Arepas are one of my favorite foods and my now kids also love arepas, which makes me very happy because I feel that I am passing down some of my Colombian traditions and culture to my children. The Arepa is one the most popular foods in Colombia. They’re served in almost every home and are the equivalent of tortillas in Mexico and bread in Italy. I ate arepa every day growing up in Colombia! There are different versions of arepas throughout Colombia, every region having its own variation.
Arepas are very versatile and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner. They can be served as appetizers, snacks or side dishes but they can also easily make a full and satisfying meal. These delicious corn cakes can be prepared with so many different types of fillings or toppings. You can stick to the classic ones or you can create your own based on inspiration from other dishes. You can combine flavors and ingredients that you love, or simply use the ingredients you have available at home.
Nowadays you can buy packages of arepas at many Latin grocery stores, but you can also easily make them at home and keep them in plastic bags in the freezer. Below are some of the most traditional Colombian arepa recipes and some with my favorite toppings.
Traditional Colombian Arepas:
Arepa Boyacense (Arepa from Boyacá) See the recipe here
Arepas de Queso (Cheese Arepas) See the recipe here
Arepas Rellenas de Queso (Cheese Stuffed Corn Cakes) See the recipe here
Arepas Carisecas (Sweet Arepas) See the recipe here
Arepa con Quesito Colombiano (Corn Cake with Fresh Cheese) see the recipe here
Arepas de Maiz Peto (Colombian Hominy Corn Arepas) See the recipe here
Arepas de Choclo con Quesito (Colombian Corn Cakes with Fresh Cheese) See the recipe here
Arepas de Yuca (Cassava Arepas) See the recipe here
Arepa Santandereana (Arepa from Santander) See the recipe here
Arepitas Fritas con Guacamole (Fried Mini Arepas with Guacamole) See the recipe here
Arepuela o Anisita (Sweet Arepa with Anise) See the recipe here
Arepa Filled with Egg (Arepa de Huevo) See the recipe here
Arepas with Different Toppings:
Arepas with Chicken and Avocado (Arepas con Pollo y Aguacate) see the recipe here
Arepas with Salmon and Shrimp (Arepas con Salmon y Camarones) See the recipe here
Arepa Thai de Pollo (Thai Chicken Arepa) See the recipe here
Arepa con Camarones y Hogao (Arepa with Shrimp and Creole Sauce) See the recipe here
Arepa con Carne a la Criolla (Arepa with Beef a la Criolla) See the recipe here
Arepa con Chorizo y Hogao (Arepa with Chorizo and Creole Sauce) See the recipe here
Arepa con Carne y Champiñones (Corn Cake with Beef and Mushrooms) See the recipe here
Arepa con Carne Desmechada (Arepa with Shredded Meat) See the recipe here
If you are looking for more toppings check this page.
They all look AMAZING! I love them but it's been a while since a Colombian pal made them for me.
These all look delicious! I love arepas, married to a Colombian I have had my share of them. Stuffed, topped with cheese and butter, any way you make them they are soooo good!
wow all the different arepas! My mouth is watering...they are amazing!
I love this type of bread! I can't wait to try it. Thanks for sharing!
while i've never actually eaten an arepa, i love seeing them on your blog and on tv. the first chance i get, i'll be trying them!
I have never had an Arepas, other country's versions yes. Love seeing them here each time and must make some in the near future. Great recipes.
James S Brucker
I lived in Colombia dos anos in 1965. I was working with the Cuerpo de Paz (Peace Corps) In an Education Television project. My favorite food was arroz con pollo and bunelos. I'm very excited about your site.
Question: are Arepas at all like corn tortillas(mexican, guatamalen)?. Also wondering if the indigenous people of Columbia eat corn tortillas. As corn is the scared grain of the indigeous peoples
No. They are different.
