Easy Empanadas

Like my belovedEnchilada,
How I adore the Empanada.

I don’t want to take the time.
To write another wordy rhyme.

I just want to eat it up,
I’m not waiting for my sup.

Onions, peppers, garlic, meat,
Eggs and olives add a treat.

No, I didn’t make my dough,
Purists, you know where to go.

Crispy,  juicy tasty wrap,
In my hand I’m gonna trap.

Hurry, hurry take a bite,
This finger food is out of sight! (literally) 🙂

I attended a fantastic party in San Francisco last weekend where all of the food was catered by mobile food vendors. The empanada I had there was the best I have ever had and I am sorry I don’t know the name of the vendor. I attempted to make one like hers and although I am really pleased with the outcome, I will always remember hers as the best. This is my attempt:


1 lb. ground sirloin (left-over steak, minced – much better!)

2 medium onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 yellow bell pepper, chopped

2 tsp. oregano

2 tsp. paprika

2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. red chili flakes

2 1/2 tsp. coarse salt

1 tsp. black pepper

1/4 cup kalamata olives, halved

2 hard boiled eggs, thinly sliced

2 T. olive oil

2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed

1 egg, beaten


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Take puff pastry from freezer to thaw.

In a pan, add the olive oil and saute the onions, garlic and yellow pepper with the oregano, paprika, cumin, red chili flakes, 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Cook on medium low for about 10 minutes or until vegetables are soft.  Place the mixture in a strainer to drain.  Set aside.

In another pan, cook the sirloin on medium high. Add 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.  Cook until browned.  Strain the meat as well.  In a mixing bowl, combine the onion mixture and the meat and mix well.  Set aside.

On a floured cutting board, roll out the pastry to twice it’s size. Using a small bowl with a wide rim, cut round pieces of pastry.  The leftover pastry can be re-rolled and used to make a few more pieces. Each sheet should make about six large empanadas. 
In the center of the pastry, add 1 1/2 – 2 T. of the meat and onion mixture.  Place 2 olive halves and a slice of egg on top.  Carefully fold one end of the pastry over.  With the times of a fork, seal the mixture in so that no liquid escapes.  Lightly brush the pastry with egg-wash and poke a few holes in the top with a fork.  Repeat until all of the pastry has been used.
Place cookie sheet in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until empanadas are golden brown.

12 thoughts on “Easy Empanadas

  1. michelle rishwain October 15, 2010 — 5:28 am

    eat your hearts out…i’m the neighbor…yummmmmmmmmmm

  2. mmmmm, these look amazing, sue!

    hehe @ “purists know where to go.” 😀

    since you used pre-made puff pastry i’m more likely to make these, hehe.

  3. It could have been San Fransisco too! Magical city. Love your empanadas and so delicious with a good puff pastry!

  4. I adore empanadas- I imagine I know why you might crave these little gems. 😉 Nice job on the photos too- loved your post from top to bottom.

  5. Ohhhh, how I love empanadas. Great job on creating your own!

  6. WOW – this empanada filling looks incredible!!! Wish I could enjoy a couple of these right now.

  7. I’ve never had an empanada but this festival of local food trucks idea is brilliant. I can’t wait to try one. Thanks for the recipe!

  8. Suz..I love love love empanadas, and yours look exactly how I love love love them! I was thinking of taking your recipe and adding sweet plantains to it. My mouth is watering! Beautifully done, and oh, the poem is spot on awesome as always!

  9. Sounds so delicious! (well, I’d substitute something else for the sirloin 🙂

  10. Hiya! I was at the party too and the vendor is Chile Lindo (http://www.facebook.com/ChileLindoSF). What you had was an authentic Chilean empanada. My mom is from Chile, and usually you can’t compare to mama’s cookin’, but wow, those were fantastic! The one thing you left out (which I always pick out anyway) are a few raisons… bleh! Also, delish with finely chopped meat instead of ground beef. If you want her recipe let me know! However… looks like you did a pretty darn good job! – Edita

  11. This empanadas look wonderful. I have had many delicious empanadas in Mexico and I think the egg is very important. Gotta love great street vendors.

  12. These look great! I think two out of my four kids would enjoy these very much–so that’s a good recipe in my book!

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