Trader Joe's Shoppers Are So Excited For Its New Gluten-Free Empanadas

If you love empanadas but want to cut down on your carbs consumption, or if you have a gluten intolerance yet have always wanted to try the turnover, Trader Joe's has just the product for you. According to @TraderJoesList on Instagram, you can now find gluten-free empanadas in the frozen section at your local Trader Joe's.

Bon Appetit reports that empanadas are made with a flour-based dough and are typically filled with ground beef. The Trader Joe's gluten-free empanadas, on the other hand, are made with a cassava crust instead. And instead of ground beef inside, these empanadas are filled with ricotta cheese, mozzarella cheese, caramelized onions, and spinach; so not only are they gluten-free, they're also vegetarian.

Each package comes with two empanadas that can either be baked in the oven or the air fryer, but for best results, @TraderJoesList recommends going the air-fryer route and serving the empanadas with bomba sauce.

Trader Joe's gluten-free empanadas are just Dominican cativias

This isn't the first time Trader Joe's has sold frozen empanadas. Back in September 2020, the grocery store tried to sell pumpkin empanadas, but the product wasn't well-received at all. MyRecipes reports it neither worked as a sweet dessert nor a savory appetizer, and Club Trader Joe's went so far as to say it couldn't be considered an empanada at all, even if sold during pumpkin spice season.

While pumpkin apparently doesn't work in empanadas, cassava most certainly does. In fact, in the Dominican Republic, it's common to make empanadas with cassava, and they're actually a well-known street food called cativias. Dominican Cooking shares that the dough is made with cassava flour, water, and oil, and if you look closely at the product label shared on @TraderJoesList, the ingredients are exactly the same.

Trader Joe's, therefore, didn't invent their own gluten-free flour; however, they clearly took notes from Dominican cuisine, and the resulting gluten-free empanadas are leaving customers pretty satisfied.