• 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 500g beef mince
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 200g (1 medium) sweet potato, peeled and diced.
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • ¼-½ teaspoon chili powder (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 packet of all-butter pastry (or a gluten-free alternative)
  • 1 egg, whisked



  1. Heat oil in a large frypan over medium-high heat. Add beef, season with salt, pepper, and fry until nicely browned, stirring throughout to break up beef, about 5 minutes.
  2. Turn heat down to medium and add onion, cooking stirring often until onion is softened and browned, about 10 minutes. Add sweet potatoes, garlic, thyme, oregano, paprika, and chili (if using). Stir well to incorporate. Season again with salt and pepper and let the mixture cook for 2 more minutes. Stir in tomato paste and a cup of water. Turn heat to simmer, stirring well to incorporate any caramelized bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.
  3. Cook for about 10 more minutes, until both meat and potatoes are tender. The sauce should just cover the meat and potatoes and not be too “saucy”. Taste and season with a little more salt, pepper, if needed. Cool to room temperature, or place in the fridge until ready to use. It is important to cool or the pastry will go soggy.
  4. Lay pastry on a baking sheet lightly dusted with flour. Use a small bowl as a stencil to cut into circles. Size doesn’t matter too much but don’t make them too small or it will be difficult to fill. You can roll out the scraps at the end to make more rough circles.
  5. Moisten the outer edge of each circle with a little water. Put about 2 tablespoons filling in the center of each circle. Wrap dough around filling to form empanada, pressing edges together. Fold the edge back and finish by pinching little pleats or crimping with a fork.
  6. To cook, preheat oven to 190 degrees celsius. Place empanadas on a large baking tray lined with baking paper. Brush tops with beaten egg. Bake on the top shelf of the oven until golden, 10 to 15 minutes. Serve warm.