Roasted Butternut Squash and Black Bean Empanadas

Recipe and photo by Tami Ganeles Weiser Yield:  20 empanadas
Prep Time:  15 minutes Cook Time:  35 minutes

Roasted Butternut Squash and Black Bean Empanadas

These empanadas have a little bit of everything—sweet from the butternut squash, savory from the beans (and cheese if you add it), and spicy from the chipotle. You'll love to eat them for breakfast, lunch, or a quick snack.


4 cups butternut squash, cut into ½-inch cubes

3 tablespoons canola oil, divided

2 sprigs fresh thyme

1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided

1 medium onion, finely diced

1 green bell pepper, finely diced

4 cloves garlic, finely minced

1½ teaspoons cumin

1 teaspoon oregano

½ teaspoon chipotle powder

1 8-ounce can Spanish-style tomato sauce

1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained

⅓ cup pitted green olives, chopped

20 frozen empanada wrappers, defrosted

¾ cup grated mozzarella or monterey jack cheese (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (or 325°F for convection). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, toss the butternut squash, 1 tablespoon oil, thyme, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Spread the squash in a single layer on prepared baking sheet. Bake until the squash is soft and edges have caramelized slightly, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove thyme sprigs and set squash aside to cool completely.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic, and cook until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the cumin, oregano, chipotle, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and tomato sauce. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and transfer to a medium bowl. Add the black beans, chopped olives, and butternut squash. Mix gently until combined.
  4. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Arrange 1 empanada wrapper on a clean flat surface. Brush the edges with water. Place 3 tablespoons filling and about 1 tablespoon cheese (optional) in the center of the round. Fold the dough over to create a half-moon, pressing the edges with a fork to seal them tightly. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
  5. Bake the empanadas on the prepared baking sheets until they are lightly golden on the outside, 15 to 17 minutes.

Kitchen Tips

Empanada wrappers may be purchased at any large supermarket in the frozen food section.  Defrost the wrappers in the refrigerator before filling the empanadas.

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