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Shrimp and Queso Fresco Empanadas with Charred Tomatillo Sauce

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Shrimp and Queso Fresco Empanadas with Charred Tomatillo Sauce

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Servings: 20

This empanada is filled with shrimp and queso fresco offset by a creamy Mexican tomatillo sauce.


  8 oz tomatillos, papery skin removed and rinsed well

  1/2 tsp salt

  1/2 lb medium shrimp, peeled, deveined, and finely chopped

  1/2 cup finely chopped Marcona almonds, divided

  1 tsp McCormick® Cumin Ground

  1/2 tsp McCormick® Chile Pepper Ancho

  2 packages refrigerated pie crusts (4 crusts)

  3 serrano chilies, seeded

  3 cloves garlic

  2 tsp olive oil

  4 oz (1/2 package) cream cheese

  1 cup shredded queso fresco, divided

  3 green onions, sliced

  3 Tbs coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

  3 Tbs finely chopped and seeded Fresno chilies, divided

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For the Charred Tomatillo Sauce, toss tomatillos, serrano chilies and garlic with oil. Place on foil-lined baking sheet. Broil 4 to 6 minutes or until tomatillos and chilies begin to char in spots. Cool slightly. Place tomatillos, chilies and garlic in blender container. Add cream cheese and 1/2 cup of the queso fresco; cover. Blend on medium speed until pureed. Add green onions, cilantro, 1 tablespoon of the fresno chilies and salt. Blend until smooth.

Preheat oven to 400°F. For the Empanada Filling, mix 2/3 cup of the Charred Tomatillo Sauce with remaining 1/2 cup queso fresco in large bowl Add shrimp, 1/4 cup of the Marcona almonds, 1 tablespoon of the remaining fresno chilies, cumin and ancho chile pepper; mix until well blended.

To assemble Empanadas, unroll pie crusts on lightly floured surface. Using 4-inch round cutter, cut each into 5 rounds for a total of 20 rounds. Spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of filling onto half of each round. Moisten edge of each with water. Fold in half; press edge with a fork to seal. Place 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets. Pierce top of each with fork to vent.

Bake 20 minutes or until light golden brown. Mix remaining 1/4 cup Marcona almonds with remaining 1 tablespoon fresno chilies. Sprinkle over empanadas. Serve with Charred Tomatillo Sauce.

Nutritional Information:

Calories 230

Total Fat 14g 

Cholesterol 32mg 

Sodium 328mg 

Total Carbohydrate 20g 

Dietary Fiber 1g 

Protein 6g