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Tuna empanadas a mexican recipe.
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Tuna Empanadas

These Tuna Empanadas remind me of those hot summer days on the beach in my hometown of Tampico. Along come memories of the roaming food vendors selling all sorts of tasty seafood fare, and the visitors that spent hours under the “palapas” (palm roofs), enjoying the ocean breeze.
Course Antojitos, Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 Empanadas
Calories 192kcal


  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • cups white onion finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped
  • cup diced tomato
  • 2 small cans of tuna
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • Salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste

MASA DOUGH (masa):

  • 2 cups masa harina
  • cups warm water*
  • 1 chile ancho pepper soaked in hot water for 25 minutes
  • 1 teaspoon salt



  • Heat the oil in a medium size pan at medium heat, then add the onion and fry until transparent. Add the garlic and continue to cook for one minute.
  • Stir in the tomato and cook thoroughly until its juices have been reduced. This will take about 8-10 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the drained tuna and chopped parsley. Season with salt and pepper and set aside to cool.


  • To make the dough, mix the masa, salt, and water together in a large bowl. If using the ancho pepper salsa, add 2½ tablespoons of the salsa to the dough before kneading. Knead dough until smooth and manageable.
  • Divide the dough into 12 small balls and cover them with some wet paper towels. Using a tortilla maker, form a “tortilla” by pressing down on each dough ball, using two sheets of plastic between the dough and the tortilla maker.
  • Remove the top plastic sheet. and then place about 1 tablespoon of the tuna filling on top of the tortilla. Next, slowly fold the tortilla in half and close the edges together, starting from the middle. Make sure the edges are sealed together because if the filling leaks out when frying the empanada, it will cause the oil to splatter.
  • Place the formed empanadas on a tray and cover them with a wet paper towel. Once they are all formed, cook them in the hot oil for 2 minutes per side (cooking time may vary depending on the temperature of the oil). Once you finish cooking the empanadas, let them rest for a couple of minutes in order to let them cool a little.

Serve with a spicy salsa, radishes, and thinly sliced cabbage.


    *Add more water to the dough is needed. It is not necessary to use the chile ancho in the masa, but it is common in some areas of Mexico to add the pepper suace in order to add some color to it. As a matter of fact, there are some regions in Mexico where the ancho chile is known as “chile color”, because it is primarily used to add color to dishes, and not to add spiciness. For this recipe, the peppers are soaked in water and then processed in a blender along with 2½ tablespoons of the soaking water. This processed salsa is then added to the masa.


    Serving: 1Empanada | Calories: 192kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 270mg | Potassium: 224mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 865IU | Vitamin C: 4.5mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2.4mg