Easy Exquisite Filipino Beef Caldereta

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Are you tired of the same old beef stew and craving something new? Look no further, my fellow culinary adventurers, as we take a mouthwatering journey to the Philippines and explore the scrumptious world of beef caldereta. Traditionally served at special occasions, this rich, hearty, and flavor-packed stew will quickly become a staple in your household, as it combines tender beef with a symphony of spices, potatoes, carrots, and bell peppers, all simmered to perfection in a savory tomato-based sauce.

But wait, there’s more! What truly sets beef caldereta apart from your run-of-the-mill stew is the surprising secret ingredient: liver spread. Yes, you read that correctly – liver spread! This velvety addition not only contributes to the delectable richness of the dish, but also provides a delightful umami flavor that will have your taste buds singing in harmony. So, whether you’re a seasoned chef or a novice cook, get ready to impress your friends, family, and even yourself with this epicurean delight from the Pearl of the Orient. So, let’s sharpen those knives, dust off the cutting board, and dive into this culinary masterpiece. Next stop, Filipino beef caldereta!

Yield & Servings

4-6 servings


2 lbs beef chuck, cut into 1.5-inch cubes
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup tomato sauce
2 cups beef broth
⅓ cup soy sauce
⅓ cup liver spread or liver pâté
2 bay leaves
1 tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp paprika
½ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
1 cup green olives, pitted
1 cup carrots, chopped
2 medium potatoes, chopped
Salt, to taste

Notable Equipment & Tools

Large pot or Dutch oven
Cutting board
Wooden spoon

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Gather and Prep Your Ingredients

All ingredients ready? Let’s begin! In a large pot or Dutch oven, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat.

Step 2: Brown Beef Cubes and Set Aside

Add the beef cubes and cook until browned on all sides, about 5-7 minutes. Remove the beef from the pot and set aside.

Step 3: Sauté Onion and Garlic in Pot

In the same pot, add the chopped onion and garlic. Sauté for 2-3 minutes, or until the onion is translucent.

Step 4: Add Bell Peppers and Cook Further

Add the chopped red and green bell peppers to the pot and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.

Step 5: Add Beef, Sauces, and Broth to Pot

Return the browned beef to the pot, along with the tomato sauce, beef broth, and soy sauce. Stir well to combine.

Step 6: Mix in Liver Spread and Seasonings

Add the liver spread or liver pâté, bay leaves, ground black pepper, paprika, and cayenne pepper (if using) to the pot. Stir well to incorporate the liver spread.

Step 7: Simmer Mixture Until Beef is Tender

Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer, covered, for 1 hour, or until the beef is tender.

Step 8: Add Olives, Carrot & Potatoes to Pot

After the beef has simmered for 1 hour, add the green olives, chopped carrots, and chopped potatoes to the pot. Stir well to combine.

Step 9: Simmer until Vegetables are Tender and Sauce Thickens

Continue to simmer the caldereta, uncovered, for an additional 20-30 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has thickened. Taste the caldereta and add salt if needed. Remove the bay leaves before serving.

Step 10: Serve Beef Caldereta with Steamed Rice

Serve the Filipino beef caldereta hot with steamed white rice. Enjoy!

Substitutions & Alternatives

Fear not, dear reader! If you find yourself missing an ingredient or two, or you’d simply prefer to switch things up a bit, we’ve got your back. Here are some handy-dandy substitutions and alternatives to ensure your Filipino beef caldereta journey is smooth sailing:

Beef Chuck: Can’t get your hands on beef chuck? Opt for other cuts of beef with some marbling, such as brisket or short ribs. You could also experiment with pork, chicken, or even tofu for a unique twist!

Vegetable Oil: Feel free to swap in another neutral oil, like canola or sunflower. If you’re craving a more luxurious touch, give coconut oil a whirl for a hint of tropical flavor.

Liver Spread or Liver Pâté: Although this ingredient adds a unique depth of flavor, you can substitute with a couple of teaspoons of Worcestershire sauce or fish sauce for a similar umami kick.

Green Olives: Not an olive lover? No problem! Try using capers or simply omit them altogether. Your caldereta won’t hold a grudge, promise.

Beef Broth: If you’re in a pinch or prefer a lighter broth, you can substitute chicken or vegetable broth. Just remember that the flavor might not be as rich and beefy.

