Birria Hand Pies (Empanadas)

Another great recipe hack is making Empanadas from Pie Crust. I used store bought Pie Crust that was already made because it saves a lot of time. Then I used left over Birria, Mozzarella Cheese, Onions, Cilantro and tucked them inside the crust.

Birria Empanadas (Hand Pies)

What’s the history behind Empanadas?

An empanada is a type of baked or fried turnover consisting of pastry and filling, common in Southern European, Latin American, and the Philippines cultures.

For the filling, typical there is some kind of protein (usually pork, chicken or beef, but sometimes fish or cheese) tucked into the inside. In addition, usually empanadas also have at least one or two simple vegetables—think corn, diced potatoes or carrots.

Birria Empanadas

Lastly, Empanadas don’t always have to be savory, it can be sweet as well. You can add, Nutella, Lemon Curd, Cherry, Apple and more!

Birria Empanadas

What is Birria?

The origin of Birria is Jalisco, Mexico. The dish is a meat stew traditionally made from goat meat, but occasionally made from beef.

You may have see Birria talking over the Internet these pass years! You probably seen people dip their Birria Tacos in consome, like I always do!

Birria Tacos in Consome

What Pie Crust did I use?

Below is the Pie Crust I got for .50 cents at Aldi. It was on sale and the original price, I believe is $3. The pack comes with two sheets.

What do you need?

2 Sheets of Pie Crust


Egg Wash

Mozzarella Cheese



Biscuit Cutter or Mason Jar Top

Parchment Paper

Sheet Pan

Let’s begin…..

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Freeze Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hr 20 minutes

Yields: 14 Pies


2 Pie Crust Sheets

1/4 cup Mozzarella Cheese

1/2 cup Birria

1/4 cup White Onions + Cilantro Mix

1 Egg

1 tsp Water

Garnish (optional)

Pickled Onions

White Onions; chopped

1 small Avocado

Red Salsa

Salsa Verde


1. In a medium bowl, using a spoon, mix cheese, Birria and onion + cilantro mix.

2. Line two baking pans with parchment paper.

3. Roll out each dough on a sheet of parchment paper. If there are any cracks, tap your finger in water and use like pressure to seal the cracks.

4. Use a 4 inch biscuit cutter (or a lid of a jar) to cut the dough into rounds. You should be able to cut 7 circles on each crust. (Look at step by step pictures below)

5. Place 1 to 2 teaspoons of the filling in the center of each round.

6. Fold the circle over the filling to make a half circle.

7. Using the back side of a fork, press around the edges to seal the pie.

8. Place them in a frezzer safe bag (example Stasher Bag). Freeze for 35 to 40 minutes.

9. Pre heat oven 350° F.

10. Remove Empanadas from freezer and transfer them to the prepared baking sheet.

11. In small bowl, mix egg and water. Using a rubber brush, lightly brush the egg wash over each Empanadas.

12. Bake 14 to 16 minutes 350F, until golden brown or fry the Empanadas in a deep fryer. If you are using this method, make sure you fry them in, 2 1/2 inches of oil in a large case iron skillet to 350 F. Great oil to use is Corn, Canola, or Vegetable Oil.

Next Step For Frying:

  • Fry the chilled pies in batches; 3 or 4.
  • Drain on paper towels.

13. Enjoy with a side of red + verde salsa, pickled onions, avocado and lime.

Enjoy! If you make it, tag me on Instagram @eatwhateveryouwant

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