Whip Up A Festive Turron De Dona Pepa This Holiday Season

Are you ready to experience a slice of Peruvian tradition? Look no further than the Turron De Dona Pepa recipe. This classic dessert hails from Lima, Peru and is primarily eaten during the month of October, making it the perfect treat for autumn.

Turron De Dona Pepa is a layered anise-flavored treat with sesame seeds toasted to perfection sprinkled throughout. It’s traditionally made up of layers of crispy cookies that are held together by a sweet fruit honey mixture, complete with a generous dusting of powdered sugar on top. The recipe has been passed down through generations and is still widely enjoyed in bakeries across Peru, including the renowned Panaderia Las Nazarenas.

As a chef specializing in both Brazilian and American cuisine, I have come to love and appreciate the flavors and techniques found within Peruvian cuisine. This recipe for Turron De Dona Pepa has been adapted from the original classic recipe to bring you a traditional Peruvian treat that will transport you to the streets of Lima with just one bite.

Are you ready to satisfy your sweet tooth while also indulging in the rich flavors of Peruvian culture? Follow along as we dive into this delicious and iconic dessert from La Casa Del Alfajor.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Turron De Dona Pepa
Turron De Dona Pepa

Are you ready for a sweet and indulgent treat that transports you to the vibrant streets of Lima? Look no further than Turron de Dona Pepa! This traditional Peruvian dessert is a layered anise-flavored nougat, coated with fruit honey and sesame seeds, and enjoyed primarily during October.

The dessert is a classic Peruvian recipe that has stood the test of time, with its original creation dating back to the 19th century. The combination of flavors and textures in this treat will leave you craving for more. The licorice-like taste of anise is perfectly complemented by the subtle sweetness of the fruit honey and toasted sesame seeds.

One of the best things about this recipe is that it can be easily customized and made in advance for special occasions or the holiday season. Whether you’re serving it after a family feast or giving it as a gift to your loved ones, this dessert is sure to be a hit!

But what truly sets Turron de Dona Pepa apart is the authenticity and cultural significance behind it. Every time I take a bite, I am reminded of fond memories growing up in Peru with my family, sharing this beloved treat during the month of October. It’s more than just another dessert; it’s a piece of history and tradition that we get to pass down from generation to generation.

So, if you’re looking for a dessert that has both amazing flavor and cultural significance, look no further than Turron de Dona Pepa!

Ingredient List

 Crispy and colorful Turron De Dona Pepa served with a cup of steaming tea.
Crispy and colorful Turron De Dona Pepa served with a cup of steaming tea.

Before we dive in, let’s gather all the necessary ingredients. This Peruvian dessert consists of layers of anise-flavored dough glued together by a dark honey syrup, then coated with a thin layer of powdered sugar. Here are the items you need for this Doña Pepa sweet:

For the Dough:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons anise seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3 egg yolks

For the Honey Syrup:

  • 2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Make sure to use these exact measurements to get the perfect texture and taste for your Doña Pepa turron.

The Recipe How-To

 Try this traditional Peruvian dessert with striking and vibrant layers.
Try this traditional Peruvian dessert with striking and vibrant layers.

Let’s get started on making this Turron De Doña Pepa recipe! Before you begin, preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).


For the dough:
– 5 cups all-purpose flour
– 3 tablespoons anise seeds
– 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 1 tablespoon sugar
– 1/2 cup water

For the syrup:
– 4 cups dark brown sugar
– 2 cups water
– 3 cloves
– 1 stick of butter

For the icing:
– 3 egg yolks
– 1 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/2 cup fruit honey


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, anise seeds, sesame seeds, salt, and sugar.
  2. Slowly add in the water and knead until the dough is firm and smooth.
  3. Let the dough rest for about an hour.


  1. In a large pot, combine the brown sugar, water, cloves, and butter.
  2. Cook on medium heat until the sugar has dissolved completely.
  3. Lower the heat and keep stirring until the syrup thickens and turns into a caramel-like consistency.
  4. Remove from heat and let it cool.


  1. Roll out the dough into thin strips and braid them together to form little rectangles.
  2. Cut each rectangle into small squares or rectangles.
  3. Bake them in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 10 minutes until they are golden brown.
  4. Once the squares are baked and cooled, dip them into the syrup.
  5. Allow excess syrup to drip off before placing them onto a baking sheet or cooling rack.


