It’s funny, when I first started this blog almost two years ago I had to hold myself back from posting more pumpkin recipes. At the time, I was in full-on pumpkin-using mode, but I didn’t want to make it seem like a pumpkin blog. Last year I was more reserved (I did have a small distraction to deal with) and only shared pumpkin arancini. Since I’m taking part in pumpkin week this year, I have an excuse to share pumpkin recipes but I still wasn’t quite organized enough to share much this week. However more ideas keep coming to mind so do keep an eye out if you are a pumpkin fan as some more may be shared. For now, though, let me get on and tell you how delicious these chocolate chip and pumpkin empanadas are.
Bring on the empanadas
After first making some savory vegetable empanadas a while ago, I have got to like making them now and then and especially loved the strawberry empanadas I made earlier this year. Empanadas are a handy on-the-go snack and have endless filling options. I had a hunch that pumpkin would make a great filling. Its soft, creamy texture kind of asks to ooze out of pastry. With a few chocolate chips in there for an extra bit of indulgence, these pumpkin empanadas feel like a real treat. Which is great, especially as they are secretly fairly healthy.
How they’re made
I used my now standard semi-wholewheat dough made in the food processor which is filled with a seasoned pumpkin filling. I made the pumpkin puree from scratch and used what are often called pie pumpkins for this since they are slightly sweeter and better suited texturally. You could use bought pumpkin puree as well (not pie filling, it is loaded up with various spices etc). The filling is then really easy to mix up before you add it to your empanadas. Many recipes I saw for pumpkin empanadas had an incredibly sugar-heavy filling which I’m sure tastes pretty good, but I didn’t really see the need for quite as much sugar. Plus, I kind of wanted them to taste of pumpkin rather than just sightly pumpkiny sugar.
These pumpkin empanadas have that delicious combination of crisp pastry on the outside and a wonderfully smooth filling. The pastry isn’t flaky – it’s more like pie crust – but to me that works perfectly here. Between the part wholewheat pastry and the lower sugar in the filling, these are a lot healthier than most pumpkin empanadas. Yes, they are a little on the less-sweet side but with the chocolate you don’t really miss it. Plus, you have lots of lovely smooth pumpkin flavor. So you can reach for another one, or more. It’s a taste of the season you have every excuse to enjoy.
Chocolate chip and pumpkin empanadas
While relatively healthy, these are a delicious combination of soft pumpkin filling with dots of chocolate, all wrapped in a tasty pastry.
- 1 cup whole wheat flour 130g
- 1 cup all purpose flour 145g plain flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg
- 2 oz unsalted butter 55g, cut into chunks
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4-5 tbsp water cold
- 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree 360g
- 3 tbsp honey
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 5 tbsp bittersweet chocolate chips
- 1 egg beaten for eggwash to seal and top (optional)
Put the flours and the salt in a food processor and pulse to mix. Add the egg, butter and oil and pulse until like small breadcrumbs.
Add the water a tablespoon at a time until the mixture is coming together in larger lumps. Remove from food processor, press together and cover and refrigerate for around 30min, less if the dough didn't get too warm (can be more if suits as well).
Meanwhile preheat oven to 400F/200C.
Mix together the pumpkin puree, honey, cinnamon and nutmeg until well mixed. Add the chocolate chips and mix through.
Making the empanadas
Roll out the dough on a floured surface until about as thin as you are comfortable with (around 1/8in/2-3mm) and cut out circles - I used my largest scone/pastry cutter which is about 2 3/4in diameter.
Put a heaped spoonful of the pumpkin mixture slightly to one side of each pastry circle, but away from the edges. They should look as if they'll be fairly full but with enough space to fold one side over then seal the edges.
Carefully pull together the sides of the pastry and use a little water or eggwash to stick the edges together - this is easiest by folding over the side without the filling then pressing down the edge, taking care not to press out the filling or have a bubble. Press together with the tip of a fork.
Lightly oil or line a baking sheet/tray and carefully transfer the empanadas. Brush lightly with eggwash, if using (it will help them brown a little more).
Bake for approx 20min until the empanadas are starting to brown.
Try these other fall-flavored sweet treats:
See all the other pumpkin-inspired treats being shared today for the last day of pumpkin week. If you like these, be sure to search for #pumpkinweek on social media for yet more ideas:
Chocolate Chip and Pumpkin Empanadas from Caroline’s Cooking
Gluten Free Pumpkin Crepe Cake from Gluten Free Crumbley
Kabak Tatlisi from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Mexican Braised Pumpkin with Pork from A Day in the Life on the Farm
Pumpkin Bread Pudding from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Pumpkin Cheesecake Cream Puffs from Cooking With Carlee
Pumpkin Churros from The Redhead Baker
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies from Rants From My Crazy Kitchen
Gluten Free Pumpkin Cornbread from Feeding Big
Pumpkin Hummus from The Freshman Cook
Pumpkin Madeleines from Family Around The Table
Fall Festival Pumpkin Mashed Potatoes from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Pumpkin Pierogies with Brown Butter Sauce from Palatable Pastime
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Spice Latte with Rum Chata from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
Whipped Cinnamon Pumpkin Honey Butter from Making Miracles
Also see my double pumpkin gnocchi for more pumpkin ideas.