Mouthwatering Athenian Pork Empanadas Recipe

Are you looking to add a little excitement to your dinner table? Look no further than my Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas recipe! As a chef specializing in Brazilian and American cuisine, I’ve combined flavors from both worlds to create a dish that will leave your taste buds singing “hallelujah!”

Empanadas are a classic appetizer found in many cuisines, but this empanada recipe takes things to the next level. With ground pork as the star ingredient, it’s seasoned with cracked black pepper, sea salt, cayenne pepper, and shallots. But what really sets this recipe apart is the addition of kalamata olives, feta cheese, and Parmesan cheese for a salty kick, and fresh parsley and red bell pepper for a pop of color.

But let’s not forget the pièce de résistance: Athenian Ranch dressing! This tangy dressing adds a zesty twist to this traditional dish. I’ve used it as an inspiration for these mouth-watering empanadas. I believe it’s the secret weapon that elevates these pastries into another level.

And if you’re not a fan of pork or are looking for a bit of variety, not to worry – I’ve included substitutions and variations below. But trust me when I say that once you try these savory empanadas, you won’t be able to resist their aroma when they come straight out of your oven.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your olive oil flavored cooking spray and let’s get started on this flavor-packed recipe!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas #RSC
Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas #RSC

Are you looking for a mouthwatering recipe that combines the flavors of Athenian and ranch cuisine? Look no further than these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas. This recipe is a game-changer for lovers of appetizing food, and I am sure that you will love this recipe just as I do.

The combination of juicy ground pork, kalamata olive, feta cheese, and red bell pepper fills every bite with flavor that is both savory and tangy. The dish also features a unique blend of spices such as cayenne pepper, sea salt, and cracked black pepper that add an irresistible kick to each bite. What makes this empanada stand out is the way it balances the tangy and spicy taste with a hint of sweetness from the persimmon salad and pomegranate.

As someone who has already tried the chicken bacon ranch empanadas, I figured why not try making these pork empanadas from scratch! When I tasted them for the first time, I couldn’t believe how much depth of flavor was packed into a single bite. Even at room temperature, these empanadas tasted just as delicious as when they were fresh out of the oven.

If you are one to experiment with variations in recipes, these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas will leave you salivating with possibilities for discovery within their simple ingredients: swap out ground pork for pulled pork or switch out kalamata olives for your other favorite types of olives. You can also use a filipino empanada dough recipe or even use store-bought pie crust to create an easy cheese empanada filling.

This recipe can provide a colorful appetizer course that satisfies your guests at any event or family gathering. Not only is each bite full of delightful flavors, but also provides health benefits by using fewer calories than popular store-bought snacks.

Overall, if you’re looking for a dish that is a perfect balance of decadence and nutritiousness while being both versatile and flavorful, these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas are sure to please. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to try it for yourself – you won’t regret it!

Ingredient List

“Satisfy your taste buds with the perfect blend of Athenian and ranch flavors.”

Here’s what you’ll need to make Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas:

For the dough:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Olive oil flavored cooking spray

For the filling:

  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 shallot, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/4 cup kalamata olive, pitted and chopped
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Athenian Ranch spice blend*
  • 2 bay leaves

For the egg wash:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water

*Athenian Ranch spice blend: To make your own, mix together dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, kosher salt, black pepper, and dried dill in a small bowl.

Note that these ingredients should be enough to make about 12 to 14 empanadas.

The Recipe How-To

“Take a bite and let the savory filling melt in your mouth.”

Before we dive into the recipe, I want to mention that making empanadas is an art in itself. It requires patience and skill, but trust me, once you get the hang of it, you will be able to create the most delectable pockets of savory goodness. Now, let’s start cooking!

Step 1: Prepare the Filling
– In a skillet over medium heat, add olive oil flavored cooking spray and sauté shallot and red bell pepper until softened.
– Next, add in ground pork, season it with cracked black pepper, sea salt, and cayenne pepper. Let the meat brown for about 8-10 minutes.
– Stir in chopped kalamata olives, feta cheese, and freshly grated parmesan cheese.
– Finally, add in some fresh parsley leaves, one bay leaf (dried) for a more aromatic flavor.

Step 2: Assemble the Empanadas
– Preheat oven to 375 degree Fahrenheit.
– Roll out store-bought empanada dough or make your own from scratch using a homemade Filipino empanada dough recipe. Cut out circles using a cookie cutter or bottom of a cup.
– Place about 1-2 tablespoons of filling in the center of each circle. Fold the dough over filling and pinch edges together to seal by pressing down firmly with a fork.
– Whisk 1 egg with 1 tablespoon water to make egg wash. Brush empanadas lightly with egg wash.

