Weeknight Ground Beef Empanadas

Total Time
Prep 25 mins
Cook 20 mins

Perfect because you can freeze these, and bake them later! My Mom made these for me as a kid, but I've thrown a few of my own ingredients into the mix and made them spicier, and moister! As this recipe calls for 12 serrano peppers, you can use less or add more for your tastes. Also, just take out the seeds if you want less heat. This is easy, quick, and very filling. Serve with Mexican rice and refried beans. Put salsa and sour cream on the side for dipping. I make these for a meal, but you can make these a little smaller for an appetizer! This makes 35-55 empanadas depending on size.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In food processor, add diced peppers, juice of lime, entire can of Rotel, and salt. Mix until all green serrano peppers are small, with no large chunks. Set aside.
  2. In large skillet, brown ground beef until done. Drain and set aside.
  3. In same skillet, add olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add onions, red bell pepper, and garlic cloves. Sauté 3 minutes.
  4. Add chili powder, seasoning salt, cumin, and black pepper. Sauté 1 minute. Add cider vinegar and cook 3 minutes.
  5. Add cooked ground beef, puree from food processor, and bring to a boil.
  6. Turn down to a simmer, and add cilantro. Simmer 5-10 until desired consistency.
  7. When ready to cook, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil.
  8. Roll out refrigerated dough and make a bit thinner with rolling pin. Use a round cookie cutter, or a drinking glass, and cut out round pieces. Re-roll scraps and cut out more circles until gone.
  9. Place 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons meat mix in the middle of each circle and fold in half. Seal edges with fingers. Crimp the edges with a fork.
  10. Place on foiled baking sheet and cook at 400°F for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
  11. Serve with salsa and sour cream for dipping.


Most Helpful

I made with shredded pork instead of the beef. I cut back to 2 serrano peppers, because we like more flavor and less heat. I had empanadas another time with small pieces of green olives inside, and they were awesome, so I decided to add them to these, and it was a big hit with everyone. We had company over so I doubled the recipe so we would have plenty. I made as appetizers, and we dipped them in salsa and topped with sour cream. So good!

~Chef Lori~ September 26, 2008

I made these for a dinner party last night with Recipe #151502 and they got rave reviews. I reduced the amount of peppers from 12 to 2 because kids were eating as well. I topped mine with Recipe #120856 I had leftover from the other night and/or sour cream. Delish!

Cook4_6 February 21, 2009

I loved this. I might reduce the vinegar a little next time, but otherwise it was perfect. Made little empanadas as well as "taste tested" it in a flour tortilla with salsa and sour cream. yummy update..they are great cold for breakfast too!

MarraMamba March 28, 2008

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