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Oh, how I long to try authentic El Salvadorian pupusas. Apparently, they are "disks of corn masa filled with slightly salty quesillo cheese, black beans, shredded pork, the flower buds of loroco (a Central American herb), or any combination thereof." —Saveur Magazine, March 2010 issue

Where, oh where in the GTA can good quality, tasty pupusas be found? The only place I am inclined to check out is Plaza Latina on 9 Milvan Dr. in Toronto. Plaza Latina is said to be a Latin food court servin' up typical Colombian, El Salvadorian, Peruvian, Ecuadorian and Mexican foods. Anyone have any other recommendations...?

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  1. I believe multiple places in Kensington Market carry them (including one of the latin american markets, can't remember which one, sorry).

    5 Replies
    1. re: Boodah

      Perola and Emporio Latino both make pupusas at the back of the store. They are cheap, tasty snacks. A nice stop during a wander through Kensington Market.

      1. re: TorontoJo

        If I'm recalling correctly Perola's has different people running the food stand in the back and they are Mexican and don't make pupusas.

        Passed a place on St. Clair west a couple blocks east of Dufferin on the North side that looked like a good hole in the wall and they had a sign up for pupusas, I've heard the food is good there but I've not tried them myself.

        1. re: bytepusher

          You can still get pupusas at Perola's.

          1. re: Snarf

            I tried the pupusas at Perola's and they were mediocre, at best. The ladies are only cookin' in the back of the store on weekends, Friday-Sunday. The pupusa I got only had cheese in it... though I was expecting at least black beans to be in there. I tried their cactus taco as well, which was mediocre too. With one bite, I was disappointed at how rubbery in texture the melted cheese was in the taco.

            1. re: shelleypascual

              Try the ones at Emporio Latino -- there is a menu of different pupusa fillings to choose from. I like the one with chorizo, cheese and beans.

    2. I love pupusas.

      Tacos El Asador (690 Bloor Street West) near Christie is Salvadorian-run and has pretty good pupusas. I also like Pupusa Loka at 887 Wilson between Keele and Dufferin (menu online at http://lapupusaloka.com/ --incidentally a great place to watch soccer, as it has a bit of a sports theme)

      3 Replies
      1. re: themself

        I second the Tacos El Asador recommendation. Great little hole in the wall type of place

        1. re: cubmike74

          El Asador's pupusas are amazing... The have the "regular" corn flour ones as well as rice ones, which are my favourite. Made fresh from scratch. You choose your combination of fillings (beans, squash, cheese, chicharron).

          1. re: absurdistan

            Can't wait to try the rice flour pupusas from El Asador! Thanks.

      2. There's a place on Wilson, between Dufferin and Keele called, La Pupusa Loka. I ate there once and enjoyed the pupusas. It was a couple of years ago, but I think it's still there.

        1. I will definitely check out La Pupusa Loka and/or Tacos El Asador! I'll probably hit up Emporio Latino for their home-made pupusas on a weekend, which is when they make the pupusas apparently. Thanks all!!!

          3 Replies
          1. re: shelleypascual

            I've had pupusas at Emporio Latino during the week. It's possible it was a Friday though.


            1. re: Davwud

              they've started making their full menu everyday of the week, but with specials on wednesdays!

              1. re: jayseeca

                Ooh, do you know what some of the specials are/have been?

          2. On the east end: "El Pulgarcito" (Tom Thumb, I guess because of the owner) on Kennedy, between Lawrence and Ellesmere.
            The place is family-friendly, has lots of seating space and the required big-screen TV with the soccer on...
            The pupusas are excellent, as well as their other dishes: Carne asada (grilled steak with salad and rice), hearty soups, tamales, fried fish, etc.
            The owners are a lovely Salvadoran couple that have made me feel at home for the past 10 years and their prices are very decent.

            1. Emporio latino in Kensington is good for a pupusa fix, as is Tacos el Asador. I also enjoy Mi Pueblo, on Bradstock at Weston. Haven't tried them at Milvan drive.

