Lamb Empanadas with Red Chimichurri



Marinated American lamb chops with rosemary & garlic on a plate


  • 5 pounds ground American Lamb
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 cup green onion, sliced
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper, to taste
  • 50 empanada prepared dough discs, thawed
  • 2 eggs, whisked
  • 1 quart Red Chimichurri (recipe follows) 

Red Chimichurri (makes 1 quart):

  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • 16 ounces roasted red peppers, drained
  • 1 cup piquillo peppers, drained
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper, to taste


Heat skillet to medium-high heat. Add oil; sauté onion and garlic until translucent, about 6 minutes. Add lamb, paprika, oregano, cumin and cayenne; sauté until lamb is browned and fully cooked. Add onion and raisins. Remove from heat; set aside to cool.

Arrange empanada discs on a flat work surface. Fill with 2 tablespoons of lamb filling. Brush edges with egg wash. Fold half of the round over the filled half and pinch edges together to seal; crimp edges using a fork. Arrange finished empanadas on a parchment-lined sheet tray; brush with egg wash. Bake at 375°F until golden brown, about 18 to 20 minutes. Serve with Red Chimichurri. 

For Red Chimichurri:  In a food processor, pulse cilantro, parsley, peppers, shallot, garlic, vinegar and paprika until fully incorporated. Stir in oil; season with salt and pepper to taste.


Chef Tips:

  • Chimichurri ingredients should be pulsed until sauce becomes a pesto-like consistency.
  • Lamb empanadas can be made ahead and frozen until needed.
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Visit our Lamb Cooking Time & Temperature page for recipe inspiration and tips on preparing the perfect lamb.
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