Costa Rican Empanadas: A Savory and Filling Stuffed Pastry

Learn how to make the traditional Costa Rican empanadas with a delicious filling of cheese, sausage, and fried beans.

Costa Rican Empanadas
Costa Rican Empanadas
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Costa Rican Empanadas are a delicious and filling snack that is beloved by locals and tourists alike. These half-moon shaped appetizers are made from a corn-based dough that is then filled with cheese, sausage, and fried until hot and crispy. This recipe is easy to follow, making it perfect for anyone looking to bring a little bit of Costa Rica into their own kitchen.

To make Costa Rican empanadas, you will need a few key ingredients. The dough is made from a combination of corn flour masa harina and dough flour, also known as Maseca. These two ingredients are combined with salt and water until the dough is slightly sticky. It’s important to test the consistency of the dough by flattening a small ball between your hands to ensure the edges are smooth.

For the filling, you will need Mozzarella cheese, chorizo sausage, and fried beans. The sausage is cooked and combined with the beans, onions, salt, and Worcestershire sauce for a savory and flavorful filling. The dough is rolled out and cut into circles, and then filled with the sausage and bean mixture, along with a sprinkle of cheese. The edges are sealed by crimping with a fork, and the empanadas are fried until light brown and crispy.

These empanadas are the perfect snack for any time of day. They are hearty enough to serve as a main dish, but also work well as an appetizer or snack. They can be enjoyed on their own or served with a variety of dipping sauces, such as salsa or guacamole.

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The Cultural Significance of Costa Rican Empanadas: A Culinary Tradition Passed Down Through Generations

The history of Costa Rican empanadas is deeply rooted in the country’s culinary traditions. Empanadas are a popular street food in many Latin American countries, and each region has its own unique twist on the recipe. In Costa Rica, empanadas are often filled with beans, cheese, and meat, making them a delicious and filling snack that is perfect for on-the-go.

One of the most unique things about Costa Rican empanadas is the use of corn flour masa harina in the dough. This gives the empanadas a distinct flavor and texture that is different from other types of empanadas. The use of chorizo sausage and fried beans in the filling is also a nod to the country’s culinary traditions, which often incorporate meat and beans into many dishes.

In Costa Rica, empanadas are a staple food that can be found in many restaurants and street food vendors. They are often served with a variety of sauces and dips, such as hot sauce, pico de gallo, and guacamole. They are also a popular snack to enjoy while watching sports or at social gatherings.

Overall, Costa Rican empanadas are a delicious and easy-to-make snack that is perfect for anyone looking to try a taste of Costa Rican cuisine. Whether enjoyed on their own or served with a variety of dips and sauces, these empanadas are sure to be a hit with anyone who tries them.

costa rican empanadas

Costa Rican Empanadas

Recipe Author : Mike Gonzalez
Empanadas are a tasty and filling stuffed pastry that is very popular in Costa Rica. Learn how to make the traditional Costa Rican Empanadas

Please Rate this Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Costa Rica
Servings 12 people
Calories 3200 kcal


  • 1/2 lb corn flour masa harina
  • 1/2 lb dough flour or Maseca
  • 4 oz vegetable oil
  • 1/4 lb Mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 3 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 lb chorizo sausage
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 cup fried beans
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Dough Flour: Combine dough flour, corn flour, and salt in a mixing bowl. Stir in water gradually until smooth. Dough must be slightly sticky. Test dough consistency by flattening a small ball between your hands. If dough edges crack, add more water. Test until edges are completely smooth. Cover dough with a damp kitchen towel.
  • Filling: Heat fried beans in a saucepan over medium high. Add onions, salt, and Worcestershire sauce. Heat chorizo sausage in another saucepan over medium high. Turning cook until meat is cooked.
  • Turnovers: Roll dough out 1/8 to ¼ inch thick. Cut the dough into circles of 4 to 5-inch diameters. Brush rounds with water. Place 2 teaspoons chorizo sausage, 1 teaspoon cheese, 1 teaspoon fried beans filling on each round. Fold over and seal by crimping with a fork, making a narrow rim. Heat vegetable oil in a saucepan over medium high. Add turnovers and cook turning until light brown. Serve warm.


Calories: 3200kcal
Keyword chorizo sausage
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  1. can you tell me if this has the same meat as pastelillos they are meat pies.this Puerto rican lady made them. I am trying to get the recipe I really love them. Can you please help me get the recipe please. Thank you so much Diana


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