I feel out of breath just trying to say that title. I wish I just called them Autumn Empanadas, but it sounded too general and unfortunately doesn’t really explain what’s in it. Yes, I could’ve just mentioned two ingredients, but why miss out on the fun of repeating this title 5 times fast, ha!
Now, I must express how much the season of fall will come to mind when you take a bite out of these! It’s the perfect lunch to have on a crisp day or even for a party or brunch!
I’ve made various versions (such as Spinach or Ham and Cheese) of empanadas already, so these had to feel much different than the other two. Butternut squash happens to be a favorite root vegetable of mine and I roast a ton in the fall and winter months.
The flavor profile of these are very layered. The tang of the goat cheese, the smokiness of the bacon, the sweetness of the caramelized onion (which is SUPER easy to do) and the earthiness of the butternut squash and thyme is just…perfect.
I’m salivating just thinking about them, ha! And the best part is, they are totally freezer friendly and can be made ahead for quick dinners during the week!
- 2 cups of butternut squash cut into bite size pieces
- 1 large onion
- 1 teaspoon of brown sugar
- 8 strips of bacon
- 2 packets of Goya Empanadas
- 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh thyme
- 6 ounces of goat cheese
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of brown sugar
- 1 egg
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
- Place butternut squash on a baking sheet and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt and cinnamon. Bake for 35 minutes. Make sure they are cooled completely before you add it to the filling.
- In a small pan, sauté the onion with a tablespoon of olive oil and a pinch of salt at medium high heat. When the onion begins to brown, add the brown sugar and lower the heat to medium low and continue to cook until the onions become soft and caramelized. This will take the same time as the butternut squash bakes. Once the onions are softened, set aside and cool completely.
- In large pan, cook the bacon at medium high heat until crisp. Drain the fat, and chop the bacon into small pieces.
- In a medium bowl, combine the butternut squash, bacon, caramelized onion, thyme, salt, a pinch of pepper. Add the goat cheese, crumbling as you go. Gently mix it into the filling.
- Place parchment paper on a baking sheet and set aside.
- In a small bowl, add a teaspoon of water to your other beaten egg.
- Place your empanada disc on a flat surface. Place about two tablespoons of your butternut squash filling in the middle of the disc. Using a brush or your finger, dip into egg mixture and apply on the entire edge of the empanada disc. Fold in half and using a fork, pinch the edges together. Make two small slits on the top and place on the baking sheet.
- Repeat with the rest of empanada discs.
- To bake immediately: brush with egg wash and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
- To freeze: Place baking sheet in the freezer to freeze individually. Once frozen, place in a large zip lock bag for another day. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes.
- The empanadas will last in the freezer for 1-3 months.
Speaking of filling, check this out! Not your typical Hispanic empanada, but man is it delicious. I made a quick salad with a maple vinaigrette and tossed in some dry cranberries and walnuts.
It took sheer will power not to devour these as I was photographing them.
But it was worth the wait when the hubs came home just in time to join me and start thinking about our fall activities!