Foodies Delight – OLLA DE CARNE – Meat Stew and Soup

In every Costa Rican home there is a home recipe for the typical OLLA DE CARNE. Usually, it’s passed from one generation to the next. This one was given to me by a close Tica friend.

Get lots of other yummy options for traditional Costa Rican food



2 kg of beef meat prepared with salt and sour orange in big pieces with no fat.
2 corncobs chopped in pieces.
12 cups of water
2 bay leaves
2 chayotes chopped in four pieces

Towards the end add:
2 cups of water
250 gr. Of carrots cut into pieces
1 big onion chopped in four
1 sweet and red chile
3 garlic
1 roll of coriander
1 branch of celery
4 teaspoons of salt

After taking the meat out and chopping it into small pieces
500 gr. Yuca chopped into pieces
500 gr. potatoes peeled
500 gr. sweet potato peeled chopped into pieces
1 Plantain almost ripe chopped into pieces
500 gr. ripe ayote with skin chopped into pieces

Lemon (Optional)
Tortilla (Optional
Bread (Optional)


Cooking Pot


In a big bowl heat up the beef, the corncobs the water and the bay leaves. When it starts to boil turn down the heat to minimum, cover the bowl and cook until it gets soft.
Cooking time is approximately 2 hours. Mixing it once in a while. At the end add the chayotes. 2 cups of water, 250 gr. Of carrots cutted in pieces 1 big onion chopped in four, 1 sweet and red chile, 3 garlic, 1 roll of coriander, 1 branch of celery, salt.

Blend all the ingredients and add them. In the moment that it starts to boil again, take out the meat and cut it in to smaller pieces and put it back in to the bowl.

After add the yuca, the potatoes, the sweet potato, and plantain. Let everything boil, approximately for another 30 min. with the bowl covered.

At the very end add the ayote and let it boil for another 10 min.

Remove the bowl from the heat and serve it up.

Suggestion: You can drain the vegetable stock.

For 6 or 8 portions


You can add some coriander branches to add a little bit of color and pleasant smell and a few drops of lemon if you like.

Don’t forget to check out more fun foods and recipes at Wanderfood Wednesday.

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About Marina Villatoro

Marina Kuperman Villatoro CEO of, a travel resource site to inspire families to travel with kids of all ages. Marina has been an expat 20+ years in Central America raising 2 boys in a multicultural, trilingual household. She travels all over the world with her family to give first hand experiences of where to eat, stay and play with kids. Needless to say, it’s never boring! Join Marina on Facebook and Twitter for more unique and boutique family travel!

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