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Costa Rican Chifrijo – GW Recipe Box

Something like a burrito bowl, something like a tortilla soup. Chifrijo is just what you’re looking for when you want it all. This Costa Rican bowl of goodness is built to be customized (or ya know… for those days when you need to clean our your pantry).  Check out the recipe below!

Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Servings: 6 friends



  • 4 cups red beans or black beans, cooked with the broth
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ⅓ cup white onion or yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 stalk celery, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon Salsa Lizano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • 4 cups of long grain rice, cooked

Pico de Gallo:

  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cup white onion, finely diced
  • 2 large tomatoes, deseeded and diced
  • Juice of 4 limes
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 large jalapeño or 2 serrano peppers, minced
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • 4 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 pound whole pork belly or 1 pound unsalted, uncured bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 8 to 10 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons salt


Combine 5 cups water, beans and the 2 whole garlic cloves in a medium pot. Bring the contents to a boil. In a medium sauce pan, preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat. Add the onions, minced garlic and celery. Season lightly with salt and pepper and continue cooking for 5 to 8 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and add the sauteed onions, celery, garlic, Salsa Lizano, cumin, pepper and salt. Return the pot to the heat and reduce from a boil to a simmer. Give one more stir, cover with a lid and allow the beans to cook until tender, 35 to 45 minutes.

Pico de gallo:
Combine the cilantro, peppers, garlic, onion and tomato in a large mixing bowl. Add the lime juice (there should be enough juice to almost cover the mixture). Season to taste. Mix well, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Heat 1 cup of the oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Allow the oil to become very hot. Add the pork, stirring as often as possible, 20 minutes. Add the garlic and salt and continue to stir until the pork is golden brown and cooked throughout, 20 to 40 minutes longer. Remove the pork from the heat and allow to fully cool. Dice the pork into small, bite sized pieces.

Add the remaining 3 cups oil to a medium pot over medium-high heat. Once the oil is completely hot, flash-fry the diced pieces of chicharron until they have a deep, rich brown color and a crunchy texture. Remove from pan and drain onto paper towels.

In a soup bowl, ladle in some rice, beans, pico de gallo, and chicharrones. Serve with sliced avocado and fresh corn tortilla chips!

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