You have some wonderful recipes here! Thank you for sharing them with us. I am currently taking two community classes - Spanish I and "Cook While Learning Spanish". We made Arepas Rellenas de Queso tonight, and hot chocolate. Loved them. I found your site while looking for a dessert recipe (I wanted to make something to take to our Spanish I class). Like you, our teacher is very proud of her culture and is passing it on to her son and us. I am looking for a dessert without chocolate (our teacher can't eat chocolate). I may try Arroz con Leche or Flan de Coco since you mentioned Flan de Coco is very popular. Or, do you have any suggestions of something to make along with the Arequipe? Thank you.
would you happen to have a recipe for arepa that is low carb version? thanks
I'm trying healthy Cololombian recipes now.They are coming soon!
Wonderful. Your dishes are great. I am grateful that new healthier recipes are to come. Please make them be bread to accompany your main dishes!
I've enjoyed Arepas in a restaurant.
After reading about Arepas on your site I purchased a small package of masarepa.
Haven't made any arepas yet but will start with a plain and simple recipe.
Then move on from there.
Thanks for sharing!
I had my first arepa today at a Farmer's Market, it was stuffed with cheese. Fantastic for me since I can't have gluten and it was SOOOO delicious! I can't wait to learn to make them for myself!!!
I was just in Colombia and fell in love with arepas. Loved them all with Juan Valdez coffee. I was in heaven and 5 pounds heavier when I came home. I am ready to go back. I did come home with 7 jars of Juan Valdez coffee.and the sombrero. my favorite item was the original handmade mochila. It is beautiful. I received so many compliments. I LOVE COLOMBIA!
Recently made arepas for the first time, and they were pretty good. Came here for filling and topping inspo. Wow! Yum! Can't wait to try some of this stuff.
These look so good! Are you able to use Maseca instant corn flour? Or no?
My parents are Colombians from Bogota. When I was a child we frequently travelled to Bogota to visit my grandparents and NEVER I was given arepas to eat. They preferred other meals, soups, bread, pan de bono, etc... but not arepas. Travelling by road you would expect to have popular meals and only in some regions of Colombia they added plain arepas (without any filling) as a side to accompany the main dish. I was born and raised in Venezuela and even when I was the son of colombian parents, arepas were more predominant than any other meal we had, not only in my home but in the homes of every person I ever met in every region of the country. Breakfast, lunch or dinner, arepas were always on the table. As an example if you travelled by road in Venezuela there were "areperas" (arepa shops) in the convenience store of every pump station in the country. 2 am in the middle of nowhere, and you could have arepas to eat with any type of filling of your choice. With the Bolivarian revolution, more than 5 million (yes 5 MILLION!) Venezuelans have left the country and one of the more popular things they do to survive is selling arepas everywhere they go, specially in other latinamerican countries like in Peru, Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, etc... Before the revolution (60's, 70's, 80's and 90's) we received millions of colombians in Venezuela and not even once I saw colombians selling arepas in Venezuela... It was not their thing. It would have been like having texans selling tacos in Mexico... The name "arepa" comes from the language of one of our first nations tribes: the "Cumanagotos". They called them "erepa" and the spanish conquistadors recorded it as a fact. I remember in one of my trips to Colombia they had a different arepa called "arepa de choclo" which was more like our venezuelan "cachapas"... I believe it has to do with the fact that Colombia has more Andes montains than Venezuela and corn is more of the plains where you can better harvest it. Venezuela only have a little piece of Andes and the people of this region (specially Merida) are the only ones in Venezuela that also eat "wheat arepas" (arepas de trigo). Similarly Colombians eat way more potatos than Venezuelans because potatoes are well harvested in the Andes... In Venezuela we eat more yuca (casava). I acknowledge that arepas are "ONE of the most popular foods" in Colombia but for sure they ARE the most popular food in Venezuela (there is no competition). Imagine if Colombia was more like Villavicencio and less than Cundinamarca... Well that's Venezuela... That's why "joropo" is also Venezuelan... it is just not an Andes thing...