Empanada Casserole

Growing up in Miami, I fell in love with delicious street food, “Empanada de Carne”” or empanadas as we called them. These we simple flavorful pastries that went well with Cuban coffee and the South Florida sun. Their flavor inspired this dish but this dish is a lot more complex. This is a dosage for 4 but it is easily adapted to 6 or 8.



:1 lbs. hamburger meat

1/2 onion. diced

1/2 cup green olives, sliced

8 taco-sized flour tortillas

1/3 cup, tamed jalapeño. divided

1 tsp each. garlic powder. onion powder and cumin

1 cup each sharp cheddar, and pepper jack cheese, grated and divided

Salt substitute and coarse-grown pepper to taste

Spray olive oil as directed


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Spray a 9×9 baking dish with olive oil,
  2. in a skillet on medium heat add ground beef, salt substitute, and ground pepper. Break up beef into crumbles and stir until all sides are just begging to brown,
  3. Add remaining spices. onions and olives and stir gently until onions are soft and beef is browned. Using paper towels, soak up as much liquid as possible. Set aside.
  4. Place 4 tacos inside the prorated backing dish overlapping with the sides of the dish covered.
  5. Place 1/2 of the beef mixture on top of the flour tortillas making an even layer.
  6. Cover the beef mixture with 1/2 the cheese and then spread 1/2 of the tamed jalapeños on top of the cheese.
  7. Lay the remaining tortillas on top of the first layer overlaying and keeping edges touching the sides of the dish.
  8. Add the same beef mixture, cheese, and jalapeño layer on top of the tortillas.
  9. Place the dish uncovered on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 30 minutes.  Then switch to broil and cook until the op of the peppers and cheese starts to get crisp.
  10. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes
  11. Divide the dish into quarters and serve hot.