Empanadas: Pizza, Beef and Habanero Cheddar, Spinach and Feta and Nutella

Inspired by Latin street food and pastries, I made empanadas at home. The little pockets of thin, flakey pastry with melted cheese fillings are easy to make. There are so many great empanada combinations such as pizza, beef and habanero cheddar, spinach and feta and nutella. They are perfect for a little snack, meal or even dessert.

Beef and habanero cheese empanada

The best discovery I made was the Goya Empanada dough I found in the Latin products section at the grocery store. Instead of having to find a way to make consistently thin empanada dough, these was an easy and convenient solution. When I am more ambitious, I will try making my own dough with Bittman’s recipe. I also found a great Hot Habanero cheese which gives that extra heat.

I baked these off at 350 for 20 minutes until the fillings were piping hot and the dough was lightly golden.

For my vegetarian pals, I made spinach and feta empanadas. which were well received.

I also made pizza empanadas with a slice of American cheese, pizza sauce and a dash of oregano. Next time, I will use shredded mozzarella for more authentic pizza flavor.

The best of the empanadas was the hot habanero cheddar with shredded bits of beef.

The dough came with little layers of plastic wrap which helped me in the process of shaping and folding the pockets.

Fork crimp to seal edges

Pizza empanada and beef and habanero cheddar empanada fillings.

Nutella filled empanada (edges folded like wonton)

Chocolate hazelnut filling in the flakey dough was a perfect dessert.

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