Paleo Empanadas (AIP, Gluten Free, Grain Free, Egg Free)
AIP Empanadas! That means these are grain, gluten, dairy, nut, and egg free! They are also totally legit! A crispy, flaky crust that is PERFECT!
Full disclosure, these are really labor intensive. Also, delicious, and the more you make them the easier they are.
I adapted the crust recipe from My Heart Beets blog, she uses almond meal in her recipe, which I have substituted with the corresponding amount of coconut flour. Rule of thumb: 1/3 cup coconut flour per cup of almond flour (useful info on AIP!).
Growing up, empanadas were a staple, as was picadillo. It was lovely to revisit this Cuban treat in an autoimmune friendly rendition.
My first go at these, I baked half & fried half. Bake them. They turn out crispier!
The lighter ones are the recipe I’m sharing here today. It will make roughly 15 AIP Empanadas!
- For Empanada “Dough”
- 1 cup tapioca flour (up to 2 tbsp more if needed)
- 1/3 cup coconut flour
- 10-12oz full fat coconut milk
- pinch salt
For Beef Filling
- 1lb grass fed ground beef
- 1 turnip
- 1 small onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup pitted, green olives
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 tbsp Italian herb seasoning (rosemary, thyme, oregano)
- 1 tbsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp sea salt
- Pre-heat oven to 350F
- Shake your coconut milk can, if the fat is solidified run the can under warm water until you can shake it and hear the fluid liquid.
- Whisk all ingredients together. It will be like pancake batter. If your batter feels a little thin add more tapioca at this point. If it feels thick, add a little more milk.
- Heat a skillet or griddle on medium heat.
- Use coconut oil cooking spray or other liquid fat.
- Ready a baking sheet lined in parchment paper by your skillet.
- Make sure your skillet is heated all the way to medium heat when you begin or your batter will spread too thin.
- Pour 1/4 cup rounds, try to make them thin and round, it helps if your skillet is not slanted to one side.
- Spray your skillet, carefully pour your batter, move skillet around or use a spatula to help shape if needed. I use the same 1/4 cup to pour the batter and at the same time do a gentle dabbing motion in a circle to get the right shape.
- Then wait until the edges begin to look just cooked, 60-90 seconds usually.
- Using a thin spatula, move your half cooked “pancake” to the baking sheet, uncooked side down (this will be the outside of your empanada).
- If the pancakes tears when you put the spatula under it, let it cook a little longer.
- Place a spoonful of filling in the center, close your empanada.
- Run a moist finger around the inside edges, then use a fork to press both sides together.
- Repeat this until batter is done. I like to make 3-4 inch rounds, they will be easier to close.
- Spray all of them with coconut oil lightly.
- Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes. Until edges are golden.
- *this recipe is forgiving. If your empanadas have lots of little tears in them or aren’t closing well, it’s ok, they will repair in the oven.
- With your fingers or a spoon scrape up any left over batter from the bowl and blot on any boo boo’s, when they bake it will seal it.
- Dice onion, garlic, turnip, olives & cranberries in to small pieces.
- In a large skillet, heat 2 tbsp cooking fat.
- Add in onions, garlic & bay leaves.
- Saute until onions are translucent.
- Add in beef, break it up with spatula, add in seasoning and stir often until brown.
- Add in cranberries & olives.
- Lower heat.
- Stir & simmer for 30 minutes.
- Taste, adjust & ready to fill empanadas!
- You can really put ANYTHING inside these. So, go wild. My “spiced”, cranberry spiked beef blend was pretty bomb though. Just saying 🙂