Plantain Empanadas

Makes 1 Serving


  • 1 ripe plantain (ends trimmed), cut into 3 pieces each
  • water for boiling plantain
  • 1 tbsp of salt
  • oil for hands (to prevent sticking)
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese or favorite cheese, divided
  • oil for frying (corn or vegetable oil)

Optional Garnishes

  • sour cream
  • grated Parmesan cheese
  • dried cilantro

Special Equipment

  • mortar & pestle or food processor
  • tortilla press
  • plastic wrap for lining tortilla press
  • paper towels


Prepare Plantain Dough

  1. Add 1 tbsp of salt to a pot of water and bring to a boil. Add plantain and boil 1 for hour
  2. Remove plantain from water. Remove peel and mash to a smooth paste with mortar and pestle or in food processor

Assemble Empanadas

  1. Brush hands with oil to prevent sticking to plantain dough
  2. Working with half of the dough at a time, roll into a ball in the palms of your hands
  3. Line tortilla press with plastic wrap. Place plantain dough on the press; top with another piece of plastic wrap. Close press lightly, so that the dough forms about a ¼” thick tortilla
  4. Carefully remove the dough, and hold in the the palm of your hand
  5. Add about ½ cup of cheese to tortilla and mound in middle of dough
  6. Fold in half, crimping edges tightly to form a tight seal. Repeat with second half of dough

Fry & Serve Empanadas

  1. Heat oil to 350º over medium-high heat and fry empanadas 1 minute per side, until dark brown all over
  2. Remove and drain on paper towels
  3. Serve alone, or with sour cream, grated cheese and a sprinkle of dried cilantro