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Best Empanadas 

Mamma Llama's Gourmet Empanadas

Readers Pick

Empanadas have been a Southwestern/Mexican delight since before Arizona was a territory. A combination breakfast/dessert pastry, these fruit-filled gems have long been a staple of the informal breakfast meeting around here, easily outclassing the doughnut. That's why it's nothing short of amazing that two blonde gringas have redefined the notion of what an empanada can be by taking the pastries in a savory direction. They fill them with spicy beef; artichoke and green chile; Caribbean chicken; spinach and black olives; and even wild Alaskan salmon—and these suckers are a meal unto themselves. Although you can buy them in Mamma Llama's quaint storefront, at local farmers' markets, or even frozen at the store, it's Mamma Llama's ability to fully cater a luncheon, conference or rehearsal dinner that's most impressive.

Runners up:

2. La Estrella Bakery

5266 S. 12th Ave.

741-0656

3. Le Cave's

1219 S. Sixth Ave.

624-2561

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