These beef empanadas are absolutely irresistible. They have a flaky and tender pastry dough that's filled with seasoned ground beef and served with a side of fresh salsa verde. I like making these as air fryer empanadas, but you can also make them in the oven, or fry them on the stovetop!
THE BEST BEEF EMPANADAS
This beef empanadas recipe is sure to become a family dinner favorite.
They are just as easy to make as they are to finish off. These air fryer empanadas are crispy and flaky on the outside and filled with beefy goodness on the inside.
And to make these homemade empanadas even better, I added a side of fresh and flavorful homemade salsa verde. And, don't sleep on the salsa verde. It takes these beef empanadas from tasty to out-of-this-world delicious!
Now, I like making these as air fryer empanadas for a healthier version of getting that delightfully crunchy dough. But, if you want, you can also fry them on the stovetop or bake them in the oven. I'll go over how to cook them all three ways later on.
However, no matter what cooking option you go with, 45 minutes is the maximum amount of time it will take to make these air fryer empanadas from scratch.
So you really can't go wrong with whatever method you choose. And all of them result in seriously delicious beef empanadas that taste like they came from an authentic Mexican restaurant.
And for the full experience, you have to make these quick and easy air fryer tortilla chips! They go really great in the salsa verde on the side.
Ok, so you'll need quite a few things to make these air fryer empanadas.
But, the good news is that they're all common ingredients and pantry staples.
Anyway, here's what you'll need to make the beef empanadas:
- 24 Empanada Discs
- 1 lb. Ground Meat
- 1 tbsp. Olive Oil
- 1 Onion, chopped
- 1 Garlic Clove, chopped
- 2 tsp. Cumin Powder
- 2 tsp. Fresh Oregano
- 1 cup Green Olives, pitted and halved
- ¼ cup Capers
- 1 cup Parsley, chopped
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 Egg, for the egg wash
And for the salsa verde:
- 2 cups Cilantro
- 1 cup Parsley
- 1 Lime, juiced
- 1 Jalapeño, seeded
- 1 tbsp. Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper
- Water, as needed
Now, as you may have noticed, you'll need some of your own empanada dough for this recipe. And we have a super easy empanada dough that only uses 5 ingredients and will take these homemade empanadas to the next level.
HOW TO MAKE BEEF EMPANADAS
As I mentioned, these air fryer empanadas come together in only about 45 minutes.
And you can cut down on prep time even more if you involve your family or friends - they're so easy to put together that even kids can join in on the fun!
Now, let's not waste any more time and dive into the details.
STEP 1: MAKING THE BEEF FILLING
First, heat the olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat.
Then, add the chopped onion, garlic, cumin, and oregano to the pan and saute for about 15 minutes until the onions have softened.
Next, toss in the green olives and capers and cook for 3 more minutes.
Finally, add the ground beef and use a wooden spoon to break down the meat so you aren't left with any large chunks. Then cook the beef mixture for about 10 minutes or until nicely browned and cooked through. And of course, season with salt and pepper to taste.
STEP 2: FILLING THE BEEF EMPANADAS
Once your filling has cooled, fill each disc of empanada dough with 1 tablespoon of beef mixture.
Then, gently fold the empanada dough in half and close the edges of the dough with a fork.
For the finishing touch, brush the outside of each empanada with the egg wash.
STEP 3: HOW TO MAKE AIR FRYER EMPANADAS
Ok, so for this air fryer cooking method, the first thing you'll want to do is preheat the air fryer to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (180ºC).
Then, take out your air fryer basket and spray it with oil to prevent the air fryer beef empanadas from sticking to it.
Next, put the empanadas in the air fryer basket and air fry them in batches of about 4 for 10 minutes each, flipping them over halfway through for even cooking.
By the way, if you have a bigger air fryer, you can add more empanadas per batch. Just make sure your beef empanadas aren't touching each other when you arrange them, and they are lying flat.
Then once you finish one batch, air fry the remaining air fryer beef empanadas.
STEP 4: MAKING THE SALSA VERDE
While the empanadas are finishing up in the air fryer, let's get started on the salsa.
To make your salsa verde, all you have to do is combine all the salsa ingredients in a blender or food processor.
Blend until everything is well-combined and add water as needed until you get the consistency you want. I like mine to be thicker and slightly runny, but you can make yours as thick or thin as you like.
Then, just transfer your salsa verde to a dipping bowl, serve with your freshly air fried beef empanadas, and enjoy!
HOW TO MAKE EMPANADAS IN THE OVEN
Making beef empanadas in the oven is a great hands-off method that can cook all the empanadas at once!
Before baking your beef empanadas, preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit (190ºC).
Then spray a baking rack with oil and place it on a baking sheet.
Arrange your empanadas on the rack, brush them with the egg wash, and then bake for 20 minutes - or until the dough crisps up and gets nicely golden.
HOW TO DEEP FRY EMPANADAS ON THE STOVETOP
If you want to make deep fried empanadas on the stovetop, you can do that too!
Deep fried beef empanadas gives them an extra crunchy exterior and richer flavor, and it is the most traditional cooking method.
