An American Story

The history of grilling at Kingsford is a classic American story. It all started in 1919 when Edward G. Kingsford helped Henry Ford procure a stretch of timberland to supply wood for his auto plants.

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Kingsford® Preserve the Pit

Kingsford remains committed to celebrating Black barbecue culture by launching the second year of Preserve the Pit and doubling the investment in aspiring barbecue professionals.

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American Pride

An American-made company founded over 100 years ago, Kingsford has a lot to be proud of. Our employees have been continuing the family tradition in backyards across the nation.

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Colombiano Picadillo Empanadas

There’s no denying the best empanadas are made from scratch. Try these fresh empanadas filled with ground beef and Yukon Gold potatoes and served with a delicious Aji Verde sauce.

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Cooking for 6 people



  • .05 lb. Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 3 cup water
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp. ground annatto
  • 1 tsp. ground Comino
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. paprika


  • 2 cup corn flour
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • .05 tsp. annatto
  • .05 tsp. Comino
  • .05 tsp. granulated garlic
  • 1.75 cup hot water

Aji verde

  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 2 scallions
  • 1 Serrano pepper
  • 0.3 cup vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

1 Food Prep

Combine the corn flour, water, salt and spices together in a mixing bowl. Start off with 1 ½ cups of water and add more if needed.

Once combined, knead your dough until it’s smooth and slightly moist. If your dough isn’t moist, add water. Dough that’s too dry will break when you form the empanadas.

Place your dough in a resealable plastic bag when finished.

For your Aji Verde, place your sauce ingredients together in a food processor or high-speed blender. Process until mostly smooth (you will still have some green specks). Season to taste with additional salt if needed and set aside.

On your stovetop, bring 3 cups of water to a boil and add your potatoes. Boil your potatoes for 10–15 min and add a bit of salt. Once boiled, remove your potatoes from the water and set aside.

2 Grill Prep

Fuel: We recommend Kingsford® Original Charcoal Briquets

Method: Direct-Heat Grilling

Temp: 400°F (Medium Heat)

3 The Cook

  • Heat your cast iron skillet on the grill with 2 tbsp. of oil. Add your garlic cloves and diced onion and cook for 3 minutes. Then, add your ground beef and spices. Cook your ground beef for about 10 minutes, using a spoon to break the meat apart until it reaches an internal temperature of 160ºF.

  • Add your potatoes to your skillet and mix together, breaking up the potatoes. Remove your mixture from the pan into a mixing bowl.
  • Next, heat up your vegetable oil to 350-375°F in a grill-safe pot.

  • Make a dough ball that’s about the size of a golf ball. Place the dough ball between 2 sheets of plastic wrap. You can even use a resealable plastic bag cut into two squares.

  • Press the dough ball down with your hand until it’s about ¼” thick and 3” in diameter. Then, gently remove your dough from the plastic and cradle it in your hand to add the filling.

  • Add 2–3 tsp. of filling and seal the empanada by pressing the tong tips of a fork along the entire edge. Creating a uniform seal will ensure your empanadas don’t open while they’re cooking in the oil. 

  • Fry your empanadas in your vegetable oil heated to 375º F for 1–2 minutes or until golden brown. Once fried, place your empanadas on a paper towel to drain. 

  • Serve your empanadas with Aji Verde and enjoy!

Recipe created by Miguel Vidal, owner of Valentina’s Tex Mex BBQ, on behalf of Kingsford® Charcoal.

For safe meat preparation, reference the USDA website.

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