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How to make Easy Beef Empanadas

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Have you ever wondered how to make Beef Empanadas (hand pies/savory turnovers) with tender flakey dough filled with ground beef and spices?

An empanada is a type of baked or fried turnover consisting of pastry and filling, common in Spanish, other Southern European, Latin American, and Iberian-influenced cultures around the world. The name comes from the Spanish empanar, and translates as ‘breaded’, that is, wrapped or coated in bread. 

Beef Empanadas
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an image of half moon baked Beef Empanadas on a platter

How to make Beef Empanadas

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  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: Approximately 16 depending on size 1x
  • Category: Appetizers and Snacks
  • Cuisine: Spanish


Beef Empanadas (hand-pies/savory turnovers) Tender flakey dough filled with ground beef and spices.


Units Scale
  • 500g Minced Beef
  • 2537.5 ml Oil
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 Red Pepper (diced)
  • 1 Yellow Pepper (diced)
  • 1 Green Pepper (diced)
  • 23 Jalapeños (diced)
  • 5ml Ground Cumin
  • 5ml Chili Powder
  • 5ml Paprika
  • 5ml Garlic Powder
  • 25 ml Tomato Paste
  • Chopped Spring Onion
  • Chopped Coriander
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • 2537.5 ml Water


  • 750 ml Flour
  • 5 ml Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • 125 ml Butter (cold)
  • 125 ml Cold Water (approximate)



  1. Heat oil and brown beef in a large pan.
  2. Add in onion & peppers and cook until softened.
  3. Add in seasonings, water, tomato paste, and jalapeños, and cook for a
    few more minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly then stir in spring onions and coriander.
  5. Roll out the dough, cut out circles then place a tablespoon of the mince
    filling on each, fold in half and crimp the edges to seal.
  6. Fry until golden brown.
  7. Enjoy!!


  1. Add flour and salt to a large bowl.
  2. Rub in the butter till it resembles sand then add in the egg and water and mix to form a ball of dough.
  3. Place dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 40-45 minutes.


  • Serving Size: 1
  • Calories: 101
  • Sugar: 1
  • Sodium: 53
  • Fat: 6
  • Saturated Fat: 2
  • Unsaturated Fat: 3
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 3
  • Fiber: 0
  • Protein: 9
  • Cholesterol: 39
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What is usually in an empanada?

Empanadas are basically little pockets of dough that are made of simple homemade dough on the outside. Some kind of protein (usually pork, chicken, or beef, but sometimes fish or cheese) is tucked into the inside. Usually, empanadas also have at least one or two simple vegetables—think corn, diced potatoes, or carrots.

Are traditional empanadas baked or fried?

Most of the time they are either baked or deep-fried, though there are some that can also be cooked on a griddle or on a grill. You can buy ready-made empanada discs at many Latin grocery stores, but you can also easily make the dough at home.

an image of a platter filled with crispy Beef Empanadas
Beef Empanadas

Some more Recipes you should check out

Half Moon Empanada

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2 thoughts on “How to make Easy Beef Empanadas”

  1. This recipe looks really good and doable. I used to be a very fussy eater, but I am focusing
    on expanding my food choices by making new to me recipes pwith foods I had shunned in my youth. Cannot make t his one this week but will try to do it soon.

    Thanks, Michele

    • Hi Michele. Good to hear from you and I am so happy to hear that you will try these Empanadas and I truly hope that you will love and enjoy it. Please let me know how it turned out and what you think of it. Much appreciated.


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