Hogao: Colombian Arepa Sauce

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A few sauces can match the mouth-watering appeal of hogao. This savory Colombian sauce is packed with flavor and is an essential ingredient in many dishes, from breakfast to dinner.

hogao ingredients tomato-and-scallions
hogao ingredients tomato-and-scallions

If you google hogao, you’ll probably find so many versions of the recipe. So many will include garlic and other spices, and there is no “right” way to make a hogao recipe.

Recipes vary by region in Colombia and family traditions. The only two unchanged ingredients are tomato and long green onion or scallion.

This recipe is made with ripe tomatoes and scallions, made by my mom for years, that combine to create a delectable mix of mildly sweet, savory, and tangy flavors.

The tomatoes provide a rich, juicy base, while the scallions have depth and complexity to the sauce. As the tomatoes break down and the sauce simmers, the flavors meld together, creating an irresistible flavorful, fragrant sauce.

What is Hogao?

Hogao is a savory Colombian sauce. This version of hogao is made with ripe tomatoes and scallions, which combine to create a delectable mix of sweet, savory, and tangy flavors.

The tomatoes provide a rich, juicy base, while the scallions have depth and complexity to the sauce. As the tomatoes break down and the sauce simmers, the flavors meld together, creating an irresistible flavorful, fragrant sauce.

What is Hogao in English?

Hogao is derived from the Spanish word ahogar – which means to drown. So we drown our tostones and arepa in this delicious and velvety Colombian sauce (arepa sauce).

Hogao on arepa

FAQs

Can I make vegan hogao?

Make this hogan vegan by substituting butter for avocado or vegetable oil.

Can I make hogao (Colombian Sauce) with round onions?

This Colombian sauce is different from a traditional Puerto Rican sofrito. Sofrito is an onion-based sauce that’s the foundation of this Puerto Rican rice like arroz con gandules. Instead, hogao is served as a dip or spread except when cooked with Colombian scrambled eggs or huevos pericos.

How does hogao taste?

This recipe has long green onions (or scallions), vine tomatoes, and butter. After cooking over low heat for a few minutes, the sauce becomes glistening, savory, and slightly sweet. When served with an arepa con queso, this Colombian sauce shines. 

Hogao Colombian Creole Sauce in a Pan

Top Tips

Vine-ripened Tomatoes

Vine-ripened tomatoes are tender and sweet and make the perfect sauce. These delicate tomatoes are juicy and, when cooked down, make a delicious and velvety spread.

Cook the Tomatoes First

Start with cooking the tomatoes for a few minutes before adding the scallions. It gives the tomatoes a few minutes to absorb the butter and slowly caramelize before adding the scallions.

Butter

Butter adds a depth of flavor that oil doesn’t. Combine the butter with the salt, tomatoes, and scallions into a decadent sauce.

Vegan Arepas with Hogao

Pair arepas with vegan hogao by substituting the butter with avocado or vegetable oil. If you’re curious if arepas are vegan or vegetarian, check the recipe. Just know that you can easily substitute butter. If you’re vegetarian, try this Colombian arepa con queso recipe.

Colombian Hogao on arepa
Hogao Colombian Creole Sauce in a Pan

Hogao: Colombian Arepa Sauce

Olga Muñoz
Sauteed scallion, tomato, and butter Colombian creole sauce.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Appetizer, Breakfast, Sauce, Snack
Cuisine Colombian
Servings 6
Calories 28 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
  

  • 12 ounces Vine-ripened Tomato
  • 1 bunch Scallions
  • 1 tbsp Butter
  • ¼ tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Step 1
    Rinse and clean the tomatoes. Chop the tomatoes in the food processor or by hand. Then dice the scallions.
  • Step 2
    Heat the skillet on low to medium heat. Add the butter and tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Then add the scallions or green onions and stir.
    Adjust the heat based on your stovetop. If the mixture burns or sticks, reduce the heat and add a small amount of butter if the sauce is dry. Adjust as needed.
  • Step 3
    Cook until the sauce thickens and the tomatoes turn to a rich red color. Adjust the salt as desired.

Notes

Enjoy this delicious sauce with a fresh arepa and scrambled eggs.

Nutrition

Calories: 28kcalCarbohydrates: 3gProtein: 1gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 5mgSodium: 117mgPotassium: 146mgFiber: 1gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 570IUVitamin C: 9mgCalcium: 9mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Breakfast, Lunch, organic, vegetables
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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