If You Have This in Your Freezer, Throw It Away Now, USDA Says

The authority warns that anyone with the food at home should not consume it.

When you want a quick meal, grabbing food from your freezer that you can quickly warm up is usually a far more appealing prospect than spending time at your stove waiting for ingredients to cook. Before you mine the recesses of your icebox searching for your next meal, however, you may want to double check your frozen food selection before you eat it. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is recommending that anyone with one particular food in their freezer throw it out immediately—read on to find out if you have this product at home.

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Two types of frozen empanadas have been recalled.

bag of frozen empanadas on cardboard box
Courtesy of USDA

On Sept. 13, the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced that approximately 3,768 pounds of frozen empanadas produced by Illinois-based SAS Foods Enterprises Inc. had been recalled.

The foods subject to the recall are 1-lb. resealable plastic bags or clear plastic containers labeled "SAS Food Empanadas de Pollo Chicken Patties" and 1-lb. resealable plastic bags or containers labeled "SAS Food Empanadas de Carne Beef Patties."

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The affected foods were shipped to five states.

person holding a white cardboard box atop other cardboard boxes in a factory
Shutterstock/Marcin Balcerzak

The recalled products were shipped to retailers in Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

The affected empanadas were produced on multiple dates between Jan. 1, 2020 and Sept. 11, 2021, and can be identified by establishment number EST. 38548 printed on the packaging.

The empanadas have falsified USDA inspection marks.

two food safety inspectors looking at papers on clip board
Shutterstock/Dusan Petkovic

While the empanadas may have a USDA mark of inspection on them, the FSIS denies that the products were ever inspected by the authority.

After receiving an anonymous tip, the USDA launched an investigation into SAS Foods Enterprises and discovered that the company did not have a link to establishment 38548, despite bearing their establishment number on the products' packaging.

If you have the empanadas at home, don't eat them.

person throwing away trash in kitchen trash can
Shutterstock/lunopark

If you purchased the recalled empanadas, the FSIS recommends either throwing them away or returning them to the store from which they were purchased. Customers can also contact SAS Foods administrator Stella Londono at (847) 275-1690 or sasfoodinc@hotmail.com with questions.

At the time the recall was announced, there had been no reports of illness or injury related to the consumption of the recalled empanadas. However, if you have eaten them and are experiencing symptoms that may be related to their consumption, notify a healthcare provider immediately.

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Sarah Crow
Sarah Crow is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, where she focuses on celebrity news and health coverage. Read more
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