Mouth-Watering Beef and Olive Empanadas Recipe

Steaming hot, golden-brown empanadas with a savory beef and olive filling – can you think of anything more mouth-watering? This recipe for Beef and Olive Empanadas is one that never goes out of style, with flavors that will transport you to the heart of South America. Whether it’s for a family gathering or an intimate dinner, these delightful pastries are perfect for any occasion.

As a chef who specializes in both Brazilian and American cuisine, I have always been drawn to the rich and diverse food culture of South America. Empanadas are one of the many culinary delights that have made their way from Argentina, Chile, and beyond to become popular across the world. The combination of ground beef, green olives, raisins and spices creates a delicious filling that perfectly balances sweet and salty flavors. The crisp outer shell of the empanada pastry gives way to a warm, fragrant center that is truly divine.

This Beef and Olive Empanadas recipe represents a perfect fusion of traditional Argentinean flavor with my own unique twist. For me, cooking is all about bringing people together around delicious food. I hope this recipe will inspire you to take your taste buds on a voyage to South America and revel in the flavors of beef olive empanadas!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Beef and Olive Empanadas
Beef and Olive Empanadas

My dear food enthusiasts, let me tell you about the mesmerizing Beef and Olive Empanadas recipe that I have in store for you. This exciting recipe is a fusion of Brazilian and American cuisine, packed with flavors that will tantalize your taste buds.

What’s not to love about a crispy shell filled with savory beef and olives? These empanadas are perfect as an appetizer or as a hearty meal on their own. The beef and olives in the filling create a rich, savory flavor.

But wait, there’s more! These empanadas are also incredibly versatile. You can serve them at parties or family gatherings, as they appeal to all ages and tastes.

Moreover, this recipe is budget-friendly and easy to make from scratch at home. With some patience and skill, you can make delicious Beef and Olive Empanadas that will impress even the most discerning foodies.

So if you’re looking for an exquisite and flavorful dish that can awaken your senses, look no further than this Beef and Olive Empanadas recipe. It’s the perfect blend of culture, taste, and practicality, making it a must-try recipe for any cooking enthusiast or food lover out there.

Ingredient List

 These empanadas are packed with savory flavors of beef and olives.
These empanadas are packed with savory flavors of beef and olives.

Ingredients for the Empanada Dough:

  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/2 cup of cold water
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup of shortening

Ingredients for the Beef and Olive Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound of lean ground beef
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sweet smoked paprika
  • 1/2 cup pitted green olives, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs, roughly chopped.

These ingredients make for a delightful and flavorful empanada filling. The dough is prepared using all-purpose flour, salt, water, egg and shortening. The perfect dough must be tender and flaky with a subtle crunch. The beef and olive filling includes minced garlic, lean ground beef, fresh yellow onions for aroma, green olives finely chopped and some spices that give it punch such as paprika, cumin powder and black pepper – this mix delivers a savory taste that will make your taste buds dance! Adding raisins to the filling is optional and will elevate the palate game. For a thick consistency and a uniform texture we add some finely chopped hard-boiled eggs that are not only visually appealing but also add an extra layer of flavor.

The Recipe How-To

 The perfect blend of protein and carbs encapsulated in a baked pastry.
The perfect blend of protein and carbs encapsulated in a baked pastry.

Now, it’s time for the most exciting part of this article: the recipe how-to! Follow these detailed instructions to make the beef and olive empanadas recipe in no time.


  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 2/3 cup of shortening
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 egg

For the Filling:

  • 1 pound of lean ground beef
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup of tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup green olives, finely chopped
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, finely chopped


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the flour and salt. Add in the shortening and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to cut it into small pieces until pea-sized crumbles form.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg and water. Slowly pour this mixture into the flour mixture and stir together until a dough forms.
  3. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface for about five minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.
  4. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook them for about three minutes or until softened. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute.
  5. Next, add in the ground beef, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper to taste. Use a spatula or wooden spoon to break up any lumps in the meat as it cooks.
  6. Stir in tomato sauce and continue cooking for five minutes over medium-low heat. Finally, add in the chopped olives and boiled eggs, stirring until everything is well combined. Set aside.
  7. Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it out onto a lightly floured surface to about 1/4 inch thick.
  8. Cut circles of dough using a cookie cutter or a cup, roughly 3 inches in diameter. Gather the remaining dough and repeat this process until you have used all the dough.
  9. Spoon about one tablespoon of filling into the center of each circle of dough, leaving enough space around the edges to seal it properly.
  10. Fold the other half of each circle over to create semi-circles, then use your fingers or a fork to press and seal the edges together tightly.
  11. Brush each empanada with egg wash, made by whisking a beaten egg with a tablespoon of water.
  12. Place the empanadas on a lined baking sheet and bake them for 20-25 minutes or until they are golden brown.
  13. Allow them to cool for 5 minutes before

Substitutions and Variations

 Give your taste buds a treat with this delicious Brazilian-American fusion snack.
Give your taste buds a treat with this delicious Brazilian-American fusion snack.

