Easiest Ground Beef Empanadas

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Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan.  Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

What’s not to love about Empanadas?  They are little savory pastry pockets of love!  These Ground Beef Empanadas recipe is the absolute easiest way to make these babies at home!  Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.  You can make them all ahead and freeze so you can later bake them off one by one as a snack or all at once for dinner or a party!  And incredibly easy to make with only a few steps.  

These Ground Beef Empanadas are also a great way to use leftover ground beef from Taco night or leftover burgers.  Click here to get 30 Leftover Protein Dinner Ideas to give you even more ideas like this.

Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Apps for Dinner

Every once in a while we have a Smorgasbord dinner in my family.  It’s where I serve a bunch of appetizers across protein, veggie, and other categories.  ‘Other’ is just whatever we are craving or have in the house that’s fun and yummy. 

These Ground Beef Empanadas are perfect for filling the Protein category in a Smorgasbord Dinner!  Other proteins that I may include are my Baked Chicken Taquitos or my Hanky Panky Canapes (Cheesy Sausage & Meat).  My Baked Coconut Shrimp would also be perfect!

For the Veggie category, I will typically cut up some raw veggies and serve with a dip, such as my Sriracha Hummus or Pimento Olive Ranch Dip.  Other great veggie appetizers are my Baked Parmesan Zucchini Chips or my Baked Coconut Cauliflower Bites (yep, just like the shrimp, but with cauliflower!)

The ‘Other’ category includes things like cheese and crackers, chips and guacamole, or other fun nibbles.  Include things you love and make it fun!

Making Ground Beef Empanadas - crust rounds with filling in center, beef filling in dish, and empanada on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Quick note!  This post contains affiliate links, which means I earn a commission (at no extra cost to you) if you purchase from them.  This commission is what helps me keep this blog afloat :).  But, I also share these links because I have used the products, genuinely love them, and want you to know exactly what I used. 

EQUIPMENT NEEDED

Nothing special for this one! Just a large sheet pan (I use a 17×11) and a 4 3/4 inch diameter circle for cutting the empanadas from the dough. You could use a plastic lid, and large circle biscuit cutter or anything really that you can run a knife around to cut the dough.

PREP-AHEAD FOR YOUR GROUND BEEF EMPANADAS

We are all extremely busy and making dinner during the week can be overwhelming. Here are the steps you prepare in the day(s) in advance and store in the fridge as your meal Kit… (See the recipe below for more details)

One of the best things about these Ground Beef Empanadas is that they can be made ahead and frozen before baking them.  They will last in your freezer for up to 4 months!  Here are the easy steps.

First, buy a good quality ready-to-bake pie crust dough.  I like Immaculate Pie Crusts, which are not overly sweet.

Making Ground Beef Empanadas - pie crust dough roll, beef filling in dish. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Mince the garlic. Thinly slice the scallions. Beat the egg in a small bowl.

Next make the ground beef filling.  I used a 90% lean ground beef without antibiotics.  Simply sear the beef with 2 minced cloves garlic, 2 sliced scallions, chili powder, cumin, salt, and black pepper.

Ground Beef in pan with seasonings for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

ASSEMBLE YOUR EMPANADAS

Roll the dough out onto a large smooth, clean and floured surface. Using a Rolling pin, roll it even thinner to spread it out to about 15-16″ in length and 11″ in width. If it breaks as you open or roll it, simply patch it back up together. Lift it up to ensure it isn’t sticking to the surface.

Using a lid or large biscuit cutter about 4 3/4″ in diameter, cut circles into the dough. When you run out of space, roll out the scraps again after you make the first batch. You should get about 8 empanadas from each pie crust.

Circles cut into dough for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Take the cooled beef filling and add a heaping spoonful to the center of each circle, creating a tall mound that leaves about 3/4″ space from filling to edge.

Pie crust dough circles with beef filling in center for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Using your finger or small pastry brush, brush a small amount of the beaten egg around the outer edge of the right half of the circle.

Using both hands, carefully fold over one side using the other hand to push the filling inside away from the edge so that you get dough on dough to seal. Push down to seal with fingers. Then use a fork to crimp around the edge.

