Our delicious Reina Pepiada Arepas recipe takes you step by step through the process of creating these Venezuelan treasures in your own kitchen, ensuring that every bite captures the authentic flavors and textures that make them a beloved national dish. Whether you’re an arepa aficionado or trying them for the first time, you’ll be captivated by the harmonious blend of creamy avocado, tender chicken, and vibrant South American flavors. Join us as we explore the art of crafting these delectable treats, and get ready to savor the taste of Venezuela in every bite.
Ingredients for Filling
1 tablespoon butter
2 (6-ounce) chicken breast, boneless, skinless
3 cups water
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 avocados, halved and pitted
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups crumbled queso fresco or shredded Monterey Jack cheese
Ingredients for Arepas
3 cups lukewarm water
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 1/2 cups white corn meal
Lime wedges, for serving
01For filling: Heat butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken and cook on one side, without moving, until lightly browned. Flip after 3 minutes and cook other side for an additional 3 minutes. Add water and salt and reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until chicken is fully cooked and a meat thermometer reads 165°F, about 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer chicken to large bowl and let cool. Using two forks shred chicken into small bite-size pieces.
02Mash avocado, mayonnaise, vinegar and garlic together in large bowl until smooth. Fold in cheese and chicken until combined. Set aside for stuffing arepas.
03For arepa: Stir water, 2 tablespoons oil and salt together in large bowl until salt dissolves. Mix corn meal gradually into salt water until a soft dough forms and no lumps remain. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 3 minutes.
04Divided dough into 8 equal portions. Divide each portion into 4-inch disks, about 1/2-inch thick. Heat remaining oil in large skillet over medium heat. Working with four at a time, cook arepas, covered, until golden-brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Flip and cook, uncovered, until other side is golden-brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Repeat with remaining arepas.
05Split arepas and stuff with chicken mixture. Serve with lime wedges and enjoy.