Can You Freeze Empanadas?

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By Ross Young

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Empanadas are one of those dishes that taste absolutely incredible but require a fair amount of preparation time in the kitchen. Regardless of what you fill them with, they’re likely to be a firm favourite with your family!

But given that they take a while to prepare, you might be wondering if it’s safe to make empanadas ahead of time before freezing them?

Can You Freeze Empanadas? Yes, you can freeze empanadas. They can be frozen for up to 3 months. Whether baked or fried, you can safely freeze empanadas without ruining their taste and texture. Allow them sufficient time to cool, before wrapping them, bagging them, and placing them in the freezer.

Do Empanadas Freeze Well? Yes

Can You Refreeze Empanadas? No

How to Freeze Empanadas

You’ll be pleased to hear that freezing empanadas is really straightforward. While you can freeze them uncooked (simply wrap them up and place them in the freezer), it’s probably better to cook them first, as this ensures they won’t split or spoil in the freezer.

Here are the steps you need to follow to freeze empanadas: 

  1. Cool
    As soon as you have cooked your empanadas, remove them from the oven or fryer and leave them to sit out at room temperature. It will take around an hour or so for your empanadas to cool completely, so don’t try and rush things! 
  2. Wrap
    Place each of your empanadas on a piece of cling film and wrap them tightly. You can also use tin foil if you prefer. 
  3. Bag Up
    Place your individually wrapped empanadas in a freezer-safe bag. Wrapping them first is important as if you place them directly into the bag they will stick together.
  4. Label and Freeze
    Write today’s date and the use-by date on the front of the bag and seal it. You can then place the bag of empanadas in the freezer and leave them for up to three months. 

3 Tips for Freezing Empanadas

Now you know how to freeze them, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing empanadas to have the best results:

Most Filling Freeze Really Well
The great news about freezing empanadas is that nearly all fillings freeze well. Whether meat, fish, or veggie-based, you can bag your empanadas up and add them to the freezer without worrying about them spoiling.

Flash Freeze Instead of Wrapping
If you’re mindful of how much foil or cling film you’re using, then you could always flash freeze your empanadas instead of wrapping them individually.

Simply place them on a tray once they have cooled and leave them in the freezer for a couple of hours until they have frozen solid. You can then transfer them to a freezer-safe bag for long term storage.

Cook First
Although you can freeze uncooked empanadas, we would recommend cooking them first. This is mainly to ensure they retain their shape and aren’t damaged during the freezing process.

Uncooked empanadas are more delicate, so you will need to bear this in mind if you freeze them before frying or baking them. 

How Long Can You Freeze Empanadas?

You can freeze empanadas for around three months. No matter the filling, provided your empanadas are tightly wrapped and protected from freezer burn, you shouldn’t experience any issues throughout the freezing process and your empanadas should taste as great as they were when they were fresh.

If you leave your empanadas in the freezer for longer than three months, you might notice the texture start to change, as the ice crystals that form during the freezing process can affect the pastry.

You Can Freeze Empanadas for up to 3 Months

How Do You Defrost Empanadas?

The best way to defrost empanadas is to transfer them from the freezer into the fridge the night before you plan to reheat them. This will give them sufficient time to thaw and means they will be ready to eat cold or reheat in any way that you choose.

You should never defrost empanadas at room temperature, particularly if they contain meat and dairy.

If you want to speed things up a little, you can defrost your empanadas in the microwave – just make sure you don’t overdo it and thaw them on low power.

Can You Refreeze Empanadas?

We wouldn’t recommend refreezing empanadas. This is because you can’t be sure of how the refreezing process will affect the consistency of the empanada as a whole.

To be on the safe side, freeze your empanadas in much smaller portion sizes and only remove the serving you need at any given time.

This ensures you don’t need to worry about refreezing them and will prevent your empanadas from going to waste.

Do Empanadas Freeze Well?

Overall, empanadas freeze really well.

This is great because they’re fairly tricky to make and require lots of time in the kitchen, meaning you can easily make a batch ahead of time, freeze them, and defrost empanadas as and when you need them. Perfection!

If you’ve still got questions about freezing empanadas or empanadas in general, then these may help:

Do You Freeze Empanadas Before or After Cooking?

It is better to freeze empanadas that have already been cooked. This is because uncooked empanadas are very delicate and are prone to be damaged in the freezer.

Can You Reheat Empanadas From Frozen?

If you don’t have time to defrost empanadas then you can cook them from frozen. Bake in a hot oven for 15 to 20 minutes until they are cooked through. You must ensure all meat is fully warmed through.

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