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What to Do with Leftover Empanada Filling (32 Ideas)

If you’ve ever made empanadas and had leftovers, you know the struggle is real.

There are so many delicious ways to make your leftover filling into something new, and we’ve rounded up 32 of our favorites for you!

What to Do with Leftover Empanada Filling?

It’s always a shame to see leftover empanada filling go to waste. Luckily, there are tons of ways you can use it up! For example, you can make a quick breakfast by heating up some rice and beans with a little leftover filling from your favorite empanada recipe. Add an egg on top and call it a meal!

If you’re feeling more adventurous, try making some homemade pizza with your leftover filling.

Looking for more ideas?

Here are 32 creative ideas for using up your leftover empanada filling:

1. Make an Omelet

Omelet

If you want to eat your leftover empanada filling again, try making an omelet.

Just scramble up the filling with a little bit of milk or water, and fry it up in a pan like you would any scrambled eggs.

If you want to really turn your leftover empanada filling into something special, mix in some cheese and vegetables as well. This dish is great for breakfast or lunch!

2. Make a Sandwich

Cuban Sandwich Empanadas
Source: mission-food.com

Empanada filling is delicious on its own, but it also makes a great sandwich, especially when paired with some of your favorite cheeses.

Just spread the filling onto a slice of bread and top with your favorite cheese.

This can be made in under 5 minutes and will leave you with a tasty lunch for the next day!

3. Use It as An Appetizer at Your Next Party

This is one of our favorite things to do with empanada filling!

Simply bake or microwave the empanada dough and cut it into squares or triangles.

Add some of your leftover filling per piece, fold over the dough, seal it shut with a fork, and bake until golden brown (about 10 minutes).

Serve warm with hot sauce or salsa on the side!

4. Make Meatballs

Meatballs

This is a great way to use up your filling from an empanada.

All you need to do is mix all of the ingredients together to form a dough, then roll it into balls and bake them for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit or until they’re golden brown.

Serve them on their own or with a side of mashed potatoes!

5. Freeze It in Ice Cube Trays

Make individual servings of leftover empanada filling by freezing it in ice cube trays. Once frozen, transfer the cubes to an airtight container or freezer bag.

You can defrost them as needed and use them to make quick meals—just add a little water to the frozen cubes and stir until they’re liquefied, then add them to soups or stews.

6. Spread It on Toast

Toast

Ok, this one isn’t exactly “creative” but it is a classic and it works!

If you aren’t sure what to do with your filling, try spreading it on toast.

The crust of the empanada pairs perfectly with the softness of the bread, and you’ll have yourself a delicious snack in no time flat.

7. Spread It on English Muffins

english muffin

If you really love empanadas and want to take them up a notch, try making an empanada sandwich!

Simply take two slices of bread, add some lettuce and tomatoes between them, then top them off with some cheese (or not).

Then spread your leftovers over the top of all that goodness for an amazing lunchtime treat!

8. Use It as A Topping on Pizza

If you’re looking for something more substantial than just a slice of toast, try topping your pizza with some leftover empanada filling!

This can be done by simply spreading the filling over top of your pizza before baking (or even after), or just sprinkling some over top before serving if that’s easier for you.

Either way, this meal is sure to please!

9. Use It as A Filling for Stuffed Peppers

Stuffed peppers

Stuffed peppers are always a crowd-pleaser, especially when they’re filled with this creamy and flavorful empanada filling!

Just hollow out your peppers and fill them up with some of that leftover filling, bake them until they’re nice and hot, and serve them up with some rice or noodles on the side for an easy meal that’s sure to please anyone in your household.

10. Add It to Scrambled Eggs or An Egg Scramble

Scrambled eggs

Scrambled eggs are a great way to use up leftover filling because they’re so versatile—you can add veggies if you like, or just make them plain if that’s all you have in mind.

Just be sure not to overcook them so they don’t get rubbery!

11. Add It to Quesadillas

Quesadillas

This one is pretty much the same idea as spreading it on toast, only you’re making quesadillas instead!

Simply take some tortillas (flour or corn), spread your leftover filling down one side, fold it over, and grill for about 2 minutes per side until golden brown and crispy.

