Arepuela o Anisita (Sweet Arepa with Anise)

This post is also available in Spanish

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but I have a weakness for arepas and I eat them almost every day for breakfast. Eating arepas makes me happy and connects me with my country.

In Colombia we eat all kinds of arepas and these Arepuelas or Anisitas (sweet arepas) are very popular on the Atlantic coast of Colombia. You can eat them with hot chocolate for breakfast or just as a quick snack with coffee. They are crispy, sweet and delicious. Enjoy!



(6 arepas)


  1. Combine the masarepa, warm water, anise seeds and sugar, mixing thoroughly. Let mixture stand for five minutes.
  2. Knead with your hands for about 3 minutes, moistening your hands with water as you work.
  3. Form 6 small balls with the dough. Place each ball between 2 plastic bags and with a flat pot cover, flatten to ¼ inch.
  4. Heat the vegetable oil in a large heavy pot to 350 F. Add the arepas in the heated oil one by one, fry for 3 minutes, turning over once about half way through.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove the arepas from the oil and drain on paper towels.
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  1. Sandra g says

    Oh I love this! it reminds me of “arepitas” that we make in The Dominican Republic, we use corn meal, anise seeds, eggs, milk and some butter, we eat them at lunch time as a side dish, will definitely make this soon, yum!

  2. says

    talk about your ideal breakfast–i can definitely see how you can stand to eat these every morning! how delightful they’d be, even without the aromatic anise. :)

  3. Carolina says

    Hi Erica!
    I’m an arepa lover too, but this is one of my favorites! I haven’t had one in ages!!
    I’m so glad I discovered this page in English….now I can share with my friends and show them how wonderful is our Colombian food.
    I’ll come back!!

  4. says

    I’ve not even had arepas for breakfaset yet and I know I’d have a weakness for them as well. As delicious as they look I’m scared to get started =) The addition of anise sounds like something special.

  5. Eddie says

    Hi Erica. I lived in Medellin for 6 months a few years ago and hardly a day goes by that I don’t crave some Colombian food! About a month ago I finally learned how to make the large flat arepas that are so popular in Medellin. (Which I love toasted with butter and queso blanco.) I can’t wait to try these. Isn’t anise the flavor in Agua Diente? Hmmmm. Ha ha. Love this site.

  6. says

    These also sound like something I would go nuts for! Crunchy is my weakness, add a touch of salt! Somehow hot sauce, even for breakfast would find its way onto them :)

  7. says

    I would appreciate more visual materials, to make your blog more attractive, but your writing style really compensates it. But there is always place for improvement

  8. Mery says

    Hello Erica; made these Arepas con Anis…tremendas!!!! un favor, podrias poner las recetas para los diferentes tipos de bollos de colombia? Vivi en B/Quilla y me gustaria, si no probarlos nuevamente, verlos en fotos aunque sea!!!!

  9. Jackie says

    Hi Erica,

    I am an expat living in Melbourne and since I found your website I have been getting re-acquainted with Colombian food! I had tried before with other cookbooks but your recipes are always so easy to follow and the measurements are just perfect! even my Aussie husband has made one of your dishes and it always comes up delicious!

    I hope you keep going with your website because you are doing such a good job!!! when my mum comes to visit I can now cook her a typical Colombian meal!!:)

  10. says

    hi! i just wanted to let you know that a whole bunch of kindergardeners are going to be making your anisita arepas on friday!!! they are syudents in an all spanish immersion school in new orleans, la. and this is the recipe they will be making to represent colombia!!! it is the end of the year, and they are seasoned little cooks now.. they can handle it!
    thank you soooo much for posting it with that lovely photo! mmmmm!

  11. Tiffany says

    Hi Erica,

    I made them today and they were a success!! Reminded me of my grandmother!! I just added a little more sugar. The first two batches I burnt them but I got the hang of them after that. My boyfriend and son were impressed! Thank you! Next one I will try is the arepas with the cheese inside!

  12. Maximiliano González says

    Hola Erika. Hace poco hice estas arepas para mi familia y la verdad, les gustaron mucho. Ahora estoy en la doble misión de compartir y/o hacer las arepas con varios de mis amigos y averiguar con qué puedo acompañar esas arepas y que les hagan buen contraste y/o maridaje (puede ser alguna carne o alguna bebida).

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