Chicken Empanadas

Chicken Empanadas

Chicken Empanadas

An empanada is a small, handheld pie that has roots well, all over the place. South America, Central America, Spain, The Middle East, they all have their variations so I’m surprised I haven’t given them a go before. Thanks Great-Grandma Mary for the inspiration!

This approach was surprisingly easy, store bought crust might have helped (Thanks Trader Joes!), but either way, they will be made again and again in our house.

You can follow the recipe exactly, or get creative. Add veggies, take away the meat all together, make it sweet instead of savory…you’re the chef, get fancy!

Chicken Empanadas

Chicken Empanadas

2 Tbsp butter

1/2 cup minced onion

1 cup cooked chicken, finely chopped

1/4 cup pimiento, minced

1/4 cup black olives, chopped

1 tsp chili powder

1 tsp worcestershire sauce

1 egg, hard boiled

hot sauce



pie crust, enough to make a double-crust pie

1 egg, beaten* (optional)


Melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and lightly saute. Then add chicken and pimientos, cooking until lightly browned. Remove from heat then combine with olives, chili powder, worcestershire, and egg. Season to taste with hot sauce, salt and pepper.

Roll pie crust thinly (approx 1/6″-1/4″ thick) then cut into 3″ rounds. Place about 1 Tbsp of filling on each circle. Fold pastry in half and crimp edges with your fingers, or a fork. Pierce the center with  fork (This will help release steam, so none of the empanadas bubble and burst open.) then brush lightly with beaten egg.

Place on a greased baking sheet and bake at 425 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until golden.


**These can be made ahead and reheated in the oven, or served room temperature.

Chicken Empanadas

Saute the three quickly to cook the onions and meld the flavors.

Chicken Empanadas

Olives, how I despise thee. I will rework to eliminate those guys on my next batch but if you’re a fan, keep ’em in there!

Chicken Empanadas

Stir it all together.

Chicken Empanadas

Roll your dough thinly and cut into rounds.

Chicken Empanadas

A tablespoon of filling on each is plenty.

Chicken Empanadas

Fold them over and crimp the edges. This filling isn’t gooey so you don’t have to worry about a tight seal…nothing is ooozing out with these. (If you add cheese to your filling, that’d be another story.)

Chicken Empanadas

Stir the egg and then brush over the tops to make a shiny, golden crust. Optional? Absolutely. Worth the effort? Absolutely.

Chicken Empanadas

All brushed and ready to bake.

Chicken Empanadas

Beer on the side. mmm…

Do you have any favorite empanada fillings?

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