Mi Madre's Sofrito Recipe Is What Gives Puerto Rican Food So Much Flavor by Elisa Schmitz

Mi Madre's Sofrito Recipe Is What Gives Puerto Rican Food So Much Flavor

If you've ever wondered what makes Puerto Rican food so dang flavorful, the answer is sofrito. Growing up, mi madre would always have sofrito on hand for whatever dinner recipe she was making. I remember the mouth-watering aroma of Puerto Rican food cooking on the stove. Most of the time, I was smelling the amazing fresh sofrito my Puerto Rican grandmother taught mi madre how to make as she grew up the youngest of 13 kids in a small town in Puerto Rico.

Today, the smell of sofrito still makes my mouth water. Sofrito is an aromatic, rich flavor base that's used in many Puerto Rican dishes, from stewed chicken (asopao de pollo, pictured below) or roasted pork to rice and beans. If you ask 10 Puerto Ricans how to make sofrito, you may get 10 slightly different recipes.

Although everyone may have their own unique way of making this delicious seasoning blend, in general, sofrito is made from fresh vegetables and herbs that are blended into a thick paste (similar to Italian pesto). Sofrito is so popular that you can buy it premade online or in stores that carry Latin foods. But it's really easy to make your own at home!

Here's what you need in order to make Puerto Rican sofrito: onion, garlic, bell pepper, cubanelle pepper, cilantro and olive oil. The ajies dulces peppers and culantro are optional. You simply pulse everything together in a blender or food processor and it's ready to use.

You can use sofrito in a variety of Puerto Rican or Latin recipes for dinner. It's a gluten-free and vegetarian seasoning base that just may transform your cooking in the most flavorful of ways!

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Cuisine: Puerto Rican
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 10


  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cubanelle peppers, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups cilantro (stems and leaves), chopped
  • extra virgin olive oil, as needed, for blending
  • 1 cup culantro (optional)
  • 1/2 cup ajies dulces peppers, chopped (optional)

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Recipe Notes

  • If you can't find cubanelle peppers, you can use banana peppers.
  • Store leftover sofrito in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It also can be frozen. 
  • Consider freezing individual portions of sofrito in ice cube trays so you can easily pop out small amounts at a time. 

Here's how to make it:

  1. Add all the vegetable and herb ingredients to a mixing bowl or directly into a blender or food processor. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, if desired.
  2. Pulse until finely chopped and blended. Add a drizzle of olive oil as needed to blend everything evenly. Consistency should be like pesto.
  3. Use immediately or refrigerate until ready to use.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving

Calories: 27

Total Fat: 1.5g

Saturated Fat: 0.2g

Cholesterol: 0mg

Sodium: 3mg

Total Carbohydrate: 3.5g

Dietary Fiber: 0.6g

Total Sugars: 1.4g

Protein: 0.6g

Vitamin D: 0mcg

Calcium: 11mg

Iron: 0mg

Potassium: 75mg

Recipe cooking times, nutritional information and servings are approximate and provided for your convenience. However, 30Seconds is not responsible for the outcome of any recipe, nor may you have the same results because of variations in ingredients, temperatures, altitude, errors, omissions or cooking/baking abilities. This recipe has been analyzed by VeryWellFit. However, any nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and it is up to the individual to ascertain accuracy. To ensure image quality, we may occasionally use stock photography.

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Elisa Schmitz
Oh, so tasty. This recipe is bringing back so many good memories for me of Puerto Rican flavors simmering on the stove. So good!
I haven’t made sofrito before but do love the taste. Will try it.

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