When it comes to making beef and olive empanadas, there is no one size fits all recipe. Depending on your taste preferences and dietary needs, you can make some substitutions and twists to the classic beef olive empanadas recipe.

For instance, if you prefer a vegetarian version of this dish, try substituting the ground beef with mushroom or tofu crumbles. You can also swap out the olive oil for vegetable oil or coconut oil.

If you are looking for a spicier flavor profile, consider adding chopped jalapeños or serrano peppers to the filling mixture. You can also sprinkle some smoked paprika over the top before baking the empanadas.

If you want to add more textures and flavors to your empanadas, try incorporating chopped bell peppers or diced tomatoes into the filling mixture. You can also experiment with different types of olives such as green olives stuffed with pimentos or black olives.

For those who are gluten-sensitive, use corn masa dough instead of all-purpose flour pastry dough for a more authentic Argentinean-style empanada. And if you don’t have time to make your own dough from scratch, feel free to use store-bought puff pastry or empanada dough.

Ultimately, the beauty of beef and olive empanadas is that it’s versatile and customizable to suit your individual tastes. Don’t be afraid to experiment and have fun with different fillings and toppings!

Serving and Pairing

 The empanadas are crispy on the outside, and juicy on the inside.
The empanadas are crispy on the outside, and juicy on the inside.

When it comes to serving beef and olive empanadas, I find them to be the perfect snack or appetizer for just about any occasion. They are great party food and pairs well with a cold beer or a glass of red wine. The flavor of these empanadas is rich and savory, making them perfect for accompanying a variety of dishes.

Personally, I like to serve beef and olive empanadas alongside fresh guacamole or salsa as an appetizer before dinner. They will also add depth and complexity to a fresh salad or the perfect pairing with roasted vegetables, potatoes or grains like quinoa or couscous.

If you are hosting a gathering, these empanadas will be the star of the show when served on a platter with a side of dipping sauces to cater everyone’s preferences. Alternatively, they can be served as an easy grab-and-go snack while watching your favorite sporting event at home.

In conclusion, this recipe is versatile and adaptable, with its rich flavor and texture adding depth and complexity to any meal or social setting. Don’t hesitate to experiment with serving options – you may discover new combinations that you love!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A hot and fresh batch of empanadas straight from the oven.
A hot and fresh batch of empanadas straight from the oven.

Savoring a scrumptious bite of an empanada is one thing, but having a pile of empanadas just waiting for you anytime you want is another thing. Fortunately, these beef and olive empanadas are a great candidate to be made ahead and stored for future cravings.

To make ahead, simply assemble the empanadas up to the point of baking. Place the unbaked empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze them until solid. Then, transfer them to an airtight container or freezer ziplock bag and keep in the freezer for up to three months.

When ready to bake, preheat your oven to 400°F and place the frozen empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush each empanada with egg wash and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown.

To store leftover baked empanadas, let them cool down to room temperature first before placing them in an airtight container or resealable plastic bag. They can stay fresh in the fridge for up to three days.

If reheating from the fridge, preheat your oven to 350°F and place the empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Heat them in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until they are heated through.

Whether you’re storing beef and olive empanadas for later or reheating leftovers, just follow these simple steps to ensure that each bite is as mouth-watering as it was when it first came out of the oven.

Tips for Perfect Results

 Perfect for a party or a snack on-the-go.
Perfect for a party or a snack on-the-go.

Cooking beef and olive empanadas can be a fun, yet challenging experience. So, I want to share with you some tips that will give you the perfect results for this flavor-packed recipe!

Firstly, it’s important to use lean ground beef to prevent the empanadas from becoming greasy. Also, avoid overcooking the filling as the beef should remain moist and tender.

Another helpful tip is to let the mixture of beef and olives cool to room temperature before adding it to the empanada dough. This will prevent the dough from getting soggy and falling apart while cooking.