Brushing milk around dough with finger for Ground Beef Empanada closed. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Hand pressing Ground Beef Empanada closed. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Fork pressing edges around Ground Beef Empanada. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Place each empanada on an oiled sheet pan. Brush the tops with the egg and then give a very light sprinkle of chili powder. Now, either bake them (see below) or place the sheet pan in the freezer and then transfer the empanadas to a storage container after frozen.Hand sprinkling chili powder on Ground Beef Empanada. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Raw Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Raw Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan in freezer. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

COOK YOUR GROUND BEEF EMPANADAS 

Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees.  Place the empanadas (fresh or frozen) on an oiled sheet pan and place on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling. Hand holding a Ground Beef Empanada with more on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Hands holding a Ground Beef Empanada with more on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

ENJOY! 😍 Carrie

 

Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
5 from 2 votes
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Easiest Ground Beef Empanadas

These Ground Beef Empanadas are delicious and easy to make!  Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling. Simply start with ready-to-bake pie crust dough, cut out circles, make the filling with lean ground beef, then fill, fold, and seal! You can freeze them up to 4 months or bake immediately and enjoy! #empanadas #appetizers #easydinners #easyrecipes #beefempanadas

Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Spanish
Keyword empanadas, ground beef
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Filling Cooling Time 30 minutes
Servings 16 Empanadas
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

  • 2 Ready-to-Bake Pie Crust Rolls (thaw in fridge the night before if frozen)
  • 1 lb Ground Beef, 90% Lean no antibiotics
  • 2 tsp Olive Oil (1 for making filling, 1 for baking the empanadas)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced (or 2 tsp garlic powder)
  • 2 Scallions, sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 Egg, large

Instructions

Prep Ahead Steps

  1. Set the pie crust dough out on the counter (unopened) to bring to room temperature.

  2. Mince the garlic. Thinly slice the scallions. Beat the egg in a small bowl.

  3. Make the ground beef filling by first preheating a medium-large pan on high heat. Add 1 tsp Olive Oil, then the ground beef. Break up the beef and add the minced cloves garlic, sliced scallions, chili powder, cumin, salt, black pepper, and a touch of cayenne (optional).  Transfer the filling to a bowl and let it cool in the fridge.

    Ground Beef in pan with seasonings for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
  4. Roll the dough out onto a large smooth, clean and floured surface. Using a Rolling pin, roll it even thinner to spread it out to about 15-16" in length and 11" in width. If it breaks as you open or roll it, simply patch it back up together. Lift it up to ensure it isn't sticking to the surface.

  5. Using a lid or large biscuit cutter about 4 3/4" in diameter, cut circles into the dough. When you run out of space, roll out the scraps again after you make the first batch. You should get about 8 empanadas from each pie crust.

    Circles cut into dough for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
  6. Take the cooled beef filling and add a heaping spoonful to the center of each circle, creating a tall mound that leaves about 3/4" space from filling to edge.

    Pie crust dough circles with beef filling in center for Ground Beef Empanadas. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
  7. Using your finger or small pastry brush, brush a small amount of the beaten egg around the outer edge of the right half of the circle.

    Brushing milk around dough with finger for Ground Beef Empanada closed. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
  8. Using both hands, carefully fold over one side using the other hand to push the filling inside away from the edge so that you get dough on dough to seal. Push down to seal with fingers. Then use a fork to crimp around the edge.

    Fork pressing edges around Ground Beef Empanada. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.
  9. Place each empanada on an oiled sheet pan. Brush the tops with the egg and then give a very light sprinkle of chili powder. Now, either bake them (see below) or place the sheet pan in the freezer and then transfer the empanadas to a storage container after frozen.

    Raw Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan in freezer. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

Bake your Empanadas

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees

  2. Place the empanadas (fresh or frozen) on an oiled sheet pan and place on the center rack of the oven. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Enjoy!

    Ground Beef Empanadas on a pan. Flaky, buttery pastry on the outside with a savory, smokey, salty ground beef filling.

 

4 thoughts on “Easiest Ground Beef Empanadas

  1. 5 stars
    These empanadas look and sound fabulous. And what a great idea for making ahead and putting in the freezer, especially during these crazy times. Hope you and your family are safe and healthy!

  2. 5 stars
    These were awesome. We added some diced onions and bell peppers to our meet. Absolutely wonderful!! Thanks Carrie!

    1. Hi Kim! Thanks so much, I’m so happy you tried them already! Yes, adding onion and peppers sounds perfect for these! I hope you and your family are safe and healthy!!
      Warm wishes, Carrie 🙂

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