Frita Cubana – The Original Cuban Hamburger

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Total time: 25 minutes
Yield: 6-8 generous patties

Enjoy this authentic Cuban recipe for the ultimate Cuban hamburger.



1 pound ground beef
3/4 pound ground pork
4 cloves garlic, mashed and finely minced
1/3 cup onion,grated
2 tablespoons ketchup
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons sweet Spanish paprika
Salt & pepper cooked patties to taste
6-8 American-style hamburger or steak buns

6-8 cups freshly fried shoestring potatoes
raw onion, sliced(optional)
Glenn’s Not-So-Secret Sauce (MANDATORY – see recipe below)

Use a food processor with a chopping blade to grind together the meats, the minced garlic, and the onion. Blend in the ketchup, cumin, and paprika.
Remove the meat mixture from the food processor and form by hand into round thin patties. Cook on a flat griddle or in a frying pan.

Fritas should be cooked to medium well done, but don’t overcook – they should still be nice and juicy. When the frita is just about cooked through, reduce heat to medium low, squirt on some secret sauce, and let the patties cook just a minute longer.

While the fritas are frying, use a deep fat fryer or frying pan with a couple inches of vegetable oil to fry the shoestring potatoes. Drain on paper towels and lightly salt. Keep warm.

Serve each frita on a traditional American hamburger bun.

Splash plenty of “Glenn’s Not-So-Secret Sauce” on the bun and the patty. The sauce is an ESSENTIAL ingredient in this recipe!

Place the patty on the bun, cover with some sliced onion (if you like), and pile high with fresh, hot, shoe-string style fried potatoes – yes, inside the bun, ON TOP of the meat! Splash a little extra secret sauce on the fries, you’ll be glad you did!

Serve with additional fries on the plate.

Glenn’s Not-So-Secret Frita Sauce

1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 1/2 teaspoons sweet Spanish paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
Mix all of the ingredients together in a two-quart saucepan.
Bring to a boil stirring constantly.

Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes.

Remove from heat and let cool. Use generously in the Frita Cubana recipe above.

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