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puerto rican mofongo (mashed plantains) served with grilled shrimp skewers

Mofongo with Garlic Sauce (Puerto Rican Plantains)

Mofongo is a simple and scrumptious side dish that’s popular on the island of Puerto Rico and throughout the Caribbean.

This mofongo with garlic sauce is totally simple to make.

If you’re tired of potatoes or sweet potatoes, it’s a nice nutrient-dense carb option to work into your routine.

This recipe was part of my food collaboration with Mel Joulwan.

puerto rican mofongo (mashed plantains) served with grilled shrimp skewers

What is Mofongo Made From?

Mel writes, “At its most basic, mofongo is a side dish made from cooked plantains, crushed chicharrones (or crumbled bacon) garlic, salt, and oil.” There are other variations, but the basic idea remains similar.

Traditionally, the plantains in this dish are deep-fried first. However, in our adaptation, we opted to boil the plantains first, then pan fry them to balance out the macronutrients a bit more.

The finished texture of this mofongo recipe is almost like Thanksgiving stuffing. 

What to Eat with Mofongo

Grilled or pan-fried shrimp are a brilliant protein to serve with mofongo. Or, try pairing it with your favorite slow cooked chicken or pork. You can’t go wrong with any of them.

How Do You Reheat This Recipe?

It’s best to reheat leftover mofongo in a pan on the stove or in the oven. If the plantain gets too dry, try adding a small bit of water or broth to moisten it.

mofongo a mashed plantain dish on a blue plate with grilled shrimp

How to Make Mofongo

It may sound complicated but this recipe is quite easy to make. The key is to pick plantains that are very green.

  • Boil the peeled plantains in salted water until soft.
  • Prepare the garlic and pork rinds to add as flavoring.
  • Fry the plantains in a pan until they’re a darker golden yellow.
  • Mix the mofongo by mashing all the ingredients together.
  • Drizzle with the garlic sauce you prepared.

Other Plantain Recipes

puerto rican mofongo (mashed plantains) served with grilled shrimp skewers

Mofongo with Garlic Sauce

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Dairy-Free, Egg-Free, Ethnic, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Nut-Free, Paleo, Veggies, Whole30
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 28 minutes
Total Time: 38 minutes
Servings: 6

Mofongo is a simple and scrumptious side dish that's popular on the island of Puerto Rico and throughout the Caribbean. Find out how to make it here! 



For the mofongo:

  • 4 green plantains (very green)
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 4 tsp cooking fat plus more for mixing (see note)*
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 oz pork rinds

For the garlic sauce:

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/3 cup avocado oil
  • 1 green onion
  • 1/2 lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp whole cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes or less if you don't like it spicy
  • 1/4 tsp salt


To make the mofongo:

  1. Boil the plantains. Peel the plantains and cut them into 1/4-inch thick coins. Place in a saucepan, cover them with cold water, add salt, bring to a boil, and then reduce heat to simmer. Cook until a fork easily slides in and out when you poke a piece of plantain, about 10-15 minutes.
  2. Prep the flavorings. While the plantains simmer, peel and crush the garlic and place in a mixing bowl. Place the pork rinds in a large ziplock bag and crush with a rolling pin or the bottom of a ramekin to make pork dust. Add to the mixing bowl.
  3. Sauté the plantains. When the plantains are tender, drain them and set aside. Place 4 teaspoons cooking fat in a large, non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, 2 minutes. Add the plantains and sauté, tossing occasionally with two wooden spoons, until they’re yellow color deepens, but don’t let them brown. When they’re a darker, golden yellow, transfer them to the mixing bowl, along with any fat remaining in the pan.
  4. Mix the mofongo. With a potato masher or an electric mixer set on medium, gently mash the plantains and pork rinds together. You want some bumpy texture, rather than a smooth paste. Add about additional fat, 1 teaspoon at a time, to help the mofongo stick together; it shouldn't be dry. Taste and add more salt, if necessary. Using moistened hands, form into 3-inch balls or mound on a plate; serve warm.

To make the garlic sauce:

  1. Place all the ingredients in a food processor and purée, or combine them in 1-pint Mason jar and whirl with a stick blender.

Recipe Notes

Note about cooking fat: This recipe works well with flavorful saturated fats like coconut oil and pastured lard, but you could also use extra-virgin olive oil or avocado oil.

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scoop of mofongo on a plate with shrimp and garlic sauce

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3 Responses

  1. I’m sooooooooo happy you posted this!!! Obsessed with plantains and have always wanted to try this dish! You’re the best! Can’t wait to make it!

  2. I made Mofongo before but never boiled the plantains. And it always seemed dry. My Abuela use to make them, but never did I pay attention Now I will I’m sure it will come out a lot better. Thanks!

Steph Gaudreau

Hi, I'm Steph Gaudreau (CISSN, NASM-CPT)!

Nutrition and fitness coach for women, Lord of the Rings nerd, and depending on who you ask, crazy cat lady. My mission is to help you fuel for more: bigger muscles, strength, energy, and possibilities. We’ll do it with my signature blend of science, strategy…and a little bit of sass.


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