Savory Hand Pies

Origin and Region:
Savory hand pies, also known as meat pies or pasties, have a long history and are enjoyed in various forms around the world. They can be found in regions with a tradition of portable, handheld foods, including Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America.

Savory hand pies are a convenient and portable meal or snack option that features a flavorful filling encased in pastry dough. They are perfect for on-the-go eating, picnics, or as a quick and satisfying meal. The filling options for savory hand pies are endless, ranging from traditional meat and vegetable combinations to creative vegetarian or seafood fillings.

For the Pastry Dough:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup ice water (more as needed)
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For the Filling:

  • 1 pound ground meat (beef, lamb, chicken, or turkey)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup mixed vegetables (such as carrots, peas, and corn)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon dried herbs (such as thyme, rosemary, or oregano)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil for cooking

Optional Toppings and Tips:

  • Brush the tops of the hand pies with beaten egg or milk before baking for a golden finish.
  • Experiment with different fillings to suit your taste preferences or dietary restrictions.
  • Make mini hand pies for bite-sized appetizers or party snacks.


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Add the chilled butter cubes and use a pastry cutter or your fingers to work the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  2. Gradually add the ice water, a tablespoon at a time, mixing until the dough comes together. Be careful not to overwork the dough. Shape the dough into a disc, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  3. While the dough chills, prepare the filling. In a skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and minced garlic, and cook until softened.
  4. Add the ground meat to the skillet and cook until browned, breaking it up with a spoon as it cooks. Stir in the tomato paste, mixed vegetables, dried herbs, salt, and pepper. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, then remove from heat and let cool.
  5. Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the chilled pastry dough to about 1/4 inch thickness. Use a round cutter or a glass to cut out circles of dough.
  7. Spoon a generous amount of the cooled filling onto one half of each dough circle, leaving a border around the edges. Fold the other half of the dough over the filling to create a half-moon shape. Press the edges together to seal, then crimp with a fork.
  8. Place the assembled hand pies on the prepared baking sheet. If desired, brush the tops with beaten egg or milk for a golden finish.
  9. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and crisp.
  10. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly before serving.

Savory hand pies are a delicious and satisfying meal or snack option that features a flavorful filling encased in flaky pastry. They can be enjoyed warm or at room temperature, making them perfect for on-the-go eating or packing in lunchboxes. The filling options are endless, allowing for endless creativity and customization.

Nutritional Information:

  • Serving Size: 1 hand pie (varies based on size)
  • Calories: 200-300
  • Total Fat: 12-18g
  • Saturated Fat: 6-9g
  • Cholesterol: 20-40mg
  • Sodium: 200-400mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 15-20g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1-3g
  • Sugars: 1-3g
  • Protein: 8-12g

Conclusion and Recommendation:
Savory hand pies are a versatile and delicious dish that can be enjoyed as a meal, snack, or appetizer. They are perfect for busy weeknights, picnics, or entertaining guests. Experiment with different fillings and pastry doughs to create your own unique hand pie creations. Serve them with a side salad or dipping sauce for a satisfying and flavorful meal.

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