Llapingachos (Potato Cakes Stuffed With Cheese)

"Llapingachos are popular in the highlands of Equador. Potato patties filled with cheese and fried to a golden brown. YUM. They can be used as an appetizer, a snack or as a side dish. They are often served with fried eggs and a simple salad of lettuce, tomato and avocado. Sometimes sausages and a side of rice are added to make a full and typically Ecuadorian meal. Found on the internet and posted for ZWT 7 Note: Do NOT deep fry these! They will fall apart - the instructions are for pan frying."
photo by NorthwestGal photo by NorthwestGal
photo by NorthwestGal
Ready In:


  • 2 lbs potatoes (yukon gold or russets work well)
  • 12 medium yellow onion, finely diced
  • 12 cup of grated cheese
  • 1 egg yolk
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 -4 tablespoons cooking oil


  • Boil the potatoes and mash (You may also use leftover mashed potatoes made without milk and butter).
  • Sautee onion in oil until soft, remove from pan and add to mashed potatoes.
  • When the potaotoes have cooled down beat the egg yolk and mix in to the potatoes.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Form into equal sized balls and poke a hole in the middle of each ball stuffing each hole with cheese. Seal.
  • Flatten each ball in to patties and chill for 30 minutes (This makes them less likely to spread when frying).
  • Add oil to a medium hot frying pan and sautee until golden and crispy outside and heated thoughout.
  • note: You can also just mix the shredded cheese in to the potato mixture but I like the gooey 'surprise' in the middle.
  • Queso Blanco is the traditional cheese used but Monteray Jack or mozzarella may be substituted.
  • Prep time does not include chilling time.
  • Cooking time will depend on the size of your pan and number of batches being made. 5 minutes per side seems to do the job.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Paul K.
    50 minutes is not a realistic time to prep & cook. Boiling 2 lbs of potatoes takes nearly 30 minutes, then cooling takes 15, then mixing & chilling is at 45 minutes more. This recipe takes closer to 2 hours from start to finish. From the picture, it looks like the potatoes are peeled before boiling. That should be mentioned in the instructions.
  2. NorthwestGal
    These were really good potato cakes! I didn't stuff them but instead just mixed the cheese throughout the mashed potatoes. It would be a lot easier to stuff them though, because the top layer of cheese melted during cooking and parts stuck to the skillet. Lesson learned - I'll follow instructions next time. But they were still quite good, and I'll be sure to make these again. Thanks K9 Owned. They were yummy. Made for 2014 Culinary Quest.
  3. Queen Dana
    These totally fell a part when I tried to deep fry them. I tried again and just pan fried them... they were still soft side and bland.


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