Treasures of Colombia: Buñuelos or Colombian Fry Dumpling (Colombian Street Food)

Today, we will savor a taste of The Buñuelo.

It is a  Fried Dough Ball or a Colombian Traditional Christmas Snack . 

According to Wikipedia, “In 711, the Islāmic Arab and Moors of Berber descent in Northern Africa, crossed the Strait of Gibraltar to the Iberian Peninsula and conquered Iberia (Medieval Spain) and ruled for eight centuries.”

It is said that in this era the Buñuelo was originated in Spain.

However, not by the Spanish but by Muhammad Ibn Abbad Al Mutamid, the Moorish king of Seville who many claimed commissioned his baker to invent this controversial delicacy. I call it controversial because many Colombians argued that it was originated in Medellin, the second largest city in Colombia.

treasures of colombia with stacey ann smith

Treasures of Colombia: Buñuelos or Colombian Fry Dumpling (Colombian Street Food)

By: Stacey Ann Smith

The Buñuelo is a fried dough ball that bears a striking resemblance to the Jamaican fried dumplings / Johnny cakes. It is a traditional Christmas snack, popular street food that’s eaten any time of day and also a famous treat at office parties.

But, I must mention that it is not homemade.

Reason being, to achieve consistency and precision (crispy on the outside and gooey on the inside) the Buñuelos must be fried at high temperatures using an industrial deep fryer.

As a result, it is mostly prepared in high-end or street side restaurants.

The Buñuelo is not only famous in Spain and Colombia but in other Latin American countries as well. Undoubtedly, each country has its own unique style and flavor.

In Colombia, it is salty as the Jamaican Johnny cakes.

However, unlike its Jamaican counterpart, it is not eaten with meat or vegetables – just with coffee, hot chocolate or soda;. And, at Christmas time, it is eaten with a cream-colored custard called Natilla.

The ingredients include:

  • Cassava flour
  • Costeño cheese
  • Milk
  • Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Salt
  • Cornstarch.

In Spain, it is dusted in sugar and then stuffed with cream, custard or marmalade and is eaten as a dessert. Additionally, other Latin American countries also prepare it as a sweet treat.

So, when in Colombia and need a quick snack, grab a pack of buñuelos and a cup of hot chocolate to soothe that empty place in your stomach.

It is also very economical. A small brown paper bag filled with buñuelos cost only two thousand pesos (2000 COP = $80 JMD).



Stacey Ann Smith is from Kingston, Jamaica.  She is an alumnus of Camperdown High School and she graduated from The Shortwood Teachers’ College having earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Languages, Spanish and French. Presently, Stacey is an English teacher at a University in Colombia.  She describes herself as a vivacious and loving person who also passionate about traveling, taking pictures, her son Nicholas and Ashley, her adorable feline.

Copyright © 2019



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.