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Whole30 Ropa Vieja Paleo Primal Gourmet Easy Cuban Recipe Shredded Beef

Whole30 Ropa Vieja - Stovetop Version

This Whole30 Ropa Vieja is a super easy and delicious Cuban dish that is perfect for meal prep or a hearty weeknight dinner.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Dinner
Cuisine Cuban
Servings 6 people


  • 2 pounds flank steak
  • Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil plus extra, if required
  • 1 medium onion - julienned
  • 1 green pepper - julienned
  • 1 red pepper - julienned
  • 1 yellow pepper - julienned
  • 5 cloves garlic - roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dry oregano
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes look for a BPA-free can
  • juice of 1 lime - plus extra lime wedges for serving
  • 1 cup compliant olives - sliced such as castelvetrano or manzanilla
  • ½ cup cilantro - roughly chopped (optional)
  • jalapeño and avocado - for serving (optional)


  • Preheat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add avocado oil and heat until shimmering.
  • Slice the beef in half so that it fits into the pot and season both sides with salt & pepper. Working in batches, carefully add the beef to the hot oil and cook until browned, around 4 minutes. Flip and cook until browned on the second side, around 4 minutes. Transfer the beef to a bowl and set aside.
  • If necessary, add avocado oil to the pot so that there is a total of 2 tablespoons cooking fat. Add the onion and peppers and season with a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring and scraping brown bits off the bottom of the pot, until the vegetables have slightly softened, around 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 60 seconds.
  • Add garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, paprika & cumin and cook, tossing everything to coat, for 60 seconds. Add crushed tomatoes, lime juice, and olives and stir to combine. Return the beef to the pot and push it down so that it's partially covered by some of the vegetables and liquid. Bring the sauce to a simmer, cover with a lid, turn the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1.5 to 2 hours or until the beef is easily shredded with a fork.
  • Shred the ropa vieja with two forks and return it to the pot. Toss everything to coat, taste the ropa vieja for seasoning and adjust with salt & pepper as desired. Add cilantro, if using, and stir through.
  • Serve the ropa vieja with cauliflower rice and/or plantains (see my blog for recipes) and garnish with jalapeño, avocado and more cilantro, if using.
Keyword cuban cuisine, ropa vieja, shredded beef, whole30 ropa vieja