Then add whatever toppings you like (cheese, sour cream, salsa), cut into wedges and serve warm with guacamole for dipping!

12. Add It to Burritos

Burritos

Take some leftover filling and wrap it up in some soft tortillas along with some veggies from your fridge or pantry!

You can even add some salsa or hot sauce if you want things spicier!

This is also a great way to use up any extra salsa or hot sauce that might be hanging around in your fridge as well!

13. Use It as A Topping for Nachos

This is an option that takes a little more time to prepare but is well worth it if you’re looking for something more substantial than just a snack.

Just cook up some nachos (either homemade or store-bought) and top them with your filling.

You can also add some cheese or salsa along with the filling if you want!

14. Use It as A Topping for Tacos

Taco Empanadas

Tacos are one of our favorite things to eat, especially during the week when we’re busy trying to get through our hectic work weeks.

If you want something easy that tastes delicious and feels like a treat, try topping some tacos with your leftover filling!

The crunchy crust of an empanada is great when paired with soft tortillas and creamy guacamole, so why not combine them both?

You can even add some hot sauce if you really want to make things spicy!

15. Mix Leftover Empanada Filling Into Refried Beans

refried beans

This is a classic Mexican dish that takes leftover filling and mixes it with mashed beans for an incredible treat!

Simply add a spoonful of refried beans to your leftover filling, then top with cheese and salsa for an absolutely mouthwatering meal.

16. Use It as A Salad Dressing

If you want to get even more creative with your filling, try using it as a salad dressing.

The savory taste will pair perfectly with greens like spinach or kale and give you an extra boost of protein—not to mention it can also be used as a dip for veggies!

17. Add It to Your Next Batch of Stew

Stew

This tip is great for anyone who loves making stews or soups at home!

After you’ve finished making your stew, use some tongs to remove any large chunks of meat and vegetables from the pot and set them aside (you can even put them on a plate if you want).

Then add all that delicious leftover filling from your empanadas into the pot and stir until it’s fully incorporated into your stew or soup.

You’ll love how much flavor this simple step adds to your meal!

18. Use it to make Empanada Soup

This one sounds kind of weird at first, but trust us—it’s actually delicious!

Just toss your leftover empanada filling into a pot with some broth or water and simmer until it thickens a bit (about 30 minutes).

Then add some veggies and seasonings of your choice and simmer for another 15 minutes or so until they’re cooked through.

You can also add some pasta if you want it to be more like a stew than just soup—just make sure not to overcook it so that it doesn’t get mushy!

19. Use It as The Filling in A Quiche or Tart

Quiche

You can also use your leftovers as the filling in a quiche or tart.

Just make sure that your crust is sturdy enough to hold up against all that goodness!

You could even add some veggies like spinach or broccoli if you want a little more nutrition in there too.

20. Make Empanada Desserts

If you love empanadas and want to try something new with the leftover filling, try making some sweet empanada desserts!

You can use the leftover filling to make tarts, pastries or even ice cream.

It’s up to you how creative you get with your dessert-making skills!

21. Freeze It for Later

If you don’t want to use your leftover filling immediately, consider freezing it for later!

Simply wrap up your leftover filling in plastic wrap or put it into an airtight container and stick it in the freezer for up to three months (or longer).

When you’re ready to use it again, simply thaw out the container in the fridge overnight and heat up your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit before baking until fully heated through again—about 15-25 minutes depending on how much is left over and how big of pieces they are!

22. Use It as A Dip

You can use empanada filling as a dip for chips or veggies.

Just heat it up in the microwave for about 30 seconds, then top with any of your favorite condiments (like sour cream or salsa).

23. Make Mini Quiches

Mini Quiche
Source: culinaryhill.com

Instead of using traditional pie crusts when you make quiches, use leftover empanadas instead!

Just cut them in half and bake until they’re browned on top and warmed through (about 15 minutes at 350°F).

Then fill them with whatever cheesy goodness you like—you can even mix in some veggies if you want!

24. Make More Empanadas

Beef Empanadas
Source: themodernproper.com

If you have leftover empanada filling, why not make more empanadas?

If you’re feeling adventurous, try making something new like an Italian-style empanada filled with chicken sausage, spinach, onions and peppers!

