The past two Saturdays I’ve stopped by the same stand–the one selling locally made arepas–at the Cherry Creek Fresh Market. And two weekends in a row I’ve come away raving about the snack.

This South American street food, a cornmeal pancake that’s heated, split open, and stuffed with anything from pork to beans, is quickly becoming one of the market’s most popular eats. I order mine filled with black beans, cheese, and a drizzle of chimichurri. The hand-held goodies are simple, messy, and satisfying.

Visit the market stand and Golden resident Yaya Lander will likely prepare your arepa, while chatting about the history of the dish and the subtle differences between the Colombian and Venezuelan versions. In addition to arepas, the Venezuelan transplant also makes and sells empanadas (from her mom’s recipe) at the market and online. These tasty goodies are filled with beef, green olives, and raisins; sausage, cheese, and potato; or guava and cream cheese.

Cherry Creek Fresh Market, First Ave. and University Blvd., 303-442-1837

La Empanada Gourmet, 303-215-0875

Amanda M. Faison
Amanda M. Faison
Freelance writer Amanda M. Faison spent 20 years at 5280 Magazine, 12 of those as Food Editor.