Gluten Free Empanadas Recipe

Gluten Free Empanadas Recipe

I can’t wait to share this gluten free empanadas recipe with you. I know you’re used to seeing mostly yummy gluten free breads and sweet treats on my blog, but once in a while, a great gluten free main dish is worth a share, too!

Latin American empanadas, like their cousins the Italian calzone and Indian samosa, are hand-held pockets of dough wrapped around fillings that include everything from potatoes to meat to raisins and sugar.

gluten free empanadas banner

Although typically savory and served as an appetizer or meal, empanadas (literally meaning something “bread wrapped”) can, and probably have, contained just about anything edible. My gluten free empanadas recipe is based on a traditional vegetarian potato empanada filling that my whole family loves, which is why I love it: a meal that every member of my six-person household will eat and ask for by name is a rarity indeed!

This first “hot pocket” hailed from Spain, but traveled to Latin America and beyond during colonization. Since then, its humble origins as a seafood-filled pastry have evolved into almost innumerable incarnations ranging from simple street food to chef-inspired cookbook viands.  

gluten free empanadas with bite parsley CU

Breaking it down though, the basic concept of any pastry pocket like the empanada is a dough recipe, a unique filling, and a cooking method — either baked or fried. Beyond that, regions (particularly Argentina) claim very specific twists making the recipes their own … and apparently, they’re quite passionate about whose version is best.

I’ve given you a delicious gluten free empanadas recipe — both for dough and for filling — but really the gluten free dough is the key. It should be a light and flaky dough that’s soft and a dream to work with. Basically, this recipe!

gluten free empanadas with bite

That’s no small feat when you’re talking gluten free doughs, and I attribute it all to my gfJules Flour. This simple dough recipe is easy to roll out and fold around the fillings, and it’s also tasty, light and flaky because it’s made with my gfJules Flour. That’s really all there is to it. You’ll see.

If you find a filling recipe elsewhere you prefer, by all means, use it with my gluten free dough recipe! Let this recipe be your base and try lots of different filling recipes until you find one(s) you love best. Be your own version of Argentina.

gluten free empanadas on rack

So start with the gluten free dough and go from there. Be sure to watch my quick video showing how easy it is to roll out this pliable dough and add the filling, wrapping the dough around it into the classic crescent shape, pressing the tines of a fork onto the edges to seal, brushing on an egg wash (or milk or oil), then baking. Voila, pretty darned easy!

Then the only hard part will be fighting off your family for your share of these savory pastries. IF, and I do mean IF there are any left, they do keep well in the refrigerator or freezer and reheated. So maybe double the recipe if you’re feeling particularly industrious. 

gluten free empanadas in line

You can also make these hot pockets smaller or larger, depending on your preference. Making them for appetizers? Make the dough rounds smaller for mini empanadas. Packing for a road trip? Make them larger for a full-size empanada meal!

So many delicious options!

 

gluten free empanadas with onions

Gluten Free Empanadas Recipe

Yield: approximately 15 gluten free empandas
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Hand-held homemade gluten free empanadas made from a light, flaky dough wrapped around traditional potato filling that can be spiced up or down for a meal your whole family will love.

Ingredients

  • Dough
  • 2 ¼ cups (304 gr) gfJules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour (gfJules Flour)
  • 1 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 8 Tbs. butter or vegan alternative (e.g. Earth Balance Buttery Sticks)
  • 1 egg or vegan substitute (e.g. choose one here) - I like aquafaba here -
  • 1/3 cup + 1 Tbs. ice water
  • 1 Tbs. white vinegar
  • Filling
  • 1 ½- 2 lbs potatoes
  • 1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 1 Tbs. spice mix, to taste (here's my homemade mix)
  • 1 Tbs.+ milk of choice to thin mixture
  • Additional veggies, if desired (e.g. bell pepper, carrot, squash …)
  • 1 egg + 1 Tbs. water (or milk of choice or oil for brushing on empanadas before baking)

Instructions

To make the gluten free empanada dough, whisk together gfJules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour and salt, then cut in butter with pastry cutter or two butter knives. This may be done pulsing with a food processor or using the paddle on a stand mixer, but be careful not to over-work the mixture; when the butter is incorporated, it should look like little pebbles in the flour, not fully incorporated or melted.

