Delicious Fanesca Recipe to Try at Home

Are you in the mood for a warm and hearty soup that will leave you feeling satisfied all day long? Then look no further than this easy Fanesca imitation recipe! This traditional Ecuadorian Easter soup is a plato típico, meaning it is a typical dish consumed during Semana Santa, the Holy Week leading up to Easter.

In this recipe article, I will be sharing with you my take on the Ecuadorian classic using easily accessible ingredients that you may already have in your pantry. Prepare yourselves for a comforting bowl of Fanesca soup that will transport your taste buds straight to beautiful Ecuador.

This Fanesca imitation recipe packs in 12 grains and dried salt cod, making it both nutritious and delicious. Plus, with the added butternut squash and cabbage, this soup will make a great addition to any meal plan looking to hit those daily vegetable goals. So grab your aprons and let’s get cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Easy Fanesca Imitation
Easy Fanesca Imitation

Fanesca is a traditional soup from Ecuador, which is typically prepared during Semana Santa or the Holy Week before Easter. This dish is considered to be a plato típico or a typical meal of this festive season. The authentic recipe of fanesca includes twelve grains and dried salt cod fish, which can be time-consuming and intimidating for many people. However, with this easy fanesca imitation recipe, you can recreate the same flavors and textures in just 10 minutes of preparation time.

One of the main reasons why you’ll love this recipe is that it uses simple ingredients that are readily available in your local grocery store. You can find green plantain, hominy, broad beans, half-and-half, cumin, pepper, garlic cloves, butter, butternut squash, and rice easily. Moreover, this recipe also includes some substitutions and variations that allow you to adjust the ingredients based on your taste preferences or dietary restrictions.

Another reason why you’ll enjoy making this fanesca imitation recipe is that it is incredibly versatile and can serve as a wholesome meal any time of the week. You can pair it with some crusty bread or top it with some fried egg to add some protein to your meal. This easter soup recipe will certainly impress not only your family but also your friends with its authentic Ecuadorian flavor and aroma.

In summary, if you are looking for an easy-to-follow fanesca ecuatoriana recipe that tastes as good as the traditional soup but requires much fewer ingredients and takes much less time to prepare, then the Fanesca Imitation Recipe is your go-to recipe. Plus, it’s perfect for fans of butter recipes who want to make their own imitation butter! Try it out today and fall in love with the rich flavors of Ecuadorian cuisine!

Ingredient List

 A hearty bowl of Fanesca, perfect for a cozy night in.
A hearty bowl of Fanesca, perfect for a cozy night in.

Here are the ingredients you will need to make this delicious Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe:

For the soup:

  • 1 pound of dried salted cod fish
  • 6 cups of water
  • 2 cups of diced green plantain
  • 2 cups of diced hominy
  • 2 cups of diced broad beans
  • 2 cups of diced squash (butternut or any other type)
  • 1 cup of diced white cabbage
  • 1 cup of cooked rice
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon of pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • ½ cup of half-and-half

For the achiote butter:

  • 316 g (11.5 oz) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon best-quality achiote powder

You can find most of these ingredients at your local grocery store. If you can’t find hominy or broad beans, you can easily substitute them with canned corn and lima beans.

The Recipe How-To

 The flavors of Ecuador come alive with this delicious soup.
The flavors of Ecuador come alive with this delicious soup.

Now, it’s time to dive into making the Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe. This recipe is straightforward and doesn’t require any special kitchen equipment. So, let’s start cooking!

Step 1: Soak the Dried Salt Cod Fish

Begin by soaking 1 pound of dried salt cod fish in cold water for 24-48 hours in the refrigerator, changing the water at least twice a day. Rinse the fish under running water and shred into small pieces.

Step 2: Cook the Rice and Beans

In a large pot, add 6 cups of water, 1 cup of dry white beans, and 1 cup of rice. Bring it to boil over high heat then reduce to medium-low heat for about an hour or until everything is cooked through.

Step 3: Cook the Vegetables

While waiting for the rice and beans to cook, peel and dice two green plantains, half a butternut squash, one cabbage leaf, and one peeled zucchini. Then, in a different pot, sauté two minced garlic cloves, one teaspoon of cumin, two teaspoons of achiote powder, and one teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper in 1/4 cup of melted imitation butter.

Step 4: Add More Veggies and Hominy

Next, add in the diced plantains, squash, cabbage, zucchini along with one can (14-16 ounce) of hominy. Cook them on medium-low until they become tender.

Step 5: Combine All Ingredients

Now that everything is cooked through, it’s time to combine all ingredients into one pot. Add in shredded codfish, cooked beans and rice mixtures into the vegetable pot.

