Vegan Arepas (Venezuelan Corn Cake Sandwich)

August 15, 2022
The first time I had an arepa was when we were living in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico. It was at a Venezuelan gastronomy restaurant, the very first one in PDL. And it was the most amazing thing I’ve ever had! The name "arepa" is said to be from the word "erepa," which means cornbread in Cumanagoto, an endangered language of eastern Venezuela.

Thousands of years ago, Indigenous women chewed the corn and put it onto a plate until it formed into a paste that was shaped into discs and later cooked in ceramic. Then they started learning how to use two stones to crush and process the corn. But don’t worry—you wont have to chew any corn kernels or use any fancy stones to process them anymore! Now you can conveniently buy precooked corn flour for your arepas. Here's the recipe:
vegan arepas on a white plate

Vegan Arepas (Venezuelan Corn Cake Sandwich)

Recipe Type: Hearty Entrees Sandwiches
utensils YIELDS 2 servings
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  • ½ cup precooked corn flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ cup hot water
  • ½ cup vegan shredded cheese
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1 plantain (cut into slices)
  • 4 tbsp black beans (from a can)
  • 1 avocado (cut into slices)
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1. In a big bowl, combine your corn flour and salt.

2. Next add hot water to incorporate into a rough mix with a spatula. 

3. Then sprinkle all of the vegan cheese until it forms into a dough ball.

4. Divide into 4 parts with a knife then roll and flatten into discs. 

5. Gently compress 2 discs together making two patties. 

6. Heat up your pan and melt 1 tbsp vegan butter.

7. Pan fry each side of the arepa until golden brown. 

8. Cut the arepas into half and prepare for your stuffing. 

9. For the fillings: cut up 1 plantain into slices and pan fry them until golden too.  

10. From a can of black beans, stuff 2 tbsp of beans or mashed them into the arepa (I like mashing them into chunks for a bit of texture). 

11. Top it off with your plantain slices and avocado slices.

12. Feel free to add in any fillings of your choice and enjoy!

Also by Bel: Vegan Banana Bread Cookies 3 Ways

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Photo by: @BelBrosasFaustino

Bel Faustino
Bel’s curiosity for healthy living started at a young age of 11. From mindful eating to exercise, she always had a sweet tooth struggle and her weakness are desserts. It then took her high school and uni days to find the balance to maintain the healthy lifestyle yet enjoy desserts in a more guilt-free way and veganizing them seems the way to do it. Obsessed with always finding healthier alternatives, she hopes to recreate her favorite non vegan treats and share her recipes through her culture (Filipina born in Macau, S.A.R., China), lifestyle, childhood memories and travels (Southeast Asia, USA, Mexico, UK and more to come!). Follow her journey in Instagram @belbrosasfaustino.


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