Tuna Empanada Recipe

Tuna Empanada Recipe

Easy and Filling delicious snack!

One that has become the crowd’s favorite is easy to make recipes that don't require too many ingredients. That includes TUNA EMPANADA.

I, myself, also created my own version of this easy and delicious snack, to the point where I was doing it on a regular basis until I ran out of pantry ingredients.

What is an Empanada?

Closer Look of Tuna Empanada

The empanada's origins are not entirely clear. However, it is most likely that Spanish immigrants who immigrated to Argentina cooked the first empanada.

An empanada is a type of baked or fried turnover made of pastry and filling.

There are various fillings to choose from, including savory options such as meat, cheese, seasoned vegetables, or sweet with fruit, berries, and honey.

Empanadas, on the other hand, are not only found in Spain but also in neighboring countries, and have become a staple and common snack for everyone.

It is very easy to make and requires little to no experience in the kitchen. Some people make their dough or pastry from scratch, which gives it a more rustic and homey feel. But guess what? You don't have to make your arms hurt because there are hundreds of ready-made doughs and pastry sheets available on the market that make our lives easier without sacrificing taste and texture.

Moving forward with our filling—the best option would be one that you can easily find in your pantry. Yes, the canned and ready-to-eat varieties—of course, the first thing that comes to mind is our beloved canned tuna.

This is a healthier option because it uses tuna flakes, which most people are aware contain Omega-3 oil, which is good for the heart. And since it is simpler and better suited for making empanadas, we chose to use canned tuna rather than fresh. With just a few added ingredients, I can guarantee you a new crowd favorite!

So let's get started with the recipe now, shall we?

How to Make Tuna Empanada

To Make the Filling

Heat the oil in a pan and sauté the garlic and onion for 2 minutes.

Sauteing garlic and onions

Add your diced potatoes to your pan and continue mixing for another 2 minutes, until the potatoes are translucent.

Adding diced potatoes

Pour in your reserved tuna oil and simmer it until you reduce the liquid.

As a result, your potatoes will be more tender and your filling will have more tuna flavor.

Add the softened cream cheese and combine everything thoroughly.

Adding softened cream cheese

Season the mixture with salt and pepper according to your taste, then set it aside to allow it to cool completely.

Pastry Sheets

Store-bought pastry sheets are usually frozen, make sure to thaw them before using them.

Once ready, lay it flat on a floured surface. Using a cookie cutter mold, cut out 4-inch-diameter circles from the dough.

Cutting out circle from the dough

Set aside all the prepared dough until you are ready to assemble your empanadas.

To Assemble the Empanada

Fill each piece of dough with 1 tablespoon of the prepared filling.

Placing 1 tablespoon of filling

Make sure to place it in the center to prevent it from oozing out of the dough.

Fold it in half to make half-moon shapes. To completely seal the edges, twist or flute them.

You can also seal the edges with a fork by pressing them together.

Lay them out on a cookie sheet and brush the tops with eggwash.

Bake at 350°F for about 10-15 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.

Serve warm and enjoy!

A serving of Tuna Empanada

Tools Needed

  • Use a nonstick skillet to cook the filling.
  • Cookie sheets or any other flat baking tray must be used for baking.
  • Convection ovens and conventional ovens are both suitable for baking empanadas.
  • Use a round cookie cutter for cutting dough. If one is not available, you can use a small plate or saucer as a mold and cut it with a sharp knife.
  • Pastry brush for applying egg wash on top.


A bite of Tuna Empanada
  • If you are not a fan of tuna, feel free to substitute it with any filling of your choice.
  • For added texture and crunch, you can also use additional vegetables like carrots, peas, and corn.
  • If cream cheese is not available, you may replace it with other types of cheese. Or remove it if you have lactose intolerance. But adding more cheese is still the best option!
  • When baking, time can vary depending on the size of your oven, quantity, and temperature. Always adjust if needed.
  • Brushing egg wash on your pastry will create a glossy and golden brown finish to your empanada.

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