Sweet Tamales

[donotprint]I’m still entamalado (stuffed with tamales), but I can’t stop thinking about them and eating them. Just yesterday I went to Xochimilco again and ate a couple of them from one of my favorite vendors. I can’t help myself, they are just that good. Anyway, here’s the last recipe from the Tamalada I made for Foodbuzz almost a month ago (wow time flies). Tamales are usually savory but you can also make them sweet. My mom has a couple of recipes she got from a friend of the family that makes a living making tamales and here I’m going to share it with you. I hope I don’t make any enemies by doing this, hehe.[/donotprint]

Corn Husk Pineapple Tamales
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: Mexican
Serves: Makes 20-25
Note: To make chocolate tamales follow the same instructions but skip the pineapple, pineapple essence and yellow food coloring and add about ½ cup of cocoa. And to make pecan tamales do the same thing just add pecan essence and about ¾ cup of chopped pecans.
  • •400 gr (14 oz) lard
  • •150 gr (5.3 oz) butter
  • •500 gr (1 lb 1 oz) sugar
  • •1 kg (2 lb 2 oz) ground corn for tamales, fresh (you can substitute with this)
  • •1 TBSP salt
  • •200 gr (7 oz) Maseca tortilla flour
  • •1 tsp pineapple essence
  • •1 cup condensed sweetened milk
  • •yellow food color
  • •1 small pineapple
  1. The how-to:
  2. Peel and core the pineapple and cut it in half. Cube one half and julienne the other half.
  3. Using a heavy duty mixer beat lard, butter and sugar for about 10 minutes at medium high speed until it turns fluffy.
  4. In a separate bowl mix salt with the tamal and tortilla masas.
  5. Reduce the speed to low and start adding the dry masas, one cup at a time.
  6. Add essence, condensed milk and just a little bit of the yellow food color, a drop or two. Add one more if it's not yellow enough.
  7. When you are happy with the color drain the pineapple that the you cubed and add little by little. If you feel that it's too much pineapple don't add it all.
  8. Beat until all the ingredients are well mixed.
  9. **To make the tamales:
  10. •You can find corn husks at your Mexican or Latino market. Make sure to wash them very well and soak them for about 10 minutes before using.
  11. •Spoon a little bit of the dough in the middle of the husk spreading it with the spoon.
  12. •Put a little bit of your filling in the middle and wrap the husk tightly. With your hand squeeze the tamal towards the bottom of the husk and fold the top of the husk underneath.
  13. •Use a second husk if the first one is too small and didn’t get to cover the tamal. Place in steamer.
  14. •Cook for about one and a half hours. The tamales will be ready when they don’t stick to the husk anymore.

Tamal masa

¡Buen provecho!


  • I can't wait to make sweet tamales. This recipe & the variations, including the pork & pineapple sound fabulous.
    I do have a question — what did you do with the julienned pineapple? The cubed pineapple is used in the recipe but no mention of the julienned pineapple.

  • Swwet or savoury these sound amazing Ben. I have enjoyed the journey you have taken us on this past month.

  • I've made lots of tamales, but for some reason I've never made sweet ones. Now that I have your yummy-looking recipe, I may have to get to work! I do buy them at the market here in San Miguel de Allende–guava is my favorite! You inspire, Ben–as always!

  • Oh Ben I love you…I have been dying to eat sweet tamales con chocolate caliente and I was going to ask you for a recipe. I guess you read my mid. Thank you, thank you so very mucho! Un beso!

  • I wonder if you got my comment…

  • You are making me crave tamales even if I have never eaten it before.

  • Wow, these sound amazing! I also love Joan's idea!

  • Oooh these sound divine. I am craving tamales all the time now, because of your blog. I should really try making them because you've inspired me, but I'm still intimidated!

  • Sound yummy, but I have a question. In your picture there are two tamales, one is pinapple and the other, the dark one what flavor is it?

  • What?!? I've never had a sweet tamale. Must try!

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