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Discos (Recipe: cheese and red pepper empanaditas)

Cheese empanaditas

Before my husband Ted discovered discos in a market in our Boston neighborhood, the closest I ever got to a disco was forty feet -- the distance between our rear window and the window of the house across the back alley where an ABBA fan blasted "Dancing Queen" on his CD player every morning.

These discos are much more my type.

Discos are sheets of dough, rolled into perfect five-inch circles. They come in two different colors (one colored by annatto to a lovely orange). They dress up any type of filling.

They're easy to use, and easy to find in the freezer aisle of the grocery store or your local Latino market.

And no singing or dancing required.

What are discos?
Rounds of wheat-flour dough ready for filling and baking.

How/where to store:
In the freezer. Remove 15-20 minutes before you want to use them and let sit at room temperature.

More facts about discos, and ingredient photos, on The Perfect Pantry:
Discos (Recipe: goat cheese-olive empanadas)


Cheese and red pepper empanaditas

An easy appetizer that can be made far in advance, and frozen baked or unbaked. Add some cooked chicken or shrimp, a bit of broccoli, or whatever you have on hand. Makes 20 empanaditas.


1 tsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
Small pinch of red pepper flakes (mild or hot)
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese, or a mix
1 Tbsp flour
1 package discos
1 egg, beaten with 1 tsp water


Preheat oven to 425°F. Prepare a sheet pan with a Silpat (silicone liner) or parchment paper, and set aside.

In a small nonstick frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and bell pepper, and saute for 2 minutes, until the onions are translucent. Add the red pepper flakes and stir for 30 seconds. Remove from heat and set aside to cool for a few minutes.

When the vegetables are cool, place in a mixing bowl. Add the cheese and flour, and toss well to combine. Put some water in a small bowl on the counter top.

Set one disco on the counter top. Cut in half. Place a pinch of cheese filling in the center of each half of the disco. Dip your index finger in the bowl of water, and run your finger around the edge of the disco. Fold the dough in half, and press with the tines of a fork to seal. Place each empanadita on the baking sheet. When all are done, paint with the beaten egg.

Bake for 11 minutes, until the tops are lightly browned. Serve hot or at room temperature.

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Empanadas filled with chicken picadillo
Shrimp potstickers
Vegetable potstickers
Potato and broccoli samosas

Other recipes that use discos:
Corn and goat cheese empanadas, from Apples and Butter
Chicken and bacon empanadas, from The Gourmet Foodie Blog
Empanadas Santiagueñas, from From Argentina With Love
Empanadas Mendocinas and chimichurri sauce, from Cookin' With Cyndi

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.


As a teen my girlfriends and I practiced our moves and went to the local disco as well as to the Italian hall. Even though I have never heard of these type of disco until now, they are more to my liking.

These sound absolutely yummy. Once when I was visiting Rand in LA we were invited to a party and you had to bring something Mexican. We found discos in a Mexican market and made empanadas of some type (my only time ever making them, but they were a hit!)

I am thinking sweet, as in maybe some apple or pear or maybe some berries with a hint of sweetness and a bit of spice. That small bite of sweet deliciousness when a sweet craving hits after dinner.

ultimate food karma....
In the market on Sunday morning - I was perusing the frozen section and saw the discos and thought of you and your first posting on them!
I wanted to get them, fill them and eat them!! and then I thought about the fact that I wouldn't be able to contain myself and would eat all 20 and thought about summer coming and swimwear season and.........
and then I saw this posting!! I will wait until I am having a party so my guests can enjoy them too and I won't be "alone" with all of them!

Thanks for the great tip on using discos - are they similar to won ton squares? I must get to my Mercado Mexicano and look for these!

I am glad that these come in the freezer case and are easy to "customize." I was never very good at those synchronized disco dances ...

someone above said they wouldn't be able to contain themselves if they made these. umm yeah, me too

Discos - who would have thought dancing not required! Love it!

A yummy combo of flavors, although I wouldn't mind dancing to the sounds of ABBA while putting them together in my kitchen :) Lovely recipe.

These discos are quite "the find"! I am going on a search next time at my local Latino market! I can think of quite a few things I can stuff them with; your version looks fabulous, by the way!

I adore empanadas. There is a restaurant in Tampa that sells all kinds of varieties of empanadas...I think it's called "Mr. Empanadas." Yummy!!!

I love empanadas! These look delicious, I am definitely going to give these a try!

I'm not much of a disco fan myself, but I tried the recipe, and it was extremely good! This is one I'm going to be telling the foodie blog all about. My wife (A.K.A. the pickiest eater alive) also loved them.

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