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Empanaditas Recipe


These are a bite-sized version of empanadas, and are perfect for serving as an appetizer for a cocktail party. While these are traditionally made with a savory dough (you can also make sweet empanaditas), the recipe calls for wonton wrappers, which results in a lighter and crispier shell.

Serve these along side margaritas at a risky-business themed party.

Adapted from Lauren Purcell and Anne Purcell Grissinger's "Cocktail Parties, Straight Up!"


For the filling:

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil, plus more for frying
  • ½ cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • ½ cup minced onion
  • ½ pound fresh chorizo, casing removed, chopped*
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper

For the empanaditas:

  • 1 package wonton wrappers (approximately 50)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten for an egg wash

*Note: Chopping uncooked sausage can be a little difficult. If large pieces remain after cooking, simply chop the cooked sausage mixture to make it easier to fill the wrappers.


For the filling:

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the bell pepper and onion and cook, stirring until softened. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes, then add the sausage and cumin. Cook until the sausage is brown and thoroughly cooked through, 5–7 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.


For the empanaditas:

Using a 3-inch cookie cutter, cut a round out of each wonton wrapper. Place a teaspoon of the sausage mixture in the middle of each round. Dab the egg wash around the edges, using your finger or a pastry brush. Fold it over, forming a semi-circle, and press the tines of a fork into the edges to seal them and create a decorative border. After assembling, refrigerate the uncooked empanaditas for about 20 minutes before cooking.

To cook, cover the bottom of a large saucepan with canola oil and heat over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add enough empanaditas to fill the pan without touching (they should sizzle when added to the pan). Cook 3–4 minutes on one side, then turn and continue cooking for another 2 minutes or until well-browned on both sides. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.

Continue cooking in batches, keeping the cooked empanaditas on a baking tray in a 200 degree oven to stay warm. Serve warm.