Delicious Black Bean Empanadas Perfect for Any Occasion

Ladies and gentlemen, gather around, for I have a recipe that will take your taste buds on an adventure to the land of Costa Rica. It is no surprise that empanadas are a crowd favorite all over the world, but what if I told you that I have a recipe that will elevate this humble appetizer to another level? Allow me to introduce the Spicy Black Bean Empanadas Recipe – a vegan and vegetarian delight that will leave meat lovers craving for more.

Now, you may be wondering what makes this recipe so special. First off, it features flavorful black bean filling that packs a spicy kick thanks to the inclusion of cayenne pepper and chili powder. Secondly, the filling is made with sweet potatoes and plenty of vegetables such as onions, corn, and bell peppers. Finally, these pockets of goodness are wrapped in golden-brown frozen puff pastry that perfectly complements their hearty, flavorful filling.

I dare anyone who tries these empanadas not to become hooked on their irresistible taste. Whether you’re throwing a party or just settling down for a cozy night in, these empanadas will become your go-to choice every time. So don’t wait any longer, let’s roll up our sleeves and get cooking!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Spicy Black Bean Empanadas
Spicy Black Bean Empanadas

I reckon you’ll fall head-over-heels for these spicy black bean empanadas! This recipe is one of my favorites because it features a tempting savory filling made from hearty black beans, sweet potatoes, and a medley of flavorful spices. They’re perfect for parties or even just as an appetizer before dinner.

One of the reasons why you’ll adore this recipe is that it’s easy to make but looks impressive on any dining table. You won’t have to spend hours toiling away in the kitchen to make these scrumptious empanadas; all you need is a few basic ingredients and some frozen puff pastry dough.

These empanadas are also perfect for those who are vegetarian or simply looking for plant-based options – you’ll never miss the meat! Additionally, they’re freezer friendly, which means you can make them ahead and store them in the freezer for later without worrying about losing their texture and flavor.

The best thing about this spicy black bean empanada recipe is its versatility. You can customize the filling according to your preferences or what ingredients you have on hand. For an even more indulgent twist, try adding some Monterey Jack cheese for extra ooey-gooey goodness.

So trust me when I say that you’ll love this recipe for all its convenience, crowd-pleasing taste, and customization options. One bite and you won’t be able to resist making another batch!

Ingredient List

Sure! Here are 11 unique photo captions for the Spicy Black Bean Empanadas recipe:
Sure! Here are 11 unique photo captions for the Spicy Black Bean Empanadas recipe:

Let me tell you about the spicy black bean empanadas recipe ingredient list that will make your taste buds tickled with pleasure. This recipe features the perfect blend of Mexican and Costa Rican cuisine with an American twist. Here’s a list of everything you’ll need:

Main ingredients:

  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 can (15 oz) solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Corn – 1 cup
  • ½ red pepper, diced
  • black bean, drained and rinsed 1 ounce or more
  • Frozen puff pastry

Spices & Herbs:

  • Salt – 1 tsp
  • Ground cumin – 1 tsp
  • Chili powder – ½ tsp
  • Cayenne pepper – ½ tsp (or more if you can handle the heat)
  • Crushed red pepper – a little bit goes a long way


  • Bell pepper, diced – 1 cup
  • Onion, chopped – 1 cup
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped – ¼ cup


  • Monterey Jack cheese – ½ cup

Other Ingredients:

  • Egg (for egg wash)
  • Tomato sauce (to stir in with the empanada filling)

These ingredients can easily be found at any local grocery store. The vegetarian empanadas recipe ingredients are perfect for those looking for a delicious appetizer without meat. You also have the option to make them vegan by substituting the cheese with vegan cheese or omitting it altogether.

The Recipe How-To

Now, let’s get into the most exciting part of this recipe – making the empanadas! It’s actually quite easy to put them together. All you need is some frozen puff pastry and your empanadas filling.

Step 1: Thaw the Puff Pastry Sheets

The first step is to thaw the puff pastry sheets. I usually take them out of the freezer and leave them in the fridge overnight. If you’re short on time, you can also thaw them at room temperature for about an hour.

Step 2: Make the Empanadas Filling

While the pastry is thawing, it’s time to prepare for the filling. Heat up a little bit of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add in your chopped onion and bell pepper, cooking for about 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

Next, add in your canned black beans, corn, and diced sweet potato black beans corn mix. Stir in some tomato sauce and spices like cumin, chili powder, and crushed red pepper**. Reduce heat to low and let it simmer for another 5-7 minutes.

