Esfihas Recipe

Esfijas istock

This esfihas recipe is very easy to make and is a great appetizer or light meal. I used puff pastry but you can easily use empanada dough if you prefer.

Typically these little meat pies are made with ground lamb but they can also be made with ground beef. These are made with beef.

Perhaps the biggest secret for this esfihas recipe is that you use a lot of Kefir cheese so they are moist. They tend to dry up in the oven so make sure you are generous.

Here is what you will need to do for these delicious and easy esfihas recipe:

Makes ten esfijas
1½ pounds ground beef
1 medium white onion – finely chopped
1 cup chopped mint leaves
½ cup Kefir cheese or Greek style thick plain yogurt
10 5×5 puff pastry squares
1 egg, lightly beaten
Salt & Pepper

Season ground beef with salt and pepper. Brown. Drain.

Wipe skillet clean. Coat with a thin layer of olive oil. Add onion and cook for 3 to 4 minutes until translucent.
Return the meat and mix well. Cook for an additional 4 to 5 minutes.

Add the Kefir cheese. Mix well. Add the mint. Turn heat off. Mix well.

Place your pastry puff squares on a cutting board. Rotate it so it looks a diamond. Add a spoonful of filling to the middle. Grab the left and right ends and press together in the middle.

Bring up the other two ends and press together in the middle as well. Seal all edges well. Make a small knot in the middle.

Place the esfihas on a lined baking pan. Brush esfihas with beaten egg. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until puffed and browned. Serve with extra Kefir cheese or Greek yogurt. Enjoy!

CALORIES 374.62; FAT 24.73 grs (sat 11.39; mono 9.46; poly 2.00); PROTEIN 16.48 grs ; FIBER 0.55 grs; CARBS 23.11 grs; CHOLESTEROL 75.80 mg; IRON 1.90 mg; SODIUM 437.31 mg; CALCIUM 54.99 mg

Print the Esfihas Recipe Here!

My name is Mary Ann Allen and I am here to help you get organized so you can save money on groceries and feed your family healthy, nutritious food. My multi-cultural cooking background comes from being born in the US and raised in Bolivia. I have 5 kids and own around 400 cook books. I absolutely love to cook!


  • March 29, 2009

    Jay (you know who i am)

    Gee Mary Ann … I saved so much money on my Esfijas … AND my car insurance!! We loooooove youuuuu mamaciiita!!

    Escrito por tu querida hija y su chico roquero.

  • April 9, 2014

    Traci Ann

    Thank you for your video… Your meat pies look wonderful and I’m anxious to try them. I really love lamb so I may do them with lamb… The only thing for me is to find “Puff Pastry” reasonable priced because it’s pretty expensive in comparison to making dough.. I also have a question, do you season with any special seasonings.

  • April 9, 2014


    Hi Traci!
    Thank you for stopping by! You do not need to add anymore seasonings to this. The mint and yogurt or Kefir cheese is plenty. As for the dough try this one out – It will work wonderfully! I hope these come out perfect for you! Thanks again!
    Mary Ann

  • April 9, 2014

    Traci Ann

    I just finished making these.. 🙂 I could not find Puff Pastry at the store I went to and decided to buy Grande biscuits which I rolled out flat; I think the fat content would be around the same, with a difference in texture. I would like to try the Puff Pastry next time… Thank you so much for your recipe!

  • April 10, 2014


    You are so welcome! I hope you guys loved them as much as we do! Thanks for giving them a try!
    Mary Ann

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