Beef Empanadas

These little pastries can be partially made ahead of time. Make the dough, cover, and chill. Make the ground beef filling, cover, and chill. Then assemble and bake just before serving.

Serves: 8Hands-on: 10 minutesTotal: 1 hour 40 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 8


  • 1 cup lard
  • 1⁄4 cup hot water
  • 1 Tbsp. whole milk
  • 2 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄2 tsp. salt
  • 1⁄8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 1⁄2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
  • 1⁄2 lb. ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 cup frozen hash brown potatoes
  • 2 tsp. chili paste
  • 1 can (4 oz.) diced green chiles, drained
  • 1 large egg, beaten


  • In large bowl, place lard and top with hot water and milk. Beat mixture, using a fork, until fat absorbs the liquid and is fluffy. Add flour, salt, cayenne pepper, and cheese and mix well until a dough forms. Cover and chill while preparing filling.
  • In heavy skillet, cook ground beef with onion and garlic until beef is browned, stirring often to break up beef. Drain well; stir in potatoes, chili paste, and chiles; cook and stir until mixture is hot and thickens. Let cool for 30 minutes, then chill for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Divide dough into 16 portions and roll or press out, on cornmeal-dusted surface, to 5-inch rounds. Place 2 tablespoons beef mixture in center of each dough circle; fold over and press edges with fork to seal. Place on baking sheet and brush with beaten egg. Bake at 375°F for 20 to 30 minutes or until pastries are golden and crisp.