Pumpkin Pastel Azteca

Pumpkin Aztec Cake

I am thankful Thanksgiving is over, LOL. Even though I don’t usually cook for this U.S. holiday, it is always a busy one. This year we visited Jon’s family, went shopping the day after, had friends over on Saturday and, of course, ate too much the entire weekend. That’s exhausting! But things don’t end up there. You are left with tons of food that you need to eat before it goes bad. The good thing is that leftover Thanksgiving food recipes start to pop up everywhere in the the blog-o-sphere.

So this time I decided to contribute with this recipe that you can make using leftover turkey and pumpkin. This is an adaptation of one of my favorite Mexican dishes, pastel azteca, that I make often. For this version I used a white pumpkin I had roasted before and shredded turkey. The preparation was practically the same. The main difference was the pasilla peppers and cinnamon sauce. It’s a perfect dinner for after Thanksgiving, or add a fried egg and make it a breakfast or brunch.

Pumpkin Aztec Cake

White pumpkin, pasilla pepper and cinnamon sauce

The ingredients:

  • 2 pasilla peppers, seeded
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 cups white pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste

The how-to:

  1. In a cast-iron skillet roast peppers, cinnamon and garlic. Make sure your kitchen is well ventilated.
  2. Blend those ingredients with the onion, pumpkin puree and 1 cup of chicken broth. Do it in batches if necessary.
  3. Pour in a sauce pan over medium high heat and add the rest of the chicken broth. Bring to a boil.
  4. Add the rest of the spices, season to taste and reduce heat to low.
  5. Simmer for 15 minutes stirring constantly.
  6. Use the sauce for pastel azteca, chilaquiles or enchiladas.

Pumpkin Aztec Cake

¡Buen provecho!


  • That looks so great with the egg! Wish I had leftovers at my house so I could try this.

  • A really interesting use of leftovers.

  • That's way too pretty to eat! 😉

  • A wonderful use of the leftovers all over the United States this week.

  • Sounds like a unique and flavorful dish. Love the egg and the runny yolk is a must!

  • Pastel Azteca is new to me but it sounds delicious and I love your presentation of the whole dish.

  • Ben that looks absolutely divine! I love it – and the photo is gorgeous!

  • So Chico, when are you inviting me to dinner and serving this beautiful pastel Azteca? It sounds delicioso. Hope you had a magnificent Thanksgiving.

  • Te quedo hermoso !!!! wow!!

  • I love the first picture, Ben! Delicious recipe and fantastic pictures as usual. I love all the spices you use in the pastel.

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