Pineapple Coconut Empanadas

Yet again, I waited til the last minute to complete the task. And sadly, it did not come out as expected. Case in point:

pineapple coconut empanadas

Burnt around the edges. Because I did a lousy job sealing the edges. Because it was 9PM on July 31st and I knew I couldn’t blow off this month’s First on the First, even though July had been filled with–you guessed it–packing, moving, unpacking, and cleaning. We only just finished clearing and cleaning the apartment on July 27th, and handed over the keys at 9PM on the 30th. Add to it starting up an exercise routine (finally! after all these months of not being able to do anything!), a wedding, an anniversary party, some picnics, and it’s been a purely exhausting month.

Does procrastination ever pay off? But what choice did I have? The month was just plain packed full.

pineapple coconut empanadas

Let’s turn this into a learning experience; we can build from this, so that we all have more success with this recipe in the future.

I substituted the called-for shortening with coconut oil to layer on the coconut experience. I don’t regret this, as the crust was nice and flaky, but I should have made sure the coconut oil was solid when I added it. At this time of year, room temperature coconut oil is more of a liquid and it therefore created a stickier dough. At least, I’d like to believe that’s why the dough was so sticky. Chilling the dough after mixing it together only resulted in semi-hard lumps throughout a messy dough, so I’m not sure that was all that helpful.

You have to make sure you drain the pineapple well. I only had pineapple tidbits, so I drained those and put them for a spin in the mini food processor. I should have drained them post-processing, but I didn’t. I had a lot of seepage because of this, hence the burnt stuff around the edges. Crimping the edge of the dough more securely would have helped, but having less juice to begin with would also be beneficial.

I only used maybe 1/3 of the filling. I should have saved it and made more empanada dough the next day, but I wasn’t thinking and I tossed it. Shame on me! I was so frustrated by the burnt seepage that I couldn’t see past it to try again in the next few days. That’s no excuse! My guess is that you can double the dough recipe without doubling the filling and have enough. Or use the dough as-is and cut the filling in half.

I had some difficulty brushing on the sweetened condensed milk as a glaze. I think next time I would either warm it up a little first or make a glaze from some reserved pineapple juice and powdered sugar. It was just too thick and gloppy and it didn’t spread well. I imagine the pineapple glaze, however, would be a perfect finish.

pineapple coconut empanadas

That said, even with my mistakes, they tasted pretty darn good. Good enough that I ate 2. Even though I’m trying to eat better and have lost some weight recently. I guess this means I’ll be up in the morning again, walking it all away. It’s worth it.

Next month, we’ll be saying goodbye to summer (goodbye to summer?! it’s only just begun!) with cold soups. If you’d like to join us, check out the First on the First tab above for more details on how to participate.

Pineapple Coconut Empanadas
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12
  • 1¼ cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup coconut oil, solid (put in fridge to chill at least 30 minutes prior)
  • ½ Tablespoon sour cream
  • ¼ cup + ½ teaspoon ice water
  • 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple, drained well
  • ½ cup vanilla sugar
  • ¾ cup sweetened flaked coconut
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2-4 Tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour and salt. Add the solid coconut oil and mix on low with the paddle attachment for about 1 minute.
  2. Remove bowl from mixer and stir in the sour cream.
  3. Add the ice water, ½ at a time, stirring until the dough comes together into a ball.
  4. Chill for 30 minutes.
  5. In a medium bowl, combine the filling ingredients. Set aside.
  6. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  7. Flour well your work surface and, tearing off small balls of dough, press out the dough until you have 5" diameter circles.
  8. Spoon about a Tablespoon of filling into the center and then fold over the circle, meeting the edges.
  9. Crimp well and transfer to prepared baking sheet.
  10. Repeat until you have used up all the dough, which should make about 12 empanadas.
  11. Brush with glaze and then bake for 18 minutes, or until golden and edges are slightly browned.
  12. Remove to wire racks to cool completely

What other empanadas do we have this month?

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  1. So sorry to hear you had some struggles but I’m glad to hear that they still tasted good!! So not a failure in my book πŸ˜‰ I love the pineapple coconut combo!

    1. But yours were gorgeous! I just need more practice.

  2. Good for you for making them anyway in spite of the chaos! Hope your life gets all settled soon πŸ™‚ Interesting flavour combo, I love how personalizable these are. Cold soups…I have never gotten my head around that idea to taste one but have a recipe I can’t wait to try now that I have an excuse!

    1. Cold soups kinda creep me out, so it’s a really good opportunity to broaden my horizons. πŸ˜‰ Just like I don’t like cold pasta (macaroni salad? yuck!).

  3. Those look super delish! Life got the better of me this month, so I hope to join you all again next month. Good luck with those boxes.

    1. Totally understand. I feel like life has gotten the better of me for the last 8 months! Eek!

  4. As long as they tasted good, who cares what they look like?! That’s my motto πŸ™‚

    1. My daughter couldn’t get enough of them!

    • Haley Adams on 4 October, 2012 at 9:04 pm
    • Reply

    I love pineapple and coconut so there’s no doubt this would taste great! Even with the burnt side, it still looks yummy.

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