Step 3: Assemble and Bake

Once your empanadas filling is ready, preheat your oven to 375°F. On a well-floured surface, roll out each puff pastry sheet into a large rectangle. Using a circular cookie cutter or cup, cut out circles of dough (about 4 inches).

Spoon a tablespoon of empanadas filling onto one half of each circle, leaving enough space around the edges to seal them closed. Fold the other half of each circle over to meet the bottom half, forming a semi-circle shaped pocket. Use a fork to press down on the edges to seal them together.

In a small bowl, whisk an egg with salt until well combined. Brush the tops of the empanadas with egg wash, then place them onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Bake the empanadas for about 20 minutes or until they’re golden brown and crispy.

Step 4: Serve Hot and Enjoy!

I love serving these spicy black bean empanadas hot out of the oven. They’re perfect as an appetizer or even as a main dish. You can enjoy them plain or with some salsa verde or guacamole on top.

Now that you know how easy it is to make these delectable bites, go ahead and give this bean empanadas recipe a try!

Substitutions and Variations

“Get ready to spice up your taste buds with these mouth-watering empanadas!”

Now, let’s talk about a few different ways to mix it up with this spicy black bean empanada recipe. While it’s certainly delicious as is, sometimes you’re in the mood for something a little different or perhaps you have some dietary restrictions that call for slight adjustments.

Firstly, if you prefer a vegan empanada, simply omit the Monterey Jack cheese and egg wash from the ingredients list. You can use vegan puff pastry instead of regular frozen puff pastry. The filling of black beans, sweet potatoes, and spices will still be just as flavorful and Instagram-worthy.

If you don’t like sweet potatoes or don’t have them on hand, feel free to substitute with butternut squash, pumpkin or carrots. If you can’t find canned solid-pack pumpkin at your grocery store, try using mashed sweet potato or butternut squash instead.

For a Costa Rican twist on the recipe, try swapping the sweet potato with plantain chunks. Plantains are common in Costa Rican cuisine and give a slightly different flavor to the empanadas – both delicious though!

If you want a bit of heat but find cayenne pepper too spicy for your liking, try reducing it by half or using paprika instead. On the other hand, if you really love spice, add a pinch of chipotle pepper or hot sauce into the mix.

Finally, if you’re looking for another appetizer recipe to pair with these black bean empanadas, try serving them alongside a side of homemade salsa verde. Simply stir tomato sauce with cilantro and lime juice alongside chopped onions and diced bell pepper.

Overall, there are lots of ways to customize and switch up this easy black bean empanada recipe to make it your own. Have fun experimenting and finding your very own perfect blend of spices!

Serving and Pairing

“Flaky, buttery, and packed with spicy black bean goodness.”

Now, let’s talk about how to serve and pair your spicy black bean empanadas once they’re hot and ready. These empanadas are delicious and versatile, making them ideal for parties or as a grab-and-go snack.

Serving Suggestions:

– These black bean empanadas are perfect as an appetizer, but they can also make for a satisfying main course depending on the size.

– You can also add a spoonful of salsa verde or a squeeze of lime juice on top to give these empanadas an extra burst of flavor.

– For a vegan-friendly version, skip the cheese and enjoy them with some homemade guacamole or pico de gallo.

Pairing Recommendations:

– A crisp and refreshing Sauvignon Blanc pairs nicely with the spice mix in this dish, while the acidity helps to cut through the richness of the cheese.

– For beer lovers, try an IPA to enhance the heat in these spicy black bean empanadas.

– If you’re feeling adventurous, a Costa Rican-style Palmito Salad (made with hearts of palm) is an excellent side dish that will complement your empanadas perfectly.

Remember that these pairing suggestions are mere guidelines – feel free to experiment and find your perfect match!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

“The filling is the star of the show – bold flavors and textures in every bite.”

Hello there, my fellow food lovers! I’m here to share with you some tips on how to make the most out of your spicy black bean empanadas. These delectable treats are not only perfect for an appetizer or a light meal, but they also make great leftovers. So, let’s talk about how to store and reheat them!

If you’re planning on making these empanadas ahead of time, you can either store them in the fridge or freezer. To refrigerate them, simply put them in an airtight container and place them in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you want to freeze them, wait until the empanadas have cooled down to room temperature and then place them in an airtight container or a plastic bag with all the air squeezed out. These can be stored for up to 2 months.

