Bacalao con Viandas Recipe

Indulge in the Ultimate Bacalao con Viandas Recipe! Explore Caribbean cuisine with this authentic and delectable dish. Your taste buds will thank you!

Bacalao con Viandas

    Bacalao con Viandas

  • Cuisine: Caribbean
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Calories: 300 calories

Bacalao con Viandas is a beloved traditional dish that finds its roots in the vibrant and diverse cuisines of the Caribbean, particularly in countries like Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba. This flavorful and hearty meal showcases the cultural fusion that characterizes Caribbean cuisine, combining influences from African, Indigenous, and European culinary traditions.

At its core, Bacalao con Viandas features salted codfish (bacalao) as the star ingredient. The preparation of the codfish is a labor of love, involving a lengthy desalting process to remove the excess salt, resulting in tender and flavorful fish.

The softened codfish is then cooked alongside a medley of root vegetables, collectively known as "viandas." These viandas can include yams, sweet potatoes, green bananas, and cassava, each contributing its unique texture and taste to the dish.

The flavor profile of Bacalao con Viandas is a harmonious blend of savory and aromatic elements. Onions, garlic, bell peppers, and tomatoes are sautéed to create a flavorful base, while spices like paprika and oregano infuse the dish with warmth and depth. A touch of tomato sauce adds a hint of acidity and enhances the overall richness.

As it simmers gently on the stove, the dish undergoes a transformation, with the viandas absorbing the flavors of the codfish and aromatic seasonings. The result is a comforting, satisfying meal that speaks to the heart of Caribbean cuisine, celebrating the bounty of the sea and the earth.

Whether enjoyed as a family dinner or a special occasion dish, Bacalao con Viandas embodies the essence of Caribbean culinary traditions, where history, culture, and flavors come together in every delicious bite.


Discover the Caribbean's Culinary Gem: Bacalao con Viandas! Dive into a world of flavors with this irresistible recipe and cultural journey.


  • 1 pound of salted codfish (bacalao)
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1/2 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1 pound of viandas (root vegetables) such as yam, sweet potato, green banana, and cassava, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 cup of water
  • Fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish

Method Instructions

  1. Start by desalting the codfish. Rinse the codfish under cold running water to remove excess salt. Then, soak it in a large bowl of cold water for about 24-48 hours, changing the water every 6-8 hours. This will rehydrate and desalt the fish. Taste a small piece to ensure it's not too salty. Once it's ready, drain and set it aside.
  2. In a large skillet or deep pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, minced garlic, and diced bell pepper. Sauté until the vegetables become tender and translucent.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes, paprika, black pepper, and oregano to the skillet. Cook for a few minutes until the tomatoes soften and release their juices.
  4. Now, add the soaked and drained codfish to the pan. Stir it gently to combine with the vegetables.
  5. Pour in the tomato sauce and add the viandas (root vegetables) to the skillet. Mix everything together.
  6. Add 1 cup of water to the skillet. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 20-30 minutes or until the viandas are tender and the flavors have melded together. You may need to add a bit more water if the mixture becomes too dry.
  7. Taste the dish and adjust the seasoning if necessary. You can add more salt if needed or some extra paprika or black pepper for flavor.
  8. Serve the Bacalao con Viandas hot, garnished with fresh cilantro or parsley for a burst of freshness.
  9. Enjoy your homemade Bacalao con Viandas, a delicious and hearty Caribbean dish!

Recipe Video

Bacalao con Viandas

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Recipe Tags: Bacalao con Viandas, Bacalao con Viandas Recipe, Recipe


Serving Bacalao con Viandas is a delightful experience that reflects the rich and communal nature of Caribbean cuisine. Here's how to serve this flavorful dish:

  1. Plating: Begin by carefully arranging the components on a plate. Place a portion of the Bacalao con Viandas in the center, making sure to include a generous serving of both the codfish and the viandas.
  2. Garnish: Add a touch of freshness and color to your dish by garnishing it with finely chopped fresh cilantro or parsley. The vibrant green herbs provide a pleasing contrast to the rich, savory flavors of the dish.
  3. Side Dishes: While Bacalao con Viandas is a substantial dish on its own, you can consider serving it with some traditional Caribbean side dishes. These may include rice and beans, fried plantains (tostones or maduros), or a simple salad with avocado.
  4. Bread: Many Caribbean meals are enjoyed with a side of bread or fried breadfruit. Some people also like to serve this dish with a slice of crusty bread or fried Johnny cakes to soak up the delicious sauce.
  5. Hot Sauce: Caribbean cuisine often incorporates spicy elements. If you enjoy a bit of heat, you can offer hot sauce on the side for those who want to add an extra kick to their meal.
  6. Family Style: Bacalao con Viandas is often served family-style, where the dish is placed at the center of the table, and everyone helps themselves. It fosters a sense of togetherness and sharing, which is a hallmark of Caribbean dining.


