A crispy, deep-fried pastry, sopapillas are often served covered with honey or syrup, are enjoyed in many Hispanic cuisines, and can be served salty or sweet.
There are many variations of sopapillas in South and Central American cuisine, but the sopapillas we’re probably most familiar with in the US are the sopapillas that originated in Albuquerque, New Mexico over 200 years ago.
There isn’t a definitive answer to where the name originated from. But the most popular beliefs are that the name comes from the Spanish word ‘sopaipa’ that refers to sweetened fried dough, or that the name comes from the word ‘xopaipa’ that means bread soaked in oil.
Sopapillas are also popular in Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay.
However, in Chile, the spelling is changed to Sopaipilla, and these are the sopaipillas we’ll be delving into today! But while the spelling is very similar to the Tex-Mex sopapilla, that’s where the similarities end.
Even the origins of the name are different! The Chileans inherited the word sopaipilla indirectly from Arabic, via the Spanish colonizers who came to Chile. Sopaipillas have since become a breakfast, lunch, and dinner staple in Chile.
They’re a beloved street food snack, often served as an appetizer in restaurants, and are best enjoyed in the fall or winter. In fact, sopaipillas have become synonymous with rainy days in Chile. Yes, really!
People often make and eat sopaipillas when the weather turns bad.
This tradition has been passed down through generations, and if you check any Chilean based social media account on a rainy day, you’re sure to see mouth-watering photos of sopaipillas in front of rain-spattered windows, accompanied by a hot drink.
Needless to say, sopaipillas are the Chilean comfort food of choice!
The appeal of sopaipillas is their versatility. Some people describe them as donuts, while others think of them more like fried bread or pancakes.
The simplicity of the sopaipillas lets you interpret them however you want! This has of course added to their enduring popularity.
You can stuff your sopapilla dish with meat, beans, honey, sugar, or cheese, whatever tickles your taste buds! But while sopaipillas can be eaten salty or sweet, the sweet variations are the most popular in Chile.
A traditional Chilean sopaipilla recipe contains pumpkin and can be simply drizzled with honey, or dipped in chancaca (a traditional sweet Chilean sauce), black beet sugar, or cinnamon.
Today, we’re bringing you some of the best Chilean sopaipillas with pumpkin recipes around.
Some are traditional and simple, some utilize the convenience of canned pumpkin puree, while some are savory takes that carry on the tradition of tweaking sopaipillas recipes, giving them unique, but always delicious twists!
Bust out these Chilean sopaipillas for picnics or dinner parties, or just whenever you want a change to your usual breakfast, lunch, or snack food options. The versatility of these deep-fried pumpkin treats is that they can be enjoyed any time of the day.
But we definitely recommend making these on a relaxing, rainy day, cozying up with a cup of coffee, staring out the window, and seeing what all the fuss is about!
1. Chilean Sopaipillas with Pumpkin from Chilean Food and Garden
These sopaipillas make a great appetizer with Pebre (a Chilean salsa), or a great dessert dusted with powdered sugar or dripping in a molasses sauce. However you serve them, the results are sure to be delicious!
2. Chilean Pumpkin Sopaipillas with Honey from The Cookware Geek
With a drizzle of honey, these authentic Chilean pumpkin sopaipillas make a delicious dessert or appetizer, and are easy to make too!
3. Chile Sopaipillas from International Cuisine
While in Chile, sopaipillas are either made with pumpkin or squash, this recipe uses canned pumpkin puree to make an equally delicious sopaipilla. Spread some butter on top and you’ve got yourself a new breakfast treat!
4. How to Make Authentic Chilean Sopaipillas from B+C
Enjoy these sopaipillas with manjar, ketchup, mustard, or pebre, but they’re best enjoyed hot!
5. Chilean-Inspired Stuffed Pumpkin Sopaipillas Recipe from Three Big Bites
While many sopaipillas you might enjoy at a restaurant get their orange hue from dye, originally this came from pumpkin. This recipe goes the traditional route with pumpkin while adding gooey, melty cheese to the mix.
6. Sopaipillas (Chilean Pumpkin Fried Dough) Recipe from Vituperio
Sopaipillas are traditionally a snack enjoyed in fall and winter, but with this recipe, you can enjoy them all year round, either plain or with salsa, mustard, or cheese.
