Salta is renowned for churning out some of the best empanadas in South America. Packed full of delicious fillings like beef, chicken, ham and cheese, llama jerky or even seafood, there are enough of these delectable savory delights to keep travelers happily munching away, day after day. Here are Culture Trip’s picks for the 10 best empanada joints in the city.
This huge empanada mega-market is testimony to just how popular the sacred pastry has become. Lined by multiple stalls whose vendors hustle for attention, the ever-popular patio is full of tourists and locals chowing down on huge servings, accompanied by crisp Torrontés wine.
Most people come here for the big juicy steaks, homemade pastas or scrumptious desserts, but unbeknownst to many they also serve up some of the best empanadas in town. Although a little pricier than elsewhere, this is money well spent.
Right opposite the landmark San Francisco Church, this tiny little empanda bar is popular for its bite-sized beef plus ham and cheese empanadas. Their spicy tomato sauce has a real kick so be sure to wash them down with an ice cold beer.
Restaurant, Argentina, South American, Vegetarian, $$$
A longtime favorite with both locals and tourists alike, this empanada institution is a winner for their perfectly soft bases which are just thick enough to contain the mouth-watering meaty fillings. Although they offer numerous main courses, it’s the empanadas who are the star of the show.
Bakery, Restaurant, South American, Argentina, $$$
Doña’s is a bright, guacho themed restaurant that gets packed out with locals later in the evening. Although not exactly pretentious, it is more upmarket than most empanada places on our list. Nevertheless, every pastry is lovingly baked in a wood-fired oven, with their incredible charqui (beef jerky) being our pick.
For a larger, more visually appealing empanada, look no further than El Buen Gusto. These huge, perfectly symmetrical pastries taste as good as they look, particularly the beef and cheese varieties. The restaurant is a fair way from the center which makes for an authentic off-the-beaten-track empanada eating experience.
You could be forgiven for thinking you’re at the wrong place upon arriving here because this empanada restaurant is literally in a residential home. But knock on the front door (during their mysterious opening hours) and you’ll be greeted by a warm local lady who cooks up some incredible home-made baked delights.
Bakery, Cafe, Restaurant, South American, Argentina, Coffee
An old time local favorite, Tobías has recently moved off the main plaza to just a block away on Caseros. Sporting a new modern decor, the popular café still pumps out the same top quality baked and fried empanadas, which are best accompanied by their excellent selection of coffee and juices.
This hip and modern café is a pleasant place to wile away the afternoon thanks to free WiFi and all the usual coffee shop goodies. Try their delectable llama chaqui empanadas, arguably the best in the city.
Bakery, Bar, Restaurant, South American, Argentina, $$$
A trip to Salta wouldn’t be complete without a night in a peña, a local entertainment venue where folk music and dancing reigns supreme. La Casona del Molino is the most authentic peña in town and their amazing baked empanadas have pretty much reached legendary status.