Now, to do this, fill a large pot - or deep saucepan - with just enough frying oil to cover your empanadas. Then, heat your oil until it reaches 365°F (180ºC) or if bubbles form when you stick the end of a wooden spoon in the oil.
Then, add your homemade empanadas in batches, cooking each for 5 minutes or until golden on the outside.
If you are shallow frying them with less oil, just flip them 3 minutes in for an even cook on both sides. Both ways results in delicious deep fried empanadas.
And before serving, cool your empanadas on a drying rack or a plate lined with paper towels to prevent excess oil from turning them soggy.
HOW TO STORE COOKED EMPANADAS
This recipe makes 24 beef empanadas, and they store extremely well - both cooked and uncooked - so don't worry if you have some remaining empanadas!
To keep the cooked empanadas, transfer them to an airtight container and refrigerate for 3-7 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
HOW TO STORE UNCOOKED EMPANADAS
For storing uncooked empanadas, first put them all on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until solid - make sure they're not touching each other.
Then, transfer to an airtight container or freezer-safe bag and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
HOW TO REHEAT EMPANADAS
Then to reheat these air fryer beef empanadas, you can either putt them back in the air fryer or use the oven.
My favorite method is putting them in the oven - wrapped in tin foil or unwrapped - at 300°F (150°C) for about 10 minutes or until warm.
And to use the air fryer, put them in the air fryer basket so they are lying flat and heat at 275°F (135°C) for about 5 minutes. Make sure to flip halfway through heating.
Oh, and if you're reheating frozen empanadas, you don't have to thaw, but you will have to add some cooking time. About 5 more minutes for each method or until warmed through.
FAQS ABOUT THIS AIR FRYER EMPANADAS RECIPE
Can you air fry frozen empanadas?
Yes, you can totally air fryer frozen empanadas. You actually don't have to thaw the frozen empanadas before reheating, so they make for an excellent quick, and convenient meal. Air fry the frozen empanadas at 275°F (135°C) for about 7-10 minutes or until they are warmed through. And you'll want to flip them halfway for even reheating.
Is it better to fry or bake empanadas?
There is no better way to cook empanadas - it totally depends on your preference. If you want that classic ultra crunchy authentic experience, you'll want to fry the empanadas. But if you don't want to use oil and are looking for a still crispy and delicious empanada, try baking them. And for the best of both worlds, I recommend using the air fryer.
WRAPPING IT ALL UP
If you're a fan of beef empanadas but have never tried making them at home, these easy air fryer empanadas will be a definite game-changer.
Not only are these easy beef empanadas insanely delicious, but they're also easy to make and come together with simple ingredients.
And this goes without saying, but they're a guaranteed crowd-pleaser and a hit with both kids and adults.
Anyway, I hope you like this beef empanadas recipe as much as my family and I do!
Be sure to leave a comment below if you try them. I'd love to know what you think!
AIR FRYER RECIPES
So, as I mentioned, I love making these as air fryer empanadas. And we have some more air fryer recipes on the blog that are just as delicious!
Give one of these air fryer recipes a try next:Print
Beef Empanadas | Air Fryer, Oven, & Stovetop Cooking Methods
These beef empanadas are absolutely irresistible. They have a flaky and tender pastry dough filled with ground beef seasoned with bold Mexican flavors and served with a side of fresh salsa verde. I like making these as air fryer empanadas, but you can also use the oven or fry them on the stovetop!
- Prep Time: 35 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 24 empanadasa
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Air Fryer
- Cuisine: Spanish
24 Empanada Discs ( I used my Empanada Dough Recipe)
1 lb. (500g) Ground Meat
1 tbsp. Olive Oil
1 Onion, chopped
1 Garlic Clove, chopped
2 tsp. Cumin Powder
2 tsp. Fresh Oregano
1 cup Green Olives, pitted and halved
¼ cup Capers
1 cup Parsley, chopped
Salt and Pepper
1 Egg, for the egg wash
2 cups Cilantro
1 cup Parsley
1 Lime, juiced
1 Jalapeño, seeded
1 tbsp. Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Water, as needed
- Heat a non-stick skillet to medium-high, add the olive oil, onion, garlic clove, cumin powder, and fresh oregano. Cook for 15 minutes or until the onion is soft.
- Add the green olives and capers, cook for 3 minutes more.
- Add the ground beef and break it up with a wooden spoon - cook it for around 10 minutes or until completely browned. Season with salt and pepper.
- Fill the empanada disks with 1 tbsp. of meat and seal them using a fork. Brush them with the egg wash.
- Remove the grid from the air fryer and spray some oil. Cook in batches of 4 (or more depending on your air fryer, they shouldn't touch each other) at 350°F (180ºC) for 10 minutes.
- Mix all the salsa verde ingredients in a blender or food processor until well combined (add water as needed until the sauce is thick but a little runny).
- Serve the empanadas with the salsa verde and enjoy!
The scale up function does not change the gram measurements.
- Serving Size: 1 empanada
- Calories: 168
- Fat: 2
- Carbohydrates: 15
- Fiber: 3
- Protein: 7
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