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Colombian Quinoa Arepas…NY Style!

Let’s first make the toppings and accompaniments. Don’t be intimidated by all the components because most are super easy to make:
Servings: 9
Calories: 3285kcal


Frijoles Macerados (Red Bean Puree)

  • 1 1/2 cup small red beans soaked overnight
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/3 cup cilantro leaves firmly packed
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon oregano finely chopped (1 teaspoon of dried oregano can also be substituted)

Chipotle Mayo

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup chipotles in adobo sauce canned
  • Cilantro Salsa
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves firmly packed
  • 1/2 cup crema Mexican/South American sour cream, but with a much milder taste than American sour cream and a thinner consistency – closer to yogurt. If using American sour cream, mix it with a little heavy cream).
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  • 1 1/2 cups tomatoes chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup scallions chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 bouillon cube crushed
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro finely chopped

Quinoa Arepas

  • Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 1/4 cup masa harina pre cooked cornflour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • oil for frying

Additional Toppings:

  • Oaxaca cheese Mexican/South American string cheese
  • Arugula


  • In a saucepan, combine garlic, bay leaves and beans. Add water to cover.
  • Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until very soft; about 1 1/2 hours.
  • Let cool for a few minutes.
  • Transfer to blender with all other ingredients except oregano and 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Puree.
  • Transfer to a bowl and add oregano. Mix well.

For the chipotle mayo

  • Combine ingredients in a food processor and mix until smooth.

To make the cilantro salsa

  • Combine cilantro, crema and lemon juice in a food processor and mix until smooth.
  • While processor is running, slowly add olive oil until sauce is smooth and homogenous.
  • Add water, salt and pepper and mix well.

For the Hogao

  • Heat oil. Add scallion and garlic and cook for 1 minute, until scallions soften.
  • Add tomatoes, bouillon cube, water, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a medium-low flame and simmer for 20 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  • Add cilantro and mix well.

To make Quinoa Arepas

  • Combine the quinoa, masa and salt together.
  • Add water and milk and mix until you have a soft dough. Let rest for 5 minutes.
  • Divide into 9 equal portions.
  • Heat a skillet with just enough oil to coat.
  • Spread a large piece of plastic wrap on a work surface and spray with non stick spray.
  • Place one ball of dough on top and cover with another piece of plastic wrap.
  • With the palm of your hand, keep on pressing down until the dough is pressed thin, about 1/4″ thick.
  • Lift off the top plastic wrap and carefull remove flattened dough with a spatula.
  • Transfer to heated skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the edges start to brown.
  • Flip over and cook for another 2-3 minutes until golden and crispy.

Now let’s make our Palenque style Arepas

  • Take one cooked arepa and spread with a little chipotle mayo. (Palenque uses butter and then puts the chipotle mayo on top, however I choose to skip the butter to reduce the fat content just a little).
  • Spread with beans.
  • Add a few Arugula Leaves.
  • Sprinkle cheese on top.
  • Next comes a drizzle of cilantro sauce and then the hogao.
  • Add a little more cheese on top, if desired.


Calories: 3285kcal | Carbohydrates: 169g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 282g | Saturated Fat: 40g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 113g | Monounsaturated Fat: 103g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 160mg | Sodium: 8766mg | Potassium: 1789mg | Fiber: 21g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 5539IU | Vitamin C: 61mg | Calcium: 728mg | Iron: 20mg
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