Reina pepiada arepas are the favorite of Venezuelan homecook Liliana Hernández. Made with avocado, shredded chicken and minced onion, this royal relleno is one of the most traditional and popular fillings for arepas, Venezuela’s national bread. It was also the winner of Familia Kitchen’s Your Favorite Arepa Recipe Contest. Felicidades, Liliana!
“But I’m sure the first question you have is: Why is it called reina pepiada?” says Liliana, who was born in Caracas. “Here’s the story: Venezuela is well known for, among other things, its beauty queens. In 1955 a Venezuelan beauty queen named Susana Duijm, won Miss World. A man who owned an arepera, an arepa restaurant, wanted to pay tribute to this momentous event, so he named one of his arepas after her: reina—queen.”
“In those days, if a woman had a great figure — if she had one of those iconic curvilinear silhouettes —people would say she was pepiada: Wow, estás pepiada. This applies to both women and men, by the way. If a man in the 1950s was very well dressed, looking very elegant, people would say: Estás pepiado. And so that is where the name reina pepiada comes from. A fitting tribute to a Venezuelan queen, no?”
How to Make Reina Pepiada Arepas
Reina pepiada arepas are made with shredded chicken and avocados onions, cilantro, lime and a little bit of mayonnaise or Greek yogurt. This royal treat is one of Liliana’s favorite ways to eat an arepa. (And now that we think of it, the curvy avocado is pepiado, right?)
If you would like to see the recipe being made step by step, via video, check out her Mi Show de Cocina’s episode on reina pepiada arepas. (See Liliana’s step-by-step instructions on how to make traditional Venezuelan arepas here.)
For more of Liliana’s traditional Venezuelan family-famous recipes, try her life-changing coconut bienmesabe cake, asado negro for celebrations, can’t-stop-at-one cheese-stuffed tequeños, handmade toasted corn flour arepas, carne mechada arepa filling, and her mother’s go-to ensalada rusa potato salad. All are 100% delicioso.
Ready to Make Reina Pepiada Filling for Your Arepa?