Ham and Cheese Empanadas

Total Time
Prep 40 mins
Cook 20 mins

This was listed as a top 5 breakfast in Peru on About.com. Although these are not traditional empanandas because they are made with puff pastry dough, they are still very popular, especially for breakfast. They are often shaped as a square, maybe to distinguish them from the classic round empanadas.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in saucepan on medium-low heat.
  3. Whisk flour into butter, and increase heat to medium. Cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes.
  4. Whisk milk into flour/butter mixture and bring to boil, stirring. Sauce will thicken slightly.
  5. Whisk 2 eggs into mixture and cook, stirring, for 1 -2 minutes more or until sauce has thickened.
  6. Add grated cheese and parmesan and stir until melted. Remove from heat and add cayenne pepper and salt to taste.
  7. Roll out 1 sheet of puff pastry dough on a floured surface to 12 inches square. With a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut dough into 12 3 x 4 inch rectangles.
  8. .Mix egg yolk with water, and brush the edges of half of the rectangles with the egg yolk mixture.
  9. Place a piece of ham in the center of the rectangles brushed with egg yolk. There should be an edge of dough all around the ham. Top ham with 2 tablespoons of the cheese mixture.
  10. Cover the ham and cheese with one of the plain rectangles, and firmly press down around the edges to seal.
  11. Repeat with other sheet of puff pastry. Pastries may be frozen at this point, or kept in the refrigerator for up to 6 hours before baking.
  12. Prick the top of the empanadas several times with a fork, and brush tops lightly with the egg yolk mixture.
  13. Bake 20 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown.
  14. Serve hot or at room temperature.
Most Helpful

I have a baking/catering business & have used this recipe several times. I fill 4" cream cheese pastry discs brush w/yolk & sprinkle w/parmesean. I reduced the flour to 1/3 C & up the amount of butter. Dry mustard & Louisiana hot sauce are added along w/fresh ground pepper.

Frankie B. April 23, 2015

I really liked these, but the instructions were a little confusing for me! I ended up just cutting the pastry sheets into 9 squares, and folded them over. Very tasty though :) I also ended up with a bit of mixture left at the end, but only had one sheet of pastry left, so I turned the rest of it into an open face pie, which was really good too! Made for ZWT7- South America.

Sara 76 June 21, 2011