Pre-heat oven to 350°F. Prepare a baking tray with a silicone mat, parchment paper, or aluminum foil and set aside.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add ground beef and cook until browned, breaking it us with a spoon or rubber spatula, about 10 minutes.
Add onions and green peppers and cook until soft, about 5 minutes more.
Stir in tomato sauce, cumin, cayenne, garlic, oregano, sliced olives, salt, and black pepper. Lower heat to medium-low and simmer until mixture thickens, about 15 minutes.
Remove and set aside until cool enough to handle.
Spoon about 2 heaping tablespoons of meat mixture into the middle of the empanada wrapper, fold in half to form a half-moon; moisten the edges with water and pinch to seal or crimp edges with a fork.
With a pastry brush, lightly brush egg wash over the top side of the empanada dough. This encourages browning.
Place empanadas on a foil-lined sheet pan sprayed lightly with non-stick cooking spray. Bake Empanadas until crisp and golden brown, about 20 to 30 minutes.
This recipe is easily doubled or tripled.
To Freeze Empanadas:
Prepare the recipe as instructed. After the empanadas come out of the oven, allow them to cool completely.
Flash freeze the empanadas on a rimmed baking tray in the freezer to prevent them from sticking together.
Transfer the empanadas to a freezer safe container or zip-top bag.
To reheat, place frozen empanadas in a pre-heated 350 degrees F oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.
Empanadas may be frozen for up to 3 months.
What kind of dough should I use to make Empanadas?
Homemade Empanada Dough: similar to pie dough, empanada dough is rolled out and cut by hand into small, typically 4-inch, circles. If you prefer to make your own dough, Laylita has a great Empanada Dough recipe.
Pre-Rolled Pie Crust: You could also opt for a pre-rolled pie crust sold in the refrigerated section. This will turn out sweeter than traditional empanada dough.
Canned biscuits or crescent rolls: pressed and rolled thin for a flakier empanada.
Empanada Dough Discs: If the grocery store near you carries them, they are in the frozen food aisle near the international foods section of the freezer case. Smaller Asian, Hispanic, and international food stores may also carry them if you are having trouble finding them.
Shortcut Beef Empanadas
Amount Per Serving (1 Empanada)
Calories 214Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Vitamin A 275IU6%
Vitamin C 13.3mg16%
* (Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.)
Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy, and is sourced from the USDA Food Database.