It’s Arepas time, mi gente! Yes, you are going to learn how to make this simple popular Latin American recipe.
And yes, every country has their own twist to it, including Puerto Rico where we add a bit to sugar to give it a sweet taste.
Arepas are naturally gluten-free and vegan (depending on the fillings of course), so it's a great bread substitute with those with allergies or diets.
This Arepas recipe only has three ingredients, and you will learn about them in a few.
A long story about my Abuela and arepas… Just kidding!
What is an arepa made of?
Arepas go back hundreds of years. It was made by soaking and pounding dried corn into a large mortar and pestle.
They pounded until the dough turned moist and then they will shape them and cook them.
Today, we don’t do all that and thanks to available corn flour we just add water, salt, from the dough and be done!
Where is arepa from?
Arepas are originally from South America and very popular in Columbia and Venezuela.
What does an arepa taste like?
Arepas taste like tortillas but sweeter but bread style.
Are arepas unhealthy?
It all depends on how you eat Arepas, with cheese, and the ingredients you use to make them. Remember that Arepas can be created with yuca and other vegetables as well and with meat and other delicious goodness.
A plain arepa made can start with 150 calories, and you can read more here.
How many calories are in Arepas?
One arepa can start with 150 calories or more.
Below are the top best selling Arepa Makers in Amazon.
What is Harina Pan?
For this recipe, we use Harina Pan, and you can find them at your local grocery at the ethnic or Mexica aisle.
Harina PAN or P.A.N. contains no additives and comes in white or yellow corn. This flour is used to make the corn or maize flour dough to make different dishes such as arepas, empanadas and more.
I made them using Harina Pan, is a masa harina but I think it's a little bit different. The result is really soft on the inside and really crispy on the outside.
What to serve Arepas with?
They are best when served right after cooking. You can eat them plain or topped with:
We love ours with Mechada and cheese.
Can you freeze Arepas?
Arepas do not taste well frozen after being cooked. It just doesn’t taste the same. There are many tips to freeze them, but they do not taste the same in my opinion.
I advise you to make what you plan to eat on eating.
You can freeze uncooked arepas.
To freeze uncooked arepas:
- Using plastic wrap, wrap each arepa.
- Place each wrapped arepa into a freezer-friendly sealable bag or container.
- Date and place into your freezer.
- They should be good for at least 2 months.
You can save the arepas and save them from later.
How to Make Now and Eat Later Arepas
- Place uncooked shape arepas into a baking sheet.
- Cover the baking sheet with plastic wrap.
- Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator to eat later.
- Arepas will stay in the fridge for about 3 days.
As for the dough you can also add some mix-ins. I love the classic version, but it's also really good with a bit of shredded cheese mixed in or if you prefer healthier alternatives some flax and chia seed and even some oats.
What are the ingredients to make Arepas?
- masa harina (pre-cooked corn flour)
- vegetable oil
How to Make Venezuelan Arepas
Now that you have all of the ingredients, it is time to make arepas follow the steps below.
Using a large bowl mix the salt and the masa harina.
Very slowly pour the water and mix until everything is blended.
Allow the dough to rest for 10 minutes, and the masa will soak most of the water.
After allowing the dough to rise, using your hands knead the dough for another 5 minutes or until the masa feels soft to touch and not sticky.
If the dough is sticky, add more masa harina, if its too crumbly add more water and let it rest again.
Add the oil to a skillet and set the stove to low to medium heat.
Make round disc by first forming small balls with the dough and then flatten them.
Place the disc to the skillet and cook until golden brown about 4 minutes per side.
Remove from heat and serve warm.
Your Arepas are ready! You can serve with cheese or Carne Mechada, and the recipe can be found here.
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Below is the recipe card with the exact measurements to make arepas. Click the print button below.
- 1 Cup masa harina (pre-cooked corn flour)
- 1 3/4 Cups water, lukewarm
- 1 Tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
In a bowl mix masa harina with salt. Slowly pour water mixing the dough until everything is well
Let the dough rest for 10 minutes. The masa harina will soak most of the water.
With the help of your hands knead dough for around 5 minutes or until soft.
The dough should be easy to work with and not sticky if it’s sticking to your hands add more masa harina if it’s too crumbly add more water and let it rest again.
Heat oil in a skillet over low to medium heat.
Form balls with the dough and flatten until you have round discs.
Take to the skillet and cook for 4 minutes per side or until golden.
Remove and serve warm filled with cheese or Carne mechada.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 134 Total Fat: 4g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 4g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 587mg Carbohydrates: 22g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 0g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 2g