              Mi Pueblo
              20 Bradstock Rd, Toronto, ON M9M1M8, CA

              1. There's a lady in the food court of the Downsview flea market that makes them as well.

                Downsview Restaurant
                2865 Keele St, Toronto, ON M3M2G7, CA

                1 Reply
                1. re: Sagesse

                  We had pupusas at the Downsview Market yesterday. They were delicious. We especially liked it with the shredded cabbage and hot sauce. It took a while, ~15 min., but it was because she was making it fresh. Very friendly people. We also tried the food at the Cuban booth - she had just finished making the ropa vieja so we had that with rice with ham and salad. Very tasty! We recommend making the trip from downtown.

                  Downsview Restaurant
                  2865 Keele St, Toronto, ON M3M2G7, CA

                2. Thought I'd reply with some suggestions from a Salvadorean friend:

                  Mi Pueblo Restaurante – Bradstock and Weston Family friendly atmosphere. Excellent pupusas

                  Pupuseria Salvadorena – 2459 Finch between Weston & Islington (Also in a plaza) Good pupusas, smaller selection and is a bit more of a salvadorean bar scene. Louder and more karaokeish…

                  La Pupusa LOCA – 4000 Steeles (Just past Weston RD) – Also good pupusas but a little bit pricier. The place is big and they have lot’sof TV screen with lot’s of soccer matches from all over the place. Family friendly as well but a bit more of a salvaorean sports bar atmosphere.

                  Mi Pueblo
                  20 Bradstock Rd, Toronto, ON M9M1M8, CA

                  1. It is great to see people enjoying this truly El Salvadorean dish. Just as a side note, Pupusas are an extension of the Central American tortilla, which unlike Mexican tortillas, are not flat. Central American tortillas are smaller but fatter. Pupusas are traditionally filled with Quesillo (a type of cheese), Chicharron (ground fried back bacon), or can be mixed (called Revueltas) with black beans plus all of the above.

                    As of the 90's a new type of pupusa was introduced from the Olocuilta region (El Salvador) made out of rice flour instead of corn. These are very hard to make and you'll be hard pressed to find them in Toronto , unfortunately.

                    1. The best pupusas are at Mi Pueblo. 4 Bradstock Rd, Finch/Weston, They won an award several years in a row when they had the "Pupusa Festival". Horchata and tamales are great.
                      My mom visits from El salvador and says that the pupusas here are better than the ones being made in El Salvador, I agree.

                      Mi Pueblo
                      20 Bradstock Rd, Toronto, ON M9M1M8, CA

                      1. I posted similar comments under a separate thread, but to update a bit, the mini-mall in Kensington known as El Gordo Fine Foods has added a pupusa counter that is really really good. Also in the mall is Pancho Bakery in the front, which does Mexican sweet baked goods, including churros while you wait; Agave y Agualcate (Mexican small plates), an Arepa counter with several fillings available, El Gordo Empanadas, an equatorial smoothie and fresh juice vendor (kicks the hind end of Booster Juice) and Pupusa Gourmet.

                        Pupusa Gourmet is by the same good folk who make the El Gordo empanadas, and features some of the meat combinations that go into Segovia's chorizos, together with other fillings and three of the best homemade hot sauces in the market. The pupusas are oversized, cooked to order and only 4$ including salad and sauces. These would compare to 3 or 4 of the smaller ones that used to be made at Perola back in the early part of the millenium.

                        247 Augusta Ave, Toronto, ON M5T, CA

                        Arepa Cafe
                        490 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V, CA

                        El Gordo
                        214 Augusta Ave, Toronto, ON , CA

                        1. I work near Mi Pueblo and go there every week for pupusas revueltas - chicharron, beans, queso. One of the best (although greasy) things I've ever tasted.

                          Mi Pueblo
                          20 Bradstock Rd, Toronto, ON M9M1M8, CA