7. Chilean Fried Pumpkin Bread (Sopaipillas) Recipe from Gourmet Vegetarians
Brighten up your lunchtime with this tasty, pumpkin treat!
8. Sopaipillas Pasadas from Cookpad
This divine recipe is best enjoyed on wintery days with a Chilean molasses called Chancaca, made of cloves, cinnamon, and orange peel.
9. Chilean Sopaipillas from En Mi Cocina Hoy
Perfect as an aperitif or snack, to make these traditional sopaipillas thicker, just add cornstarch dissolved in cold water and stir until it thickens.
10. Sopaipillas from 196 Flavors
This traditional recipe for sopaipillas (or sopaipas or cachangas) is made with pumpkin puree and served hot.
11. Chilean Style Sopaipillas from The Spruce Eats
These sopapillas are made from pumpkin-spiced dough and drenched in brown sugar syrup. They make a delicious fall breakfast and a tasty afternoon snack with coffee.
12. Pumpkin Sopaipillas from Hispanic Kitchen
If you have any pumpkin puree (or even sweet potato puree) lying around and don’t know what to do with it, why not make sopapillas? They make for a delicious dessert or a fun snack, and will certainly brighten up your morning coffee.
Just fry them, drizzle with honey or sugar, and enjoy!
13. Chilean Sopapillas from Foody Chile
Their spongy consistency and delicate flavor are what make sopaipillas Chile’s favorite street food, and you can recreate them for yourself at home.
While fried bread may not sound all that exciting, the cooked pumpkin element of this recipe is what sets it apart.
14. Sopaipillas: A Tasty Chilean Dessert from Amigo Foods
In Chile, sopaipillas are often enjoyed during rainy days in winter. It’s easy to see why kicking back with these sopaipillas and a hot drink while the rain taps at your window are sure to shoo away any wintry blues!
15. Sopaipillas & Pebre Sauce with Bliss is My Food
A common, delicious accompaniment to sopaipillas is pebre sauce. But if you’ve never made either before, this recipe tells you how to make both. Win-win!
16. Sopaipillas: Chilean Fried Pumpkin Bread recipe from Woolworths
Easy to make and versatile enough to enjoy at breakfast, lunch, or dinner, this sopapillas recipe is easy to make with only 2 ingredients. Plus, it’s vegan-friendly.
17. Chilean Pumpkin Pancakes (Sopaipillas) Recipe from Tasty Craze
You can serve this traditional sopaipillas dish warm with honey or whatever garnish you like!
18. Chilean Breakfast Pancakes (Sopaipillas) from Ginger and Bread
Give your breakfast sopaipillas a savory twist with guacamole and fresh tomato, or indulge in more traditionally Chilean flavors such as chancho en piedra which is a spicy tomato sauce.
19. Pumpkin Fried Bread (Sopaipillas) Recipe from Vegoralia
This soft and warm treat is a versatile snack and can transform into a dessert with a few sweet tweaks.
20. Sopaipillas Con Pebre from Canela Kitchen
Inspired by the side of sopaipillas that often accompanies meals in Chilean restaurants, these stuffed pumpkin sopapillas can either be served with a savory sauce like pebre or hot jalapeno sauce, or a sweeter sauce like chancaca.
21. Sopapillas Recipe from New Worlder
As we know, one of the biggest appeals of sopaipillas is their versatility.
Avocado, onions, and even canned mackerels are toppings that are increasingly growing in popularity! While this recipe is for a squash-flavored sopaipilla, it still has a pumpkin element with pumpkin puree.
22. How to make Chilean Sopaipillas from Segioter
Using pumpkin puree, this recipe could not be easier to make.
23. Chilean Style Sopaipillas from What’s Cookin Chicago?
A great appetizer, these savory pumpkin sopaipillas will go down a treat at a dinner party served with cilantro and sour cream.
24. Sopaipillas Recipe from Spark Recipes
These traditional Chilean sopaipillas with pumpkin make for an easy snack to make, and have a gorgeous flavor to boot!
25. Chilean Pumpkin Sopaipillas from Dominican Heat
Serve these sweet sopaipillas with sugar, and cinnamon or honey.