Easy Pupusas Recipe

Are you ready to embark on a culinary journey to El Salvador without leaving your kitchen? Pupusas, the national dish of El Salvador, are a delicious and comforting staple that have won hearts around the globe. These delightful corn cakes are stuffed with a savory filling, typically cheese and beans, and are griddled to golden perfection.

Today, I’m excited to share with you an Easy Pupusas Recipe that is perfect for both beginners and seasoned cooks. This recipe breaks down the process into simple, manageable steps, ensuring that you can create these mouthwatering treats with ease. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party, looking for a new family favorite, or simply craving something different, these pupusas are sure to impress.

So, roll up your sleeves, get your ingredients ready, and let’s dive into the world of homemade pupusas. Trust me, your taste buds will thank you!


For the Dough:

  • 2 cups (228g) masa harina (white or yellow)
  • 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon granules (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons (28g) butter or lard, softened
  • Vegetable oil (for cooking)

For the Filling:

  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese or Oaxaca cheese
  • 1 cup refried beans (optional)


  1. Make the Dough:
    • In a large mixing bowl, combine the masa harina, chicken bouillon (if using), and salt.
    • Gradually add hot water, stirring constantly with a rubber spatula to prevent clumps. Be cautious not to add all the water at once. Allow the dough to rest for a few minutes after each addition to absorb the liquid. You may not need to use all the water. The dough should be pliable, similar to play dough, and slightly sticky.
    • Mix in the softened butter or lard thoroughly until it’s evenly distributed throughout the dough.
  2. Divide the Dough:
    • Once the dough is cool enough to handle, moisten your hands with a blend of oil and cold water to prevent sticking.
    • Split the dough in half, then divide each half into six equal portions, forming a total of 12 balls, each about the size of a golf ball.
    • Keep the dough balls under a damp cloth to prevent drying.
  3. Shape the Pupusas:
    • Take a dough ball and flatten it into a disk approximately 3 inches in diameter. Make an indentation in the center using your thumb.
    • Place a tablespoon of refried beans (if using) and a heaping tablespoon of cheese in the center of the disk. Be careful not to overfill.
    • Fold the edges over the filling, forming a ball again, then gently flatten it into a thin disk about 3 inches wide. If the dough begins to crack, moisten your hands and smooth the edges.
  4. Cook the Pupusas:
    • Preheat a griddle, large non-stick skillet, or cast-iron pan over medium heat. Lightly oil the surface.
    • Cook 2 to 3 pupusas at a time (depending on the size of your pan). Each side should take about 3 minutes to cook, or until the edges turn golden and they can be easily lifted with a spatula.
    • Repeat the process, adding oil as needed for each batch.
  5. Serve Warm:
    • Enjoy your homemade pupusas while they’re warm. They can be served with curtido (a type of pickled cabbage slaw) and salsa roja for an authentic Salvadoran experience.


  • If the dough is too dry, add a bit more water. If it’s too wet, add a little more masa harina.
  • Experiment with different fillings like cooked and seasoned pork, chicken, or vegetables.

Enjoy your delicious homemade pupusas!

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