Pupusa Recipe: Salvadorean Tortilla Treats

Pupusa with Curtido

Pupusa with Curtido

Pupusas are a fun, thick corn tortilla snack native to El Salvador and a few surrounding countries. The version below uses masa harina, a type of corn flour and refried beans. Other common fillings include chicken, chiccharones (pork) and even shrimp. The recipe is fairly easy. The tricky part is getting the right consistency and thickness of dough. We tried several recipes including make the dough into a ball; indenting; adding filling and then flattening – that proved too messy. After several experiments, creating top and bottom halves worked best for us.

Pupusas can be made vegan by skipping cheese and sour cream. Daiyya and Nutritional yeast are two great, dairy free topping options. Always to be eaten with this Salvadorean treat are a vinegar based coleslaw, called curtido.

Pupusa bottom with beans and cheese

Pupusa bottom with beans and cheese

Pupusas Ready to Be Cooked

Pupusas Ready to Be Cooked

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Servings: 2
Yield: 4 pupusas
1 cup masa harina
4/5 cup water
salt to taste
pepper to taste
queso fresco to taste
onions to taste
jalapenos to taste

In a bowl add in masa. Add any preferred seasoning including queso fresco if desired. Next add in water. Mix until dough is moist and all is absorbed. Divide the dough into 8 balls, about the size of an egg. Flatten each ball in the palm of your hand until they’re a little thicker than a pancake (roughly 3-4 inches in diameter). On four of the pieces, apply your beans (or preferred filling). Take the other pieces of dough and place on top of the just-filled pieces (like a sandwich) then pinch all around the circumference to seal in the goodness.

Heat a little oil in pan. If desired, add in chopped onions and jalapenos. Lay down pupusas. Allow about 4 minutes per side to cook. They’ll turn a light brown color. Serve with curtido, hot sauce and sour cream.


2 comments on “Pupusa Recipe: Salvadorean Tortilla Treats

  1. That is so awesome that you made pupusas! I love to eat them, guess I need to try making them. These look soooo good!

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