Soy Sauce: For a gluten-free or soy-free alternative, try using tamari or coconut aminos.

Paprika and Cayenne Pepper: Make your caldereta truly your own by customizing the spices. Experiment with adding a touch of smoked paprika, a pinch of chili powder, or even a dash of curry powder.

Bell Peppers: Get creative with your veggie choices! Feel free to mix in different colors of bell peppers or even throw in some chopped zucchini, eggplant, or mushrooms.

Carrots and Potatoes: Don’t feel limited by these traditional root veggies. You can add other hearty vegetables like sweet potatoes, parsnips, or turnips for a delightful twist.

So, go forth and conquer the culinary world, knowing that you’ve got a treasure trove of substitutions and alternatives up your sleeve! No ingredient shortage or dietary restriction can hold you back from creating a scrumptious Filipino beef caldereta masterpiece!

Storage & Reheating

Ah, the age-old question: To store or not to store? Fear not, dear reader, for we have you covered with our trusty storage and reheating tips for your sumptuous Filipino beef caldereta.

First and foremost, make sure you allow the caldereta to cool to room temperature (no longer than 2 hours, as we don’t want any sneaky bacteria making a home in our delicious meal). Channel your inner Goldilocks, as it shouldn’t be too hot nor too cold before we tuck it away for future feasting.

Once cooled, transfer your culinary masterpiece into an airtight container. If it’s a glass container, all the better, as it will showcase your masterpiece like a Rembrandt in the Louvre (with the added bonus of being microwave-safe)!

Now, you may be asking yourself, How long will my caldereta keep its deliciousness? Well, the beef will act as a trusty timekeeper, giving you a generous 3-4 days in the refrigerator to savor your creation. But wait, there’s more – if you’re an expert meal planner or merely a fan of frozen treats, you can store your caldereta in the freezer for up to 3 months. Talk about being cool under pressure!

When the time comes to awaken your caldereta from its icy slumber or liberate it from its chilled confines, take a moment to give yourself a pat on the back for your excellent storage skills. Now, let’s get down to the reheating business.

For those with refrigerated caldereta, simply pop your container into the microwave and heat on medium power for 2-3 minutes, stirring midway to ensure even heating. Alternatively, you can return your caldereta to its birthplace (the pot or Dutch oven) and reheat it on the stovetop over low heat until warmed through, stirring occasionally.

Now, if you went full-on Elsa and froze your caldereta, allow it to defrost in the refrigerator overnight. Once thawed, follow the reheating steps above for a piping-hot, mouthwatering dish that will transport you right back to the first time you laid eyes on this scrumptious recipe.

And there you have it! With these storage and reheating tips in your culinary arsenal, you’ll never have to worry about leftover Filipino beef caldereta going to waste. Happy storing, and even happier reheating!

Serving Ideas

Now, you’ve conquered the art of making a delicious Filipino beef caldereta, and it’s time to serve it up in style! But why stop at plain ol’ steamed white rice? Let’s explore some mouthwatering serving ideas that will elevate your caldereta game to new heights.

  1. Garlic Fried Rice: Give your regular steamed rice a flavor boost by turning it into garlic fried rice. Simply sauté minced garlic in some oil until golden brown, then toss in your cooked rice and mix well. The fragrant aroma of garlic will complement the rich flavors of the caldereta beautifully.
  2. Crusty Bread: If you’re looking to add some European flair to your dish, serve your caldereta with a side of crusty bread. Rip off a chunk and use it to sop up that delicious sauce. It’s a match made in culinary heaven!
  3. Quinoa or Couscous: Looking for a healthier alternative? Ditch the rice and opt for quinoa or couscous. Both of these grains are packed with nutrients and will provide a delicious, slightly nutty base for your caldereta.
  4. Noodles: Give your caldereta an East Asian twist by serving it over a bed of noodles. Whether you choose egg noodles, rice noodles, or even ramen, the tender strands will soak up the scrumptious sauce perfectly.
  5. Caldereta Tacos: Why not turn your caldereta into a fun, interactive meal by setting up a taco bar? Lay out some warm tortillas, a bowl of caldereta, and an array of toppings such as shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, and a dollop of sour cream. Let everyone build their own caldereta taco and enjoy the fusion of Filipino and Mexican flavors.
  6. Loaded Baked Potato: For a heartier option, serve your beef caldereta over a piping hot baked potato. Top it off with some shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped green onions for a loaded caldereta baked potato that will have everyone coming back for seconds.

