Pupusas Recipe

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Vicki Butts (lazyme)


The pupusa is a traditional "fast food" sold by street vendors in El Salvador. It's a thick, handmade tortilla stuffed with a savory filling and cooked to a golden brown. Other versions of pupusas, called by different names, are popular throughout Central America. Some favorite fillings include cheese, chicken, and pork skin cracklings.

From El Cocodrilo's cookbook.

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20 Min
20 Min
Stove Top


3 3/4 c
masa harina
2 1/2 c
warm water
1/2 tsp
freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp
1/2 tsp
hot red pepper sauce
green bell pepper, chopped
tomatoes, chopped
1 medium
red onion, chopped
1/2 c
shredded mozzarella cheese
2/3 c
shredded cooked chicken
2 Tbsp
corn oil, for cooking

How to Make Pupusas


  • 1Combine the masa harina and water in a medium-size bowl. Mix thoroughly until the dough just holds together; it will have the consistency of pie dough.
  • 2Divide the dough into 12 balls: six 2-ounce balls and six 3-ounce balls. Set aside.
  • 3Place the black pepper, cumin, red pepper sauce, bell pepper, tomatoes, and onion in a food processor or blender; puree until well blended.
  • 4Flatten one 3-ounce ball of tortilla dough into a 5-1/2 to 6 1/2-inch circle.
  • 5In the center of the tortilla, place 1 tablespoon of the pureed mixture, 1 tablespoon of the mozzarella cheese, and 2 tablespoons of the chicken.
  • 6Flatten one 2-ounce ball of the tortilla dough into a 4- to 5-inch circle and place over the larger tortilla, covering the filling. Press the edges of both tortillas together, so they form a sealed pocket. Repeat this process five more times.
  • 7Pour 1 teaspoon of oil in medium nonstick skillet and spread it around with a paper towel. Heat the oil; add 1 or 2 pupusas. Cook over medium heat, turning once, until golden brown on both sides, about 8 minutes. Repeat until all the pupusas are cooked.
  • 8Cheese Pupusas
    Substitute 1-1/4 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese for both the chicken and the cheese in the pupusa filling. When filling the tortillas, top the puree mixture with 3 tablespoons of cheese. Continue as directed.

Printable Recipe Card

About Pupusas

Course/Dish: Poultry Appetizers
Main Ingredient: Chicken
Regional Style: Latin American