Quick and Easy Vegetable Empanadas Recipe

As I sit here thinking about what to prepare for dinner tonight, my thoughts drift to one of my favorite dishes, vegetable empanadas with tomato sauce. This savory vegetarian empanada recipe is sure to tantalize your taste buds and leave you yearning for more. Empanadas are a street food staple in many countries, including Spain, Puerto Rico, and Latin America. The options for fillings are endless, but this recipe is one of the best vegetable empanadas recipes that I’ve ever come across.

The filling is bursting with flavor from the sautéed onions, garlic cloves, carrots, potatoes, peas, and a unique blend of herbs such as dry oregano and basil. These components work together in harmony to highlight the different textures and flavors of the vegetables. A splash of red wine and tomato paste adds depth and richness to this already flavorsome filling.

The empanada dough itself couldn’t be easier to make, using only store-bought puff pastry sheets. The result is a perfect flaky crust that is perfect for holding the flavorful filling inside while being baked until golden brown.

But what really sets this vegetarian empanada recipe apart from others is the tomato sauce that accompanies it. We’re not talking about any ordinary tomato sauce here – this recipe uses a deliciously simple homemade tomato sauce made up of fresh tomatoes, onions, garlic cloves that are simmered in olive oil until they break down into a rich textured sauce.

Whether you’re a fan of vegan or meat-filled empanadas like chicken or beef empanadas, there’s no denying the irresistible taste of these savory vegetarian empanadas with tomato sauce.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegetable Empanadas With Tomato Sauce
Vegetable Empanadas With Tomato Sauce

My dear reader, let me tell you why your taste buds will thank you for trying this delicious vegetable empanadas recipe. Not only is it packed with flavor, but it’s also a healthy, vegetarian option that will satisfy even the biggest meat-eater.

The combination of fresh vegetables such as onion, carrots, and potatoes perfectly blended with savory spices like oregano and basil create a filling that is simply divine. But wait, there’s more! The crispiness of the puff pastry dough mixed with the juiciness of the vegetable filling will surely make every bite an explosion of flavors in your mouth.

Have I mentioned how easy it is to make this recipe? Just follow the clear instructions and in no time your kitchen will be filled with the aroma of these empanadas baking in the oven. Plus, you can customize this recipe to fit your own taste buds by adding your favorite spices or vegetables.

Not only is this recipe scrumptious and easy to prepare, but it’s also budget-friendly. You won’t have to break the bank to enjoy a delicious meal that can please everybody at the table. Additionally, if you’re looking for a vegan option, simply swap out the egg wash for some plant-based milk and boom! Vegan empanadas!

Trust me, ladies and gentlemen; whether you’re looking for a main course for dinner or small bites for a party, these vegetable empanadas are going to be a hit. Don’t believe me? Try them out yourself and thank me later!

Ingredient List

 These savory vegetable empanadas have a beautiful golden color that will make your mouth water!
These savory vegetable empanadas have a beautiful golden color that will make your mouth water!

For the Empanadas:

  • [ ] Puff Pastry Sheets
  • [ ] 1 Egg
  • [ ] 1 Onion, diced
  • [ ] 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • [ ] 1 Carrot, peeled and diced
  • [ ] 1 Potato, peeled and diced
  • [ ] ¼ Cup of Peas
  • [ ] ¼ Cup of Vegetable Broth
  • [ ] 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • [ ] Salt and Pepper to taste

For the Tomato Sauce:

  • [ ] 1 Tablespoon of Olive oil
  • [ ] 1 Onion, chopped
  • [ ] ½ Red Pepper, diced
  • [ ] 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
  • [ ] 3 Tomatoes, chopped
  • [ ] 2 Tablespoons of Tomato Paste
  • [ ] ½ Cup of Red Wine
  • [ ] ¼ Cup of Vegetable Broth
  • [ ] ½ Teaspoon of Dry Oregano
  • [ ] ½ Teaspoon of Dry Basil
  • [ ] Salt and Pepper to taste

Optional Garnish:

  • Fresh Parsley

Note: Make sure that all your vegetables are diced in small pieces so they fit nicely into the empanadas.

The Recipe How-To

 The golden flaky crust of these empanadas will have you begging for more.
The golden flaky crust of these empanadas will have you begging for more.