When it comes to reheating these tasty bites, there are two recommended methods. The first one is to reheat them in the oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C) and place the frozen or refrigerated empanadas on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake them for about 10-15 minutes until they are crispy and hot all over.

The second option is to reheat them in the microwave. Simply place them on a microwave-safe plate and heat them for about 30 seconds per empanada or until they’re heated through.

Remember that when reheating empanadas, it’s important not to overcook them because this will dry out the filling and make the pastry crust tough. Also, if you find that your empanadas need a little bit of moisture after reheating, sprinkle some water on top of them before placing them in the oven or microwave.

And there you have it! Those are my best tips on how to properly store and reheat your spicy black bean empanadas. Don’t forget to try them with some salsa verde, and enjoy!

Tips for Perfect Results

“Perfect for a game day snack, appetizer, or an easy weeknight dinner.”

Now that you have your ingredients ready and your empanadas are filled and ready to bake, follow these tips for perfect results:

1. Chill the dough: It’s important to let the empanada dough chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before using it. This ensures that they won’t become too soft while you’re working with them.

2. Seal tightly: When sealing the empanadas, be sure to pinch the edges together tightly. If they are not sealed properly, they may open up during baking and spill out the filling.

3. Egg wash: Brushing a beaten egg on top of each empanada before baking will give them a golden brown color and a shiny finish.

4. Don’t overfill: It’s tempting to over-stuff your empanadas with filling, but doing so can cause them to burst during baking. Stick to about 2 tablespoons of filling per empanada.

5. Use a fork to crimp: To create a decorative edge on your empanadas, use a fork to crimp the edges after sealing.

6. Ventilation: Make sure to cut a small slit on top of each empanada before putting them in the oven. This allows steam to escape during baking and prevents the empanadas from becoming soggy.

7. Let them rest: After baking, allow your empanadas to cool for a few minutes before serving. This will ensure that they hold their shape and don’t fall apart when you bite into them.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to achieve perfectly crisp and delicious spicy black bean empanadas every time!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this Spicy Black Bean Empanadas recipe is a must-try for anyone who enjoys bold and flavorful food. It’s a perfect appetizer or snack, and it can also serve as a main course for those who prefer vegetarian or vegan meals.

With the right ingredients and following the step-by-step instructions provided, you’ll be able to make delicious black bean empanadas in no time. Don’t be afraid to experiment with variations and substitutions to make the recipe your own.

Serve these empanadas with some refreshing salsa verde or any of your favorite dipping sauces. You can even pair it with a salad or some plantain chips for added texture and taste. And if you have leftovers, they can be easily stored and reheated for another day.

So go on and give this recipe a try – your taste buds will thank you for it! Whether you’re trying to impress guests at a party or just looking for an easy and tasty family meal, these spicy black bean empanadas are sure to impress.

Spicy Black Bean Empanadas

Spicy Black Bean Empanadas Recipe

Empanadas with a vegetable filling made easy by using frozen puff pastry.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 45 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer/Snack
Cuisine Fusion
Servings 18 empanadas
Calories 228.2 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • salt
  • 1 (17 1/3 ounce) package frozen puff pastry, thawed (2 sheets)
  • 1 cup grated monterey jack cheese
  • 1 large egg, beaten (for glaze)


  • .Heat oil in a skillet over high heat; add in onion; stir/saute 3 minutes.
  • Add in beans, pumpkin, cilantro, cumin, and cayenne; cook about 3 minutes, until mixture is warmed through; remove from heat.
  • Using the back of a fork, mash bean filling to coarse paste; season with salt; cool.
  • Preheat oven to 425°.
  • Roll out each puff pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface to a 14-inch square.
  • Cut each into 9 squares; place 1 heaping tablespoons bean filling in center of each square.
  • Sprinkle each mound of filling with cheese.
  • Brush edges of squares with egg glaze; fold 1 corner over filling to opposite corner, forming a triangle; using fork, seal crust edges.
  • Arrange pastries on rimmed baking sheet; brush with egg glaze.
  • Bake about 15 minutes, until golden brown; serve warm.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 1237gCalories: 228.2kcalCarbohydrates: 19.3gProtein: 6.1gFat: 14.3gSaturated Fat: 4.2gCholesterol: 17.3mgSodium: 122.7mgFiber: 2.8gSugar: 0.8g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein, Very Low Carbs
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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.