Mix the egg in a separate bowl and whisk together with water and white vinegar then slowly stir into the flour mixture with a fork, mixing only until a dough has been formed. The dough should hold together easily and not be dry or crumbly; if necessary, add more cold water until the dough holds
together.

Cover the dough with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator while preparing fillings.

Wash and peel (or not – your choice) potatoes and place in a large pot, covering potatoes with water. Add a dash of salt to bring water to a boil faster, if desired. Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer just until fork tender, not mushy, then drain and set aside until cool enough to handle. At that point, cube potatoes into small ½ inch cubes and place into a large bowl.

Separately, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add diced onion, stirring often. Cook until translucent and soft, approximately 5 minutes. If adding other veggies like bell pepper or carrot, add with onion and cook until slightly soft, longer for carrot. Add tomato paste and spice mix to onion while sautéing. 

Remove onion/veggie mix from heat and add to bowl with cubed potatoes. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 425 F and line two baking sheets with parchment.

Divide gluten free empanada dough into 15-16 pieces, covering the dough while you work. Roll out each section of gluten free empanada dough into rounds, a thickness of a pie crust – approximately 3-4mm (watch video for technique).

Place approximately 2 tablespoons of cooled empanada filling into the middle, but towards one side of the round, in an elongated shape. Wet edges of pastry with water by dabbing your finger.

Gently fold pastry over and press together to seal. Press with the tines of a fork around the crescent shape then cut off excess dough, if needed. Transfer the gluten-free empanada to the parchment-lined baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough and fillings, spacing at least 1 inch apart.

This process may be done with smaller amounts of dough and filling to make more empanadas, or larger amounts of dough and filling to make fewer empanadas.

Brush gluten free empanadas with beaten egg wash and prick with a fork to vent before baking.

Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, rotating the trays halfway through to promote more even baking.

Notes

May make ahead and freeze empanadas before
baking on trays, then transfer to freezer bags once frozen (they will keep for
3 weeks).

For vegan egg replacer, I used VOR Aquafaba Powder: 1/3 tsp powder + 3 Tbs. water

Nutrition Information
Yield 15 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 270Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 5gCholesterol 42mgSodium 375mgCarbohydrates 36gFiber 3gSugar 2gProtein 5g

Please keep in mind that nutrition information provided is per serving, which may vary. While we have taken care to provide you with the most accurate nutritional values possible, please note that this information may differ significantly depending on the exact ingredients and brands that you choose to use to make this recipe. Additionally, where options are given for ingredients, the resulting calculation may include all ingredient options instead of only one per line, skewing the totals significantly.

What will you fill these yummy hot pockets with? I can’t wait to see!

Don’t forget to pin for later!

Gluten Free Empandas Recipe | gfJules

Gluten Free Empanadas Recipe

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24 thoughts on “Gluten Free Empanadas Recipe

  1. Hello! I just got your flour and I’m exited to do make this recipe. My daughter diagnosed with celiac 3 years ago and this was one of her favorite food. I have the original recipe i used with regular flour, just wondering if i can used it and just substitute the flour as my recipe for the dough included baking powder and shortening. I was going to try your recipe but the only white vinegar i can find is destile and we can’t t have it.

    • Hi Lilliam, I know you’ll love this recipe but you could also just use my gfJules Flour in place of the regular flour in your old recipe — the technique and sometimes the amount of the liquid is really the only thing that might ever change. Have a look at this article on converting recipes using my gfJules Flour for more ideas. Otherwise, in place of white vinegar you could also just use lemon juice in this recipe. ENJOY!
      ~jules

  2. Hi! I’m planning on making these, but fully vegan. What would you suggest as an alternative to the egg wash before placing them in the oven?

