Turkey Arepas

Our friends at IMUSA sent us an electric arepa maker and we couldn’t wait to test it. We had honestly never made arepas at home and had only eaten them at a restaurant. Arepas are corncakes popular in Colombia and Venezuela. They look very similar to English muffins or gorditas and can be eaten warm with butter as a snack, or split in half and filled with cheese, meats, or other fillings. If you don’t have an arepa maker you can still make this recipe and cook them on a skillet with a little oil on medium heat until they are browned and sound hollow when “thumped”.

This arepa maker with a non-stick coating is available to purchase on Amazon. It’s very affordable and similar to a waffle iron. It’s very compact and easy to use and store. You can make 4 delicious, golden arepas in only minutes. The unique non-stick cooking plates prevent the arepas from sticking.

We gave our arepas a muy bueno twist by adding some Mexican ingredients y mucho amor. Instead of the traditional P.A.N. arepas flour we used masa harina, a corn flour. We also added some softened cream cheese and Monterrey Jack cheese to the dough to give it a richer flavor. After making the arepas we topped them with shredded turkey, pico de gallo, and queso fresco. Take your Thanksgiving turkey leftovers south of the border with this recipe. Just brown some shredded turkey and a little onion and watch your leftovers turn into a savory Mexican mountain of goodness on this golden arepa. If you split each one like we do than 4 arepas quickly turns into 8, considering we topped each half with enough toppings to call it a single serving.

Yield: 4 to 8 Arepas



¾ cup milk

½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup softened cream cheese

1 teaspoon sugar

1 cup masa harina flour (recommend Maseca Corn Flour Masa)

¼ cup Monterrey Jack cheese (shredded)


1 tablespoon virgin olive oil

2 cups turkey or rotisserie chicken, shredded

1 white onion, chopped

1 cup salsa of your choice

1 cup queso fresco, crumbled



Turn on the arepa maker.

Add milk, salt, and cream cheese to a mixing bowl and whisk until creamy.

Add sugar, flour, and cheese. Hand mix well until the flour absorbs most of the liquid.

Divide the dough into four balls. Using slightly moistened hands flatten the dough with your hands and soften the edges so you don’t have any cracks on the edges.

Spray the arepa maker lightly with non-stick cooking spray.

Add the arepas to the hot arepa maker, close the cover, and allow the arepas to cook for about 15 minutes.

While the arepas are cooking you can prepare the shredded leftover turkey listed below.

Using a wooden spoon, remove the arepas from the hot plate and while still warm, cut the arepas in half.

Top each arepa with the following toppings.


Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat.

Add shredded leftover turkey and onion and sauté.

Top arepas with turkey and onions, pico de gallo or salsa verde and queso fresco.

IMUSA products are available from Amazon, Target, and other major retailers. If you want more information on this or other products from IMUSA, check out their website.


Photography by Jeanine Thurston

Note: IMUSA sent us the arepa maker to try out and we were compensated for writing this recipe post, however, the recipe is ours and so is our opinion about this product.  

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  1. What a great idea for all those turkey leftovers! The look deliciosos!

  2. I agree, this is a tasty way to use up turkey leftovers. What a great, super-fast lunch idea.

  3. ay, ay, ay!
    arepas are a favorite of mine…mine never look like that, so maybe i need an arepa-maker? or, you guys to make some for me!

  4. Wow, these look absolutely amazing. I am getting hungry just looking at them! I love how you used Turkey for the meat; perfect timing!

  5. mm.. I need to try your arepas ! I am getting hungry just looking at them! thanksssssss

  6. Looks delicious! And I learned something new. We have arepas here in our small town in Mexico, but they’re a sweet bread very similar to gingerbread.

  7. I don’t have the arepa maker, how can I make?

  8. Your south of the border ingedients kicked it up a notch……and the photos are wonderful…Happy Thanksgiving…..

  9. Great time saving and short cut gadget. What will IMUSA come up with next?

  10. how wonderful that you make make arepas a bit simpler! I’m going to have to try one. I looooove me some arepas. I have a dear Columbian and Venezuelan friend that makes them for me every so often… con pavo? riquisimo.

  11. I don’t think I’ve ever had an arepa and I’m loving the description of them. You’ve officially got me craving turkey leftovers. :)

  12. So very very messy! just the way i like it!

  13. It is interesting how much arepas can vary from area to area. My aunt-in-law from Colombia taught me how to make them and they use masa harina with salt and I add a tiny bit of panela. Then they use their hands to make them super flat and round like a tortilla and grill them on this special grill pan that fits over the burner on the stove. We serve them with butter and fresh farmers cheese. They are amazing. Thanks for sharing this recipe. I might have to see how my fiance likes them!

  14. You are brilliant! What a great way to use up stuffing…altho’, I have to admit…stuffing is one of the best things ever, so I’d probably not allow any leftovers! :)

  15. Simply amazing, your recipe looks easy and tasty!
    We have some different options to make arepas in our web, have you seen it?

    Check it out!


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  17. We ceLebrate with hot Mexican chocolate and blackeyeed beans and tamales
    Munelos and lots of family thank you we tried the cesitos and were a big hit thanks
    My husband was asking about papas charchivas?
    Thanks for any help u can give me

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  19. Pingback: Arepas: Venezuelan Cornmeal Cakes

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