These dark chocolate chicken mole empanadas are full of rich mole sauce and shredded chicken, baked in a fluffy puff pastry shell, and are the perfect appetizer or meal.
This post sponsored by Forte Chocolates. The recipe and opinions expressed here are my own.
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Chicken Empanadas with Mole
Have you ever had Mole Sauce? If not, you are totally missing out!
That amazingly complex sauce is great with chicken, beef, or shrimp. In this recipe, I show you how to make a quicker version that is just as tasty, and how to use it in these tasty appetizers.
Now, these Dark Chocolate Mole Empanadas are meant to be a quick and easy appetizer that you can throw together with the help of puff pastry and pre-cooked chicken but the mole is the star!
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What is Mole Sauce?
What is Mole? It is a sauce of Mexican origin that usually takes hours to make with 20+ ingredients.
Who has time for that? You can buy mole in a jar in the specialty foods aisle of your grocery store but why buy it when you can make it from scratch in less than 20 minutes?
This mole recipe makes 4 cups, but the empanadas only use 1.5 cups so you can save the extra in the freezer for a quick weeknight meal. Or make this mole now for use in the empanadas next weekend.
My recipe for Mole starts with ancho chili peppers and a guajillo thrown in for a little spice. The Ancho chili peppers have a rich and chocolatey taste to them which makes them perfect for Mole sauce.
Dried Chilies – This recipe uses ancho and guajillo peppers. You can find them in the international aisle of your grocery store. You will rehydrate them in hot water and then remove the seeds and stems before using.
Tortillas – Use corn tortillas for this recipe. And I recommend frying or toasting them in a hot dry pan before adding to the sauce.
Peanut Butter – Creamy peanut butter works best in this sauce.
Spices – Cumin and oregano, along with salt and pepper are all you need for this.
Chicken – Use precooked shredded chicken. I like to grab a rotisserie chicken from the deli or you can cook your own chicken, shred it, and keep it stored until ready to use.
Puff Pastry – Be sure to thaw the sheets before trying to unfold and cut into circles. You can also use homemade empanada dough.
How to make chicken empanadas
ONE: Make the mole sauce by hydrating the dried chilies. Sweat some onion and garlic in olive oil in a pan. Add them to the chilies along with tortillas in a blender. Add the remaining sauce ingredients and blend. Simmer to thicken.
TWO: Prepare the empanadas by cutting 6 circles from each sheet of puff pastry. Preheat the oven to 425F.
THREE: Add 1.5 cups mole sauce to the shredded chicken. Place 1 – 1.5 tablespoons chicken mole mixture in the center of the puff pastry disc. Fold and crimp with a fork. Brush with egg wash.
FOUR: Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and enjoy warm.
For the full recipe and detailed instructions, please refer to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.
Can you use chocolate in a savory recipe?
If you think using chocolate in a spicy sauce is weird, don’t fret! I used to think the same thing but this is where chemistry comes into play.
Chocolate actually enhances and brings out the flavors of spicy foods which is why I throw an ounce or two in my chili when I make it. The same thing happens with chili peppers to chocolate sweets.
If you sprinkle a pinch of cayenne pepper in your brownies or chocolate cake, it will bring out the flavors of the chocolate and make it more intense.
So don’t worry about putting chocolate in this savory sauce because it will all make sense once it hits your mouth.
Another ingredient that seems weird is peanut butter. Some mole recipes use a lot of peanut butter, which I like but I don’t want it to taste like Pad Thai or peanut satay sauce. I just want to enhance the flavors of the chilies.
How to make Mole Sauce
Start with rehydrating your dried chilies in hot water. Then tossing them in a blender once you take the stems and seeds out. Toss in some baked or fried tortillas to thicken the sauce a bit. Saute onions and garlic are then added along with some chicken stock, that tiny bit of peanut butter, and some spices.
Blend it until it’s a smooth consistency. Return it to the pan and let it simmer and the flavors meld. Once the Mole simmers, toss in the chocolate and let it go a little bit more.
I chose this Forte Dark Chocolate for its rich flavor. It melts flawlessly and enhances the Mole perfectly!
Forte Chocolate’s motto is “Celebrate Life Through Chocolate.” What can be better than celebrating life with family, friends, and great food made with chocolate?
Now that you have your sauce, it’s time for the empanadas.
Grab the puff pastry that you have in the fridge and unfold the sheets and cut each sheet into 6 squares or circles for prettier empanadas.
Mix your Mole with some already cooked, shredded chicken. Place a tablespoon of the chicken mole mixture in the middle of the puff pastry circle.
Fold over and crimp the edges shut. Brush with an egg wash and bake for 20 mins.
Serve with a spicy jalapeño ranch dipping sauce!
If you love this recipe as much as I do, please write a five-star review in the comment section below (or on Pinterest with the “tried it” button – you can now add pictures into reviews, too!), and be sure to help me share on facebook!
More Empanada Recipes
- 3 dried ancho chiles
- 1 dried guajillo chile
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 3 corn tortillas fried, torn into pieces
- 1 medium onion (diced small)
- 2 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp oregano
- 3 ounces Forte Dark Chocolate
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cup shredded chicken
- 1 egg
- 1 cup mole sauce
- 2 sheets puff pastry
Make the Mole
- In a microwave safe bowl place chiles and cover with water.
- Microwave on high for 3 minutes.
- Drain, remove stem and seeds and add to blender.
- Break tortillas into pieces and place in blender.
- In a large saucepan over medium-high meat add 2 tbsp olive oil.
- Add onion and a pinch of salt.
- Cook until soft, about 4 minutes.
- Add garlic and cook another 2 minutes, being careful not to overcook the garlic.
- In a blender with tortillas and chiles add onion, garlic, peanut butter, chicken stock, cumin, and oregano.
- Blend until smooth.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Return blended mix to a large saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes on medium high.
- Reduce heat and add chocolate.
- Cover and simmer 10 minutes.
- Allow to cool and store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Make the Empanadas
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Grab the puff pastry that you have in the fridge and unfold the sheets and cut each sheet into 6 squares or circles for prettier empanadas.
- Mix your Mole with some already cooked, shredded chicken.
- Place a tablespoon of the chicken mole mixture in the middle of the puff pastry circle.
- Fold over and crimp the edges shut.
- Brush with an egg wash and bake for 20 mins.
*If you love this recipe as much as I do, please leave me a comment and rate it 5 stars. Thank you!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 171Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 172mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 10g
This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided.
Check out all the other #Choctoberfest recipes posting today!
Mole recipe inspired by this one:
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