You can never go wrong with too much cheese. This is really good as a filling for a taquito as well. The only problem I have had with this recipe is getting my pie crusts to work correctly. One of my crusts basically exploded when I threw it in the deep fryer, not exactly sure why, but it sure made one hell of a mess! Use the premade frozen empanada shells that you can find at the grocery store, like work really well. I also like to bake them if you don’t want to mess with deep frying them.
Cheesy Chicken Empanadas:
- 3 cups chopped, cooked chicken (4 to 5 chicken breasts)
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 (8-ounce) package shredded Colby and Monterey Jack cheese blend
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 chopped red bell pepper
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie crusts (or any pre-made dough)
Pre-heat vegetable oil in a deep-fryer to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl using a rubber spatula, combine the chicken, Colby and Monterey cheese, cream cheese, red pepper, jalapeno, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper. Remove pie crust from pie tin onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 15-inch circle. Cut out rounds, using a 3-inch cookie cutter. Re-roll dough as needed. Repeat procedure with remaining pie crusts, making 12 to 15 circles total. Arrange 1 round on a clean, flat surface. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the edges of crust with water. Place 1 heaping teaspoon of chicken mixture in the center of the round. Fold the dough over the filling, pressing the edges with a fork to seal. Repeat with the remaining rounds and chicken mixture. Place empanadas in deep-fryer for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown. Top with con queso dip.
Note: Up to this point, the recipe can be made ahead and frozen for up to 1 month
Chili Con Queso Dip:
- 1 pound package Velveeta
- Can of Rotel
- 2 teaspoons hot sauce
In a medium sauce pot, slowly melt cheese over medium/low heat. When cheese is fully melted add rotel and hot sauce, stirring with spoon until combined well.
Pour cheese dip into a small casserole dish and serve as a dip for the cheesy empanadas or pour on top for a real cheesy effect.
Adapted from Foodnetwork