Caribbean Empanada (Turnovers-lean version)

Caribbean Empanada (Turnovers-lean version)

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READY IN 45 minutes
PREP TIME 10 minutes
COOK TIME 35 minutes
SERVINGS 10 servings

Here's a snack from the islands with a healthy twist.

I changed the traditionally used beef(ground meat) in the filling, to lean, organic ground turkey.

It's a versatile snack that can be prepared ahead of time and kept in the fridge days before cooking.

Note that this is a fried food so it should be cooked at the time of serving.


  • 1 lb ground turkey, preferably organic
  • 2 tablespoons of sofrito
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil (to cook the meat wit the seasonings) and 1to 2 cups of canola oil to deep fry the turnovers
  • 1 pack of turnover dough for pastries (thawed) They come in disc shape, package of 10.
  • Optional: seasonings or spicy ingredients such as jalapenos


  • 1Preheat a nonstick skillet in medium high, add the meat, sofrito, oil, tomato paste, and seasonings. Mix and let cook covered for 20 minutes.
  • 2Uncover, turn heat to medium and cook for 7 to 10 minutes more.
  • 3Set cooked meat aside. In another nonstick skillet, pour and heat the frying oil to at least 1 inch deep.
  • 4Lay out a dough disc and fill the center with a heap tablespoon of the cooked meat. Fold over in half, making sure the border is sealed. Use a fork to double-seal the disc so the filling stays in place while frying. Repeat the process with all ten.
  • 5Fry for about two minutes. Turn over once to make sure both sides are golden fried. Take out of the hot oil and set on a paper towel to absorb extra oil.