Remember, when it comes to serving your Filipino beef caldereta, don’t be afraid to get creative and think outside the box. After all, the best dishes are made even better by the memories shared while enjoying them. Happy eating!

Variations & Customization

A great thing about Filipino beef caldereta is that it’s highly customizable to suit various dietary needs, lifestyles, and taste preferences. Let’s explore some popular variations and adjustments to make this delicious dish perfect for everyone at the table.

  1. Vegan & Vegetarian: Transform this meaty dish into a hearty vegetable caldereta by replacing the beef with tofu or tempeh, and using vegetable broth instead of beef broth. For a more authentic taste, use a vegan liver spread or mushroom pâté in place of the traditional liver spread or pâté.
  2. Gluten-Free: To make this dish gluten-free, simply swap out the soy sauce for tamari or coconut aminos. As always, be sure to check the labels on your ingredients to ensure they are certified gluten-free.
  3. GAPS/AIP: If you’re following the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) or Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diets, you’ll want to make some adjustments. Replace the bell peppers with zucchini or other AIP-friendly vegetables, and use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce. You’ll also need to skip the paprika, cayenne pepper, and black pepper, but feel free to add in other AIP-compliant herbs and spices, like garlic and onion powder, to amp up the flavor.
  4. Keto: For those on a ketogenic diet, simply omit the potatoes and carrots, and add in more keto-friendly vegetables, such as cauliflower and green beans. You can also reduce the amount of tomato sauce to lower the carb count further.
  5. Other popular variations:
    – Spice it up! If you enjoy a little heat, add some sliced chili peppers or a dash of hot sauce to your caldereta
    – Seafood lovers, rejoice! Turn this dish into a seafood extravaganza by replacing the beef with fish, shrimp, or your favorite shellfish.
    – Can’t find liver spread or pâté? Not a problem! Substitute it with a few tablespoons of tomato paste or peanut butter for a unique twist on the classic caldereta flavor.

Whatever your dietary needs or preferences, Filipino beef caldereta is a versatile and flavorful dish that can be tailored to fit your lifestyle. So go ahead, get creative in the kitchen, and make a caldereta that’s perfect for you!

Notes & Tips

  • The key to mouthwatering caldereta lies in browning the beef. Don’t be afraid to let it develop a rich, dark crust on all sides. This deepens the flavor and ensures that the protein holds up well during the long simmering process. Patience is a virtue, my friends!
  • Can’t find liver spread or liver pâté? Fear not! You can substitute with a tablespoon of anchovy paste or Worcestershire sauce to achieve a similar depth of flavor. No need to fret about missing out on the rich, umami-packed goodness!
  • If you prefer a little kick in your caldereta, feel free to play around with the amount of cayenne pepper. If you’re feeling especially adventurous (or just craving some extra heat), try adding a finely chopped Thai bird’s eye chili or two into the mix. Remember, though, with great power comes great responsibility; so start small and adjust according to your heat tolerance.
  • Caldereta is one of those dishes that tastes even better the next day. So, if you have the time and patience, consider making it a day in advance and reheating it when you’re ready to serve. The flavors will meld and intensify, giving you a deliciously complex and satisfying meal.
  • This dish is incredibly versatile, so feel free to swap out or add in vegetables to suit your taste or make use of what’s in season. For instance, you can throw in some green peas, red kidney beans, or even eggplant for a little extra flair. Just be sure to keep an eye on the cooking time for each vegetable to ensure they’re cooked to perfection.
  • Pair your Filipino beef caldereta with steamed white rice for the ultimate comfort food experience. But, if you’re looking to cut back on carbs or simply change things up, try serving it over cauliflower rice, quinoa, or even with some crusty bread to soak up that delicious sauce.
  • Caldereta is a celebration of Filipino culinary heritage, so don’t hesitate to share your masterpiece with friends and family. They’ll be singing your praises while enjoying this flavorful, hearty dish – and who knows, you might just inspire them to try their hand at Filipino cuisine, too!
  • So, go forth and conquer the kitchen with confidence as you whip up this delectable Filipino beef caldereta. Happy cooking!