Step 6: Add Half-and-Half

Finally, pour two cups of half-and-half into the pot and stir until everything is well combined. Cook on low for about 10 minutes, or until the soup becomes creamy and heated through.

Congratulations, you now have a delicious pot of Easy Fanesca Imitation Soup!

Substitutions and Variations

 Don't let the long ingredient list intimidate you - this Fanesca imitation is easy to make!
Don’t let the long ingredient list intimidate you – this Fanesca imitation is easy to make!

One of the great things about this easy fanesca imitation recipe is that you can customize it to your liking. Here are some substitution ideas and variations that you can try:

– Salt cod fish: If you don’t have or don’t like salt cod fish, you can use other types of white fish such as tilapia or cod. You can also substitute it with imitation crab or shrimp for a vegetarian version.

– Butternut squash: This recipe calls for butternut squash, but you can also use acorn squash or pumpkin as a substitute.

– Green plantain: If you’re having a hard time finding green plantains, you can substitute them with unripe bananas.

– Hominy: Can’t find hominy? Substitute it with canned corn or freeze-dried corn.

– Broad beans: If fava beans are not available, try using lima beans or navy beans instead.

– Half-and-half: To make the recipe lighter or more dairy-free, use coconut milk or almond milk instead.

– Achiote powder: Achiote powder is common in Ecuadorian cuisine and gives the dish its characteristic color. If you can’t find it, consider using paprika powder.

As for variations, try adding some crushed peanuts or topping it with crispy bacon bits for an extra crunch. Some people also like adding a fried egg on top of their fanesca to complete the dish.

Remember that there’s no single “correct” way to make fanesca, so feel free to play around with the ingredients and make it your own!

Serving and Pairing

 This soup is packed with nutrients and fiber, making it a healthy meal option.
This soup is packed with nutrients and fiber, making it a healthy meal option.

Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe is a rich and hearty soup that is traditionally served during the Semana Santa (Easter week) celebration in Ecuador. To get the best experience from this recipe, it should be served hot in bowls, accompanied with various toppings and sides that complement its bold flavors.

Some popular toppings for Fanesca Ecutoriana include hard-boiled egg slices, fried empanadas, and diced cheese. You can also sprinkle a tablespoon of minced onion or cilantro to enhance its taste. When it comes to sides, many people opt for steamed white rice, boiled green plantains or sweet ripe plantains.

Another great way to serve this soup is by pairing it with traditional Ecuadorian dishes such as grilled meat or fish, ceviche, or roasted pork. A glass of cold lemonade or chicha (a South American maize-based drink) would go well with any of these options.

For those who prefer milder flavor profiles, you can consider serving the easy fanesca imitation recipe with a side of avocado salad or grilled vegetables like butternut squash or cabbage. Not only do these pairings take minimal time to prepare, but they will also balance out the richness of the soup.

Overall, there’s no right or wrong way to pair your Fanesca soup. Experiment with different combinations until you find one that tickles your taste buds. Just remember to keep your servings small because this soup is filling!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 If you love pumpkin, you'll love this soup - it's the star ingredient!
If you love pumpkin, you’ll love this soup – it’s the star ingredient!

One of the great things about this easy fanesca imitation recipe is that it can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator or freezer. If you’re planning to make this soup for a special occasion, like the traditional Ecuadorian Easter known as Semana Santa, you can prepare it a day or two in advance to save time on the big day.

To store the fanesca soup, let it cool down completely first. Then, transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to four days. If you’re not planning to eat it soon, you can freeze it for up to three months. Just be sure to thaw it overnight in the refrigerator before reheating it.

When reheating the fanesca soup, do so gently over low heat on the stove. You can add water or half-and-half if necessary to thin it out to your desired consistency. Make sure to stir frequently and watch carefully so that it doesn’t burn or stick to the bottom of the pot.

The taste and texture of this easy fanesca imitation recipe actually improves with time, as the flavors meld together more fully. So, feel free to make a big batch and enjoy it throughout the week. It’s best eaten warm with your favorite bread or crackers for dipping!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Creamy, savory, and comforting - Fanesca is the ultimate winter soup.
Creamy, savory, and comforting – Fanesca is the ultimate winter soup.

To ensure that your Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe turns out perfectly, there are a few tips that I recommend you follow.

Firstly, it’s important to soak the dried salt cod in water for at least 24 hours to remove the excess saltiness. Drain the water and rinse the fish a few times before adding it to the soup.

Secondly, make sure that you dice the vegetables, including the green plantain, butternut squash, and cabbage, into small, bite-sized pieces. This will ensure that they cook evenly and don’t become mushy.

Thirdly, when cooking the hominy and dry white beans, add a pinch of salt to the water to help soften them up. Also, for best results, use half-and-half instead of regular milk to give the soup a much creamier texture and consistency.

