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These empanadas are packed with a savory/sweet filling that has just enough sweet raisins to beautifully harmonize with the warming spice of the pulled pork. The flavorful filling is enveloped in a buttery, flaky pastry crust that is fried to golden perfection. Save time by making the pulled pork the day before.

Sweet and Savory Empanadas

Print Recipe

Pulled Pork

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 3 to 3 1/2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 1 (14- to 15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons adobo seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste*

Heat oil in 6- or 8-quart Presto® Pressure Cooker over medium heat. Brown pork pieces on two sides. Combine tomatoes, water, onion, garlic, vinegar, Worcestershire, brown sugar, adobo seasoning, salt, and pepper in blender; puree until smooth. Add to pressure cooker. Close cover securely. Place pressure regulator on vent pipe. Cook 45 minutes at 15 pounds pressure. Let pressure drop of its own accord. Remove pork to cutting board and using two forks, shred meat. Remove and discard any fat or connective tissue.

Stir tomato paste into sauce. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook and stir until desired thickness. Return pork to pressure cooker; stir until pork is evenly coated with sauce.

Preparation tip: The Pulled Pork can be made 1 to 2 days in advance. This recipe makes a larger batch than what is needed for the empanadas. Save out about 2 cups of pulled pork for the empanadas and serve the remainder with sandwiches. Two meals in one!

*Shopping tip: You will need 2 tablespoons of tomato paste for the pulled pork and 1/2 cup for the empanada filling. Buy a 6-ounce can of tomato paste.


  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup ice water
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar

Combine flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Blend in butter using pastry blender or fingertips until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Whisk egg, water and vinegar in a small bowl. Add to flour mixture, stirring with a fork until just incorporated.

Turn out mixture onto a lightly floured surface. Gently knead until mixture forms a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour.

Remove plastic wrap from dough. Roll out on a lightly floured surface to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut out ten 6-inch circles (see note). Refrigerate, covered, until ready to use.

Note: Use a 6-inch metal bowl as a cutter.

Empanada Filling

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped tomato
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped jalapeño pepper
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red pepper
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onion
  • 2 cups Pulled Pork (see recipe above)
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste
  • 3/4 cup shredded Pepper Jack Cheese
  • Vegetable oil for frying*

Heat oil in large skillet. Add raisins, tomato, peppers, and green onion. Sauté until tender, about 2 minutes. Add pork and tomato paste, stirring until well blended with vegetables. Sprinkle cheese on top of mixture.

Preheat oil in Presto® Electric Deep Fryer. If using an adjustable thermostat deep fryer, set at 375°.

Place a scant 1/3 cup filling in the center of a dough circle. Moisten edge of half the circle lightly with water. Fold dough over the filling to form a semi-circle. Pinch edge to seal, making sure to eliminate any air pockets. To braid sealed edge, start at one corner of the empanada and fold over a triangle of dough (about 1/2 inch) and pinch. Continue turning and pinching around the sealed edge of the empanada. Assemble empanadas until you have enough to fry. Fry empanadas, 1 or 2 at a time, for 6 to 6 1/2 minutes. Drain on paper towels. Serve warm.

Makes about 10 empanadas

*Reference your deep fryer instruction folder for amount of oil needed.

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