Common Mistakes

  • Not browning the beef properly: The key to a rich, flavorful caldereta is to get a good sear on the beef cubes. This not only locks in flavor but also creates a nice crust on the outside. To avoid this common mistake, make sure the pot is hot, and don’t overcrowd the beef. Work in batches if necessary, and give each cube enough space to brown evenly.
  • Rushing the simmering process: Caldereta is a dish that truly benefits from low and slow cooking. If you’re tempted to crank up the heat and speed things along, resist the urge! Cooking at a higher heat can result in tough, chewy meat and a sauce that lacks depth. Be patient, and let the flavors meld together while simmering at a gentle pace.
  • Using the wrong cut of beef: For a tender, melt-in-your-mouth caldereta, it’s essential to use a cut of beef that’s suited for slow cooking, like beef chuck. Leaner cuts, such as sirloin or round, may become dry and tough when cooked for an extended period. Embrace the marbled goodness of beef chuck for a truly satisfying caldereta experience.
  • Skimping on the liver spread: The addition of liver spread or liver pâté is what sets Filipino beef caldereta apart from other beef stews. You may be tempted to skip this ingredient if you’re not a liver fan, but trust us, it adds a rich, velvety texture and depth of flavor that’s truly unique. Embrace this culinary heritage from the Philippines and give it a try!
  • Overcooking the vegetables: While it’s important to cook the beef until it’s tender, be careful not to overcook the vegetables. Add the carrots and potatoes during the final stages of cooking, and keep an eye on them to ensure they maintain their shape and texture. No one wants to dig into a bowl of caldereta with mushy veggies!
  • Neglecting to taste and adjust seasonings: Caldereta is a flavor-packed dish, but it’s essential to taste and adjust seasonings before serving. The combination of tomato sauce, soy sauce, and beef broth can create a wide range of tastes depending on the brand. So, give it a taste, and don’t be afraid to add more salt, pepper, or even a splash of vinegar to brighten the flavors.
  • Now that you’re armed with these tips and tricks, you’re ready to conquer the common pitfalls of caldereta and impress your friends and family with a delicious, comforting Filipino beef stew. Happy cooking!

Health Risks & Benefits

As you embark on your culinary journey to create this delicious Filipino beef caldereta, let’s take a moment to appreciate the health risks and benefits of this comforting dish. Trust us, it’s not just a pretty face on your dinner table; it’s got some nutritional goodness hiding in there too!

First and foremost, let’s talk beef. Beef chuck provides a healthy dose of protein, which is essential for building and maintaining strong muscles. It also contains iron, which contributes to the production of red blood cells and fights off fatigue. However, be mindful of portion sizes, as beef can be high in saturated fat, which may increase your risk of heart disease if consumed excessively.

The variety of vegetables in this dish not only add vibrant colors and flavors but also provide a range of essential vitamins and minerals. Onions and garlic, for instance, are known for their immune-boosting properties, while bell peppers are packed with vitamin C, which aids in collagen production and skin health. Carrots contribute vitamin A, which supports eye health, and potatoes are a good source of potassium that can help regulate blood pressure.

Now let’s give a round of applause for the liver spread or liver pâté, which may seem unusual but is a nutritional powerhouse! Liver is rich in vitamin A, iron, and B vitamins, which support a healthy immune system, energy production, and cognitive function. Keep in mind, though, that vitamin A can be toxic in large amounts, so use moderation when indulging in liver-based dishes.

Last but not least, those scrumptious green olives bring a pop of flavor and a dose of healthy fats. Olives are known for their monounsaturated fats, which can help to improve your heart health and lower your risk of heart disease.

In summary, Filipino beef caldereta offers a delightful blend of flavors and textures while providing nutritious ingredients to fuel your body. Enjoy this tasty dish in moderation, and rest assured that you are treating yourself to a meal packed with health benefits!

Recipe History & Context

Ah, Filipino beef caldereta – a hearty, flavor-packed dish that has won hearts and stomachs around the world! But did you know that this mouth-watering marvel can trace its roots back to the Spanish colonization of the Philippines in the 16th century? That’s right, this dish is a beautiful fusion of Filipino and Spanish culinary influences, a testament to the rich cultural heritage of the Philippines.

