Yield: 30 empanandas

Empanadas de chiverre

Three baked chiverre empanadas arranged on a doily.

These Costa Rican empanadas de chiverre are the perfect mix of sweet and savory. Made from scratch and baked to golden perfection, these traditional Costa Rican Easter treats are delicious and fun to make with friends.

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes


  • Empanada Ingredients:
  • 3 cups white flour + 2-3 tablespoons extra
  • 2 stick margarine can use butter- room temperature
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 cups miel de chiverre
  • 1 egg
  • spray-on cooking oil such as Pam
  • Tools:
  • Large bowl
  • Plastic shopping bag cut up into 15-20 3 x 3" squares
  • Tortilla maker
  • Fork
  • 2-3 baking pans


  1. For the dough:
  2. In a large bowl, combine 3 cups of flour and 2 stick of margarine. Suing your hands, combine until all of the four is integrated into the margarine. The mixture will be a bit crumbly.
  3. Measure about 1/2 cup whipping cream and add to the dough. Using your hands, combine. From here on out, add cream until the entire mixture is the consistency of cookie dough.
  4. Tips: It is much easier to add the whipping cream slowly to gain the right consistency than to have too much cream and a sticky dough. However, if you do end up in a situation where you added too much whipping cream, you can simply add flour to the dough until you have the right consistency. Once you do, spend a couple of minutes kneading the dough on the countertop just to get everything worked in.
  5. Note- if you used butter instead of margarine, the dough will come out much lighter in color. The flavor, to me, is about the same.

To form the empanadas:

  1. Pinch off pieces of the dough and roll into 1" balls
  2. You can place the balls back in the large mixing bowl until you have completed all of the dough, or you can do each step one at a time. Typically many people are involved in the preparation of the empanadas in Costa Rica, so each person will take a station.
  3. Open your tortilla maker and place one of the pieces of the plastic bag in the center.
  4. Place a single ball of dough in the middle of the plastic bag on the tortilla maker.
  5. Place another piece of the plastic bag on top and close the tortilla maker.
  6. Press down until flat. Note- I used Ziploc bags for this once, and they didn' t work as well as a shopping bag.
  7. Remove the top plastic bag pice and place it back in the tortilla maker.
  8. Move the circle of dough for the empanada, with the plastic bag, to the side.
  9. Using a fork, place about a tablespoon of miel de chiverre on half of the circle of dough
  10. Close the other half of the dough over the miel de chiverre and lightly seal.
  11. Using a clean fork, make hash marks all around the edge of the empanada (not on the seam)
  12. Repeat these steps until all the dough has been used.

To bake the empanadas:

  1. Lightly grease a large baking pan.
  2. Lightly place flour on top of the baking pan.
  3. In a small bowl, beat the egg and add a tablespoon of water.
  4. Place the empanadas on the baking pan. These will not expand, so they can be quite close together on the pan with no problems.
  5. Using your finger or a small cooking brush, gently spread the egg wash on the top of the empanadas.
  6. Once the baking tray is full of empanadas, place the empanadas in the oven. They will bake for about 20 minutes- do not remove until they are golden brown. Note- it's pretty hard to outright burn these, but it is easy for them to be undercooked. So let them in a bit longer than you'd think to make sure they get nice and crispy.
  7. Heat oven to about 375 degrees Fahrenheit. If your oven heats fast, then you don't need to do this step until later- it takes about 25 minutes to prepare the first round of empanadas for baking. And if you want to bake them all at once, even longer.


Note: It is typical to make many rounds, or "tandas," of empanada dough. However, this recipe does not double well so it is better to make each batch of dough separately.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 143Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 22mgSodium: 66mgCarbohydrates: 16gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 3g

Please double-check this information with your favorite nutrition calculator.