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Tuna Empanadas

These amazing tuna empanadas will have you wanting one after the other. They are spicy, cheesy and just plain delicious!

tuna empanadas on a blue plate

Tuna empanadas are one of my favorite meals. They’re so flavorful and filling.

Canned tuna is a staple in my home. It’s inexpensive and there are so many delicious recipes you can make with it such as tuna salad, atún a la Mexicana, tuna patties and many more.

Tuna filling for empanadas

  • 1/2 white onion (diced)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 2 roma tomatoes (chopped)
  • 2 chipotle pepper in adobo (sliced) (optional)
  • 3 tbs cilantro (chopped)
  • 1 1/2 tbs mayonnaise
  • 2 5 oz cans of tuna (drained)
  • 8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cups masa harina
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tbs oil
  • salt to taste
  • ground pepper to taste

How to make the filling

Heat up the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute for about a minute. Then add the tomatoes and chipotle peppers. Cover and cook on medium low for about 7 minutes or until the tomatoes have softened. If you can’t tolerate spicy foods just omit the chipotle peppers.

garlic, onion, tomato and chipotle in a skillet

Then add the cilantro. Season with salt and pepper. Stir and remove the skillet from the heat and let it cool down for about 5-10 minutes.

onion, garlic, tomato, chipotles and cilantro

Add the drained tuna and mayonnaise and stir well to make sure everything is well combined. Set this mixture aside for later use.

tuna mixture for empanadas

Tuna empanada dough

Now we can get started on the empanada dough. This is super easy.

Just put the masa harina in a large bowl and slowly add in the water while mixing with your hand .

After the dough is well mixed and there are no dry spots form 10 equal sized balls.

For flattening the dough balls I use a plastic bag and I cut through both the sides in order to create a flap.

Place one ball on the opened piece of plastic. Then close the flap over it.

dough ball on a piece of plastic

Flatten the ball with a heavy bottomed pot. You could also do this with a tortilla press.

flattened masa dough ball

Put a spoonful of the tuna mixture on the dough.

tuna mixture on flattened dough

Then top with shredded mozzarella cheese. This is actually optional but I think it is a really great addition. You should definitely give it a try.

tuna mixture and cheese on flattened dough

Close the empanada by folding it. Press on the edges with your fingertips or a fork to make sure it is good and closed.

Repeat with the remaining balls and place on a baking sheet.

closed empanada before frying

Fill another skillet with enough oil for frying. Heat over medium high heat. Fry the empanadas on each side for about 1-2 minutes until they turn a golden brown color. In my skillet I’m able to fry two empanadas at a time.

frying an empanada

After frying place the empandas on a paper towel lined baking sheet to absorb excess oil.

empanadas on a paper towel lined baking sheet

Easy tuna empanada recipe

These are some incredibly delicious empanadas that are sure to please a crowd.

They are great for lunch and also dinner. You can easily omit the chipotle peppers if you’re not into spicy food.

I hope you enjoyed this recipe. Please don’t forget to leave this recipe a rating below, thanks for visiting!

two tuna empanadas on a blue plate
tuna empanadas on a blue plate
5 from 2 votes
Print

Tuna empanadas

Flavorful, cheesy, spicy tuna empanadas that are perfect for dinner

Course lunch, Mexican
Cuisine latin american, Mexican
Keyword empanadas, empanadas de atun, tuna empanadas
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 5
Calories 454 kcal
Author Carissa

Ingredients

  • 1/2 onion white
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 roma tomatoes chopped
  • 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sliced
  • 3 tbs cilantro chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbs mayonnaise
  • 2 cans tuna 5 oz each drained
  • 8 oz mozzarella cheese shredded
  • 2 cups masa harina
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tbs oil plus more for frying
  • salt to taste
  • ground black pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat.

  2. Add the onion and garlic to the skillet and saute for a minute.

  3. Add the tomatoes and chipotle peppers. Cover and cook on medium low for 7 minutes or until the tomatoes have softened.

  4. Add the cilantro to the skillet and season with salt and pepper. Stir and remove the skillet from the heat. Let the mixture cool for about 5-10 minutes.

  5. Add the drained tuna and mayonnaise. Stir well. Set mixture aside.

  6. Put the masa harina in a large bowl. Slowly add in the water while mixing with your hand.

  7. After the dough is well mixed form the dough into 10 equal sized balls.

  8. Place one ball on the opened piece of plastic. Close the plastic bag over it.

  9. Flatten the ball with a heavy bottomed pot.

  10. Put a spoonful of the tuna mixture on the flattened dough.

  11. Top with shredded mozarella cheese.

  12. Close the empanada by folding it. Press on edges of the empanada with your fingertips or a fork.

  13. Transfer this empanada to a baking sheet then repeat the above steps with the remaining dough balls.

  14. Fill another skillet with enough oil for frying and heat over medium high heat.

  15. Fry the empanadas on each side for 1-2 minutes. They will turn a golden color.

  16. After frying transfer the empanadas to a paper towel lined baking sheet to absorb excess oil.

Nutrition Facts
Tuna empanadas
Amount Per Serving
Calories 454 Calories from Fat 189
% Daily Value*
Fat 21g32%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Cholesterol 62mg21%
Sodium 563mg24%
Potassium 351mg10%
Carbohydrates 39g13%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 28g56%
Vitamin A 966IU19%
Vitamin C 5mg6%
Calcium 312mg31%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Rating




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