Papa a la Huancaina (Potatoes in Spicy Cheese Sauce)

This recipe is originally from Peru, one of the potato capitals of the world.

Papa a la Huancaina (Potatoes in Spicy Cheese Sauce)

This recipe is originally from Peru, one of the potato capitals of the world.


  • ¼ cup toasted small bread crumbs
  • 1.25 cups evaporated milk
  • 6 Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • ¼ clove garlic (minced)
  • ¾ cup aji amarillo paste
  • 1.5 cups queso fresco, or soft Mexican white cheese
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 12-16 baby lettuce leaves (as garnish)
  • ¼ cup pitted black olives (cut in half, as garnish)
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs (cut in half, as garnish)
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley (roughly chopped, as garnish)


  • Soak the toasted bread crumbs in 1.25 cups evaporated milk and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
  • While the bread crumbs are soaking, boil the Yukon Gold potatoes in very salty water and cook until tender.
  • When potatoes are cooked, drain and remove peels.
  • Cut the potatoes into 3/8” thick slices and set aside for later.
  • To make the sauce, use an immersion blender to combine the bread crumbs and milk from earlier with the vegetable oil, garlic, aji Amarillo paste, queso fresco, and kosher salt.
  • Blend mixture until it reaches a smooth consistency.
  • If the mixture is too thin, add more queso fresco.
  • If the mixture is too thick, add more evaporated milk.
  • Prepare plates with lettuce leaves, topped with sliced potatoes, topped with the spicy cheese sauce, black olives, and parsley.


Any extra sauce can be saved and used to accompany a variety of dishes. It tastes great on grilled chicken or beef.
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