Let’s get started on making these delectable Vegetable Empanadas with Tomato Sauce!

1. Preparing the Filling

  • First, take a medium saucepan and heat olive oil over medium heat.
  • Once the oil is heated, add in one finely chopped onion and one minced garlic clove to the saucepan.
  • Sauté for 2 minutes until the onion becomes soft and translucent.
  • Add in one diced carrot, one peeled and diced potato, half a cup of peas, 1 teaspoon each of dry oregano and dry basil. Mix everything until it is fully coated with oil, and let it cook for 3-minutes stirring occasionally.
  • Pour two cups of vegetable broth into the saucepan and stir all ingredients together.
  • Bring the mixture to boil and let it simmer on medium-low heat for 15 minutes until vegetables are soft.
  • Once vegetables are cooked, add half a tablespoon of tomato paste, stir it in, then reduce heat to low. Let it simmer until all liquid reduces to about half.

2. Empanada Assembly

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  • Roll out your two sheets of puff pastry dough on a floured surface. Use a knife or pizza cutter to cut into small circles (4-inch size).
  • Scoop up 1 tablespoon of filling onto half side of dough circle. Brush egg wash along the edge.
  • Gently fold over the other half of the dough circle so that it forms a semi-circle on top of the filling with edges sealed shut.
  • Dip a fork into flour and press against edges to make ‘pinched’ marks around empanada edges, ensuring they’re fully sealed.
  • Repeat filling & sealing process with each dough round until you run out of puff pastry.
  • Place empanadas onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Brush egg wash over your empanadas evenly.
  • Cut 2 or 3 small slits on top each empanada to allow steam to escape while baking.

3. Baking and Serving

  • Bake empanadas in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and crispy.
    -Meanwhile, for the tomato sauce, heat up olive oil over medium heat in a medium saucepan.
    -Add one finely chopped onion and sauté for about 3 minutes or until is soft
    -Add one diced red pepper and continue cooking for 2 more minutes
    -Add one peeled and sliced garlic clove and pour two cups of tomatoes puree into your pot. Mix everything until all ingredients have properly combined.
    -Add half tablespoon of dry oregano, salt and pepper to taste. Let simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    -Let the empan

Substitutions and Variations

 The aroma of the freshly baked empanadas is simply irresistible.
The aroma of the freshly baked empanadas is simply irresistible.

Now that you’ve got the hang of making these delicious vegetable empanadas, let’s talk about some ways you can switch things up to keep them interesting!

– Empanada filling: While this recipe calls for a savory vegetarian filling of potatoes, carrots, peas, and olives, you can certainly play around with different combinations of veggies or even add in some protein like ground beef, chicken or tofu.

– Dipping Sauce: While the tomato sauce is a classic pairing for empanadas, it’s always fun to experiment with different dipping sauces. Try Salsa Verde or Chimichurri Sauce for a refreshing kick. If you’re after something a bit richer and creamier, try a cheesy dip.

– Cheese Empanada: For those who love cheese, consider adding some mozzarella cheese into your empanadas! You can either mix cheese with your current filling choice or prepare a separate filling consisting of fresh tomatoes and basil.

– Veggie options: This recipe is already vegan-friendly as written, but if you want to make it lactose-free or have difficulty finding puff pastry that doesn’t contain butter (a vegan alternative), there are vegan puff pastry options available.

Overall the goal is to be creative and have fun. The sky’s the limit when it comes to the variety of fillings and sauces to try out with your empanadas so don’t be afraid to experiment!

Serving and Pairing

 The perfect handheld snack for any occasion, these empanadas are both hearty and delicious.
The perfect handheld snack for any occasion, these empanadas are both hearty and delicious.

Hear ye, hear ye fellow foodie! If like me, you crave the enchanting fusion of flavors that emanate from this vegetarian empanada recipe, then you’re definitely in for a treat. These empanadas are best served hot and crispy fresh out of the oven and paired with a robust tomato sauce.

The savory vegetarian empanadas go well as a light lunch or dinner entree with a side salad comprising a mix of fresh greens such as spinach, lettuce, and arugula sprinkled with some freshly squeezed lemon juice or a tangy vinaigrette dressing.

