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Recipe for shrimp and black bean empanadas

Shrimp and black bean empanadas

Ever since my husband Ted discovered discos in our neighborhood supermarket in Boston, I've been wrapping and rolling and generally having a great time making simple food look more pulled together. Discos, made by Goya, are nothing more than five-inch rounds of dough, thinly rolled and ready to fill. I've stuffed them with everything from a traditional picadillo to trendy goat cheese, and I've cut them in half to make small empanaditas, filled with cheese and red peppers. If you're putting on a feast for that big football game coming up, consider these shrimp and black bean empanadas. You can make them ahead, cook and freeze, and then reheat in the oven before serving. Or, assemble ahead and refrigerate, and then bake right before halftime.

Shrimp and black bean empanadas

Shrimp and black bean empanadas

From the pantry, you'll need: discos, canned black beans, frozen shrimp, shredded cheese, ground cumin, store-bought salsa.

Serves 2; can be doubled.


1 tsp vegetable oil
2 tsp chopped onion
4 large (21-25 per pound) frozen shrimp, defrosted, peeled, roughly chopped
1/2 cup canned (or cooked) black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 Tbsp salsa, hot or mild, to taste
1/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (I use reduced-fat Mexican four-cheese mix from the market, or my own bits of leftover shredded cheese from the freezer)
Kosher salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
4 discos, defrosted
1 egg, beaten with 1 tsp water


In a small frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion, and sauté for 1-2 minutes, until translucent. Add the shrimp, beans, cumin and salsa, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, until the shrimp are pink. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

When the shrimp and beans are cool to the touch, transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the cheese, and stir to combine.

Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a Silpat (silicone liner) or parchment paper. Place a small bowl of cold water on your work surface.

In another bowl, beat one large egg with one teaspoon of water to make an egg wash, and set aside.

Set out one disco. Place 1/4 of the bean mixture in the center. Wet your finger with water and run it around the edge of the disco. Fold the dough over to make a half-moon shape. Press the edges to seal, then take a fork and press firmly into the dough all around the folded edge. Place the empanada on the baking sheet. Make the remaining empanadas; then, using a pastry brush, paint each with a bit of the egg wash.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 11-12 minutes or until lightly browned. Serve hot or at room temperature. Cooked empanadas can be frozen and reheated in a 350°F oven.

[Printer-friendly recipe.]

More recipes in The Perfect Pantry:
Turkey or chicken picadillo empanadas
Goat cheese-olive empanadas
Curried chicken wontons
Cheese and red pepper empanaditas
Shrimp potstickers

Other recipes that use these pantry ingredients:
Spinach and ricotta empanadas, from From Argentina With Love
Spicy, citrusy black beans, from Simply Recipes
Sweet potato black bean enchiladas, from Gluten-Free Goddess
Fried shrimp/prawn balls, from Rasa Malaysia
Pork and apple empanadas, from Cooking...by the Seat of My Pants

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.


These sound delightful. I love the shrimp and black bean combination. Great for switching it up.

Where are they in your grocery store? I'm not sure where to look in mine (where the wonton skins are? Or where the arepas are? Or somewhere else, entirely?) but I can imagine about a dozen ways to use them, including making leftovers more fun and interesting! We have many Goya products here, so I'm hopeful they might be here already. Thanks!

Oooh... I am intrigued by these discos. Will have to keep an eye out for them! These empanadas look wonderful!

Wow, those look so good, Lydia! I've long had empanadas on my list to make. I doubt that the discos are gluten free (darn it!), so I just need to bite the bullet and make some. We're celebrating Cinqo de Mayo for our May support group meeting, so that would be a great time. But I probably need to practice before then! ;-) Thanks for the recipe and inspiration.


This might actually get me to watch football! You really produce some amazing noshes from pantry items!

How about rice paper discs as a gluten free sub for Discos? They can be fried, so they'd look as pretty as these do. (OK, I'll try it.)

These discos looked great till I read the ingredient statement.

the question is... what can't you put in a disco?!!!

Lydia, These look and sound so tasty! Thank you most of all for turning us all on to discos. I have not seen them in the grocery stores but will be looking for them next time I visit. Several folks have asked where they will be in the store...i am guessing refrigerated section.

I promise to report how they are once they are consumed at OUR house!

Everyone: discos are usually in the freezer section in the supermarket, with other Goya products. I've also found them at BJs, in a box of 4 packages (40 discos in all), which is great if you're having a party. Keep them in the freezer until you're ready to use, then defrost in the refrigerator.

Shirley, discos are a wheat product, so not GF. Susan suggests rice paper discs. I'm not sure how they'll work, but she will try and let us know.

Penny, discos do have some fat products in them (like all dough). They should be an occasional indulgence (maybe for a Super Bowl party?!), not an everyday food.

Oh, how wish I could just happen upon gluten-free discos! I discovered these in the freezer section at the grocery a number of years ago, before I went gluten-free, and thought they were the greatest thing ever. While I can certainly make my own dough, these are such a time saver and come out much more uniformly than mine do! Love your filling. Drool.

I grew up on empanadas!! I love the combination here of the shrimp and beans!

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