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El Salvadoran Tamales Pisques Recipe

El Salvadoran Tamales Pisques Recipe

Tamales pisques are a traditional Salvadoran tamale consisting of a corn dough with a pureed bean filling.

The pliable dough is made using corn flour, water and sometimes lard. The filling is made by pureeing beans then seasoning them with onions, peppers and garlic. Once the bean filling has been placed on the dough, they are wrapped up in banana leaves or corn husks then cooked by steaming.

Tamales pisques is typically served warm and can be accompanied by salsa.

Red or black beans are used depending on the region. Some tamales pisques include shredded meat, eggs or cheese as part of the filling. One common variation is tamales pisques con chipilin.

Chipilin is a leafy green that is a common in ingredient in Central America. It is edible only when cooked and is prepared together with the corn masa dough.

Origin & Cultural Significance

As with many traditional dishes, recipes and variations can vary by region and family traditions. Tamales pisques remains a cherished dish, often enjoyed during special occasions, holidays, and family gatherings in El Salvador.

Tamal Pisque served with sauce

El Salvador Tamales Pisques Recipe

Yield: 10 Servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours

Tamales pisques are a traditional Salvadoran tamale. It consists of a corn dough with a pureed bean filling.


  • Corn dough - 2.2 lbs
  • Garlic cloves - 2
  • Onion - 1
  • Green pepper - 1
  • Cooked beans - 17 oz.
  • Melted butter - 7 oz.
  • Salt - 1 pinch
  • Pepper - 1 pinch
  • Oil - as needed
  • Banana leaves - as needed


    1. Mash the cooked beans until they are a thick creamy consistency.
    2. Cut the onion, garlic cloves, green pepper into small pieces, and sauté them in hot oil.
    3. Add the crushed beans to the stir-fry, adding salt and pepper and stirring.
    4. Add the melted butter and salt to taste to the the dough of the tamales kneading very well, until the consistency is uniform.
    5. Boil the banana leaves for a few minutes to soften them.
    6. Cut the leaves into squares and place a small scoop of the dough on top.
    7. Top with a smaller scoop of the mashed beans.
    8. Wrap the same banana leaf around the fillings to form the tamales
    9. Boil for about 50 minutes or steam until firm.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 331Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 43mgSodium: 401mgCarbohydrates: 29gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 4g

Nutrition is provided and calculated by Nutritionix. It is for general information purposes and is only a rough estimation.

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