When it comes to seasoning your Fanesca soup recipe ingredients, I highly recommend using freshly ground cumin and black pepper for maximum flavor. Additionally, for an added burst of flavor and color, try mixing in some achiote powder (a traditional ingredient in Ecuadorian cuisine).

Finally, after cooking your imitation butter recipes and combining all of the ingredients together into one pot, simmer the soup for at least 10 minutes on medium heat. This allows all of the flavors to meld together beautifully.

With these tips in hand, you can be confident that your Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe will turn out just as delicious as if you were enjoying it as a traditional ecuatoriana plato típico during Semana Santa in Ecuador.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this easy fanesca imitation recipe is the perfect way to enjoy the traditional flavors of Ecuadorian cuisine in a simple and convenient way. With its delicious combination of ingredients such as salt cod fish, green plantains, hominy, broad beans, and many more, it offers a rich taste that will satisfy any palate. You can easily modify the recipe by adding or substituting some ingredients according to your own preference and liking.

Furthermore, this recipe can be the ideal centerpiece for your Semana Santa feast as it is known as one of the most popular dishes during this Holy Week in Ecuador. It is not only a tasty treat but also a great opportunity to explore new culinary experiences and get a better understanding of Ecuadorian culture.

Finally, I must say that this easy fanesca imitation recipe is definitely worth trying. You will find it easy to follow with readily available ingredients that can be sourced from many grocery stores. In just a few simple steps, you can have an authentic Ecuadorian delicacy ready to serve to your friends and family. So why not give it a try? I guarantee that it will be a hit at your next gathering or holiday feast!

Easy Fanesca Imitation

Easy Fanesca Imitation Recipe

Fanesca is a salty peanut and cream-based soup served in the Andes of Ecuador for Easter. The traditional recipe has 12 grains for the 12 disciples and fish in observance of the Catholic meat regulations, and was made with care and much preparation shelling and cooking the grains. This is NOT the traditional recipe, but an imitation which is still delicious. This is a modification of a recipe from "Comidas del Ecuador" by Michelle O. Fried, which is a wonderful book which I highly recommend, but contains recipes which can often be simplified. If you can find chochos, which are small, white, bitter beans, wonderful; the stew will still turn out delicious without. The same is true for any of the adornments, for that matter. If you can find prepared empanadas, they are often served as an additional adornment. Any mild squashes will do instead of sambo. Although completely nontraditional, I enjoy cutting down the dairy and adding a dallop of sour cream and some cilantro upon serving. Prep time factors in bean and fish soaking times.
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Prep Time 12 hrs
Cook Time 50 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Ecuadorian
Servings 12 1 cup
Calories 326.1 kcal



  • 1 1/2 cups hard squash, raw, cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups figleaf squash, raw, cubed
  • 1 cup cabbage, raw, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white beans
  • 1/4 cup rice, dry
  • 1/2 lb salt cod fish
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon achiote
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 white onions
  • 1 dash pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup natural-style peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen broad beans
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 3 cups hominy
  • 1/2 cup 'chochos' or 'lupini' beans


  • green plantain
  • egg


  • Ahead of time, cook the squashes, cabbage, rice and beans separately and soak the fish. Save the liquids from the beans and fish.
  • If the broad beans still have the shells, remove them.
  • When ready to prepare:.
  • 1. In a large pot, fry onion in 1 T butter with achiote and 3 minced cloves of garlic until the onion is transparent.
  • 2. Add pepper and1/4 tsp cumin and fry additional minute.
  • 3. Cut the fish in medium sized pieces (to preference).
  • 4. Add a half cup of saved fish water, half-and-half, and the bean water to make one liter of liquid. If the bean water does not reach a liter, add water.
  • 5. Add peanut butter, squash, sambo, cabbage, and rice; boil for 20 minutes, stirring, until it reaches a creamy consistency.
  • 6. Add the hominy, both types of beans (make sure the broad beans have no shells), and peas, and simmer for 10 minutes.
  • 7. Add the fish, simmer for 5 minutes. More of the fish water may be added to taste.
  • 8. Add chochos.
  • Top with any/all of the following:.
  • 1. Fried plantain: Cut the plantains into pieces about an inch long, microwave until soft, press flat with a flat knife or a can, and fry in oil of your choice until golden brown.
  • 2. Hard-boiled egg, peeled and halved.
  • 3. Empanadas.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 217gCalories: 326.1kcalCarbohydrates: 35.9gProtein: 24.9gFat: 9.9gSaturated Fat: 3.4gCholesterol: 38.7mgSodium: 1596.3mgFiber: 7.9gSugar: 4.4g
Keyword Beans, Ecuadorean, One-Dish Meal, Savory, South American, Stove Top
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.