These Puerto Rican piononos are sweet and savory treats made with a combination of fried brown plantains, picadillo, and beaten eggs. The result is sweet plantain cups stuffed with a salty ground beef & fluffy egg filling. They're the perfect bite-sized appetizers or entrees that capture the flavors of Puerto Rico in a cup!
Why We Love This Recipe
While the word has origins in Italy, Spain and the Philippines, the Puerto Rican version of piononos is actually said to have originated from baker D. Juan Boschetti.
They were originally known on the island to be sweet, sponge cake based treats filled with sweeter ingredients.
Nowadays they lean on the much more savory side with a picadillo-egg filling that pulls at my heart strings, as a true sweet-and-savory lover.
If you enjoy savory bite-sized appetizers, you will love these.
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Here are the ingredients you will need to make piononos:
For the Picadillo:
For the Plantains:
- Canola or vegetable oil
- Brown plantains
- Nonstick spray
See recipe card for quantities.
Step by Step Instructions
Step 1: Make the picadillo. Add sofrito and ground beef to a pan over medium high heat. Cook until the beef has browned, breaking up the meat. Add seasonings, bay leaves, tomato sauce, and olives, stir and bring to a heavy simmer. Lower, cover, and cook for 10 minutes or until beef is fully cooked.
Step 2: Peel & cut the plantains. Cut the tips off the plantains and peel the skin. Slice plantains into fourths lengthwise to create thick strips (see images above).
Step 3: Fry plantains. Heat oil in a clean frying pan. Fry plantain strips in batches, flipping to brown on both sides. Transfer fried plantains to a paper towel lined plate to drain any excess oil.
Optional: Feel free to top the eggs with a sprinkle of grated cheese before baking, if desired.
Step 5: Bake. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit / 205 degrees Celsius. Bake the piononos for 10-15 minutes, or until the eggs are no longer liquid.
Step 6: Enjoy. Remove from the tins and let cool before enjoying!
I recommend placing a baking sheet under the muffin tin to prevent any grease from spilling into the oven.
What to Eat with Piononos
This recipe goes well with these sides & sauces:
While it's not considered authentic, you can totally add some shredded cheese to your piononos before popping in the oven.
Special Kitchen Tools
The only special equipment you will need to make piononos is a muffin tin!
These reheat well in the oven or microwave, and can keep up to 5 days when stored in the fridge in an air tight container.
I do not recommend freezing them.
More Puerto Rican Recipes with Picadillo
You will likely not have leftover picadillo, but in case you do, here are some other fun ways to use your leftovers: