This “Delicious” Grocery Actually Gets Me Excited to Eat Salad (You Just Have to Microwave It!)

published May 27, 2024
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Taco bowl with hunk of Somos plant based taco filling in center
Credit: Su-Jit Lin

The first time I’d ever heard the term “picadillo,” I immediately thought of Piccadilly Circus in London and a cafeteria chain I’d seen signs for, but never actually visited. So it was a pretty happy surprise to find that picadillo has nothing at all to do with either of these things. In actuality, picadillo is a popular dish in many Latin American countries (as well as the Philippines). 

Picar, which translates to chop in Spanish, refers to the chopped meat. Typically ground beef is cooked in a slowly reduced tomato base and laced with seasonings and add-ins that vary depending on the area. You’ll find Cuban varieties with raisins, capers, and olives; some Costa Rican recipes with chayote squash; and Mexican dishes with diced potatoes, peas, carrots, and even a little heat. However, it’s the plant-based version of the latter that has been beefing up my salad kits lately.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

What’s So Great About SOMOS Mexican Peacadillo?

Established in 2022 by the founder and two former employees of KIND Snacks, SOMOS is the trio’s love letter to the home-cooked meals they grew up eating in Mexico. This means using high-quality ingredients, slow cooking, stone grinding, fire-roasting, and featuring flavors from the heartland. SOMOS certainly delivers on all of the above with its Mexican Peacadillo. Even more impressive is that it manages to do it without a speck of meat.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

Peacadillo, as you might have gathered from the name, is made of peas — not beef. The texture and flavor, though, are only a small jump from dark-meat ground turkey. Slightly springier and bouncier than ground meat and a little earthy, the two-ingredient pea protein is pleasantly meat-like without feeling like it’s trying too hard.

There’s a depth and complexity to every bite; it has smoky aroma and smooth, layered flavors that aren’t too heavy or too spicy, instead offering just the slightest hint of warmth. It’s thick, like a reduced sauce that’s been slow-cooked, and the seasonings permeate evenly throughout. 

Plus, it’s ready in 90 seconds and cooks right in its own pouch, which means fewer dishes to wash and near-instant gratification for lazy or late weeknight dinners.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

What’s the Best Way to Use SOMOS Mexican Peacadillo?

As the packaging suggests, this pea-cadillo is a no-brainer for your next taco night, but that’s certainly just the beginning. Picadillo is often used as a topper for rice, and when combined with one of Royal’s White Queso & Jalapeño microwavable pouches it really kicks the pairing up a notch. I’ll also add a pouch of SOMOS Mexican Black Beans, FILLO’s Mexican Mayacoba Sofrito, or Tex-Mex Pinto Sofrito to pump up the protein, fiber, and overall satisfaction of another easy, heat-and-eat meal.

SOMOS Peacadillo can also be used in other traditional picadillo applications — as a filling for empanadas, peppers, tamales, and other handhelds. It’s a nice base for baked runny eggs (a la shakshuka), or a topping for sopes or nachos (with a drizzle of cheese sauce, like Gordo’s Hot Cheese Dip or Tostito’s Spicy Queso).

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

My favorite way to use SOMOS Peacadillo, though, is mixed into salads. Its seasonings — a blend of cilantro, onion, serrano pepper, garlic, oregano, bay leaves, and cumin — lend themselves well to most any Mexican, Southwestern, or Tex-Mex salad kit. I should know — I’ve tried well over a dozen.

Credit: Su-Jit Lin

Peacadillo is saucy and thick enough to add to any lettuce or cabbage salad base; mix it up with some Greek yogurt or sour cream and top with any manner of crushed tortilla chips, pickled onions, cilantro, shredded cheese, roasted peppers and onions, or what have you. Trust me — you won’t even need dressing.

Buy: SOMOS Mexican Peacadillo, $11 for 2 (10-ounces) pouches at SOMOS 5.29 at Kroger

What fun grocery finds do you toss in your salads? Tell us in the comments.