Argentine Empanadas

These Argentine Empanadas are iconic empanadas filled with well-seasoned ground beef, hard-boiled eggs, olives, and raisins. All these and more are wrapped up in a delicious easy empanada dough and baked to golden perfection. Flaky, buttery, and loaded meat pies that can be served as breakfast, snacks, appetizers, and even dinner!

 Table of Contents

What are Argentine Empanadas?
Recipe for Argentinian Empanadas
Other Filling Ideas
Dipping Sauces for Empanadas
Making Ahead and Freezing Instructions
How to Reheat Empanadas
More Beef Recipes To Try

Argentine Empanadas in a White Bowl

Every bite of these Argentinian empanadas will transport you to Buenos Aires without flying in a plane.

Although I’m claiming this to be an Argentinian beef empanada recipe, actually there are tons of empanada variations in Argentina.

Our version for today is close to what they call Empanada Mendocinas which are baked and popular in the Mendoza region in Argentina (which by the way is also known for great wines.)

Another thing that you’d notice, too, are those curvy seals, repulgue. They’re kind of tricky to do at first, I admit, but with practice, you’ll be able to perfect them.

Are you ready to satiate your stomach? Let’s go make these South American popular meat pies.

What are Argentine Empanadas?

Believed to have originated in Spain, South American have actually done a pretty good job in marketing their respective empanada in their countries and around the world.

These hand pies are commonly filled with ground beef, chicken, shredded pork, seafood, or vegetables.

If you basically want to treat your palate for something sweet, you can always stuff your empanadas with sweet fillings like  Dulce de Leche, custard, fruit jams, or Nutella.

One popular version of this well-beloved comfort food is the Argentinian empanadas Mendocinas or Mendoza-style empanadas.

It’s typically filled with seasoned ground beef, hard-boiled eggs, a slice of olive, and raisins.

Okay, that raisin part is still debatable. But I do looove them. They add a nice texture and a hint of sweetness in our beef empanada filling.

If you happen to visit Argentina, you can usually buy empanadas at street food stands, bakeries, cafes, and of course, commonly in most Argentinian homes.

Recipe for Empanadas Argentina

Beef Empanada Dough Ingredients

This version of beef empanada recipe is not at all far flung from what you would usually have. It may have different variations, but most of them are made with kitchen staple ingredients.

The Dough

Most empanada dough is usually made with flour, butter, salt, water, and egg. But in today’s recipe for Empanadas Argentina, you’ll be surprised that it’s made with wheat flour and milk. Yes, milk!

Adding milk to the dough somehow adds that softness and creaminess mouthfeel when you bite into the crust. And not to mention that nice note of milk flavor.

Here’s what you need for the dough...

Wheat flour - it is a healthier option compared to all-purpose or white flour since it has higher protein content, as well as fiber, nutrients, and flavor. It also has that distinct nutty and tasty flavor to it.

Butter or lard - adds a buttery flavor to our dough. Take note that we’re using melted butter/lard. Since we’re using whole wheat flour that produces a coarser texture baked goods, it’s best to pair it with melted butter to add moisture right off the bat. Melted butter is usually used in recipes that require gentle mixing.

Egg - binds our ingredients all together and helps create a structure for our empanada dough. 

Milk - makes our dough softer and creamier in every bite. It's a smart addition (instead of water) since we're using whole wheat flour for this recipe.

Sugar and salt - adds flavor for our beef empanada dough.

Beef Empanada Filling

To better incorporate flavors in our empanada meat filling, I opted to blend the veggies and seasonings before adding into the pan with the sauteed meat. Surprise, surprise!

But, of course, you can go the traditional way of adding them straight away into the pan, but I feel like blending them all together into a liquid mixture allows the meat to properly absorb them.

Ground Beef - beef has the tastiest flavor among meat, but feel free to swap it with ground chicken, turkey, pork or sausage. Other version of beef empanada mendocinas uses chopped beef which is a lot chunkier than the finer ground one.

Red Bell Pepper - adds a nice juicy crunch and mild sweet flavor.

Onion - aside from its sweet and sharp flavor, onions also have an incredible aroma which makes any dish mouthwatering.

Basil - adds a mint-like and herby notes of flavor in our meat filling

Dried Oregano - has a subtle sweet and spicy flavors, and bold and earthy at the same time.

Cumin - adds a rich, warm, earthy tone of flavors.

Vegetable Oil - this is to loosen up a bit our blended mixture and make it pourable.

Vinegar - adds a nice sharp and sour flavor

Boiled Eggs - coz meat isn’t just enough, this Argentine empanadas showcases a slice of boiled egg to make it even heartier.

Black Olives - have mild and slightly flavor that compliments our meat filling, and egg.

Raisins - adds a nice texture in our empanada filling and that lovely hint of sweetness. Since not all are raving fans of raisins, feel free to leave it out.

Other Filling Ideas

Aside from those mentioned above, you may also throw in these ones below to make our empanada filling even more exciting.

  • Fried egg and bacon bits
  • Diced potatoes
  • Carrots and peas
  • Ham and cheese
  • Nuts
  • Ground chicken or turkey
Argentine Empanadas Recipe

Dipping Sauces for Empanadas

Empanadas can be enjoyed on its own or with a dipping sauce. But a chimichurri sauce is usually served along with it. 

Here are other dips or sauces that you can use in case you don’t want to go the trouble of making the chimichurri sauce.

Making Ahead and Freezing Instructions

One of the best things about making empanadas is that they are absolutely freezer-friendly. You can always make a big batch and freeze half of it.

Here’s how you can prepare these Argentine empanadas ahead of time.

Beef Empanada Filling. You can make the empanada filling ahead of time. Store it in an airtight container and into the fridge for 3 days.

Empanada Dough. The dough can also be made a day in advance. Wrap the dough ball with a plastic wrap and store in the fridge.

Unbaked Empanadas. To freeze unbaked empanadas, place them in a baking sheet pan and freeze them for an hour. Once they're already hard to touch, transfer them in a freezer safe container or a ziploc and freeze for up to 3 months.

When ready to bake, simply thaw them in the fridge overnight and follow the baking instructions in this recipe for empanadas Argentina.

How to Reheat Empanadas

Leftover empanadas can be stored in the fridge overnight or frozen for up to 2 weeks. Once you’re ready to eat them, bake the frozen empanadas at 350 F/170C for about 20-25 minutes or until heated through.

More Beef Recipes To Try

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