Spicy Beef Turnovers

Spicy Beef Turnovers

We’ve been loving the idea of ready-to-eat “packet meals” on our day hikes or first day of backpacking trips. These are quick and easy to prepare at home, and take away all the prep time needed for your trail lunch. If you’re trying to make the most of a quick weekend before the snows come, this will help you spend less time cookin’ with your hands so you can spend more time cookin’ on your feet!

These are delicious and spicy. Taco meat and puff pastry- what could be better? Just don’t forget the hot sauce! (I learned my lesson on this trip).

Arrow Peak Talus Field
Arrow Peak

Spicy Beef Turnovers

Taco Turnovers


8 turnovers

Prep Time / Cook Time


Activity Guide

Backpacking, Day Trip


  • 2 sheets puff pastry, thawed in the fridge overnight
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 bell peppers, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 cup taco seasoning
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes


  • Cast iron skillet
  • Cutting board
  • Fork
  • Knife
  • Rolling pin
  • Small bowl
  • Stove
  • 2 Baking sheets
  • Oven


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Saute onions in olive oil over medium-high heat, until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add peppers and saute until slightly softened, another 2-3 minutes.
  4. Set veggies aside. In the same skillet, add ground beef and brown, about 10 minutes. Drain the fat and add it back to the skillet. (Use more olive oil if using veggie ground beef, but you don’t have to drain it).
  5. Add taco seasoning and water, and simmer for about 2 minutes. Add back in the veggies and mix to combine.
  6. Roll out 1 sheet of puff pastry on a greased baking sheet and slice into 4 squares. Place 1 heaping spoonful of meat filling in the center of each square. Fold the square over, corner to corner creating a triangle, and, using a fork, press the edges together. Do the same thing with the other sheet of puff pastry.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes, until turnovers are puffed and browned.  Wrap in foil and pack for your trip.

6 thoughts on “Spicy Beef Turnovers

  1. Hi there! It is so nice to have a picnic section when hiking. So relax and free from busy city life. Your taco recipe sounds so yummy! haha.. Gonna have a try on it later. Thanks for the great recipe and the photos sharing here.

  2. Hi. I don’t understand direction #6. Do you have pictures anywhere? Does the meat filling go on each square or in the middle of the 4 squares. You say to do this with both sheets of puff pastry..where does the other sheet come in? So sorry this is the last meal I need to make after making a weeks worth in the dehydrater. Off to do the west coast trail this week☺

    1. @Brenda, sorry for the confusion. The meat filling goes in the center of each square. These become small hand-sized pies. The recipe makes enough for 8 turnovers, which is why it calls for 2 sheets of puff pastry. You only need 1/4 of one sheet to make one turnover. One serving is 2-3 of them, and most store-bought puff pastry comes in a package of 2, so I wanted you to be able to use it all up. Have a great trip!

  3. I am wondering about using meat due to spoilage concerns. Probably eat on day 1? Or do you think they can make it to day 2? For reference, we’ll be camping in the North Cascades and the day temp probably won’t get above 70. Thoughts?

    1. @Debbie, yes- meat can be an issue in the backcountry, which is why we usually stick to a vegetarian diet out there. I’d play it safe and eat these on day 1, spending the least amount of time in the danger zone as possible. You could also try making these with veggie beef if you want to push the time a bit more. We’ve done this and the turnovers come out equally delicious.

  4. Are these something that could be made and frozen, and then defrosted in your pack while hiking? My husband and I are going on our first overnight hiking trip, and we don’t have a backpacking stove. But I didn’t want to have to resort to bars and wraps during the whole thing. Do you think this would get too mushy from being frozen?

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