Empanadas with Soy “Picadillo”

Argentinean style empanadas

UPDATE: Thanks to Ben who left a comment and asked if the Goya Discos had animal products, I researched the ingredients. The Goya Discos contain milk. For those who are Vegan (no dairy), here is a link to an Empanadas recipe that is vegan

Behold the most awesome recipe for empanadas in the Universe! Well… not really. But they are pretty good. I used store bought Goya empanadas dough. They work fine. And I made them in the oven. You can fry them and they will taste even better. Now the recipe…


The “Picadillo”

This is not your typical Argentinean “picadillo”. I’ll make more “empanadas” using the original recipe from my mom and I’ll post the recipe.  This time I wanted to try something that I like having on a regular basis. By the way, this filling works very well for a “pastelon” as well.


The Ingredients

  1. 2 bags of 12 oz of “soy ground-beef”
  2. 1 Trader Joe’s Soy Chorizo (any brand should do)
  3. 1 big red onion
  4. 2 seeded jalapenos
  5. 1 red pepper
  6. Adobo Goya
  7. 2 bags of Goya big “empanadillas” discs (twenty discs)
  8. 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  9. 1 can of tomato sauce
  10. 1 basil leaf
  11. 1 teaspoon of sugar
  12. 2 tablespoons of water

The Instructions

  1. If the “empanadas” discs are frozen, thaw them in the fridge (usually 24 hours) before using them and keep them in the fridge until you are ready to use them. This way they are easier to handle.
  2. To prepare the “picadillo”, heat the olive oil on medium heat in a large skillet along with the finely diced red onion, red pepper, jalapeño and garlic. You want to soften the vegetables not brown them, so keep this at medium to low heat trying to prevent the garlic from burning. (FYI you can use any onion and/or pepper depending on what you like).
  3. Once the vegetables are soft add the chorizo. I rely heavily on the seasoning from the Soy Chorizo. So you might want to taste the chorizo to know how much seasoning it might need at the end of the recipe. The heat will break down the chorizo. Be sure to mix well.
  4. Add one can of  tomato sauce (or pureed stewed tomatoes) along with the water, sugar and basil leaf and Adobo Goya (if you don’t have adobo salt and pepper work just fine)
  5. Add the tofu/soy “beef”-crumbles.
  6. Mix very well and let it simmer until most of the moisture has evaporated.
  7. Let it cool down. Don’t fill the empanadas with it while its hot! It will ruin the dough.
  8. Now preheat the oven to 325.
  9. If you buy the large discs you can fill the empanada with 2 tablespoons of filling. If you buy the small ones, use 1 tablespoon. Do not overfill them! (Very important)
  10. Close the empanadas and use a fork to make some holes on top to prevent them from exploding in the oven. (You can use a brush to moisten the borders with water, milk or a mixture of egg and milk)
  11. Bake for about 12 to 15 minutes. It is better if you look at the instructions in your pastry bag. Remember that the filling is cooked so you only want to bake the dough.
  12. This is optional (I did it with the ones I prepared): Mix 1 tablespoons of  water and 1 egg very well. Use a brush to paint the empanadas before cooking.
  13. Let them rest for about 5 minutes and enjoy.


In step six (6) you can also add water-soaked raisins, olives and finely chopped diced eggs. That is more argentinian. I’ll post more recipes in the near future.

Update: I took these “empanadas” to the office and everyone like them except for another vegetarian that commented out that these have too much “beef”. So I reconsidered the recipe. Use 1 bag of “ground-beef” instead of two and replace the second bag with 12oz of cooked quinoa. I have filled “empanadas” with quinoa in the past and I prefer to use it rather than rice. Enjoy!



  1. No Gravatar on May 25, 2011 at 5:05 pm

    Ok If you got hungry with my FlatOutBread pizza, I envy those folks in the office that got to eat those empanadas. 

  2. BenNo Gravatar on March 1, 2013 at 3:19 am

    Thanks for the recipe! I have the discos but I don’t know what some of the ingredients are. Are you sure they are %100 vegetarian(no animal ingredients in the dough at all)? Thanks

  3. LucyNo Gravatar on March 1, 2013 at 9:44 am

    Hi Ben, in this particular recipe the person used Goya Discos that contain milk in the ingredients list that I found on the internet. They do use vegetable shortening. (http://www.hannaford.com/product/Goya-Discos-Pastry-Dough/730412.uts#) I did find an Empanada recipe on the internet that you can make yourself if you are vegan. http://vegweb.com/recipes/best-ever-vegan-empanada-dough

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