Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Stuffed Arepas)

This traditional Venezuela Reina Pepiada Arepa recipe features a crispy corn cake stuffed with a creamy avocado chicken salad. It’s a super satisfying and fast weeknight dinner option!

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This post is sponsored by Country Crock®. The opinions and text are all mine.

This traditional Venezuela Reina Pepiada Arepa recipe features a crispy corn cake stuffed with a creamy avocado chicken salad. It’s a super satisfying and fast weeknight dinner option!

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

The first time I ever had arepas was on my first date with my husband. He’s half Colombian and half Puerto Rican, and he took me to a local Colombian restaurant in his hometown in Northern New Jersey. It’s safe to say that after that meal, I fell in love with him, and arepas! We had a traditional Colombian meal called a Bandeja Paisa, which is a sampling of grilled steak, sausage, white rice, beans, avocado, a fried egg, sweet plantains, and a griddled arepa! So much food, but so good!

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

Traditional arepas are made of a special type of corn meal called masarepa. Just mix hot water, butter, masarepa and a pinch of salt into a dough, then form them into cakes and griddle them in a hot pan with they’re crispy on the outside and fluffy in the inside. Instead of using butter, I make my arepas with Country Crock® Plant Butter. I love it because it cooks, bake and tastes like butter**, with 40% less saturated fat than dairy butter! And of course, because it’s dairy free!

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

Country Crock® Plant Butter is perfect for use in recipes that traditionally call for dairy butter. You can find it in the refrigerated butter section at Publix. Country Crock® Plant Butter has become a staple in my house, because even butter lovers like me love it! I substitute Country Crock® Plant Butter for dairy butter one-for-one in all my favorite recipes, like these yummy stuffed arepas.

Head on over to Publix and you’ll get $3 off any TWO (2) Country Crock® Spreads 15-45 oz. at Publix from 6/27/20– 7/25/20! You can also buy any TWO (2) Country Crock Plant Butter products and Get One (1) Free at Publix from 6/27/20 – 7/25/20!

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

Arepas are griddled corn cakes that are a food staple in places like Colombia and Venezuela. They’re as essential to a meal as tortillas are to Mexican food. In Venezuela & Colombia, arepas are served with almost every meal. But in Venezuela, arepas are typically split open and stuffed like a sandwich. Arepas can be filled with all kinds of delicious things like beans, sweet plantains, avocado or shredded beef. But the queen of all the stuffed arepas is the Reina Pepiada.

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

 The Reina Pepiada arepa was named after Susana Dujim, a Venezuelan beauty queen who was crowned Miss World in 1955.  She visited a local restaurant, and they created a new stuffed arepa, featuring a chicken and avocado filling.  The owner named it La Reina Pepiada, which translates into “La Curvy Queen” in tribute to the curvaceous beauty queen. It’s been a sensation ever since!

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)

This Reina Pepiada arepa features a delicious avocado chicken salad. It is a super satisfying and fast weeknight dinner option. You can have these on the table in 30 minutes or less. For a vegan filling, you can stuff these with mashed black beans, sliced avocado and fried sweet plantains! Plus, arepas are gluten free, so they’re a great bread substitute for sandwiches! Thanks to Country Crock® Plant Butter, my arepas came out perfectly, and the taste was just as good as the traditional version. Right now, you can by any TWO (2) Country Crock® Plant Butter products and Get One (1) Free at Publix from 6/27/20 – 7/25/20.

**Tested and when used with Country Crock® Plant Butter Sticks

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Arepas with Chicken & Avocado)
5 from 3 votes
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Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Stuffed Arepas)

Course Main Course
Cuisine Venezuelan
Keyword reina pepiada arepas, stuffed arepas, venezuelan stuffed arepas
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Delish D’Lites

Ingredients

Arepas

  • 1 cup masarepa pre-cooked cornmeal
  • 1 1/4 cups warm water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons Country Crock® Plant Butter divided

Chicken & Avocado Filling

  • 2 cups cooked & shredded chicken breast
  • 1 ripe avocado pitted and mashed
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro chopped
  • 2 green onion finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Salt & Pepper to taste

Vegan Black Bean, Plantain & Avocado Filling

  • 1 tablespoon Country Crock® Plant Butter
  • 2 large ripe plantains peeled, diagonally cut into 1-inch thick slices (or you can purchase them already made from the frozen Hispanic/Latin section of the grocery store
  • 1 can black beans drained (10 oz)
  • 1 ripe avocado pitted and mashed

Instructions

For the Arepas

  1. Melt one tablespoon of Country Crock® Plant Butter into the hot water. Mix the salt, cornmeal and hot water mixture together, until the dough is smooth. You should be able to form balls of dough in your hands without it sticking. Let the dough rest for 3 minutes to allow the cornmeal to fully absorb the liquid.
  2. Divide the arepa dough into 4 portions and form them into discs, about 1/2 inch thick. Don’t make them too thin, you want to be able to split them open later.
  3. Heat a griddle or cast iron skillet to medium, add 2 tablespoons of Country Crock® Plant Butter to the pan. Once the Country Crock® Plant Butter is melted, add the arepas.
  4. Cook the arepas for 10-15 minutes, until they’re crunchy and golden brown in spots on both sides.

For the Chicken & Avocado Filling

  1. Mash the avocados with a pinch of salt and 1 tablespoon of lime juice.
  2. Add in 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise, and mix.
  3. Toss the chicken, green onions and cilantro into the avocado dressing.
  4. Stir thoroughly to combine, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. To slice the arepa open, lay your non-cutting hand on top of the arepa. Using a small serrated knife, slide the knife around the edge of the arepa, until you’ve cut all the way around. Pull the 2 halves apart.
  6. Place a generous helping of the chicken salad onto one half of the split arepa. Top the stuffed arepa with the 2nd half of the split arepa to form a sandwich. Serve immediately.

For the Vegan Black Bean, Plantain & Avocado Filling

  1. Make the sweet plantains. In a hot nonstick skillet, add 1 tablespoon of Country Crock® Plant Butter. Pan fry the sliced plantains for 2-3 minutes at medium heat until they have browned. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Chop into small pieces. Set aside.
  2. Drain and rinse the black beans. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. To slice the arepa open, lay your non-cutting hand on top of the arepa. Using a small serrated knife, slide the knife around the edge of the arepa, until you’ve cut all the way around. Pull the 2 halves apart.
  4. Place a generous helping of the black beans, plantains and avocado onto one half of the split arepa. Top the stuffed arepa with the 2nd half of the split arepa to form a sandwich. Serve immediately.

Reina Pepiada Arepas (Venezuelan Stuffed Arepas)

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4 Responses

  1. 5 stars
    Amazing recipe, thank you for publishing this. Also I would just like to add that as good as the recipe you use for the “dough”, it’s not the traditional or “Venezuelan” method. We just use water and salt to make the mix, water is meant to be cool not warm and no butter is added. Some people dab the Arepa with oil or dab the pan with oil, others may mix a spoon of sunflower oil into the mix to avoid the dabbing process. I know it can be a bit tricky publishing recipes from other places specially Venezuelan ones as we seem to be generally quite touchy about it!! I guess if there’s one thing we can agree on is that the Latino community sure loves its food!!

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Hola

I’m Jannese, Founder of Delish D’lites

I’m a Puerto Rican girl living in paradise (Florida), and the creative mind behind Delish D’Lites. I love sharing my family recipes and travel inspired cuisine! My favorite things include collecting passport stamps, twerking to Latin music, and kissing puppies. Follow along on social.