Pineapple Empanadas

In my humble opinion, pastries are some of the best things to grace the face of this fine Earth. They are mana from heaven. A food of the Gods. And these homemade, pineapple empanadas are no exception.

They are delicious. A soft, mildly sweet and tart dough wrapped around a delectably sweet filling. It will fill your soul with happiness.

These dessert empanadas have been a favorite since I was a child. I’ve adapted my family recipe to be gluten free and dairy free and they are just as good if not better than the original recipe.

Pineapple Empanadas

Amazing Pineapple Empanadas that are also Gluten free and Dairy free
Prep Time1 hr
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: dairy free, gluten free, sweet empanadas
Servings: 24
Author: Daddy


Pineapple Filling

  • 20 oz Crushed Pineapple
  • 3/4 c Cane sugar

The Dough

  • 8 oz Cream cheese dairy free
  • 1/2 c Butter dairy free
  • 1/4 c Cane sugar
  • 1 1/2 c Gluten free flour (or white flour) Pillsburry Gluten Free mix works well
  • 1/4 c Almond flour


Pineapple Filling

  • Combine pineapple and the 3/4 c of sugar in a frying pan or pot, and heat on the stove until it starts to boil.
  • Turn down heat and let it simmer, stirring often, until it is thick like jam, about 20 minutes.
    Pineapple Jam

Empanada Dough

  • In a stand mixer, use a paddle attachment to cream together ½ cup of butter and 8 ounces of cream cheese. I use dairy free options for both of these ingredients, but dairy options are fine.
  • Once creamed together, add ¼ cup sugar, 1 ½ cups Gluten free flour, and ¼ cup almond flour. Mix together in the mixer until just combined. The dough should be nice and moist, but not too sticky. If it is too dry add a little bit of milk.
  • Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Use a rolling pin to roll out the prepared dough into a large rectangle about 1/8 inch thick. Flour the roller and place plastic wrap under the dough to prevent sticking, if needed.
    Gluten free empanada dough
  • Preheat an oven to 375° F
  • When rolled out to size, use a circular cookie cutter to cut out individual circles of dough (at least 3 inches in diameter). Roll up the scraps into a ball and repeat the process until all the dough is used.
  • Next, to form an empanada, take a dough circle and place no more than 1/2 tablespoon of pineapple filling in the center. Depending on the size of your dough circles you may need to use more or less filling, but too much filling will prevent the dough from folding over cleanly without breaking.
  • Carefully fold the dough over the filling to make a half-moon. Pinch or press the edges to help seal the dough. If necessary, wet the tip of a fork with water and press down across the edge for a stronger seal and nice finish. If the dough cracks on the back of the fold, gently press it together to mend any breaks.
  • Place each prepared empanada about 1 inch apart onto the baking sheet.
  • Once all the empanadas are assembled, in a small container beat an egg with a fork. Use a pastry brush to paint a thin layer of egg wash onto each empanada. Sprinkle lightly with sugar, if desired.
  • Bake in an oven for 10-14 minutes. They are ready when lightly browned on top.



  • For the filling, any thick fruit filling can be used as long as it is not too runny
  • The 1/4 c almond flour is not required. You can use another gluten free flour instead.
  • Gluten free dough might want to crack on the back of the fold. Make sure the dough is not too dry or try putting less filling. Gently press the dough together to mend any breaks.
  • If the seal is not holding, brush a little egg wash on the edge of the dough before you fold it to help it stick better

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