White Bean Stew

cuba recipes .org -White Bean Stew

Each Cuban cook has a personal recipe for white bean stew (Potaje de Frijoles Blancos). Unlike traditional asturian favada, the cuban recipe includes the pumpkin but regardless of the variations, this thick, rich potaje is a meal in itself.


  • 1 lbs. white beans (large or small I only had small and remember them being small)
  • 1 1/2 lbs. beef stew meat cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 3 small spanish chorizo's or 1/2 a large one casing removed cut into rounds
  • 1 green bell pepper minced
  • 1 onion minced
  • 1/2 head garlic mashed to a paste
  • 1 lbs. Calabaza (Butternut) cut into chunks
  • 2-3 medium potatoes peeled cut into chunks
  • salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • extra-virgin olive oil or lard as needed



Bring beans to a boil in enough water to cover them about 2-4 inches (eyeball it) when it comes to a rolling boil add beef stew meat and season with salt (normally we do not salt beans until fully cooked but if you don't salt it when there's raw meat then the meat will be bland no matter how salty the stew is). Cover and let boil until beans are tender at medium low heat.

When beans and beef are tender and cooked heat olive oil or lard in a large pan and start the sofrito by sauteeing some Spanish chorizo at medium high, when the oil turns redish add onions and bell pepper and cook for about 5 minutes or more until translucent then add garlic and cook another 1-2 minutes until fragrant, turn off heat your sofrito is done. Throw the sofrito into the pot of beans and beef, throw in the Calabaza and potatoes along with cumin and more salt if necessary (taste the liquid) bring back to a boil and cook together until Calabaza and potatoes are tender, be sure to boil uncovered after adding the sofrito and all so the stew can reduce and thicken if necessary.