Edible Insect Recipes: Balsamic Cricket Empanadas

Aug. 4, 2019
Aug. 14, 2019

May contain affiliate links.

Balsamic Cricket Empanadas

Total: 1 hr; Serves 4


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cricket powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup whole milk


  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons cricket powder
  • 3 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 2 cups (6 oz) sliced shallots; about 7-8 shallots
  • 2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups (4 oz) grated fontina or swiss cheese
  • 1 egg white; whisked


1. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, 3 tablespoons of cricket powder, and salt. Mix milk and butter together, and add to flour mixture. Add butter, and at this point, start to knead firmly with your hands. Set aside, covered and refrigerated, while you make the filling.

2. Heat butter in a saucepan over medium, to melt. Add mushrooms and shallots, and cook until halfway tender, about 5-10 minutes, stirring often. Using a slotted spoon, remove mushrooms and shallots, and set aside in a heat-safe container, preserving moisture in pan. Add balsamic vinegar and cricket powder, and whisk constantly, to make a sauce, cooking for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and pour sauce over mushroom and shallot mixture, and mix thoroughly. Allow to cool, until it can be touched with your bare hands.

3. Grab a small clump of dough and roll in into a ball. Flatten with a roller until it is thin, but not so thin it will fall apart when you lift or fold it. Press a clean coffee mug on it, upside down, and peel extra dough, so you have a circle. Spoon in filling, enough so it will be a full, juicy, and delicious empanada, but not so full that you will be unable to close the dough. You may burst a few empanadas when trying to close them at first, but you will get the hang of it. Fill it a little more than the picture below.

4. In a small bowl, crack an egg, separate the yolk, and discard yolk. Fold the empanada over, but don't fold it exactly in half; leave a small lip on the bottom layer of the empanada. Using a basting brush or your fingers, spread a little bit of egg whites over the lip, to help them seal better, and prevent the filling from leaking while the empanadas bake.

5. Fold the lip over itself and either squeeze with your fingers, or mash with a fork, to seal the dough. When you have sealed all of the empanadas, take the remaining egg whites and lightly brush it over the top of empanadas. This will make them come out nice and golden. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

6. Preheat the oven to 400°F/204°C and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until empanadas are a beautiful golden color. Remove from the oven and allow to cool only slightly; serve warm and melty.

This entomophagy recipe is included in Bugs for Beginners, a cookbook which teaches Westerners how to prepare edible insects and safely eat a bug. Text may include affiliate links

Meet Mic

I'm Mic. I love reading about, writing about, thinking about, photographing, and especially eating, food. Especially bug food. Enough talk, let's eat!

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