In its original Spanish form, the dish was known as caldereta de cabrito, which translates to goat stew. Spanish colonizers brought the recipe to the Philippines, where resourceful Filipino cooks adapted it to suit local palates and available ingredients. In place of goat, beef became the star of the dish, and an array of vegetables and spices were incorporated to create the unique Filipino flavor profile that we know and love today.

Now, let’s talk about one of the most intriguing ingredients in this dish: liver spread or liver pâté. You might be wondering, how did this European delicacy find its way into a Filipino dish? Well, it’s said that during the American occupation of the Philippines in the early 20th century, canned liver spread was introduced to the local market. Filipino cooks, ever the innovators, seized upon this new ingredient and incorporated it into their beef caldereta, bringing an extra depth of flavor and richness to the dish.

And let’s not forget about the soy sauce, which showcases the Chinese influence on Filipino cuisine. This humble condiment adds a delightful umami kick to the dish, further setting it apart from its Spanish ancestor.

So there you have it, folks – Filipino beef caldereta is not just a delicious, soul-satisfying meal, but a fascinating culinary journey that brings together Spanish, Filipino, American, and Chinese flavors. What a delectable testament to the power of culinary fusion and adaptation! Now, grab your wooden spoon and let’s get cooking!

Common Questions

What if I can’t find liver spread or liver pâté? Can I substitute it with something else?

Liver spread or liver pâté is a key ingredient in Filipino beef caldereta, giving the dish a unique, savory depth of flavor. If you can’t find it, you can try using chicken liver, which you can boil and then mash, or even substitute it with a little Worcestershire sauce for that extra umami kick. But trust us, it’s worth hunting down the real deal to taste the magic of this dish!

Can I make this dish with other proteins, like chicken or pork?

Absolutely! Filipino caldereta is a versatile recipe that can be easily adapted to suit your preferences. You can use chicken or pork as a substitute for beef; just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly, as these proteins may cook faster than the beef chuck. Caldereta is all about embracing the spirit of creativity and resourcefulness in the kitchen.

Is this dish spicy? Can I adjust the heat level?

The cayenne pepper in this Filipino beef caldereta recipe is optional, so you can choose to include it or not, depending on your heat preference. If you’re a spice aficionado, feel free to add more cayenne or even toss in some chopped fresh chilies to crank up the heat. If you’re cooking for a milder crowd, you can omit the cayenne altogether. With caldereta, you’re the captain of your own spice adventure!

Can I make this dish ahead of time and reheat later?

Yes, you can! Filipino beef caldereta tastes even better the next day, as the flavors meld and deepen. Simply let it cool completely before storing it in the refrigerator. To reheat, just place the pot back on the stovetop over low heat and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until heated through. It’s the perfect make-ahead meal for busy weeknights or leisurely weekends.

Can I freeze leftover caldereta?

Filipino beef caldereta freezes well, making it a great option for meal planning. Just be sure to cool the dish completely before transferring it to airtight containers or freezer-safe zip-top bags. When you’re ready to enjoy your frozen caldereta, transfer the container to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. Then, reheat it as instructed above, and enjoy a taste of the Philippines whenever the craving strikes!

Filipino Beef Caldereta

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 474kcal


  • Large pot or Dutch oven
  • Cutting board
  • Knife
  • Wooden spoon


  • 2 lbs beef chuck cut into 1.5-inch cubes
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper chopped
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • cup soy sauce
  • cup liver spread or liver pâté
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper optional
  • 1 cup green olives pitted
  • 1 cup carrots chopped
  • 2 medium potatoes chopped
  • Salt to taste


  • Heat vegetable oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Brown beef cubes for 5-7 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  • Sauté onion and garlic in the same pot for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add red and green bell peppers, cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Return beef to the pot. Add tomato sauce, beef broth, and soy sauce. Stir well.
  • Add liver spread, bay leaves, black pepper, paprika, and cayenne pepper (if using). Stir well.
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer, covered, for 1 hour or until beef is tender.
  • Add green olives, carrots, and potatoes. Stir well.
  • Simmer, uncovered, for 20-30 minutes or until vegetables are tender and sauce has thickened.
  • Taste and add salt if needed. Remove bay leaves before serving.
  • Serve hot with steamed white rice.



Calories: 474kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 140mg | Sodium: 1722mg | Potassium: 1243mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 6871IU | Vitamin C: 63mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 6mg

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