  1. In another bowl, mix together the egg yolks, flour, and fruit honey.
  2. Spoon the icing over each piece of Turron De Doña Pepa.
  3. Let the icing dry for at least 30 minutes before serving.

The Turron De Doña Pepa recipe might seem challenging to make, but it’s totally worth it! The layered anise-flavored dough with sesame seeds toasted to perfection paired with the sweet Peruvian syrup and fruit honey icing creates an explosion in your mouth, a perfect dessert for any special occasion.

Substitutions and Variations

 The art of Turron De Dona Pepa-making, step by step!
The art of Turron De Dona Pepa-making, step by step!

There are many variations and substitutions for the Turron de Doña Pepa recipe, making this traditional Peruvian dessert quite versatile. Here are a few ideas to consider:

– Flour: You can experiment with using different types of flour, such as whole wheat or almond flour, to give your Turron de Doña Pepa a unique twist.

– Sweeteners: Instead of using dark brown sugar, you can try substituting it with honey or maple syrup to add a different level of sweetness to the dessert.

– Anise seeds: If you don’t have anise seeds on hand, you can use fennel seeds instead. Alternatively, if you’re not a fan of the anise flavor, you can omit it altogether or replace it with other spices like cinnamon or cardamom.

– Nuts and seeds: You can add your favorite nuts and seeds to the Turron de Doña Pepa mixture to give it a nutty crunch. Almonds or pecans work well here.

– Fruit: You can add dried fruit like raisins or cranberries into the dough mixture for added texture and flavor. Experiment with different combinations for a unique spin on this classic dessert.

– Chocolate: If you have a sweet tooth and love chocolate, try adding some chocolate chips to the dough mixture before baking.

Remember, while these substitutions and variations may alter the original flavor of the dish, they offer exciting new ways to enjoy this classic Peruvian dessert!

Serving and Pairing

 A slice of heaven straight from the bakeries of Lima!
A slice of heaven straight from the bakeries of Lima!

Looking for the perfect way to enjoy your Turron de Doña Pepa? Luckily, this sweet Peruvian dessert is incredibly versatile and pairs beautifully with a variety of different beverages.

First and foremost, you can’t go wrong serving a slice of Turron de Doña Pepa alongside a steaming hot cup of coffee. The rich, familiar flavor of coffee perfectly complements the anise-flavored layers of this classic dessert.

If you’re looking for something a little bit sweeter to drink, try serving your Turron de Doña Pepa with a glass of fruit honey. This naturally sweet drink is the perfect complement to the layered sweetness of this traditional Peruvian treat.

For those who prefer something with a little bit more bite, a glass of red wine is an excellent choice. The tannins in the wine help to cut through the rich sweetness of the Turron de Doña Pepa, creating a deliciously balanced flavor explosion.

Of course, there’s no need to limit yourself to just one drink option! Experiment with different combinations until you find the pairing that suits your particular taste buds. Whether you opt for coffee, fruit honey or red wine, be sure to savor each bite and enjoy every sip – after all, you’re enjoying a true Peruvian tradition!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The perfect ending to a flavorsome meal, Turron De Dona Pepa.
The perfect ending to a flavorsome meal, Turron De Dona Pepa.

One of the best things about Turron De Doña Pepa is that it can be made ahead of time! This dessert stays fresh and delicious for days if properly stored. When making this dessert ahead of time, prepare it as usual, let it cool completely, and then store it in an airtight container at room temperature for up to five days.

To reheat leftovers, simply pop them into the oven at 350°F for 5-7 minutes or until warm. Alternatively, you can microwave each slice for 20-30 seconds. However, be careful not to overheat them as this may toughen the layers of the Turron.

For those who want to make Turron De Doña Pepa in advance, prepare each layer but avoid gluing them together until serving time. Stack them on top of each other between sheets of parchment paper and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator for up to three days before preparing and completing the final step just before serving.

If storing longer than three days before assembly, freeze each layer individually by placing a sheet of wax paper between each layer before wrapping them individually in plastic wrap. Freeze up to one month.

Overall, this dessert is perfect for entertaining as you can make it a day or two ahead of your party without sacrificing flavor and quality. You’ll have more time to focus on other dishes and impress your guests with a beautiful layered anise-flavored treat that stays tasting fresh for several days.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Stack them high, sweet and delicate layers of icing, oh my!
Stack them high, sweet and delicate layers of icing, oh my!

First, make sure to measure all of your ingredients precisely. This is especially important for the flour, as using too much or too little can significantly impact the texture of your Turron De Dona Pepa.

