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Cheesy Beef Empanadas

Cheesy Beef Empanadas with Salsa Roja

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Recipe Details


Having lived in Argentina, Chef Suzanne has a special affinity for empanadas, the savory South American turnovers stuffed with flavorful meats and veggies. There’s no one right filling for these crispy hand pies, but we’re pretty sure this Italian-inspired version is very right: beef sautéed with spinach and garlic, plus shredded mozzarella and Monterey Jack cheeses. Baked until golden and gooey, they’re served with a warm salsa of tomato, jalapeño, and honey.


  • Spicy

Quick facts

Serving size
Prep & cook time
Cooking Skill
By Chef Suzanne

By Chef Suzanne

Nutritional info

Ingredients & Equipment

What we send

  • lime
  • yellow onion
    yellow onion
  • garlic
    3 cloves
  • grape tomatoes
    1 1/2 cup
    grape tomatoes
  • jalapeño
  • ground beef
    12 ounces
    ground beef
  • tomato paste
    1 teaspoon
    tomato paste
  • baby spinach
    5 ounces
    baby spinach
  • empanada doughs
    empanada doughs
  • honey
    1 packet
  • parchment paper
    parchment paper
  • shredded mozzarella cheese
    2 ounces
    shredded mozzarella cheese
  • shredded Monterey Jack cheese
    1 ounce
    shredded Monterey Jack cheese

What You’ll Need

  • olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • baking sheet
  • 10" medium high-sided pan

Cooking Steps

  1. Prepare Ingredients

    Prepare Ingredients

    Preheat oven to 450ºF. Halve lime. Peel onion, halve, and thinly slice. Mince garlic. Rinse tomatoes and halve. Rinse jalapeño, halve lengthwise, and using a knife tip, discard seeds. Mince up to half of pepper. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

  2. Cook Filling

    Cook Filling

    Pat beef dry with paper towel. Heat ½ tablespoon olive oil in a medium high-sided pan over medium heat. When oil is shimmering, add half of onion and half of garlic and sauté until softened, 3-4 minutes. Stir in tomato paste to warm through, about 1 minute. Add beef, ½ teaspoon salt and pepper and cook, breaking up, until meat is browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in half of spinach to wilt, 1-2 minutes more. Remove pan from heat.

  3. Form and Bake Empanadas

    Form and Bake Empanadas

    Working 1 at a time, place empanada doughs on prepared baking sheet, in a single layer. Using a slotted spoon, add about ¼ cup filling to 1 half of each. Reserve pan for salsa. Sprinkle cheese mix over filling. Carefully fold dough over filling and using the tines of a fork, press and seal edges tightly. Cut a small slit on top of empanadas so steam can escape. Bake until puffed and light golden, about 15 minutes.

  4. Cook Salsa Roja

    Cook Salsa Roja

    While empanadas bake, wipe pan from beef clean and add 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat. When oil is shimmering, add jalapeño, remaining onion, and remaining garlic and sauté until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and cook, breaking up, until thick and jammy, 5-7 minutes more. Season with ¼ teaspoon salt. Remove pan from heat, stir in half of honey, and set aside until ready to serve.

  5. Make Spinach Salad

    Make Spinach Salad

    In a large bowl, whisk together juice of ½ lime, remaining honey, and 1 tablespoon olive oil until fully combined. Season with ⅛ teaspoon salt and pepper as desired. Add remaining spinach to bowl with dressing and toss to coat. Save remaining lime for another use (try squeezing over diced avocado—even better if it's for guacamole).

  6. Plate Empanadas

    Plate Empanadas

    Divide cheesy beef empanadas and spinach salad between plates. Spoon salsa roja over empanadas or serve alongside for dipping. Enjoy your homemade masterpiece!

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