    • Hi Veronica, the aquafaba sub worked great, so you’ll have no problem with this gluten free empanada dough being vegan. As for brushing something on the outside of the dough, I’d suggest your favorite vegan milk. If you really want them to brown more before serving, you can either use a convection setting on your oven (if you have one) or a quick broil right before you remove them from the oven to brown the tops will do it. Watch closely if broiling though!
      ~jules

    • Hi Manpreet, yes, the butter should still be cold when worked into the dry ingredients, then the dough is put back into the refrigerator while the fillings are prepared. Enjoy the gluten free empanadas recipe!
      ~jules

  3. Hi just tried out recipe using the vegan mayo to sub for egg, I fried the empanadas at 300-325f. Unfortunately they came out hard. Please let me know what I’m doing wrong.? Thank you.

    • Hi Enid, was the vegan egg substitute the only change you made to the ingredients listed? You can always try another egg substitute like aquafaba and see if that works better for you if that was the only other ingredient you switched from those listed here. The other issue you named was that you deep fried the empanadas. My recipe calls for baking them, so that’s definitely a variable. When I deep fry, I usually try to keep things in the 350F range to make sure the dough stays crispy and doesn’t absorb oil. I’m also not sure how long you fried them — frying them too long will make them hard. So there are several variables at play here.
      ~jules

      • I made these last night using aquafaba as the egg substitute and the dough worked perfectly, Enid, so I’d suggest that next time!
        ~jules

    • Hi Cindy, it’s added at the end with the spice mix — sorry about overlooking that note. I’ve added it back in now. Enjoy the recipe!
      ~jules

  4. I love your products and recipes, but I need to keep track of my carbs and I do not see any listing in your recipes. Am I missing something? TIA

    • Hi Kathy, I’ve only just secured the software necessary to add nutritional information to my recipes and I’m so excited! But now I have to go back through each one manually, one by one, and add it! So I’ve added it for you in this recipe! I hope it’s helpful!
      ~jules

  5. I grew up in Latin America, and my late grandma used to make these for me with a variety of fillings. These could be pizza, traditional meat filling, and guava (the guava filling can give you third degree burns if you do not let it cool off). The best way to let these cool off is to nip off the ends and let it set for a few mins, for the hot steam to escape.
    Enjoy!

  6. Hi Jules, just a starting to work with your flour; so far, it has been great! What if I wanted to fry these in an air fryer? How would you recommend doing it?

    • Hi Jessica, I make gluten free hand pies in the air fryer by spraying them lightly with oil and air frying for 4 minutes at 350F. However, there’s no egg in the dough or egg/dairy/meat in the filling. I would recommend looking at your air fryer booklet for any help with settings for recipes if you choose to make a filling that does contain meat; otherwise, it’s much easier because basically you’re just cooking these until they’re hot (the egg in the dough will cook pretty quickly). The air fryer will mean you definitely won’t need to cook as long, and not as hot. If you can’t find other directions, I’d start at 375F and 10 minutes, but keep an eye on them. Let me know how it goes!
      ~jules

  7. Thank you for this wonderful recipe. My granddaughter wanted to have empanadas for her lunch at school. These will be perfect! I’ve made them twice so far and made a roasted cherry tomato tart with the dough. All delicious!

    • That’s fantastic, Stephanie! The roasted cherry tart sounds amazing, also!! I just love the portability of these and calzones, as well, for lunches and travel. What a great idea to put these gluten free empanadas in lunches for school!
      ~jules

  8. Excellent recipe! I made them with a different brand of gluten free flour (didn’t have gfjules) and it was tricky to fold them. Had to use parchment paper and place the round dough on top to be able to flatten it with the rolling pin.
    Folded the top of empanada with the help of the paper. The empanadas were delicious!
    Thank you for the excellent recipe!

    • Hi Erika, I so appreciate you taking the time to leave a note about how you were able to get the dough to work with another brand of gluten free flour — very resourceful of you to make it work!!! I do hope you get to try this recipe with my gfJules Flour soon so you can see how easy it is to work with and the difference it makes both in ease of use and in taste and texture. That being said though, I’m thrilled that it worked out for you and that you were still able to enjoy this yummy recipe!!!
      ~jules