The dipping sauce you choose can make or break the flavor profile experience; therefore, be adventurous by exploring other dips besides tomato sauce. For instance, try making your own homemade salsa verde or kick things up a notch with some spicy chimichurri sauce. The possibilities are endless.

If you’re hosting a party or a gathering of friends and family, consider pairing this dish with mozzarella caprese empanadas for variety. These mouth-watering delights feature delectable chunks of mozzarella cheese in between slices of juicy ripe tomatoes and fresh basil. Must I say more?

Vegetarian empanadas are versatile and can be modified to cater to different dietary requirements. Vegans can swap out puff pastry sheets for vegan empanada dough while omnivores can add ground beef or chicken to their filling to create meaty options such as beef or chicken empanadas.

In conclusion, serve these savory vegetarian empanadas hot and crispy with your favorite dipping sauce and enjoy them as either a light lunch or dinner entree paired with refreshing greens or mozzarella caprese empanadas for variety. Remember to experiment with different dips and fillings to satisfy your taste buds cravings!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A delicious way to sneak vegetables into your diet, these empanadas are packed with flavorful veggies.
A delicious way to sneak vegetables into your diet, these empanadas are packed with flavorful veggies.

After making these delicious vegetable empanadas with tomato sauce, you may want to make some in advance to save time when hunger strikes. Fortunately, this recipe is very accommodating and can be made ahead of time.

Once you have baked the empanadas, let them cool completely before storing them in an airtight container for up to three days. You can also refrigerate them for up to six days or freeze them for up to three months. Just make sure to defrost them before reheating.

One of my favorite ways to reheat frozen empanadas is by baking them again in a preheated oven at 375°F (190°C) until they are heated through and crispy. If you prefer a quicker option, place them in the microwave for about 30-60 seconds.

If you plan on making the tomato sauce ahead of time, store it separately from the empanadas in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer. To reheat, simply place it in a small saucepan over medium heat until it becomes warm.

Whether you are meal prepping or just want to have leftovers for later, these savory vegetarian empanadas are perfect for making ahead and storing. Just remember to follow proper storage and reheating techniques to ensure optimal flavor and texture. Enjoy!

Tips for Perfect Results

 These vegetable empanadas pair perfectly with our tangy homemade tomato sauce.
These vegetable empanadas pair perfectly with our tangy homemade tomato sauce.

To make the perfect vegetable empanadas with tomato sauce, pay attention to these tips and tricks that I gathered through practice and experience.

Firstly, when working with puff pastry sheets, make sure to keep them chilled until you are ready to use them. Otherwise, they can become too soft to work with and sticky, leading to a disaster. Additionally, do not overfill your empanadas as it will lead to tears on the dough or filling spilling out while baking.

Secondly, when preparing the tomato sauce for dipping or pouring over the empanadas, remember to reduce it enough so that the flavors concentrate and thicken. This can be done by simmering the sauce on medium heat for around 10 to 15 minutes until it reaches a sauce-like consistency.

Thirdly, if you are making vegetarian empanadas or vegan empanadas, make sure to add some extra seasonings like dry oregano and basil to bring out more flavor in the dish. Add some red pepper flakes or cumin powder for an extra kick.

Fourthly, for those who want to experiment with different fillings, try using a combination of peas, carrots, potatoes, olives, cheese, and even ground beef or chicken. You can also make caprese empanadas by using mozzarella cheese, tomatoes and basil.

Fifthly, brush some beaten egg lightly over the puff pastry before baking. It will give a beautiful golden color to your empanadas.

Lastly but not least important, allow your empanadas to cool down for a few minutes after baking before serving. This time will help them hold their shape better and prevent any injuries caused by hot filling that might escape from the dough.

By following these tips with patience and care, you can bake delicious savory vegetarian or vegan empanadas that your guests will savor!


Before we conclude this recipe article, let’s address some commonly asked questions about these vegetable empanadas with tomato sauce. I understand that, as a chef, it’s essential to provide answers to any queries you might have after reading through the recipe how-to. So, in this section, I’ll provide detailed responses to some FAQs to help you prepare the best possible batch of savory vegetarian empanadas.

What kind of sauce goes with empanadas?

