Beef and Mushroom Empanadas – Fall Book Club Feast

Create your own Fall feast with these Beef and Mushroom Empanadas. Share it today!

Beef and Mushroom Empanadas with Chimichurri Sauce

Thanks to a group effort, our October book club was a delightful and delicious success. My dear friend Kay was kind enough to volunteer her home as our gathering place, which was much appreciated. Because the new house is still a few weeks away from being finished, I didn’t have anywhere suitable for our little gaggle of gals. However, I was way overdue in my hosting duties, so I insisted on bringing the food and beverages. That meant I needed a menu that could be prepared in advance and would be easy to serve. Here’s the the line-up I selected:



Creamy Tomato-Bacon Dip with assorted crackers 

Modification – substituted packet of ranch dressing mix vs. the paprika in this recipe.

The result was very tasty!

Sorry about the bacon Jessica, my pork abstaining friend!



Gin and Juice Cocktail 

Modification – added a splash of tonic to this cocktail to create a refreshing punch-like concoction.


Roasted Squash Soup 


Beef and Mushroom Empanadas with Chimichurri Sauce – Recipe Below!


Lemon Ice Cream & Gingersnaps 

I am pleased to say the Fall feast was a big hit! But the food was only half the story.  Seeing the charming transformation Kay’s home had undergone for the latest season, was the other half. While Kay has a plethora of decorations for every season, I am especially fond of the autumnal atmosphere she creates. She even has an array of Halloween “headwear” which we proudly modeled in the slide show below. 

A Cocktail with Meaning

I couldn’t resist serving a cocktail in honor of the 1st sentence in the book we read for our October book discussion – Commonwealth by Ann Patchett.

“The christening party took a turn when Albert Cousins arrived with gin.”

As the christening party progresses, the tonic runs out and the guests turn to harvesting oranges from the fruit trees in the backyard. Hence, the gin and juice cocktail.  This cocktail came from the folks at Tangueray. I simply added a splash of tonic to give it a “punch-like” pizzazz. Another big hit!

Beef and Mushroom Empanadas

6 servings

Serving Size: Serves 6

Beef and Mushroom Empanadas


    Filling -
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups portobello mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped (sweet onion preferred)
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/3 c. tomato paste
  • 2/3 c. tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup pitted green olives, finely chopped
    Chimichurri sauce
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, finely chopped
  • 1 spring onion, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely minced
  • 1 small red chili pepper (or jalapeno), seeded, deveined and finely chopped (or include the seeds for more heat)
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup light olive oil (highly recommend a light olive oil)
  • 1 box refrigerated pie crust (2 crusts) - I used Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust
  • 1 beaten egg
    Special Equipment
  • parchment paper


  • Heat oil in large sauté pan over medium heat. Add mushrooms and carrot. Cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms start to brown and carrot starts to soften.
  • Add the beef, onion, salt and pepper and cook until meat is browned, breaking up the meat will it cooks.
  • Stir in the garlic, cumin and oregano and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the tomato paste and tomato sauce. Simmer for 5 minutes until thickened. You can add a few tablespoons of water if the mixture seems to thick and is sticking to the pan (the mixture should be fairly thick after simmering, however.)
  • Remove from heat and stir in olives. Transfer to a shallow bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. Note - filling can be prepared a day ahead and refrigerated. If refrigerated, rewarm in microwave on low power until mixture reaches room temperature before proceeding.
    Chimichurri Sauce
  • Mix all the ingredients except oil in a bowl, then whisk in the oil. Set aside.
    Empanada pastry
  • Set pie crust on counter for 15 minutes to warm up. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Unroll pastry carefully onto light floured surface suitable for rolling. Roll out dough so it is large enough to accommodate 3 circles of 6"each. Cut 3 circles from each of the pastry sheets for a total of 6 circles.
  • Divide meat between circles, placing onto 1 side leaving border around the edge. Brush egg wash around edge of the entire circle and fold in half. Press edge with a fork to seal.
  • Place on prepared baking sheet and brush all over with egg wash (beaten egg.)
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool for at least 5 minutes, or longer, so pastry sets up and empanadas are easier to serve. Serve empanadas (which are best eaten with a fork) with chimichurri sauce on the side or drizzle on top before serving.


Adapted from Culinary Ginger Beef and Mushroom Empanadas

4 thoughts on “Beef and Mushroom Empanadas – Fall Book Club Feast

    • Let me know if you have any questions and how you like them. They actually reheated well too in the oven.

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