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Simple Instant Pot Steak Picadillo | 20-minute Recipe

This steak picadillo recipe is sure to be a hit for busy weeknights.  Served over rice, it’s filling, delicious, healthy, and a fun change from your average taco night.

bowl of rice with picadillo and chunks of steak

Tender steak, sweet peppers, green olives, and fire-roasted tomatoes in a flavorful sauce simmered to delicious perfection…sounds good right?  This recipe comes together so easily and is a great way to switch up taco night.  We like to serve Picadillo with steak over white rice and add all of our favorite taco toppings.  Adding sour cream, avocado, cheese, and cilantro really take it up a notch.  It’s delicious and could not be easier to make!

Traditional picadillo recipes use ground beef instead of steak, this is just a little twist on the original that I came up with when I was trying to find a creative way to use Sirloin Steak.  It’s not one of my favorite cuts of meat, so I wanted to find a way to make it a little more interesting and appealing.  I just love it cooked this way, the sauce adds so much flavor and helps to tenderize this tougher cut of meat.

instant pot filled with picadillo with chunks of steak

Instant Pot Beef Picadillo for a Crowd

It’s easy to double or triple the servings if you are serving a large group due to the simple ingredients for picadillo and the cooking time remains the same.  I like to make enough for dinner one night and lunch the next day or to serve it again later in the week. You can substitute the steak for ground beef or ground turkey if you prefer.

Stretch his recipe even further by using the leftovers as filling for burritos, you can also serve it over diced potatoes, or as part of a rice bowl with beans, cheese, and fresh avocado.

Instant Pot Steak Picadillo FAQS

Can I use a different meat instead of Sirloin Steak?

You can certainly experiment with other meats such as stew meat, lean ground beef, ground turkey, or any other ground meat.

Can I make Instant Pot Picadillo with Steak in advance?

Sure!  Picadillo tastes even better when the flavors have had time to meld together. Make it a day or two in advance and refrigerate it. You can just reheat gently on the stovetop before serving.

How do I store leftover picadillo?

It’s a great leftover!  In an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Can I freeze this Instant Pot Picadillo Recipe?

Yes, the green olives will change texture once frozen so I prefer to add them to the recipe on the day that I’m going to use the mixture. To freeze the picadillo, allow it to cool completely and then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag and remove as much air as possible. Store in the freezer for up to three months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating gently on the stove.

What if I don’t like olives?

Capers make a great substitute and they blend into the sauce a bit more, so most people won’t even know that they are there!

blue and white bowl filled with rice and traditional picadillo with a twist.  Chunks of steak.

What to Serve with My Steak Picadillo Recipe?

You can’t go wrong with black beans and long-grain white rice. Cilantro lime rice would be great too. You could also use brown rice or quinoa would be fine too.  You just need a bed of something to soak up all of the delicious sauce!  We like to serve the picadillo as a part of rice bowls and add our favorite taco toppings.  Lime juice and fresh cilantro add brightness to the dish, and sour cream, avocado, and cheese add a creaminess.  Oh and don’t forget your favorite hot sauce if you like things a little spicier!

Whether enjoyed with traditional accompaniments like rice, beans, limes, or tortillas, Picadillo’s rich comfort flavors and easy preparation make it an ideal choice for busy weeknight dinners.

Recipe Card

Simple Instant Pot Picadillo with Sirloin Steak

Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 10 people


  • Instant Pot


  • 2 lbs Sirlon Steak
  • 2 Tbs flour
  • 1 small onion diced
  • 1 red bell pepper diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced or grated
  • 16 oz can of fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbs chopped cilantro
  • 1/8-1/4 cup green olives with pimentos or capers you can choose how many you want to add


  • Season the cubed sirloin steak generously with salt and pepper and toss with the flour until well-coated. Brown meat on the sautee function of the instant pot; It does not need to be fully cooked just browned on some of the edges.
  • Remove the meat from the pan and add 1/4 of water. Cook for a minute scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any fond (brown bits.). Don't throw this away!
  • Turn off the sautee function and transfer the meat and any juices to the instant pot. Then add the rest of the ingredients, including a tablespoon or two of the brine from the olives (or capers.) Stir to combine the ingredients.
  • Cook in the Instant Pot on high pressure for 15 minutes. This recipe can be slow released (natural release) or quick released.
  • Serve over white or brown rice and garnish with cilantro, cheese, sour cream, crumbled corn chips, guacamole, hot sauce, or avocado. Any favorite taco toppings will do!

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