Savory Apple and Chicken Empanadas


Take a trip to Spain with the delicious flavors baked into these savory empanadas. Spicy chicken, sharp cheddar cheese, and sweet apple are the perfect trio.

  • Yields
    30 small empanadas
  • Prep Time
    50 mins
  • Cook Time
    15 mins
  • Total Time
    1 hours, 5 mins


Empanada Pastry

  • 3 1/4 cups (390g) Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon (14g) granulated sugar
  • 6 Tablespoons (71g) vegetable shortening
  • 12 Tablespoons (170g) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
  • 2/3 to 3/4 cup (152g to 170g) ice water


  • 1 large tart or sweet-tart apple, diced
  • 1 Tablespoon (14g) fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon (14g) unsalted butter, cold
  • 1/2 cup (156g) onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced (optional)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups (198g) cooked chicken, diced
  • 2/3 cup (71g) grated sharp cheddar cheese

Egg wash

  • 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon milk



  1. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine the dry ingredients.
  2. Add the shortening and butter; pulse until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal.
  3. Slowly add the water and pulse until a ball of dough forms.
  4. Remove it from the bowl, pat it into a disk, wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour, or overnight.


  1. Toss the diced apples with the lemon juice and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter.
  3. Reduce heat slightly, then add the onions, pepper if using, and garlic and cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until the onions are translucent, and the garlic is fragrant, do not burn the garlic.
  4. Add all the spices, salt, and pepper.
  5. Next add the apple mixture and cook for about 2 minutes.
  6. Stir in the diced chicken.
  7. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.
  8. Remove from the heat let cool.
  9. Once cooled, stir in grated cheddar cheese.
  10. To shape empanadas: Roll the dough about 1/8" thick. Cut out rounds with a 3 1/2" round cutter – if you are using a bigger round cutter, you will have fewer empanadas than suggested amount. Place the rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  11. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  12. After chilling the dough, place 1 scant tablespoon of filling on each circle.
  13. Brush a bit of egg wash on the rims.
  14. Fold the circles in half and crimp with a fork to seal.
  15. Brush the tops of the empanadas with more egg wash.
  16. Bake the empanadas for 15 to 20 minutes, until golden brown.
  17. Remove them from the oven and serve warm.
  18. Serve with sour cream or guacamole for extra flavor.

If you have leftovers, you can wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for a few days or freeze them in a freezer bag for longer storage.