Pinto Bean, Green Olive & Sweet Potato Turnovers


Vegan Pinto Bean Green Olive Turnovers by An Unrefined Vegan

I think I could eat one of these turnovers every day for lunch and be quite happy.  I’d be grinning like the Cheshire Cat day after day after day.  They have everything I love: beans, olives, sweet potato, smoky cumin and crust.  Especially crust.  I like to make a big batch and put half in the freezer.

Serve with salsa and/or cashew sour cream.  If you’re not into making your own dough, use vegan puff pastry.  Or go super simple and stuff whole wheat tortillas with the warm filling.

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Pinto Bean Green Olive Turnovers An Unrefined Vegan


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Pinto Bean, Green Olive & Sweet Potato Turnovers

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  • Author: Annie
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 60
  • Yield: 6 1x


Garlicky pinto beans, sweet potatoes, and green chilies are lovingly wrapped in a spicy crust and baked until golden.




  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
  • 1/4 tsp. cumin
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (do not melt)
  • 1/2 cup vegan shortening (I use Earth Balance)
  • ~6 Tbsp. ice cold water


  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 16-ounce can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup cooked sweet potato (I roasted mine)
  • 1 4-ounce can green chiles
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. chipotle chili powder
  • 1/8 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/2 cup green olives, chopped
  • salt & pepper, to taste


Make the crust

  1. In a food processor, combine the flours, salt and cumin. Pulse a few times. Add the coconut oil and shortening and process until you get a fine-chunky mixture. With the processor on, slowly pour in the water and process until the dough gathers in a ball.
  2. Remove and knead a few times then divide the dough in half and cover each portion with plastic wrap and chill until firm.

Make the filling

  1. In a large bowl, lightly mash the pinto beans and the sweet potato. Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
  2. Set aside until ready to assemble the turnovers. I made the filling a day ahead and kept it in the refrigerator.

Assemble the turnovers

  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment and preheat the oven to 350-degrees.
  2. Working with one piece of dough at a time, roll out onto a lightly floured surface and cut into rounds – I used a small saucer and got three rounds per piece of dough. Probably one could get more, but I only like to re-roll the dough once. Place the rounds on the prepared baking sheets.
  3. Scoop up a couple of tablespoons of the filling and place off-center on a dough round. Brush the edge with water and carefully fold one side of the dough over the other; crimp with a fork and then prick a few holes in the tops of the turnovers. Proceed with remaining rounds. If desired, lightly brush the turnovers with nut milk. There will be leftover filling – time to get creative.
  4. Bake the turnovers for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately or allow to cool, wrap well and store in the freezer for later.


  • Serving Size: 6
  • Calories: 514
  • Sugar: 4
  • Sodium: 324
  • Fat: 29
  • Saturated Fat: 13
  • Unsaturated Fat: 15
  • Trans Fat: 2
  • Carbohydrates: 55
  • Protein: 10
  • Cholesterol: 0


Pinto Bean Green Olive Turnovers An Unrefined Vegan

Pinto Bean Green Olive Turnovers An Unrefined Vegan

45 thoughts on “Pinto Bean, Green Olive & Sweet Potato Turnovers

  1. Lou

    I think I would like a HUGE bowl of that filling and a spoon, thankyouverymuch – it sounds magical…. maybe even scooped up with corn chips!?! Yummo!

  2. tearoomdelights

    These look very satisfying and I love the addition of olives in the filing. I like the idea of putting cumin in the crust, too. I think I could also easily eat one of these for lunch every day.

  3. jenniferwhetham

    Ooooooohhhhhh . . . Ann! You’ve said (written) a mouthful! Yes– I could happily eat these every day as well!

    I have this vivid memory, during my meat-eating days, of a meal at a vegetarian restaurant in Bellingham, WA– Three Sisters, I think. Anyway, this is more than a decade ago . . . But I had sweet potato empanadas with a blue cornmeal crust. So. Good. I tried to replicate that dish for years afterwards.

    This recipe makes me want to try again!

    I would love to eat a real meal with you, Ann. Is that creepy? Probably.

    Anyway, thank you so much for this beautiful post and exciting recipe!



    1. An Unrefined Vegan

      I love empanadas! Well, anything surrounded by crust. You ought to give another go at replicating that delicious empanada of your memory. Blue cornmeal sounds fantastic!

      Not creepy at all!! That was the whole idea behind the Virtual Vegan Potluck! I wanted to sit down and have a huge, crazy meal w/ the bloggers I’ve met.

  4. Brittany

    I LOVE crust. Thick and crunchy. I can just see the crunch on these bad boys. They sound amazing, and I would be over every day eating these with you!

  5. narf77

    We call these sorts of things “pasties” here in Australia :). Those (whatever they are) look amazing! I haven’t eaten pastry in ages and those babies are calling me like crazy. Every ingredient in these pasties/turnovers has me right in the palm of their hands. I am starting to think that you are a vegan food alchemist girl and you hit that precious recipe for gold time after time :). Its no WONDER this is one of my very favourite “never miss” blogs. Cheers for this gorgeousness and for something that Brunhilda (our wood burning stove) can get her teeth into cooking with abandon 🙂 I just KNOW these babies are going to smell amazing when they are cooking 🙂

  6. Eileen

    These little turnovers sound amazing! I definitely like the idea of putting half the batch in the freezer for future application–in fact, I might even make a double batch just for the freezer supply!

  7. Somer

    Those are unreal little parcels of goodness! And do I spy some dehydrator corn chips? Too bad my sriracha and olive salsa isn’t raw 🙁

  8. Angela @ Canned Time

    As much as I Love sweet potatoes, (my dinner of choice when I’m tired and alone) I can picture these with Guac instead of the potato? Or maybe I’ll just make both so I don’t have to choose 🙂
    The extra special news today? I got a brand spankin new Belgian Waffle maker, Hurray!!!
    Red Velvet waffles here I come….wondering about Somer’s salsa now. Is it on her site?

  9. Richgail Enriquez

    Ooo yum. I love turnovers. I’m still a little intimidated with baking but I would love to give this one a try.

  10. Shira

    A cumin crust? Just kill me now! My fave spice in the world by far and I can only imagine it spicing up a delicious turnover crust. Fantastic Annie! These look brilliant. xo from HI!!

  11. biggsis

    Don’t know how I missed this email – so glad I found it. This sounds really incredible. The pastry dough is also very inventive. Can’t wait to try with and without crust 😉

  12. Celine Bag

    These look very satisfying and I love the addition of olives in the filing. I like the idea of putting cumin in the crust, too. I think I could also easily eat one of these for lunch every day.

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