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Our Slow Cooker Carne Picada recipe will become one of your favorite weeknight meals! It is so incredibly tasty and easy to prepare using your slow cooker.
Carne picada meat is perfect for using in easy weeknight dinners like burrito bowls, tacos, or simply served over white rice. With just 15 minutes of prep, simple ingredients, and 3 easy steps, you can have a perfect beef picada dinner.
I guarantee you are going to love this recipe for beef carne picada. It is melt-in-your-mouth delicious and as easy as can be to make. The first time I made this recipe, you should have seen the look on my family’s faces! Instant obsession. I get asked to make this beef picada recipe almost weekly.
One of my favorite times to make this carne picada slow cooker recipe is for my kids’ birthdays. They all love it, and because it’s so easy and cooks all in the crockpot, it saves me time to make the rest of their day extra special.
It’s a perfect celebration dinner because you can make it ahead of time and serve it with everything from rice to a taco bar (my favorite!). Carne picada recipes don’t get more delicious than this!
What is carne picada?
In Spanish, carne means “meat”, and picada means “chopped”. Typically, packages of carne picada meat at the market are sold as small pieces of beef, either cut into thin slices or cubes.
Some also refer to this cut of beef as Carne Picado, which means “bitten”, Carne Molida (“ground”), or Carne Moída (“minced”). You may even hear people refer to it simply as minced meat.
There is also carne guisada, which is a beef stew.
Is carne picada the same as carne asada?
Depending on the cut of beef, you may even hear some people call variations of this recipe Steak Picado, but it shouldn’t be confused with Carne Asada, which is thin slices of grilled steak.
Carne picada is a beef recipe with more sauce, using either chopped roast beef or steak, while carne asada is grilled and generally served as strips of steak. We have a recipe for carne asada, so you can try both!
🥩 Carne Picada Ingredients
- Bottom round roast, cut into ½-inch cubes
- All-purpose flour
- Sea salt and black pepper
- Garlic Powder
- Olive oil
- Fire-roasted diced tomatoes
Although you can generally find cubed bottom round roast to use for this recipe, or can ask your butcher to cut it for you, you can also easily prepare your own carne picada meat at home. Simply cut a bottom round roast into ½-inch cubes.
You need very few ingredients to make the best carne picada recipe you will ever eat. Aside from the beef, all you need are common seasonings and the fire-roasted tomatoes that really make this dish pop.
What kind of meat is used for carne picada?
Although you can use other cuts of beef to make beef carne picada, we use bottom round roast as it becomes perfectly tender when you cook it in the crockpot.
If you cook for 5 hours instead of 3, you could also use chuck roast, which is one of our favorite cuts of beef because it’s inexpensive and so tender when braised low and slow! Beef chuck roast is one of our favorite meals, along with this carne picada recipe.
🔪 How to Cook Carne Picada
- Dry bottom round roast cut into ½-inch cubes by patting with paper towels. Combine all-purpose flour, paprika, salt and pepper, and garlic powder in a bowl, and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet. Sear beef over medium-high heat in batches until all pieces are browned. Transfer the seared beef to your slow cooker.
- Stir in the flour seasoning blend and fire-roasted tomatoes, then place the lid on your slow cooker and cook for 3 hours on high.
Garnish with fresh cilantro (optional), and enjoy!
For full ingredient measurements and helpful tips, keep scrolling to the recipe card below!
⭐ Family Foodie Tips
My favorite part about this carne picada crockpot recipe is that it’s really so easy to make. But, I have a few tips for you that will give you the best results every time!
- Sear the beef first for the best flavor – don’t skip this step! The beef sears quickly and easily since it’s cut into chunks, and that extra sear makes a big difference.
- If you have time to spare, cook your carne picada beef for longer. Cook on low until very tender, about 5 hours. This will give you the most tender crockpot dinner.
- I always recommend using Certified Angus Beef® brand beef to maximize flavor and tenderness.
- If you’re a busy mom like me, make slow cooker carne picada on the weekends along with a batch of Portuguese rice or pasta. Then you can simply heat, assemble, and enjoy on those busy nights when cooking something fresh isn’t possible. Carne picada beef makes a great rice bowl to take to work for lunch, too!
👪 Serving Size
Our recipe for slow cooker carne picada makes about 8 servings. This is perfect for a family dinner with leftovers or even a party.
Carne picada is a great recipe for game day thanks to how many servings it makes and how easy it is to prep and cook!
🥫 Storing Carne Picada Meat
Store your leftover carne picada meat, or your make ahead meals, in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. I like to keep mine separate from anything I’m serving it with, like rice or pasta.
🌮 Recipes with Carne Picada
The possibilities for what you can make with crock pot carne picada meat is endless. Our recipe is full of delicious Mexican flavors that are perfect for making so many delicious meals.