As a chef with expertise in both Brazilian and American cuisine, I have curated a list of flavorful and versatile dipping sauces that can be paired with one of my personal favorites – empanadas. These sauces include Salsa Criolla, Chimichurri Sauce, Salsa Verde, Honey Mustard Sauce, Romesco Sauce, Anaheim Chili Sauce, Marinara Sauce, and Mole Sauce. Each sauce offers a unique blend of sweet, tangy, and savory flavors and can be customized to taste. Here are some tips and tricks for making the perfect dipping sauce to go with your empanadas.

What to put into tomato sauce?

To take your sauce to the next level, consider incorporating these key ingredients: a drizzle of high quality extra virgin olive oil for depth of flavor, fresh garlic for a pungent kick, meat for a savory base, hot pepper flakes for added heat, red wine for richness, fresh or dried herbs to enhance the aroma, cheese to thicken and enrich, and creamy butter for a smooth finish. These ingredients can elevate any sauce from bland to deliciously complex.

What are the different types of empanadas?

Here are some delicious empanada ideas to try at home: Chicken Enchilada Empanada, Nutella and Banana Empanada, Beef and Mushroom Empanada, Corn and Goat Cheese Empanada, Pineapple Empanada, Tomato, Mozzarella, and Basil Empanada, Fried Cheese Empanada, and Squash, Corn, and Spinach Empanada.

What pairs well with empanadas?

In this recipe article, we will be exploring a delicious array of dishes inspired by Mexican and American cuisines. We’ll be creating a flavorful Mexican rice dish, zesty salsa verde, refreshing Mexican street corn salad, creamy Qdoba queso, sweet and tangy strawberry salsa, perfectly grilled corn on the cob, savory black beans and rice, and last but not least, crispy fried plantains. Get your taste buds ready for a fiesta of flavors!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, these vegetable empanadas with tomato sauce are a must-try for anyone who loves savory vegetarian dishes. The combination of fresh vegetables and flavorful seasonings make for a delicious and satisfying meal that you’ll crave again and again.

Plus, the beauty of this recipe is its versatility. You can easily substitute different vegetables or even add meat to create your perfect empanada. And with the option to make ahead and freeze, this dish is perfect for busy weeknights or unexpected guests.

Whether enjoyed as a main course or appetizer, these empanadas are sure to impress your friends and family. So why not try this recipe today? I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Vegetable Empanadas With Tomato Sauce

Vegetable Empanadas With Tomato Sauce Recipe

This recipe comes from an Argentinian grocery store booklet. As an Argentinian myself, I have never try empanadas with dipping sauce, but several times when I bake empanadas, my american friends coment that they would probably be really good with a dipping sauce. That is why when I saw this recipe I decided to post it. I have not try it yet.
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Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 50 mins
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Latin American
Servings 12 empanadas
Calories 1244.9 kcal


  • 1 potato, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 4 ounces butternut squash, diced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/3 cup peas
  • 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
  • 3 puff pastry sheets
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • tomato sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 tablespoon dry basil
  • 1/2 tablespoon dry oregano


  • Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  • In a saucepan over medium heat, sauté onion in olive oil.
  • When translucent add potato, carrot, and squash. Mix well and add vegetable broth.
  • Cook for about 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender and broth evaporated.
  • Add peas and parley and let it cool down.
  • While vegetable filling is cooling down, cut each puff pastry sheet into four 5”circles.
  • Add 1 Tbs of filling in the center of every circle.
  • Brush the edge of each ½ circle with a little water, fold in half and seal pressing with a fork.
  • Place on a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 25 minutes or until they are puffy and golden.
  • Meanwhile make tomato sauce by sautéing, over medium heat, onion and garlic with the olive oil. After 5 minutes add tomatoes, wine and broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Move off the heat and let it cool down a little. Pour carefully in a blender and blend until smooth.
  • Pour onto a sauté pan, add tomato paste, basil and oregano and stir over medium heat until hot.
  • Serve the empanadas with tomato sauce as a dip.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 299gCalories: 1244.9kcalCarbohydrates: 108.8gProtein: 18.7gFat: 81.8gSaturated Fat: 19.6gCholesterol: 52.9mgSodium: 560.2mgFiber: 7.7gSugar: 8.6g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Easy, Potato, South American, Vegetable
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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.