Next, make sure to evenly distribute the layers of anise-flavored dough and sesame seeds while constructing the Turron De Dona Pepa. This will ensure that each slice has an equal amount of flavor and texture.

Another crucial tip is to let the Turron De Dona Pepa cool completely before slicing it. Cutting into it too soon can cause the layers to separate and make the dessert less visually appealing.

If you’re making this recipe for the first time, I highly recommend following the instructions closely and not improvising too much until you’ve had some practice. Since it’s a layered dessert, it requires some precision and patience to assemble correctly.

Lastly, don’t be afraid to experiment with different variations and substitutions once you’ve mastered the basic recipe. For instance, you could try incorporating fruit or honey into the layers for a unique twist on this classic Peruvian dessert.


Now that you know how to make this delectable Peruvian dessert, you might have some questions in mind. My goal is to help you create the best turron de dona pepa possible, and there’s a lot of handy insight I can provide to ensure your success. So, let’s dive right in and answer some frequently asked questions about this classic dessert recipe.

What is Peruvian turron made of?

According to nutritionist Sarah Abu Sabbah, the well-known turrón de Doña Pepa is prepared using a dough made from wheat flour, butter, sesame, and cloves. Afterward, these sticks of dough are dipped in a combination of fruit honey and garnished with vibrant sprinkles.

Where is Turron de Doña Pepa from?

In Peru, there is a popular dessert called Turrón de Doña Pepa that is closely associated with the Señor de los Milagros celebration. It is a beloved sweet treat among the people of Peru, and is even considered a culinary heritage of the country.

Bottom Line

So there you have it – my recipe for Turron De Dona Pepa! It may seem like a complicated recipe, but the end result is well worth the effort. This sweet Peruvian dessert is a classic that is primarily eaten during the month of October and is popular amongst Peruvian households and bakeries alike. It is a dessert that embodies tradition and history, and one that can bring joy to those who have not tasted it before.

If you’re looking to expand your palate or try something new in the kitchen, then I highly recommend giving this recipe a try. And if you happen to be familiar with this beloved dessert, then I encourage you to embrace the cultural significance of this recipe and share it with others.

Turron De Dona Pepa is not just a sweet treat; it is a symbol of Peruvian tradition and history that has stood the test of time. By making this dessert, we can honor and appreciate the rich culture behind it. So let’s keep this tradition alive and continue to pass down the recipe for Turron De Dona Pepa for generations to come!

Turron De Dona Pepa

Turron De Dona Pepa Recipe

Turron is a nougat candy, known for at least 500 years in Spain. It probably originated with the Moors, but came to be typically eaten as a Christmas treat. The Spaniards carried it to their colonies, where many local variations developed. Turron de Dona Pepa is associated with the city of Lima and its Senor de los Milagros (Lord of Miracles) festival. Dona Pepa was an african slave who received the recipe in a dream after being cured of paralysis in her arms. This version is from yanuq.com.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Peruvian
Servings 1 9x9 turron
Calories 360 kcal


  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, cold
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 5 tablespoons anise water
  • 1 lb dark brown sugar (chancaca)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 orange rind (only orange part)
  • 6 cloves


  • In a boiler, bring chancaca, water, orange rind and cloves to boil. Simmer for 40 minutes until mixture forms a soft ball when dropped in cold water or reaches 238° F (113° C) on a candy thermometer. Cool.
  • While the syrup is cooking, preheat oven to 350°F.
  • In a large bowl, mix salt into flour.
  • Cut butter into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender.
  • Add egg yolks and aniseed water. Knead dough until soft.
  • Take small portions of dough and roll, on a ligtly floured surface, into sticks about 1/2 x 9 inches.
  • Transfer sticks to a greased baking sheet, placing them 1 inch apart.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until lightly golden. Cool.
  • Place sticks on a serving dish, one beside the other, in one layer. Pour cold syrup on top. Place a second layer of sticks crosswise and pour syrup. Repeat a third layer and cover with the rest of syrup.
  • Decorate with sprinkles or dragees if desired.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 92gCalories: 360kcalCarbohydrates: 57.5gProtein: 4.6gFat: 12.7gSaturated Fat: 7.6gCholesterol: 65.9mgSodium: 240.4mgFiber: 1.1gSugar: 27.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Candy, Dessert, For Large Groups, Peruvian, South American
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recommended Recipes Just For You

None found



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.