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Tasty Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe from Spain

It is always good to include vegetables in our daily diet, but there are times when we get tired of eating Spanish vegetable soup (despite being delicious).

If you are already tired of eating herbed vegetables, in a salad, in a soup, or in a stew, then get ready to discover the vegetarian empanadas recipe.

In this article, you will learn how to make a vegan empanada filling recipe, the changes you can make to the ingredients, and the best tricks to store and serve them.

Spanish Vegetarian Empanadas on a wooden plate

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Background of the Dish

empanadas on a black plate, next there's a bowl of sauce for the best spanish breakfast foods.

All cultures have some type of food similar to empanada: dumplings in Asia, some types of pasta in Italy, and hot pockets in the USA, but nothing compares to this Hispanic recipe.

The vegetarian empanadas recipe is not really the oldest of the empanadas, since at first the filling used was made with meat, but as time went by the recipe changed.

This is how this recipe came to be along with other vegan empanada recipes, whose main ingredient is a delicious mix of vegetables for the filling, without losing the charm of the authentic empanada recipe.

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vegetarian empanadas in a bowl and some veggies in the background. Under the photo it's written Spanish vegetarian empanadas.
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Things You’ll Need for Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe

To make this vegetarian empanadas recipe you only need the vegetables listed for the filling (although there are changes you can make) and store-bought pastry.

Raw empanadas dough on white background for the vegetarian empanadas.

Ingredients

  • 1 package of empanada dough (or the same amount of puff pastry sheet)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper (or yellow)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 eggplant
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika (optional)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) Water
  • 1 egg
  • Extra virgin olive oil

How to Make Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe – Step by Step Guide

closeup with making a vegetarian empanada.
  1. To start making this vegetarian empanada recipe,  you have to peel and finely chop the garlic clove, and onion.
  1. Up next, wash the peppers, remove the seeds and chop them into small pieces. Also, peel and chop the carrot and eggplant into small pieces too.
  1. Then heat a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil in a saucepan and sauté the garlic, onion, peppers, and carrot for 10 minutes.
  1. After that, add the eggplant, season to taste, and continue cooking for another five minutes.
  1. Now add the tomato paste, paprika, and half the water. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. If the vegetables stick to the base, add the rest of the water (if they don’t stick then don’t add more water cause it would be too much liquid). Remove from heat and let cool for a couple of minutes.
  1. If you got a package of empanada dough that comes in a round shape, you can skip this step. If you bought mini rectangle dough you can use it like this, or if it is a large sheet also cut it as rectangles so as not to lose excess dough.
  1. In case the dough is shaped like circles: put the filling in the middle and close until you get a half-moon shape, then with the help of a fork seal the edges of the vegetarian empanadas completely.
  1. If it has a rectangular shape: put a rectangle as the base, fill it with the vegetables leaving a space on the edges, place another rectangle on the top and close it with the help of a fork.
  1. Now brush the empanadas with a beaten egg (you can skip it if you want to make vegan empanadas). Take the vegetable empanadas to an oven tray lined with parchment paper or with a dash of oil so that it doesn’t stick.
  1. Place the baking tray in the oven, which should be preheated at 200 ºC (with the heat on top and bottom if your oven has that option), and cook for 30 minutes or until golden.
  1. For the final step of this easy empanada recipe you just have to let them cool slightly (at least for 5-10 minutes) before serving.

Substitution of Ingredients

closeup with vegetarian empanadas

For this vegetarian empanadas recipe, you can make homemade dough, though using the storebought saves you time and works just as great (remember that the star is the vegetable filling).

As for the fillings for the veggie empanadas, some include other vegetables such as potato, pumpkin, zucchini, and spinach, so you can do that. 

Some people add a cube of mozzarella cheese to each empanada, and the result is simply delicious.

You can use other empanadas fillings, such as chicken empanadas or beef empanadas, they are easy to make and are also delicious (although they aren’t vegetarian).

