Pastelón is a dish traditionally found in the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico.
However, just because the recipe is the same doesn’t mean the techniques are.
In a traditional Puerto Rican pastelón recipe, you’ll find that they don’t mash their plantains. Instead of boiling and mashing the plantains, they slice the plantains long ways and fry them.
I’ve actually tried that technique once before and though it was unique in texture and delicious, I prefer the Dominican technique. The plantain is smoother and it holds together a lot easier.
Pastelón is meant to be the Caribbean version of the Italian dish Lasagna. Plantains plays the role of the pasta, beef plays the role of the beef, and mozzarella plays the role of the parmesan and bechamel.
What do I need to make pastelón?
Ripe plantains. Plantains are practically the straw of the show in this amazing lasagna remix. Make sure they’re nice and ripe!
Ground beef. Whether you choose turkey, beef, pork, or chicken it’s up to you! You could even make this vegan by substituting the beef with lentils, mushrooms, and literally so much more. Pretty much anything ground works.
Onion. Garlic. Green Peppers. Necessary for flavoring the ground beef and for adding a fresh touch.
Mozzarella. Creates the gooey top layer that we all love.
Seasonings. Caribbean flavors are a must in a pastelón!
Butter. Needed to yield smooth, buttery mashed plantains.
How do I make pastelón?
Can I make this with green plantains?
This recipe is intended to be made with ripe plantains for the flavor contrast of the sweetness in the plantains and the saltiness in the beef and mozzarella. So, you could definitely make it with green plantains, but I don’t know if you could still call it a traditional pastelón.
Can I make this with the Puerto Rican technique?
Of course you can, and if you’ve already tried my technique I strongly encourage you to try out the other one! Just make sure you add a scrambled egg to your pastelón to make sure the layers stick together. With that addition, you can use my recipe for that technique too!
- 4 ripe plantains
- 1 tbsp butter
- ½ onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ green bell pepper chopped
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 sazon packet
- ¼ tsp adobo
- ¼ tsp oregano
- To taste salt and pepper
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 cup mozzarella cheese
- Peel plantains and cut in half. Add plantains to a pot of water over high heat until soft.
- Remove from heat. Place plantains in a bowl with butter and mash until completely smooth. Set aside.
- Add onions, garlic, and peppers to a pan over low to medium heat. Cook until soft.
- Add beef and seasonings to the pan and cook.
- When almost fully cooked, mix in tomato paste. Set aside.
- Butter a baking dish and add ½ of the plantain mixture. Use a fork to flatten.
- Add beef mixture to the dish and flatten.
- Add the rest of the plantain and top with mozzarella cheese.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 375°.
- Let cool and serve. Enjoy!
Thank you for reading my Pastelón recipe, if you decide to try it out tag me on instagram @breakthrukitchen. Be sure to subscribe down below to get notified when I post more recipes like this!