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Ropa Vieja: Thin shreds of flank steak braised in a rich tomato vegetable sauce with olives &capers. Prepare in an Instant Pot OR Slow-Cooker.

Ropa Vieja {Cuban Shredded Beef}

Take advantage of either the slow-cooker or the Instant Pot to turn out this saucy, shredded, salty, sweet Cuban Classic flank steak preparation. Serve with some hot, cooked rice, a shower of fresh cilantro, and some lime wedges for squeezing and and feel like you've been transported to Miami!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 40 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 186 kcal
Author Rebecca Lindamood

Ingredients

  • 2 to 2 1/2 pounds beef flank steak
  • 2 packets Sazon Goya or 1 1/4 teaspoons plus 1 1/4 teaspoons seasoning salt separated
  • 1 tablespoon peanut or canola oil plus 1 teaspoon separated
  • 1 large green pepper seeded, stemmed, and diced
  • 1 large onion trimmed of root and blossom ends, peeled, and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 1 can petite diced tomatoes in their juices 28 ounces
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus a pinch separated
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
  • 1 jar green olives with pimientos 5.75 ounces or thereabouts, drained and cut in half
  • 1 jar capers 2 ounces, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup golden raisins If omitting, add 2 tablespoons sugar., optional
  • hot cooked rice or noodles
  • cilantro or parsley and fresh lime wedges for garnish optional

Instructions

To Make in the Slow Cooker:

  1. Sprinkle one packet of the Sazon Goya (or 1 1/4 teaspoons of seasoning salt) over both sides of the flank steak. Heat the tablespoon of oil in a cast-iron or other heavy skillet on high heat. When the oil is very shimmery and has faint wisps of smoke rising from it, lay the flank steak down in it carefully. Don't move the steak for 4 minutes. Use tongs to flip the steak to sear the other side for another 4 minutes. After searing the steak, use tongs to transfer it to the crock of your slow cooker. Cover and set the slow-cooker to HIGH.

  2. Set the pan back on the burner, dropping the heat to medium low. If the pan is dry, add the additional teaspoon of peanut or canola oil and swirl, then add the green peppers and onions along with a pinch of salt. Sautee, stirring frequently, until the onions and peppers have a touch of colour around the edges, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes, beef broth, wine, remaining packet of Sazon (or last 1 1/4 teasoons of seasoning salt), olives, capers, raisins, kosher salt, and coarse black pepper, raise the heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Pour over the seared flank steak in the slow-cooker. The flank steak should be covered by vegetables and sauces. Cover the slow-cooker and continue cooking on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.

  3. After the time is up, use tongs to scrape anything off of the top of the steak and transfer the steak to a cutting board. Cover and let it cook while you address the steak.

  4. Hold the steak down at one end with a fork. Poke another fork into the steak near the anchoring fork and pull away, down the length of the steak, shredding the steak into long, thin, ropy strips. Repeat until the whole steak has been shredded. Return the shredded meat to the slow-cooker and toss to distribute everything evenly. Serve hot, warm, or room temperature on rice or noodles. If desired, garnish with chopped, fresh cilantro or parsley and some fresh lime wedges for squeezing over the dish.

To Make in an Instant Pot

  1. Sprinkle one packet of the Sazon Goya (or 1 1/4 teaspoons of seasoning salt) over both sides of the flank steak. Heat the tablespoon of oil in an Instant Pot set to SAUTE. When the oil is very shimmery lay the flank steak down in it carefully. You may need to cut the steak in half to fit. Don't move the steak for 4 minutes. Use tongs to flip the steak to sear the other side for another 4 minutes. Repeat with the other half if you needed to trim it to fit. After searing the steak, use tongs to transfer it to a plate.

  2. If the pan is dry, add the additional teaspoon of peanut or canola oil, then add the green peppers and onions along with a pinch of salt. Saute, stirring frequently, until the onions and peppers have a touch of colour around the edges, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook just until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes, beef broth, wine, remaining packet of Sazon (or last 1 1/4 teasoons of seasoning salt), olives, capers, raisins, kosher salt, and coarse black pepper, return the flank steak to the pot, pressing to submerge the meat as much as possible. Fix the Instant Pot's lid in place, be sure the vent is in the closed position, and set to High Pressure manually for 70 minutes.

  3. After the time is up, release the pressure by carefully venting, remove the lid, use tongs to scrape anything off of the top of the steak and transfer the steak to a cutting board.

  4. Hold the steak down at one end with a fork. Poke another fork into the steak near the anchoring fork and pull away, down the length of the steak, shredding the steak into long, thin, ropy strips. Repeat until the whole steak has been shredded. Return the shredded meat to the Instant Pot and toss to distribute everything evenly. Serve hot, warm, or room temperature on rice or noodles. If desired, garnish with chopped, fresh cilantro or parsley and some fresh lime wedges for squeezing over the dish.

Nutrition Facts
Ropa Vieja {Cuban Shredded Beef}
Amount Per Serving
Calories 186 Calories from Fat 36
% Daily Value*
Fat 4g6%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 542mg23%
Potassium 396mg11%
Carbohydrates 17g6%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 11g12%
Protein 13g26%
Vitamin A 55IU1%
Vitamin C 14mg17%
Calcium 31mg3%
Iron 1.4mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.