Sweet Plaintain Bacon Burger

Everyone has a fave burger recipe and this is mine. In Puerto Rico (my homeland!) there is a very common meat filling called picadillo. It's usually ground beef or pork with sweet raisins, spanish olives, spices and sofritto (the Puerto Rican base for almost ALL our dishes). I like to make the picadillo into a burger patty and top it with sweet fried plantains and bacon. It's Puerto Rico in one bite. TRY IT! You'll never watch West Side Story the same way again...that's assuming that you love dated musicals as much as I do.


For the patty

  • 1/2 onion
  • 1/2 green peper
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 Tbsp vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp tomato sauce
  • 1/2 lb ground chuck
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 8 medium Spanish olives, cut in 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/4 cup of raisins

For the sauce

  • 2 Tbsp ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp yellow mustard
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced


  • Four Martin's potato rolls (Or your fave burger buns)
  • Two ripe yellow plantains, cut into 1/2-inch strips on the bias
  • 4 cups corn oil
  • 8 slices of bacon
  • 1 small red onion, cut into 1/4-iinch thick rings
  • 1 tomato, sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • 1 avocado, sliced into 1/4-inch thick half moons
  • 1/2 cup shaved parmesan


To make the patty

  1. Make a soffrito in a food processor with 1/2 onion, 1/2 green pepper, 1/4 cup cilantro leaves and tender stems, and 3 cloves garlic until a paste forms.

  2. Add oregano, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, vinegar, and tomato sauce. Pulse until combined.

  3. Add this mixture to the ground meat, combine.

  4. Add olives and raisins, combine, let sit in refrigerator for at least 1 hour. TA DAA! You’ve officially made PICADILLO!

  5. Form into four 4 1/2-inch wide patties. Cook in a heavy skillet over medium heat, turning once, about 8 minutes. Let rest.

To make the sauce

  1. This is a typical Puerto Rican dipping sauce called simply Mayo-Ketchup. We're incredibly inventive people. I know. I like to add a little kick to it hence the cayenne, mustard and garlic. To make the sauce, just stir together the ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, cayenne and minced garlic.

To make the toppings

  1. Heat your corn oil in a deep skillet to 350 degrees. While the oil is heating, cut two ripe yellow plantains on a bias into 1/2-inch thick strips. Fry them up until golden brown and remove from pan. Drain on paper towels.

  2. Fry bacon until crispy, remove and dry on paper towels. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat and toast your buns in that goodness!

  3. While your buns are toasting oil a griddle and heat til smoking. Grill red onion and tomato, turning once, until slightly charred. About 2 minutes total.

  4. Take a delicious toasted bun bottom and spread a tablespoon of “Mayo-Ketchup” sauce on it. Put your picadillo patty on top. Top the patty with some plantains, sliced avocado, shaved parmesan, bacon, grilled onion, grilled tomato. Slap on the bun top and ENJOY! It’s yummy, right? Next thing you know you’re going to be flying the Puerto Rican flag in your car just like the rest of us. I’m so proud.

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Sweet Plaintain Bacon Burger