Philly Cheesesteak Empanadas

This inventive twist on a classic Philadelphia favorite brings together the rich flavors of a traditional cheesesteak with the convenient handheld deliciousness of an empanada

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This inventive twist on a classic Philadelphia favorite brings together the rich flavors of a traditional cheesesteak with the convenient handheld deliciousness of an empanada

Cheesesteak Empanadas | Delish D'Lites

I just love putting a Latin spin on comfort food classics. Case in point, I’ve taken delicious Philly cheesesteak flavors, and stuffed them into empanadas! Tender steak, ooey gooey cheese, and some sauteed peppers and onions, stuffed into an empanadas shell and deep fried. Do I have your attention yet? Empanadas, originating from Spain and Portugal, have become a beloved staple across Latin America and beyond. These savory pastries, typically filled with a variety of ingredients such as meats, cheeses, vegetables, and spices, offer a convenient and flavorful meal on the go. On the other hand, the Philly Cheesesteak, a legendary sandwich hailing from Philadelphia, boasts thinly sliced steak, melted cheese, and sautéed onions served on a hoagie roll. Combining the essence of these two culinary classics was nothing short of genius.

Cheesesteak Empanadas | Delish D'Lites

Being a girl who grew up in the Northeast, nothing says melty, cheesy and delicious like a good old Philly Cheesesteak. The cheesesteak made its official debut in 1930, when South Philadelphia hot dog vendor Pat Olivieri slapped some beef from the butcher onto his grill. A taxicab driver noticed the alluring aroma and asked for his own steak sandwich. The next day, as the story goes, rumor of the delicious lunch had spread, and cabbies around the city came to Olivieri demanding steak sandwiches. Soon thereafter, Olivieri opened up a shop on 9th Street and Passyunk Avenue, Pat’s King of Steaks, to sell his new creation. Eventually, according to legend, he added cheese to the recipe.

Cheesesteak Empanadas | Delish D'Lites

Today, Pat’s grills sizzle 24 hours a day, as does circa 1966 Geno’s, the rival shop across the street. For decades, the two family-run businesses have waged a friendly competition to win the title of best cheesesteak in town, with Geno’s late founder, Joe Vento, claiming it was he, not Olivieri, who first added cheese to the cheesesteak.

Cheesesteak Empanadas | Delish D'Lites

So, How could you possibly make a cheesesteak better? Make them into an cheeseteak empanadas, of course?!  I have a habit of doing that. Just check out these recipes for other wacky empanada flavors I’ve cooked up!

Philly Cheesesteak Empanadas represent the epitome of culinary fusion – a marriage of flavors and traditions that result in a truly unforgettable dining experience. Whether enjoyed as a snack, appetizer, or main course, these handheld delights are sure to satisfy cravings and ignite a passion for culinary experimentation. So, gather your ingredients, fire up your stove and prepare to embark on a flavor-filled journey with every bite of these irresistible empanadas.

Cheesesteak Empanadas | Delish D'Lites

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5 from 2 votes

Cheesesteak Empanadas

Course Appetizer
Cuisine Puerto Rican
Keyword cheesesteak
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 10
Author Delish D’Lites


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup red onion sliced into half moons
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper sliced into strips
  • 1 lb thinly sliced steak cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 5-6 slices American cheese
  • 1 packet frozen empanada discs defrosted
  • Canola oil for frying


  1. Heat a large saute pan on medium heart. Add 1 tablespoon of oil and the butter. Once the butter is melted, add the sliced peppers and onions. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and cook until tender but not browned, about 5-6 minutes.

  2. Add the sliced beef into the pan, season with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Saute the beef with the peppers and onions until the beef is no longer pink.

  3. Add the sliced cheese on top of the beef & veggies and stir until the cheese melts and coats the mixture. Set aside to cool

  4. Add 2-3 tablespoons of the cheesesteak mixture into the center of each empanada disc. Make sure to leave a border so you can seal it.

  5. Close up the empanada with a fork. Press down hard on both sides, you don't want this luscious filling oozing out during the frying process.

  6. Pour about an inch of canola oil into a frying pan, then heat to medium heat (350 degrees F).
  7. Fry the empanadas for 2-4 minutes per side, or until golden brown and crisp.
  8. Serve with ketchup, or my mayoketchup dipping sauce.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

Freeze uncooked empanadas by wrapping them individually in plastic wrap or wax paper, and stacking them into a freezer bag. Defrost overnight in the fridge before frying.

Philly Cheesesteak Empanadas


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I’m Jannese, Founder of Delish D’lites

I’m a Puerto Rican girl living in paradise (Florida), and the creative mind behind Delish D’Lites. I love sharing my family recipes and travel inspired cuisine! My favorite things include collecting passport stamps, twerking to Latin music, and kissing puppies. Follow along on social.