If you want it to be a vegan empanada recipe you have to make sure that the dough is vegan (it usually is, but be careful because some puff pastries come with butter or lard), and avoid brushing it with the egg.

Tips on Serving Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe

vegetarian empanadas on a wooden plate next to a red sauce.

Once you finish making this recipe for empanadas you can serve it at any time of the day.

Of course, it is more common to eat it for lunch or dinner, but you can also eat it in the afternoon as a snack, or serve it as an appetizer.

You can serve the veggie patties with dipping sauces, such as aioli, sour cream, tomato sauce, etc. (if they are vegan empanadas recipes make sure they are vegan sauces).

You can also make a snackable meal and serve these healthy empanadas for the main course and apple empanadas for dessert (never say no to an empanada-themed party).

Try other vegetarian recipes from Spain such as Spanish vegetable stew, Spanish Leek and Celery Soup, or Spanish Pea Soup.

How to Store Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe

How to Store Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe. An open fridge with various vegetables and fruits in plastic containers.

The best part about making empanadas is that you can store them in different ways.

For example, you can save them before cooking, just put them on a tray and put some plastic separator so they don’t stick together (plastic wrap works too).

Then you can freeze them for up to 60 days, and thaw as many as you want, cooking them for 30 minutes before serving.

You can also make the entire empanadas recipe (including cooking), let them come to room temperature, and store them in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 30 days.

Recipe Card: Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe

Yield: 4

Easy Vegetarian Empanadas Recipe

Spanish Vegetarian Empanadas on a wooden plate

It is always good to include vegetables in our daily diet, but there are times when we get tired of eating Spanish vegetable soup.

If you are already tired of eating vegetables, in a salad, in a soup, or in a stew, then get ready to discover the vegetarian empanadas recipe.

Learn how to make these easy empanadas from scratch with our tasty recipe.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 package of empanada dough (or the same amount of puff pastry sheet)
  • 1 onion
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper (or yellow)
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 eggplant
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika (optional)
  • Salt and pepper (to taste)
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) Water
  • 1 egg
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Instructions

  1. Peel and finely chop the garlic clove and onion.
  2. Wash the peppers, remove the seeds, and chop. Also, peel and chop the carrot and eggplant.
  3. Heat a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil in a saucepan and sauté the garlic, onion, peppers, and carrot for 10 minutes.
  4. Add the eggplant, season to taste, and continue cooking for another five minutes.
  5. Add the tomato paste, paprika, and half the water. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. If the vegetables stick to the base, add the rest of the water (if they don't stick then don't add more water). Remove from heat and let cool.
  6. If you got a package of empanada dough that comes in a round shape, you can skip this step. If you bought mini rectangle dough you can use it like this, or if it is a large sheet also cut it as rectangles so as not to lose excess dough.
  7. In case the dough is shaped like circles: put the filling in the middle and close until you get like a half-moon shape, with the help of a fork, seal the edges completely.
  8. In case it has a rectangle shape: put a rectangle as the base, fill it with the vegetables leaving a space on the edges, place another rectangle on the top and close it with the help of a fork.
  9. Brush with a beaten egg. Take the vegetarian empanadas to an oven tray lined with parchment paper or with oil so that it doesn't stick.
  10. Place in the oven, preheated to 200 ºC (with the heat on top and bottom if your oven has that option), and cook for 30 minutes or until golden.
  11. Let cool slightly (at least 5-10 minutes) before serving.

Notes

This is a baked empanada recipe, but you could switch the cooking method.

In that case, you should follow this veggie empanada recipe step by step and fry them in plenty of oil one by one (for like 5 minutes each).

Nutrition Information

Yield

4

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 159Total Fat 4.6gSaturated Fat 1.9gCholesterol 45mgSodium 151mgCarbohydrates 27gFiber 6.4gSugar 9.5gProtein 5.1g

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