Criolla Cooking

Empanada dough recipe

Empanadas are some of the most typical dishes you will eat around Argentina, and South America. You are able to fill them with different types of filling, ranging from beef stew (remember to cool the stew), ham and cheese, mushrooms, corn stew filling, chicken and peppers and more!


Serving: 12-15 empanada wraps

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ to 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 6 oz unsalted butter (1 stick of butter = 4 oz)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of water or milk adjust as needed to obtain a soft and smooth dough

Step-by-Step Guide:

  1. Mix the flour and salt in a food processor.
  2. Add the butter and pulse for 2 minutes until the flour and butter have mixed into a crumble
  3. Add the egg and the water or milk (in small doses) and continue pulsing until a clumpy dough forms.
  4. To make the empanada dough by hand, follow the same approach but use your hands to mix the ingredients together.
  5. Split the dough into 2 large balls, flatten slightly into the shape of a flat disks. The dough can be used immediately or refrigerated until ready to use (1-2 days max).
  6. Roll out the dough into a thin sheet (it should not be see through). Cut out round disc shapes for empanadas (use round molds from a big water glass or a small plate). You can also make small individual balls with the dough and roll out each individual ball to a round shape (doesn’t need to be perfectly round) – if you have a tortilla press you can use it to flatten the dough balls.
  7. Use immediately, or store in the refrigerator/freezer to use later.


  • To assemble the empanadas, place a spoonful of the filling on the middle of each empanada disc. The amount of filling will vary based on the size of the empanada, but in general, it’s easier to seal an empanada that isn’t overstuffed – we don’t want a burrito.
  • To seal the empanadas, , wet your finger and run it along the edge of the dough disk, then fold the disc and seal the edges by pressing the dough with your fingers. If you’re having a hard time sealing the edges, you can use brush the inside edges with egg white, it will act as a glue for the empanadas. You can also use a fork to help seal the edges, just press the top of the fork against the edges. To make the repulgue wavy seal, use your fingers to twist to curl the edges like you would for a dumpling. This video tutorial can help.
  • For best results, I recommend refrigerating for at least 30 minutes the empanadas before baking – this also helps them seal better and prevents the filling from leaking out.
  • If you want your empanadas to have a nice golden finish, then you can brush them with egg wash (a whole egg whisked or egg yolk plus a few drops of water whisked).
  • Bake the empanadas in a pre-heated oven. I usually bake them at 375F-400F, the temperature will vary based on the oven and the size of the empanadas. I bake the smaller sized empanadas at 375F. The baking time also varies (again based on the oven and size), but it’s in the range of 18-25 minutes – the empanadas will be ready once they are golden.

There you have it – an authentic Argentine empanada recipe to adjust as you please.