40 g
- Fiber: 13 g
- Protein: 8 g
Keywords: mofongo, vegan mofongo, healthy mofongo
For other plant-based foods from around the world, check out some of my favorites:
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