Carnitas Empanadas

I made empanadas for the first time! They were really stinking good so I’m definitely going to have to make them again. I filled them with pork carnitas and Monterey Jack cheese. Next time I want to try a sweet version. 


2 lb Pork Shoulder

1 teaspoon Smoked Paprika

½ teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

1 teaspoon Garlic Powder

1 Tablespoon Chile Powder

¼ cup Cilantro; chopped

1 medium Onion; chopped

3 cloves Garlic; sliced

1 small Jalapeño; cored & chopped

1 large Bell Pepper; chopped

1 cup Orange Juice

Salt and Pepper to taste

1 cup Monterey Jack Cheese


9 oz. A/P Flour

1 ½ oz. Lard

1 teaspoon Salt

4 ½ oz. warm Water; (110°F)

Oil for frying

  1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Rub the pork shoulder with the spices and sear on all sides. Place the pork, orange juice and vegetables in an InstaPot or pressure cooker. 
  2. Cook, at pressure, for 45 minutes or until fork tender. Shred the meat and spread the filling in an even layer on a baking sheet and chill in the fridge until cold.
  3. Preheat oil to 350°F.
  4. Meanwhile, whisk the salt into the warm water until dissolved and sift the flour into a large bowl. Add the lard to the bowl and blend through the flour. Mix in the water and knead until a smooth dough forms. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Portion the dough into 15 equal sized balls and, using a rolling pin, flatten each ball into a disk. Mix the cheese into the carnitas and place about 2 tablespoons of filling in the center of the disk. 
  6. Lightly brush the edges with water and fold the dough over on itself, pinching the edges to seal. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  7. Fry the empanadas until golden brown and crispy.
  8. Enjoy!

Looking for a side dish? Try one of these recipes!

Published by ashsinthekitchen

Home cook, gardener and lover of life!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: