Empanadas de Espinaca Recipe - Authentic Paraguayan Vegetarian Dish

Empanadas de Espinaca

Empanadas de Espinaca Recipe - Authentic Paraguayan Vegetarian Dish
Region / culture: Paraguay | Preparation time: 1 hour | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 6 | Vegetarian diet


Empanadas de Espinaca are a delicious and savory pastry filled with a mixture of cooked spinach, cheese, olives, white sauce, and hard-boiled eggs. These empanadas are a popular dish in many Latin American countries and are perfect for a quick and easy meal or snack.


Empanadas have a long history dating back to medieval Spain, where they were originally filled with meat and vegetables. As Spanish colonizers traveled to the Americas, they brought the empanada with them, and it quickly became a staple in Latin American cuisine. The addition of spinach to the filling adds a nutritious twist to this traditional dish.




How to prepare

  1. In a bowl, combine the sifted flour, baking powder, and salt.
  2. Add the room temperature butter or margarine, followed by the egg and necessary milk to form a smooth dough.
  3. The dough should be tender but stretchable. Let it rest in the refrigerator for one hour.


  1. In a bowl, mix all the filling ingredients until well combined.
  2. Refrigerate the filling until it is cold and easier to work with.
  3. Roll out the dough and cut it into discs to make the empanadas.
  4. Place a small amount of filling in the center of each disc, then fold it in half and press the edges together to seal.
  5. Arrange the empanadas on a baking tray and bake in a preheated moderate oven.
  6. Remove them from the oven before they start to brown, then brush them with beaten egg mixed with a spoonful of sugar or melted butter.


  • Add cooked chicken or beef to the filling for a meatier option.
  • Substitute the spinach with kale or Swiss chard for a different flavor.
  • Add diced tomatoes or bell peppers to the filling for extra color and flavor.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Make sure to let the dough rest in the refrigerator for at least one hour before rolling it out. This will help the dough relax and make it easier to work with.

- Refrigerating the filling before assembling the empanadas will make it easier to handle and prevent it from spilling out of the pastry.

- Be sure to seal the edges of the empanadas tightly to prevent the filling from leaking out during baking.

- Brushing the empanadas with beaten egg or melted butter before baking will give them a golden and shiny finish.

Serving Suggestions

Empanadas de Espinaca can be served as a main dish with a side salad or as a snack on their own. They are perfect for picnics, parties, or as a quick lunch or dinner option.

Cooking Techniques

Baking the empanadas in a preheated oven ensures that they cook evenly and develop a crispy crust.

- Brushing the empanadas with beaten egg or melted butter before baking will give them a shiny and golden finish.

Ingredient Substitutions

You can use butter instead of margarine in the dough for a richer flavor.

- Substitute the olives with capers or sun-dried tomatoes for a different taste.

- Use store-bought puff pastry or pie crust instead of making the dough from scratch for a quicker option.

Make Ahead Tips

You can prepare the dough and filling ahead of time and assemble the empanadas just before baking.

- Store the assembled empanadas in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before baking.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the empanadas on a platter with a side of salsa or chimichurri sauce for dipping. - Garnish the empanadas with chopped fresh herbs or a sprinkle of grated cheese before serving.

Pairing Recommendations

Empanadas de Espinaca pair well with a crisp green salad, roasted vegetables, or a side of rice and beans.

- Serve them with a glass of chilled white wine or a refreshing lemonade for a complete meal.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftover empanadas in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

- Reheat the empanadas in a preheated oven at 350°F for 10-15 minutes or until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Empanadas de Espinaca contains approximately 250 calories.


Each serving of Empanadas de Espinaca contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.


Each serving of Empanadas de Espinaca contains approximately 15 grams of fats.


Each serving of Empanadas de Espinaca contains approximately 8 grams of proteins.

Vitamins and minerals

Empanadas de Espinaca are a good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and iron.


Empanadas de Espinaca contain wheat, eggs, and dairy.


Empanadas de Espinaca are a balanced meal containing carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and essential vitamins and minerals. They are a nutritious and delicious option for a quick and easy meal.


Empanadas de Espinaca are a delicious and nutritious pastry filled with a flavorful mixture of spinach, cheese, olives, white sauce, and hard-boiled eggs. They are perfect for a quick and easy meal or snack and can be enjoyed by the whole family.

How did I get this recipe?

I can still recall the sense of amazement I felt when I first saw this recipe for Empanadas de Espinaca. It was many years ago, when I was just a young girl helping out in the kitchen of my abuela's small but cozy home in the countryside of Argentina. My abuela was a master in the kitchen, and I was always in awe of the delicious dishes she would whip up with such ease.

One day, as I was helping her prepare dinner, she pulled out a tattered old recipe book that had been passed down through generations of our family. As she flipped through the pages, a smile spread across her face as she landed on a page that seemed to hold a special significance.

"Ah, here it is," she said, her eyes twinkling with excitement. "Empanadas de Espinaca. This is a recipe that has been in our family for generations. It was passed down to me by my own abuela, and now I will pass it down to you."

I watched in awe as she gathered the ingredients and began to walk me through the steps of making these savory spinach empanadas. The dough was made from scratch, a mixture of flour, water, and a pinch of salt that she kneaded with practiced hands until it was smooth and elastic. The filling was a delicious combination of sautéed spinach, onions, garlic, and a generous sprinkle of cheese.

As the empanadas baked in the oven, the kitchen filled with the tantalizing aroma of buttery dough and savory spinach. My abuela and I sat at the table, eagerly awaiting the moment when we could sink our teeth into these golden, flaky pastries.

When the empanadas were finally ready, we each took a bite and savored the explosion of flavors in our mouths. The buttery crust melted in our mouths, while the spinach and cheese filling added a depth of richness and complexity that was simply divine.

From that day on, Empanadas de Espinaca became a staple in our household. My abuela would make them for special occasions, family gatherings, or simply as a comforting meal on a cold winter's night. And as I grew older, I too learned to make them with the same love and care that she had shown me.

Over the years, I have made these empanadas countless times, each time marveling at how a simple mixture of flour, water, spinach, and cheese could come together to create something so utterly delicious. And with each bite, I am reminded of the bond that connects me to my abuela and the generations of women who came before us, passing down not just a recipe, but a legacy of love, tradition, and shared meals around the table.

Today, as I stand in my own kitchen, rolling out the dough and folding it around the spinach filling, I can't help but feel a sense of gratitude for the gift that my abuela gave me all those years ago. This recipe for Empanadas de Espinaca is more than just a dish – it is a connection to my past, a link to my family's history, and a reminder of the power of food to bring us together in love and celebration. And for that, I will always be grateful.


| Black Olive Recipes | Cheese Recipes | Hard-boiled Egg Recipes | Paraguayan Recipes | Paraguayan Snacks | Paraguayan Vegetarian | Spinach Recipes | Wheat Flour Recipes |

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