WATCH: We Made Encanto's Buñuelos

We found Julieta Madrigal's healing recipe for these cheese balls!

Have you seen Disney's Encanto yet? If you have, you might have noticed a few food references that you might not be too familiar with. The animated movie revolves around the Madrigal family in a charming little village in Colombia. Food naturally plays a part in the family-centric movie. 

Apart from the arepas con queso, there was also the round little buñuelos that one of the Madrigal sisters carried around the plaza to deliver her healing magic. We don't have a recipe for the arepas but we did find the official recipe from Disney's Encanto for Julieta Madrigal's Colombian buñuelos


For this Screen To Table recipe video, we followed every step of the buñuelos recipe but to make it easier on everyone who wants to try the recipe, we opted to substitute the cheese. That's because, in the original recipe, the cheese used is a specific one: queso costeño

Queso costeño or costeño cheese can be a fresh cheese that is firm and salty. It's not so firm though that it cannot be grated and made into these adorable little cheese doughnuts. However, since this is a specific cheese, the recipe suggests two cheese substitutes that one can use instead of using queso costeño: mozzarella or feta cheese. 

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Mozzarella cheese that we are most familiar with is the low-moisture kind. This is the mozzarella that has the ability to deliver the stretchy pull on our pizzas and lasagnas when heated. Feta cheese on the other hand became a household name all because of that baked feta pasta trend earlier this year. This is a fresh goat cheese that is salty, tangy, and sharp in flavor. This easily crumbles and when heated, can turn creamy as the trend proved. 


The tweaks we needed to make and thought to make were simple: While we followed the recipe, we did add a little more mozzarella because feta cheese isn't a stretchy cheese. You can of course add more mozzarella or even stuff each one with a square of mozzarella. However, we decided to not add too much since adding too much might alter the consistency of the buñuelos.

Here are some other ingredients we decided on when we made this version:

  • • We used unsalted butter since the recipe adds salt the feta cheese is salty. 
  • • We used a large egg since that's the standard size for most baking recipes
  • • We used fresh milk but you can use evaporated milk. 

We also noted that this recipe uses cassava flour and if you happen to have a hard time looking for it, you swap it with rice flour or just use all cornstarch to make these fritters. 

Disney's Encanto's bunuelos or cheese fritters are easy to make!
Photo by Roselle Miranda

Do you need Julieta's healing recipe, too? Here is the recipe: 

Disney's Encanto Buñuelos Recipe

  • 1 cup (140 grams) cassava flour 
  • 1/2 cup (65 grams) cornstarch
  • 1 cup (150 grams) shredded cheese, ideally queso costeño (We used 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, and 3/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled.) 
  • 2 tablespoons sugar 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 
  • 2 tablespoons (14.2 grams) butter, room temperature 
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons milk 
  • 3 cups vegetable oil, for frying 

How To Make Disney's Encanto Buñuelos 

  • 1 In a big mixing bowl or on a clean, flat surface, add cassava flour, cornstarch, cheese, sugar, salt, baking powder, butter, egg, and milk. Mix with your hands until fully combined. The dough should be easy to mold with your hands and not too dry or wet. 
  • 2 In a medium pan, heat oil on high for about 3 minutes until it reaches 320-340 degrees F (160-170 degrees C), then lower the heat to medium and keep it at a constant temperature. 
  • 3 Divide the dough into 32 equal portions. Roll the dough into balls. 
  • 4 Fry 3-4 buñelos at a time for about 2-5 minutes, or until golden brown. They rotate on their own to help themselves cook evenly! 
  • 5 Place them on a paper towel to drain excess oil. Serve right away, but be careful since they'll be a bit hot! 

Screen To Table is a video series that recreates food, dishes, and recipes from fictional works, whether from books, TV shows, movies, or other pop culture references. 


Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

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