Mexican Pizza Beef Flatbread
Slow cooker carne picada is the best topping for a delicious Mexican pizza recipe! It will be similar to Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza, only so much more delicious.
Use a flatbread as the dough for your pizza, like I did with my Pulled Pork Flatbread Pizza, and top with a fried or poached egg. Cotija cheese, queso fresco, or just a Mexican cheese blend are perfect for a Mexican pizza recipe.
The combination of the runny egg with spicy carne picada is just wow!
Carne Picada Tacos
Carne picada slow-cooked with spicy tomato gravy is perfect for serving in tacos. You can use flour tortillas or corn tortillas. Top with all of your favorite taco toppings, like we did for our Pulled Pork Tacos, like:
- Shredded lettuce
- Sour cream
- Cotija cheese or queso fresco
- Fresh cilantro
- Lime zest and jalapenos
The whole family will gobble these tacos up and ask for more! Trust me – mine does every time!
Carne Picada Fajitas
Fajitas are one of the best recipes with carne picada! Serve them in tortillas with peppers, onions, and a side of rice.
You can even make it a fajita bar and set out the fillings separately for everyone to make their own carne picada fajitas!
Carne Picada Beef Rice Bowls
Serve this dish over white rice or Portuguese rice, cotija cheese, sour cream, guacamole or sliced avocados, and fresh cilantro as a garnish. I like to top mine with a poached egg, just like with a Mexican pizza.
The fresh flavors and tender carne picada, plus the slightly spicy tomato gravy, blend together perfectly with rice. And, it comes together for a quick and easy dinner any night of the week!
Carne Picada Breakfast Tacos
Breakfast tacos are one of my favorite ways to serve this recipe. In fact, this is one of my favorite breakfast recipes ever.
What could be better than scrambled eggs, cheese, and crockpot carne picada beef? These tasty tacos spice up any morning routine and are a great way to start the day!
Next, I want to try making Picadas Veracruz using this recipe. What do you think? Let me know if that’s a recipe you want to see!
🥗 What to Serve with Spicy Carne Picada
- Elotes Mexicanos or Mexican Street Corn Dip are both a perfect match for this slow cooker crockpot recipe.
- Spicy beef is delicious served with baked crispy potato wedges.
- You can serve it simply over pasta for a spicy beef tomato sauce pasta.
End your meal with a delicious Mexican dessert recipe, like Caramel Apple Empanadas, Carlota de Limon, or Fresas con Crema (Mexican Strawberries and Cream). Another great choice for dessert are our Key Lime Pie Bars!
For easy drink recipes that pair perfectly with this recipe, give these a try:
- Moscato Sangria
- Frozen Coconut Rum Cocktail
- Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri Recipe
- Best Mimosa Recipe (“MOMosa”)
🥟 Mexican Food Ideas
Love Mexican cuisine as much as we do? Then you will love these other Mexican food ideas!
- Chilaquiles Rojos (Mexican Breakfast Skillet)
- Mexican Lasagna Recipe with Tortillas
- Chicken Taquitos Recipe
- Easy Shrimp Mexican Rice Bowl Recipe
🍲 Easy Weeknight Crockpot Meals
Some of my favorite easy weeknight dinners are slow cooker recipes. Check these out:
- Slow Cooker Chuck Roast
- Slow Cooker Pork Ribs with Bourbon BBQ Sauce
- Easy Slow Cooker Roast Beef Recipe
- Slow Cooker Beef Tips and Gravy
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Did you try our slow cooker carne picada recipe? It’s a favorite holiday meal of ours (we count it right up there with Instant Pot Prime Rib!), and one of the best weeknight dinners you can make when you’re busy.
Let us know what you think in the comments below and with a rating!
Slow Cooker Carne Picada
- 2 pounds Bottom round roast cut in ½-inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cans fire roasted diced tomatoes 14.5oz
- Cube (if necessary) and dry the beef by patting with paper towels. Combine flour, paprika, salt, pepper and garlic powder, and set aside.
- Heat olive oil in heavy-bottom pan. Sear beef over medium-high heat in batches until browned. Transfer seared beef to slow cooker.
- Stir in reserved flour blend and the fire roasted tomatoes.
- Cook for 3 hours on high. Garnish with fresh cilantro and enjoy!
- It’s important to sear the beef for best flavor, so don’t skip that step. The beef sears quickly and easily as it is already cut into small chunks.
- Want a longer cook time? Cook the beef on low until very tender, about 5 hours.
- We always recommend using Certified Angus Beef® brand beef to maximize flavor and tenderness.
- If you prefer a milder flavor, use regular canned diced tomatoes.
- If you want more sauce to top over rice or pasta, use 2 cans of fire roasted tomatoes. If you want a drier beef for tacos, use 1 can of fire roasted tomatoes.