Pork Carnita Empanada



  • 5 ounces Habanero sausage, skinned and minced
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 jalapeños, deseeded and diced
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons cilantro, chopped
  • 11/2 pounds pork carnitas
  • 1 bottle Cholula® Green Pepper Hot Sauce
  • 11/2 pounds smoked cheddar, shredded
  • Empanada Dough
  • 3 cups dough
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 3 teaspoons shortening


  • 1 Put Habanero sausage and onion in food processor and pulse until minced.
  • 2 Heat large sauté pan and over moderate heat. Add oil to pan and sauté sausage, onion, jalapeño, garlic and pork carnitas.
  • 3 Once everything is tender, about 4 - 5 minutes, add cilantro and Cholula Green Pepper. Remove from heat and add cheese. Reserve in refrigerator until cooled, about 1 hour.
  • 4 Take dry ingredients and put into mixer with dough hook. Start mixer on low and add wet ingredients slowly.
  • 5 After ball has formed, remove from mixing bowl. Knead until smooth and refrigerate for at least one hour.
  • 6 Remove dough from refrigerator. On floured surface, roll dough to 1/8” thick. Cut 5-inch rounds from the dough, recipe usually yields 14 - 15 rounds.
  • 7 Take a heaping spoonful of filling and put in center of dough round. On half of dough round, brush rim of dough egg wash. Fold dough over filling making half-moon shape.
  • 8 Take fork and press around edge to seal. Fry in 350ºF oil until brown (about 4 minutes) or take and wrap tightly and freeze. Frozen empanadas may take up to 10 minutes to get filling to temp
  • 9 Recipe By: Recipe by Chef Carlos Vargas, Delaware North Sportservice at Petco Park

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