Step 3: Bake Empanadas
– Arrange prepared empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
– Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
– Let empanadas cool for a few minutes before serving.

Step 4: Serve and Enjoy
– Serve empanadas hot with a refreshing pomegranate persimmon salad (persimmon salad warm with goat cheese) on the side.
– If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try making these chicken bacon ranch empanadas instead, by substituting the pork filling for cooked chicken and mixing in some crispy bacon bits and ranch seasoning.

Now that you have mastered this recipe, go ahead and experiment with different empanada fillings and dough. There are plenty of variations to enjoy as an appetizer or main dish. Bon appetit!

Substitutions and Variations

“Get a taste of Greece with every bite of these empanadas.”

If you’re feeling adventurous and want to try something different, here are some substitutions and variations that you can try with this Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas recipe:

– Cheese empanadas: You can switch the pork empanada filling with shredded cheese such as cheddar or mozzarella for a vegetarian option. Add sliced olives or diced peppers for an extra flavor.

– Ground beef or chicken: If you’re not a big pork fan, you can use ground beef or chicken instead. The cooking time should be the same as with the pork.

– Filipino empanada dough recipe: You can use a dough recipe from the Philippines if you prefer a lighter texture for your empanadas. These empanadas are popularly known as “empanada de kaliskis.”

– Vegan version: Omit the pork or cheese filling and substitute it with a mixture of vegetables like cooked mushrooms, carrots, onions, and garlic. Use vegan-friendly ingredients like vegan cheese or cashew cream.

– Appetizer style: Make them smaller and serve them as an appetizer at your next gathering. They’re perfect bite-size pieces that will be a hit among your guests.

Whether you’re looking for a meatless option or a fun new variation on classic empanadas, these substitutions and variations offer plenty of options to try. Experiment with different flavors and ingredients to find the one that suits your palate best!

Serving and Pairing

“Crispy crust, rich filling – the ultimate empanada experience!”

As a chef, I understand the importance of pairing the right flavors and ingredients to create a well-rounded dish. The Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas are no exception to this rule. These crispy and flavorful empanadas are perfect as an appetizer for any social gathering or even a main course for hungry diners.

To bring out the best flavors of these empanadas, I would recommend serving them with a side of delicious Pomegranate Persimmon Salad. This salad is a refreshing mix of sweet and tangy flavors that perfectly complements the saltiness of the kalamata olives and feta cheese inside the empanadas. The warm goat cheese topping on the salad balances the spiciness of cayenne pepper in the filling.

For those who crave something more substantial, Chicken Bacon Ranch Empanadas make a great meaty companion to pork empanadas. The smokiness of bacon adds depth to the filling while the ranch dressing enhances the overall flavor profile.

If you’re looking for a drink pairing, then I would suggest serving these empanadas with a cold glass of light beer or fruity red wine. The crispness and lightness of beer would complement well with the crispy texture of the empanada crust, while red wine’s berry notes can further enhance the fruity taste sensation of persimmons in the salad.

By paying attention to flavor profiles and combining complementary ingredients, you can take your Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas to another level altogether!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“Hearty and comforting, these empanadas are perfect for a cozy night in.”

What’s one thing better than enjoying a delicious empanada? Having a delicious empanada ready to enjoy at your convenience, anytime you want! Well, guess what? You totally can!

Let me start by saying that these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas can be made ahead of time, which makes them perfect for meal planning, entertaining, or busy weeks when you need quick and easy lunches or dinners.

To make ahead, simply prepare the empanadas up to the point where they would be baked. Instead of baking them right away, arrange them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, wrap it tightly with plastic wrap, then refrigerate or freeze until you’re ready to cook.

When you’re ready to bake, remove the empanadas from the fridge or freezer and let them thaw if frozen. Brush them with egg wash and bake according to the recipe directions. That’s it!

If you have any leftovers – which I’d be surprised if you did – store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. To reheat, simply pop them into the oven preheated to 350°F for about 8 minutes, or until heated through.

These empanadas are so delicious that once you’ve tasted one, I’m positive there won’t be any leftovers. But in case there are, reheating will be just as good as baking them fresh from scratch!

Tips for Perfect Results

“Impress your friends and family with these unique and delicious empanadas.”

Now, I’m going to share with you some insider tips that will take your Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas to the next level.

First and foremost, it’s essential to use a high-quality olive oil flavored cooking spray when cooking your empanadas. This ingredient will add an extra layer of flavor and prevent them from sticking to the pan.

In terms of seasoning, I highly recommend using cracked black pepper and sea salt for taste. Then, for a spicy kick, add just a pinch of cayenne pepper.

