Houston chef Evelyn Garcia shows how to make Salvadoran pupusas

Don't miss out on this affordable and delicious comfort food

HOUSTON – Chef Evelyn Garcia, of Kin Concepts, won recognition after she won an episode of Food Network's "Chopped" and became an up-and-coming chef in New York City.

But her Hispanic heritage brought her back to Houston, where she hosts pop-up dinners and teaches everyone how to make her family's Salvadoran pupusas.

The traditional pupusa is filled with pork and cheese or beans and cheese, but she loves to use other fillings to step it up a notch.

"Pupusas can pretty much be filled with anything. I've done lamb, zucchini, mushroom, and brisket. I like to think of them as versatile as the taco," said Garcia, who is currently chef-in-residence at Decatur Bar & Pop-Up Factory.

She stopped by the Houston Life studio to share one of her recipes and teach us great tips to make the masa, or dough, perfectly.

But if you want to try Garcia's famous pupusas, you can go the Pupusa Lab Pop Up event she is having at Axelrad on Thrusday, Nov. 7



(Yields 10 pupusas)


Chicharon filling
•    ½ pound pork butt
•    2-3 cups of mozzarella cheese

Seasoning paste ingredients:
•    1 tomato
•    ¼ of an onion
•    ¼ of a green bell pepper
•    1 clove of garlic
•    ½ tablespoon of tomato consommé
•    1 pinch of salt


1.    On medium heat, sauté pork butt till caramelized
2.    Once caramelized, lower heat to low and cover for 20 minutes
3.    Once pork is tender, take off heat and cool

Seasoning Paste Directions:
1.    Grab all ingredients and puree in food processor
2.    Sauté paste on medium heat with oil till caramelized
3.    Season with consommé and salt
4.    Sauté till caramelized and set aside
4.     Place cooked pork and seasoning paste in food processor until it gets finely be chopped

Pupusa masa

•    ½ pound corn maseca
•    2 cups of warm water
•    ½ tablespoon of salt


1.    Place all ingredients in metal bowl and combine by hand till completely mixed
2.    You are looking for a soft but not sticky consistency, so add water slowly and add more if needed 

Salsa de tomate
•    3 tomatoes
•    ½ an onion
•    1 chile cambray
•    1 clove of garlic
•    ½ tablespoon of tomato consommé


1.    In sauce pot, boil tomato, onion, chile and garlic till tender
2.    Place all cooked vegetables in blender and puree
3.    On medium heat with oil, sauté puree with tomato consommé and let it reduce till it reaches the desired consistency


•    ½ head of small cabbage, shredded
•    1 small carrot, shredded
•    ½ an onion, sliced thinly
•    ¾ cup of vinegar
•    ¼ cup of water
•    1 teaspoon of salt
•    ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
•    1 pinch of dried chili flakes


1.    Place shredded cabbage and carrots in large metal bowl
2.    Season with vinegar, water, salt, oregano and chili
3.    Place kitchen towel over bowl and let ferment overnight

Recipe provided by Evelyn Garcia.