Pupusas is a ubiquitous and traditional dish in El Salvador. There is even a National Pupusa Day, on the second Sunday of November. Growing up in an El Salvador household, it was the most common food ever. My mom felt lazy to make another dish pupusas. My mom did not want to cook, she would order pupusas from the market down the street. We went out to eat, we would eat Pupusas. We went to a Hispanic restaurant, we would order Pupusas. It was our main dish and we never got tired of it. To this day, it is my comfort food. 

Where do Pupusas originate from? 

Pupusas were created by the Pipil tribes who lived in what is now known as El Salvador. This dish was only found in central towns and cities of the country as these were the places in which the Pipil tribe was located. Soon the neighboring countries such as Honduras and Guatemala were introduced to Pupusas but their Pupusas weren’t the round shape we are used to instead it was shaped like a half-moon. 

Soon after the Salvadorian civil war, which forced many people of the nation to migrate to other countries, the dish then became available to other parts of the world, especially the United States. There are many Pupuserías in many areas of the world. 


For the pupusa dough:

  • 4 cups masa harina
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups cold water

For the filling:

  • 4 oz mozzarella cheese
  • 1 15-oz can black beans
  • 1 medium winter squash (ex: butternut or acorn)
  • 4 tsp vegetable oil

How to Make the Pupusas

  1. Grab a small amount of dough, a little bit smaller than your palm. Roll it into a small ball and like a tortilla make it round. 
  2. Once it is round, add the fillings you want to it.
  3. Again restart the process of shaping it into a ball and flattening it. 
  4. Put it on the stove for a few minutes until it turns a light brown and flip sides 
  5. You are going to repeat this process until you have the amount you need.
  6. And you have now learned how to make Pupusas!! Enjoy!

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Daniela Hernandez Ayala
Daniela Hernandez Ayala is a first-generation college student at McDaniel College pursuing a B.A in Political Science and Spanish. She is also minoring in Sociology. Daniela’s goal is to get her JD in either the Immigration or Criminal Law Field. She wants to dedicate her life to her community and the people who suffer from the oppressed and unjust society. Her passion has always been words whether that is in books or writing. She enjoys the escape from reality that can be found in words. She wants to use this skill she is learning to bring awareness to the Latino Community.