To enhance the flavor of the ground pork filling, I like to add a small amount of grated parmesan cheese and crumbled feta cheese. These cheeses go perfectly with kalamata olives roasted red bell peppers, shallots and fresh parsley, each of which are crucial ingredients in this recipe.

Another important aspect is the dough’s consistency. When making the dough, be sure to use cold water and handle it minimally so that it doesn’t become tough or overworked.

It’s also essential not to overload the filling inside each empanada shell. 1-2 tablespoons of filling are ideal per empanada. Overfilling may cause them to break apart while baking or result in an unevenly cooked dish.

Finally, when baking the pork empanadas in the oven make sure they are arranged in a single layer on a cookie sheet. This produces crispy edges on each crescent-shaped pie between 15-20 minutes at 375 degrees.

With these tips in mind, you’ll surely have a five-star dish that packs flavorful punch after punch!

Bottom Line

with a persuasive text:

Now that you’ve read through the recipe and all of its variations, substitutions, and tips, it’s time to jump into the kitchen and create your own Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas. Trust me, this recipe is worth every effort you put in. Once you taste the combination of flavorful pork filling, crispy empanada shell, and tangy ranch dip, you’ll never want to settle for anything less.

Furthermore, the beauty of this recipe is that it’s versatile enough to cater to your personal taste preferences. Don’t like kalamata olives? Swap them with regular black olives. Want some extra heat? Increase the amount of cayenne pepper. Have some leftover pulled pork in the fridge? Use it as a substitute for ground pork. The possibilities are endless!

So go ahead and indulge yourself with a plate full of magical empanadas that tantalize your taste buds and satisfy your cravings. You won’t be disappointed! And if you’re feeling adventurous or if there is any Filipino root in your family tree, why not try making the Filipino empanada dough recipe we’ve included?

Whether you’re hosting a party, looking for an appetizer to bring to a potluck or just craving delicious food, these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas #RSC Recipe offer everything. Make this recipe once and I promise you’ll be making it again and again!

Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas #RSC

Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas #RSC Recipe

Ready, Set, Cook! Hidden Valley Contest Entry. Refrigerated pizza dough makes a conveniently delicious crust for these Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas. Filled with ground pork, red bell pepper, shallots, artichokes, parmesan cheese, feta cheese, Greek yogurt, and Hidden Valley Original Ranch Dressing-A combination that will throw a delicious Greek Party in your mouth! Easy to prepare and fast to cook!!!!
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Fusion
Servings 6 Empanadas
Calories 378.8 kcal


  • 1 can refrigerated pizza crust (13.8 oz.)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 lb fresh ground pork
  • 1/4 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup shallot, finely minced
  • 1/4 cup drained chopped marinated artichoke hearts
  • 1 teaspoon all purpose Greek seasoning, prefer McCormick Gourmet Collection
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup Hidden Valley® Original Ranch® Dressing, divided
  • 1 tablespoon chopped kalamata olive
  • 1 teaspoon sicilian sea salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper, divided
  • olive oil flavored cooking spray


  • Preheat oven to 400°F Line 2 cookie sheets with cooking parchment paper; Set Aside.
  • In a medium nonstick skillet, heat one tablespoon extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. Add fresh ground pork and cook until pork is fully cooked; about 6-8 minutes.
  • On a clean work surface, unroll refrigerated pizza dough. Roll or press dough 1/4 inch thick. Cut into 6 equal squares. In large bowl combine pork, chopped red bell pepper, shallots, artichoke hearts, greek seasoning, fresh parsley, Parmesan cheese, feta cheese, cayenne pepper, Greek yogurt, 1/3 cup Hidden Valley Original Ranch Dressing, kalamata olives, 1/2 teaspoon Sicilian sea salt, and 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper. Place 2 tablespoons ranch pork mixture on center of each pizza dough square. Fold each pizza dough square in half diagonally to make triangle; press edges to seal with tines of fork. Place on prepared cookie sheets. Spray empanadas with olive oil cooking spray, and sprinkle with the remaining Sicilian Sea Salt and cracked black pepper. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve Athenian Ranch Pork Empanadas with Remaining Hidden Valley Original Ranch Dressing for dipping. Serves: 6, prep time: 20 minutes, cooking time: 15 minutes.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 128gCalories: 378.8kcalCarbohydrates: 7.4gProtein: 10.9gFat: 34.5gSaturated Fat: 8.8gCholesterol: 52.8mgSodium: 1043.4mgFiber: 1.4gSugar: 1.8g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Easy, Weeknight
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Dora is a chef well-versed in Brazilian and American cuisine. After a hard day's work in the kitchen of her restaurant, she finds the time to jot down recipes for her food blog. Her recipes are sure to delight foodies everywhere, as she strives to make each one unique and enjoyable to read.