Yuca and Beef Patties

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

In Paraguay, yuca is a mainstay that appears on the table, in one form or another, almost every day. Lampreado is one of the many tasty, wholesome recipes that use this versatile root vegetable. It is of Spanish origin, although in a way it also resembles the kibbeh, or kibbi, of the Arabs, which is made with ground meat and bulgur (thanks, no doubt, to centuries of Moorish occupation of Spain). In this dish, a crunchy exterior gives way to a soft, savory interior. It is both fun and comfortingly familiar. Lampreado may also be made with finely chopped boiled beef or carne seca (beef jerky), if you wish to try different variations.

Make8 patties; 4 to 8 servings

Cooking Methodpan-frying



Total Timeunder 1 hour

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionFamily Get-together

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationegg-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free

Five Ingredients or LessYes



Taste and Texturecrunchy, meaty, savory


  • 1 pound fresh or frozen yuca
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, plus more for frying
  • 1 medium-size onion, minced (about 1 cup)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces lean ground beef
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh or dry bread crumbs


  1. If using fresh yuca, peel it. If using frozen yuca, do not thaw it. Cook the yuca in boiling salted water until tender. Do not let it get too soft, or it will become watery. Drain and mash.

  2. While the yuca is cooking, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring a few times, until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the ground beef, salt, and pepper and cook, breaking up the meat with a wooden spoon or fork, until the beef loses its pink color.

  3. Mix the beef with the yuca until well blended and shape into 8 patties, just like hamburgers. Dredge in the bread crumbs until evenly and completely covered. This recipe can be prepared to this point up to a day ahead. Just cover loosely with waxed paper and refrigerate until needed.

  4. To serve, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add enough oil to coat the bottom of the skillet and, when it is sizzling hot, add the patties 4 at a time. Fry on both sides until golden brown, about 4 minutes per side. Serve hot.

  5. To Serve:

  6. Serve with a tossed salad.


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