Let’s be honest. Everybody is a little sick of potato salads! There, I said it! Sorry if it hurts.

Don’t get me wrong, I love potato salads and I make a killer one too. But nowadays, whenever I serve it, I don’t get the oohs and aahs I used to. I suspect it’s because people were expecting something else, something new to sweep them off their feet. I guess that’s what I get for being a food blogger . . . People always expect an award-winning meal from you.

So for this Fourth of July, I’ve decided to knock the ball out of the park with these papas chorreadas, a Colombian staple made with red potatoes smothered in a delicious sauce made with onions, tomatoes, cream, and cheese!

Oh, and I went ahead and added crumbled bacon to that list. Because in my book there is no potato and cheese without bacon!

If you are grilling this Fourth of July, this traditional dish from the mountains near Bogotá is a great side for any meat or chicken! And, if you skip the bacon, it is vegetarian-friend pleaser.

It is also my new go-to picnic recipe, as it is delicious even at room temperature! Just remember to pack extra napkins, plates, and forks, as this is very saucy (aka messy).

The name papas chorreadas comes from the verb “chorrear” in Spanish, which means “to flow” or “to pour.” As for “papas,” that is the Spanish word for potatoes. Oh yeah, those Colombians know the way to my heart: potatoes covered in an extravagant, creamy sauce! I could eat that every day.

My favorite thing about this dish is that it’s quick to make! It seriously couldn’t be easier: you cook the potatoes and, while they are cooking, make the sauce, which starts with a hogao – the Colombian version of sofrito, made with onions, garlic, tomatoes, and cumin – and finish off with some heavy cream and cheese.

The dish is ready in about 20 minutes, which means less time in the kitchen and more time to spend with my husband (we rarely have the same days off) and my dog, or to watch the fireworks – you name it!

Original Recipe by Olivia Mesquita

Colombian Papas Chorreadas


Skip the bacon for a vegetarian version of the dish!


8 medium red potatoes, scrubbed and halved or quartered


1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

1 large onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

4 tablespoons scallions, chopped

1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, tomatoes only, chopped

1/2 teaspoon cumin

1 cup heavy cream, divided

1/2 cup queso blanco, grated (substitute for a melting cheese, like mozzarella, if you’d like)

Salt and pepper to taste

4 slices bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled

Chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)


  1. Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, between 10 and 20 minutes.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, heat the olive oil and the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and garlic, and sauté until translucent. Add the chopped tomatoes, the scallions, and the cumin, and cook until reduced, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add 1/2 cup heavy cream and the cheese. Cover and cook until the cheese melts. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If you think the sauce has thickened too much, add the rest of the heavy cream to loosen it up.
  4. Drain the potatoes, place them on a serving dish, and pour the sauce over them.
  5. Finish by sprinkling the crumbled bacon and the chopped cilantro (if using).
  6. Serve hot or at room temperature.