Lentil Taco Filled Empanadas

TheseLentil Taco Filled Empanadas empanadas have been a labor of love.  The first time that I made them I was basing them off another recipe and they turned out really well.  I made them a few times to make sure they worked and was happy with the outcome.  But I couldn’t just leave them alone.

The first version I made used eggs, which is fine because I love eggs and use them daily.  I wanted to try and make a version that didn’t use eggs.  That’s when the labor part of “labor of love” started.  I won’t say I failed, I just found 452 ways to NOT make empanadas without eggs.  Finally I had a breakthrough and came up with an eggless empanada.  I might have done a little dance in my kitchen….

I included both versions of the empanada here so you can choose which version you want to make.  The ingredients will be different but the process will be the same.  I’m also including my recipe for taco lentils as a filling for the empanada, but you can use any filling you would like.  Try shredded chicken or pork or ground turkey or beef.  Whatever your little heart desires.  Dream big my friends, dream big.

Lentil Taco Filled Empanada

Empanada with Eggs- based on this recipe from Barefoot Provisions 

  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder

Empanada without Eggs

  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup aquafaba
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder

1.  Whatever version you make, combine all the dry ingredients and mix together.  Then add in the wet and stir to combine.  For the version with eggs the batter will seem very runny but that is fine.  The eggless version should be a little thicker like pancake batter.

2. Preheat oven to 350 and line a large baking sheet with a Silpat or parchment paper.

3.  Heat a little olive oil in a small skillet over medium high heat.  Pour a little bit of the empanada batter into the skillet and cook for about 3 minutes.  You want the bottom to be cooked but the top to still be a little doughy.

4.  With a spatula transfer the empanada from the skillet over to the lined baking sheet.  Spoon a little of your filling onto one side of the empanada.  Fold over the opposite side pressing along the edges to seal.  Repeat this process until you have used all the batter.  I usually get about 5 empanadas out of this recipe.

5.  Bake the empanadas for 10 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes.  You can top with avocado cream, cashew sour cream, salsa, or hot sauce.

Lentil Taco Filled Empanadas

Lentil Taco Filling

  • 1 cup cooked lentils
  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans (canned or dry)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onions
  • 1 14 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2-3 tsp taco seasoning
  • 3 tbsp fresh cilantro chopped
  • 2 tsp tapioca starch or cornstarch mixed in 1/4 cup water

1.  Mix the tapioca starch/cornstarch into the water and set aside.

2.  Heat a little olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Saute the onions until soft and translucent, about 5-7 minutes.  Add in garlic and saute for another minute.  Add in everything else except for the seasoning, starch, and cilantro.  Cook for about 10 minutes.

3.  Sprinkle the seasoning over the lentil mix and then pour the starch mix over everything.  Cook until the sauce begins to thicken.  Turn off the heat and stir in cilantro.

Lentil Taco Filled Empanada

It might seem like a lot but this meal actually comes together pretty easily.  You can even make your filling ahead of time and then just pull it out when you’re making the empanadas.  Whichever version you try I hope you enjoy these yummy empanadas!

Have a great weekend and enjoy the last few days of May!

What’s your favorite Mexican dish?