Beef Empanadas Recipe

Empanadas name comes the Spanish verb Empanar which means to wrap or coat with bread.  The traditional hearty pastry  is made by folding a thin circular shaped dough over the stuffing and are served as street food in the Carribbean, Phillipines, Puerto Rico and Latin America.  The traditional empanada is prepared with fish or chicken.

I enjoy making empadas in bulk and serving them as a simple meal.   I also store the rest in the refrigerator to eat as an on the go snack or as a quick meal.


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 pound ground beef steak
1/4 pound fresh chorizo
3/4 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves finely chopped garlic
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 package store-bought pie crust or your favorite pie crust recipe
1 egg


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  In a medium-sized skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the beef, chorizo, onion, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper. Cook for 8 to 11 minutes, stirring constantly to  blend ingredients. Set aside and let the filling cool.

Roll out the pie crust dough and cut out rounds using a 3-inch cutter. Put 1 tablespoon of filling on half of the round. Fold the other half of the round over and using a fork, press down on the edge of the dough making sure it is sealed all the way around. This forms the empanada. Whisk the egg in a small bowl. Brush the top of each empanada with the egg wash. Arrange the empanadas on a nonstick sheet pan and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Transfer the empanadas to a serving platter and serve.


Buen Provecho!





Question:  What filling do you like in your empanadas? 


The Official Cinco de Mayo Quiz

As you prepare to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with your family consider sharing this quiz with your family and children.

1. Is Cinco de Mayo an American Holiday?

Answer:    Cinco de Mayo is the anniversary of a battle that took place between the Mexicans and the French in 1862.   The state of Puebla observes Cinco de Mayo to commemorate the Mexican’s army victory over French forces in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.   Cinco de Mayo is a Holiday of great importance to Mexican and Chicano communities.  The holiday which is held on May 5 every year is a day of celebration to commemorate Mexican Heritage and Pride.

2. Is Cinco de Mayo a Day to Celebrate Mexican Independence Day?

Answer:  Contrary to what many people believe, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day.   Mexican independence day is celebrated on September 16.    Over, the years Cinco de Mayo has become  more commercialized and many people see this holiday as a time for fun and dance.

3. How long has Cinco de Mayo been officially observed in the United States?

Answer:   A study published by the UCLA Center for the Study of Latino Health and Culture claims the battle of Puebla has been celebrated among Mexican-Americans in the western states, especially California, since 1860s.  In 2005, The President of the United States issued a Proclamation calling upon the people of the United states to observe Cinco de Mayo with ceremonies and festivities.   One recent study found 122 official celebrations, with the majority of festivities held in Southwest states, such as New Mexico and our dear California and U.S. Mexico Border.

4.  Is the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration held in Washington, D.C.?

Answer:  The National observation of Cinco de Mayo was held in Washington, D.C. on May 11, 2011.  The largest Cinco de Mayo celebration is held in Los Angeles, California where more than 600,000 people celebrate.  The Los Angeles Farmer’s market will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo all day.   A traditional celebration with mariachis, folklorico dancers, piñatas and other activities will be held at El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historic Site.

Cinco de Mayo is more than Margaritas, it’s a day to celebrate our culture and promote more inter-cultural relations within our communities.  Que Viva Puebla!  Que Viva Mexico!

Question:  How do you celebrate Cinco de Mayo?  Does your community celebrate Cinco de Mayo?


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