If you are making your own dough using corn masa, make sure it is not too dry or too wet. This will ensure that it holds its shape and won’t crack when you fold it into the traditional half-moon shape of an empanada.

When assembling the empanadas, be mindful of not overstuffing them with filling. A little less is more in this case as too much filling can cause them to burst open while cooking.

Lastly, brush egg wash on top of the empanadas before popping them into the oven. This will give them a shiny golden finish and add an extra layer of flavor.

By following these tips, you will have perfectly crispy and flavorful beef and olive empanadas every time!


As a chef, I have been asked numerous questions about various recipes that I have made. Therefore, I anticipate some frequently asked questions related to this recipe. To help you make beef and olive empanadas smoothly, let me address potential concerns and queries that you may have.

Is it better to fry or bake empanadas?

There are two ways to prepare scrumptious empanadas – baking and frying. For a healthier option, the oven is the way to go, but if time is of the essence, frying them is a solid choice.

What kind of dough do you use for empanadas?

It is common for individuals to use pre-made pie doughs when preparing empanadas. The reason being is that the necessary ingredients for the dough are quite similar. Typically, both pie doughs and empanada doughs consist of flour, butter, salt, water, and occasionally egg.

What are 3 types of empanadas?

In the region of Tucumán, which is famous for hosting the National Empanada Festival, empanadas are made by filling dough with one of three specialty fillings – beef, tripe, or chicken. These empanadas are then cooked in beef fat within a clay oven, resulting in a delicious and authentic flavor.

What is the difference between Spanish empanadas and Mexican empanadas?

Empanadas have various origins and types depending on the region they come from. While the Spanish version utilizes bread dough, the Mexican empanada recipe is made using corn masa dough, with different regions in Mexico producing their unique variations. Some regions use wheat flour instead of corn masa dough and empanadas can either be baked or deep-fried.

Bottom Line

in the style of Gabriel Garcia Marquez:

As I come to the end of this recipe article, I urge you to try these savory and succulent beef and olive empanadas that are perfect for any occasion. You’ll love their flaky texture with a mouth-watering filling that will leave you craving for more. They are easy to make and will transport your taste buds straight to South America.

Whether you want to impress your guests at a party or enjoy a satisfying meal with your family, these beef and olive empanadas offer an irresistible combination of flavors and aromas that will tantalize your senses. With its carefully curated ingredients list and detailed steps, this recipe guarantees that you’ll achieve the perfect results every time.

So go ahead, put on some Argentine or Chilean music, roll up your sleeves, and get ready for a delightful culinary adventure in the comfort of your own kitchen. I promise that this empanada recipe will not disappoint. Embrace its cultural origins and indulge in a dish that is beloved by millions around the world. Trust me, your taste buds will thank you for it!

Beef and Olive Empanadas

Beef and Olive Empanadas Recipe

I know I got this from a cookbook several years ago, but have no idea which one. You can also make the filling separately and serve it over rice for a main course.
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Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 18 mins
Course Appetizer/Snack
Cuisine Latin American
Servings 36 empanadas
Calories 358 kcal


  • 6 ounces lean ground beef
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped pimento stuffed olive
  • 1/4 cup tomato sauce
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup shortening
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water


  • For filling: Cook beef, onion & garlic; drain fat; Stir in cumin & red pepper; Cook & stir 1 minute; Stir in olives & tomato sauce; Set aside.
  • For pastry, stir together flour & salt; Cut in shortening until mixture resembles cornmeal. Add beaten egg & 1/2 cup water; stir until well combined. Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead 10-12 strokes. Divide dough in half; Roll 1 portion dough 1/8" thick; Cut into 3" rounds; Re-roll scraps & cut enough to total 18 rounds; Repeat with remaining dough portion. Place 1 rounded teaspoon of filling in center of each round; Moisten edges with water; fold in half, sealing edges with fork. Prick dough and place on ungreased baking sheet. Stir together egg & water; brush over empanadas.
  • Bake at 425 °F for 15-18 minutes Can also be deep-fried, if desired.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 116gCalories: 358kcalCarbohydrates: 33.2gProtein: 9.7gFat: 20.5gSaturated Fat: 5.5gCholesterol: 59.4mgSodium: 129.9mgFiber: 1.3gSugar: 0.8g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Brunch, Easy, Kosher, Lunch, Meat, Savory, South American
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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.