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A white plate topped with ropa vieja
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Ropa Vieja

Ropa Vieja, a tasty Cuban dish with tender flank steak, delicious  peppers and onions, smothered in a well seasoned tomato sauce.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time6 hrs 15 mins
Total Time6 hrs 25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Main Dish
Keyword: ropa vieja
Servings: 6
Calories: 357kcal
Author: Rachael


  • 3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ cups onions halved and sliced thin (about 2 onions)
  • 2 red bell peppers stemmed, seeded, and cut into ½ inch wide strips
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 pounds flank steak trimmed and cut crosswise against the grain into 4 equal pieces
  • ¾ cup pitted large, brine-cured green olives, sliced
  • 1 Tablespoon distilled white vinegar


  • Heat a 12 inch skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Once oil is shimmering, add onions and peppers, and cover and cook, until softened and spotty brown, about 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Push to one side of the pan.
  • On the empty side of the pan, add tomato paste, garlic, paprika, cumin, oregano, and ½ teaspoon salt.
  • Cook uncovered for 1 minute, then stir it all together.
  • Add in wine and cook until nearly evaporated, about 2 minutes.
  • Transfer to a slow cooker.
  • Season flank steak with salt and pepper, and add to the slow cooker.
  • Add in soy sauce and bay leaves.
  • Make sure steak is covered, and cook until meat is fork tender, 6 to 7 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.
  • Transfer the steak to a cutting board, and let cool for 3-5 minutes, and then shred into bite-size pieces using forks.
  • Discard the bay leaves.
  • Stir shredded beef and olives into the slow cooker and let it sit for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in vinegar, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Serve with rice.


Calories: 357kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 91mg | Sodium: 770mg | Potassium: 829mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 1574IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 76mg | Iron: 4mg