  1. Desalting the Codfish: Properly desalting the codfish is crucial to ensure it's not overly salty. Soak the codfish for at least 24-48 hours in cold water, changing the water every 6-8 hours. Taste a small piece to check for saltiness. If it's still too salty, continue soaking and changing the water until it reaches the desired level of saltiness.
  2. Cut Viandas Uniformly: When cutting the viandas (root vegetables), try to make uniform-sized pieces. This ensures that they cook evenly and are ready at the same time.
  3. Adjust Seasoning: Taste the dish as it cooks and adjust the seasoning as needed. Depending on your preference and the saltiness of the codfish, you may want to add more salt, paprika, or black pepper to suit your taste.
  4. Use Fresh Ingredients: Whenever possible, use fresh ingredients, especially ripe tomatoes and aromatic herbs like cilantro or parsley. Fresh ingredients can elevate the flavors of the dish.
  5. Control the Heat: Adjust the cooking heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer. This helps the flavors meld together without overcooking the viandas or fish.
  6. Stir Gently: Be careful when stirring the dish to avoid breaking up the codfish into small pieces. Codfish should maintain some texture and flakiness.
  7. Serve Hot: Bacalao con Viandas is best enjoyed when it's hot and freshly prepared. Serve it immediately to savor its full flavor.
  8. Pairing: Consider pairing this dish with a refreshing beverage like a tropical fruit juice, a crisp white wine, or a Caribbean soda for a complete culinary experience.
  9. Leftovers: If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. The flavors often deepen and become even more delicious the next day.
  10. Experiment: Feel free to experiment with the choice of viandas and spices. Caribbean cuisine is known for its flexibility, so you can adapt the recipe to your personal preferences.

Do enjoy the process of creating this classic Caribbean dish, and don't hesitate to make it your own by adding your unique twists and variations!

Ingredient Substitutes

If you find yourself in a situation where you need to substitute ingredients for Bacalao con Viandas, here I have some options for you:

  1. Codfish Substitute: If you can't find salted codfish (bacalao) or prefer a different type of fish, you can use fresh white fish such as cod, haddock, or tilapia. However, keep in mind that the dish's flavor profile may differ from the traditional version.
  2. Viandas Substitutes: If you can't find the specific root vegetables traditionally used, you can substitute them with readily available options. For example, you can use regular potatoes, carrots, or butternut squash as substitutes for yams and sweet potatoes. These alternatives will change the flavor slightly but can still result in a tasty dish.
  3. Tomato Sauce: If you don't have tomato sauce on hand, you can make a simple substitute by mixing tomato paste with water until you reach the desired consistency. Alternatively, you can use canned diced tomatoes, blended until smooth.
  4. Spice Substitutes: If you're missing paprika or oregano, you can use chili powder or cayenne pepper for some heat and dried thyme or basil for herbal notes. Adjust the amounts based on your taste preferences.
  5. Fresh Herbs: If you don't have fresh cilantro or parsley for garnish, you can use dried herbs as a substitute. However, fresh herbs provide a brighter flavor and color.
  6. Onion and Garlic: If you're out of fresh onions and garlic, you can use onion and garlic powder as a substitute. Keep in mind that fresh ingredients usually offer more flavor.
  7. Oil: If you run out of olive oil, you can substitute it with vegetable oil or canola oil. While the flavor may vary slightly, it won't significantly impact the dish.
  8. Hot Sauce: If you enjoy some heat but don't have hot sauce, you can use red pepper flakes or a dash of cayenne pepper for spiciness.


Wrap up your culinary adventure with Bacalao con Viandas, a true Caribbean delight. Share the love, share the flavors, and savor every bite!

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