It’s a fun way to switch up your usual routine and give yourself a healthy dose of vitamins while doing it.

25. Add It to Baked Goods

You can add leftover filling to any baked goods recipe that calls for an egg wash—just whisk together two eggs with 1 tablespoon of milk and brush onto your freshly baked goods before sprinkling on your leftover empanada filling.

This will give them an extra-delicious crunchy top!

We especially love this idea because it makes use of both leftovers at once!

26. Add It to Your Breakfast Sandwiches

Leftover empanada filling makes a great addition to breakfast sandwiches!

Just spread some mayo on your favorite bread (I like whole wheat), add some cheese if you’d like (you can use sharp cheddar or Monterey Jack), then put on your cooked egg and top it all off with some leftover empanada filling.

Cover with another slice of bread and enjoy!

27. Make Some Homemade Tamales with It

Mexican Tamales
Source: tastesbetterfromscratch.com

Nothing says “party” like tamales!

You can make them in advance and heat them up when you’re ready to serve them—or even better yet, make them ahead of time and freeze them until you need them so they’re ready to go whenever you are!

28. Use It as a Topping for Your Favorite Cheeseburger

This is another classic that’s perfect if you’re looking for something quick and easy!

Make sure you have some shredded cheese on hand, then just throw all of your ingredients together and enjoy!

29. Use It In A Casserole

If you happen to have a lot of leftovers, you can also use it to make this delicious casserole.

Just saute some onions and garlic in olive oil until they’re soft, then add your leftover empanada filling and cook it until it’s heated through (about five minutes).

Then top with shredded cheese, cover with aluminum foil, bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes, then remove the foil and bake another 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly!

30. Make a Burrito Bowl

Burrito Bowl

You could also consider making a burrito bowl instead of a burrito!

Simply add the leftover filling to your favorite burrito ingredients (rice, beans, lettuce) and serve it over brown rice with guacamole and salsa on top.

You can also throw on some corn chips for extra crunch!

31. Spread It on Toast

Toast

Ok, this one isn’t exactly “creative” but it is a classic and it works! If you aren’t sure what to do with your leftover empanada filling, try spreading it on toast.

The crust of the empanada pairs perfectly with the softness of the bread, and you’ll have yourself a delicious snack in no time flat.

32. Use It as a Side Dish

If you’re feeling like something lighter than toast but still want to get some use out of your leftover filling, try serving it alongside another dish as a side.

You can serve it with rice or pasta or even just by itself if you’re in the mood for something light and fresh!

Empanada filling

What to Do with Leftover Empanada Filling (32 Ideas)

If you're anything like us, you probably make a lot of empanadas. And if you're anything like us, you probably have a lot of leftover filling.
But instead of letting it go to waste, we have a few great ideas for how to put it to use!
Check them out!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 people
Calories 340 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • Make an Omelet
  • Make a Sandwich
  • Use It as An Appetizer at Your Next Party
  • Make Meatballs
  • Freeze It in Ice Cube Trays
  • Spread It on Toast
  • Spread It on English Muffins
  • Use It as A Topping on Pizza
  • Use It as A Filling for Stuffed Peppers
  • Add It to Scrambled Eggs or An Egg Scramble
  • Add It to Quesadillas
  • Add It to Burritos
  • Use It as A Topping for Nachos
  • Use It as A Topping for Tacos
  • Mix Leftover Empanada Filling Into Refried Beans
  • Use It as A Salad Dressing
  • Add It to Your Next Batch of Stew
  • Use it to make Empanada Soup
  • Use It as The Filling in A Quiche or Tart
  • Make Empanada Desserts
  • Freeze It for Later
  • Use It as A Dip
  • Make Mini Quiches
  • Make More Empanadas
  • Add It to Baked Goods
  • Add It to Your Breakfast Sandwiches
  • Make Some Homemade Tamales with It
  • Use It as a Topping for Your Favorite Cheeseburger
  • Use It In A Casserole
  • Make a Burrito Bowl
  • Spread It on Toast
  • Use It as a Side Dish

Instructions
 

  • Pick your favorite idea from this list to use up your empanada filling.
  • Prepare the rest of your dinner.
  • Be ready to munch in no time!
Keyword What to Do with Leftover Empanada Filling