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+ servings

Sweet potato empanadas

Take a smart shortcut with store-bought puff pastry sheets and enjoy these delicious pies in one hour!


  • 2 sheets puff pastry, (1 box), defrosted in the refrigerator
  • 1 lb sweet potatoes, (2 medium sized ones), cooked Note 1
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup chopped onion, (1 medium sized onion or ½ of a large onion)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic, (4 fat cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder, Note 2
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 large egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, optional


  • Cook sweet potatoes until soft. See Note 1 for different cooking methods.
  • In a shallow bowl, place sweet potatoes, peeled, and mash them with a potato masher until smooth.
  • Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Add chopped onions and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the onions are translucent and slightly golden around the edges.
  • Add minced garlic and sauté for another minute.
  • Stir in brown sugar, chipotle chili powder, ground cumin, salt and pepper. Cook for another 30 to 45 seconds till the spices are toasted and onions have caramelized.
  • Add the onion mix to the mashed sweet potatoes and mix well. Keep the filling aside.
  • Prepare an egg wash by whisking a large egg with a tablespoon of water.
  • Unfold one sheet of the cold puff pastry on a well-floured cutting board. Using a rolling pin, roll the sheet into a rough 12-inch square.
  • Now, using 5-inch round cookie cutter, cut 4 dough circle from 12-inch square of puff pastry. (You can also use a dessert plate as a template and a sharp paring knife to cut out 4 dough circles.)
  • Place two heaping tablespoons of sweet potato filling on each circle, leaving an inch border.
  • Brush the edges with egg wash.
  • Fold over the dough to create a half circle and seal and crimp the edges by pressing with a fork.
  • Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Arrange the empanadas on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Brush the tops with the egg wash and sprinkle lightly with kosher salt (optional).
  • Cut two tiny slits on the empanadas for the steam to escape.
  • Bake for 25 minutes or until the tops are golden.
  • Serve hot with chimichurri sauce or your favorite salsa.


Note 1: Here are few ways to cook sweet potatoes:
  1. Oven method: Rub sweet potatoes with oil and prick all over with a fork. Place it in a 425°F preheated oven and bake for 1 hour or till tender.
  2. Microwave method: Prick sweet potatoes all over with a fork. Place it in a microwave. Microwave for 2 minutes. Turn them over and microwave for another 2 minutes at full powder till tender. Tested on a 1200-watt microwave. Add 1 minute extra, per side, if your microwave has lower power.
  3. Stovetop method: Peel and cut sweet potatoes into bite-size pieces. Add a cup of water to a pot of water, fitted with a steamer basket. Add sweet potatoes to the steamer basket. Bring the water to a boil. Cover and let it steam for 10 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Pressure cooker method: Pressure cook whole, unpeeled sweet potatoes for 15 minutes, with 10 minutes of natural release in Instant Pot.
Note 2: If you don’t have chipotle chili powder, use a combination of ½ teaspoon smoked paprika and ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper. Or if you prefer milder filling, just use 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 2hand pies, Calories: 592kcal, Carbohydrates: 103g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 41mg, Sodium: 1935mg, Potassium: 558mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 16300IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 71mg, Iron: 6mg
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