Sunday, October 30, 2022

Halloween hand pies

This is a sponsored post by Challenge butter, but the text and opinions are all mine. Thank you for supporting brands that make Kylee's Kitchen possible! 

I'm talking about hand pies two ways today with both a savory and sweet option. A hand pie is essentially just a mini pie that you can hold in your hand. You can make it with puff pastry or pie dough. The filling can be a homemade pie filling, or you can use store-bought ingredients to make a delicious treat.

Since we're celebrating Halloween, I thought it would be fun to make hand pies in a super literal sense—pies with eyes (I wanted to spell it p-eyes, but I didn't think it would make sense) and pies shaped like hands!

You can use any type of filling, puff pastry, pie dough that you want. It's kind of like a "choose your own adventure" book. I like to buy my puff pastry and make my pie dough. Trader Joe's carries the best puff pastry, hands down (that's a Halloween hand pie joke)! It's seasonal, and they only carry it in the fall leading up to Christmas. So stock up while you can!

If you make the pie dough, it’s important to use good quality butter. It makes a tremendous difference in your final product. I use Challenge European Style Butter when I make pie dough. It’s churned slower and longer, in the tradition of fine European butters, to produce a more flavorful butter with less moisture and higher butterfat. 

A few more tips:

It's important to roll the pie dough out to 1/8-inch thick. If it’s too thick, the crust will be gummy and chewy, not flaky.

If you're using a fruit filling, you need to make a mealy pie crust. This means the butter pieces in the dough are the size of peas. Mealy pie dough is best for fruit pies because it is good at repelling moisture from liquid fillings. If your filling isn't very juicy, you can make a flaky pie crust. This means the butter pieces in the dough are the size of walnut halves.

Spinach artichoke hand pies

Yield: Makes 3 pies

Time: 1 hour


  • 1 sheet puff pastry
  • 3 slices prosciutto
  • 1/2 cup spinach artichoke dip
  • 3 green olives with pimentos, cut in half
  • Egg wash (1 egg mixed with 1 Tablespoon water)


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Use circle cookie cutter or jar lid to create 6 large circles on puff pastry. Use end of piping tip or other small circle cutter to create 6 small circles. Fold 3 of the small circles in half.
  3. Place 3 large circles on baking sheet and brush egg wash around the edge. 
  4. Top each large circle with 1 piece prosciutto and add about 2 Tablespoons spinach artichoke dip on top of prosciutto.
  5. Cover with large circle and seal the edge using fork prongs.
  6. Add 1 small circle to center of hand pie. Place half green olive on top. Place folded small circle partly over olive so it looks like an eyelid. 
  7. Brush the pies with egg wash.
  8. Place in oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until puff pastry is golden brown.
  9. Remove from oven and serve.
  10. Refrigerate leftover pies and eat within 3 days.

Warm-spiced cherry hand pies

Yield: Makes 2 hand pies

Time: About 90 minutes


For the filling

  • 1 cup cherries (thawed if frozen)
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon Grand Marnier
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice

For the dough

  • 113 grams (8 tablespoons or 1 stick) Challenge European Style Unsalted Butter
  • 150 grams (1 1/4) cups all-purpose flour
  • 13 grams (1 Tablespoon) granulated sugar
  • 1 gram (1/4 teaspoon) kosher salt
  • 60 grams (1/4 cup ice water)
  • Egg wash (1 egg mixed with 1 Tablespoon water)
  • Optional: 1 Tablespoon cherry jam, 10 almond slices


For the filling

  1. Mix together all ingredients and set aside.

For the dough

  1. Cut butter into 1/2-inch cubes. Place in freezer for at least 20 minutes or until very cold.
  2. In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt.
  3. Cut butter into flour mixture with pastry blender or food processor until butter is pea-sized.
  4. Make well in flour mixture and add water.
  5. Mix to create shaggy mixture then knead to form dough. If dough is too dry, add up to 2 Tablespoons additional ice water.
  6. Form dough into flat disc and wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 days.
  7. Once dough is chilled, preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  8. Roll dough out on floured surface to 1/8-inch thick.
  9. Trace hand on wax paper or parchment paper and cut out with scissors. This will be your stencil.
  10. Place paper hand on pie dough and cut out with knife. Continue three more times so you have a total of 4 hands, gathering and re-rolling dough if necessary.
  11. Place 2 dough hands on baking sheet. Brush edges with egg wash.
  12. Put 1/4 to 1/2 cup cherry filling in center of each palm.
  13. Place a second hand on top of each of the hands. Use a fork to crimp the edges.
  14. Brush the hands with egg wash, sprinkle with additional granulated sugar if desired, and place in oven.
  15. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until pie dough is golden brown. Remove from oven.
  16. Spread small amount of jam onto each fingertip. Place almond slice on jam so it looks like nails.
  17. Serve immediately. Store leftovers at room temperature. Eat hand pies within 3 days.


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