Make Ahead

Sweet Cherry Hand Pies AKA Mini Cherry Pie Pockets

June 25, 2010
5 Ratings
  • Serves 14 to 16
Author Notes

Sour cherries are all the rage come pie season, but I think nothing beats the taste of a sweet cherry pie. I made a special trip to the Greenmarket for some to make a pie recently—and got sidetracked by some cute sparkly silver shoes on the way. When I got home and made the dough, I decided I couldn't bare the thought of all that luscious filling oozing out after the first slice, so decided to make some hand pies. Those yummy pockets are long gone, but the shoes are here to stay, much like this recipe. - Jennifer Perillo —Jennifer Perillo

Test Kitchen Notes

I've been trying to make hand pies for a couple of years. It seems the perfect solution when there are only two of us in the house. And I like the idea of hand pies in the freezer, easy to bake off one at a time, whenever the spirit moves me. Until Jennifer Perillo taught me the basics though, my hand pies were a failure. Her pies, and her crystal clear instructions, are perfect. Just the right size and no spilling out of the seams. Jennifer's hand pie recipe also introduced me to the idea of sweet cherries in a pie filling. What a revelation! Delicious. I plan to make more of these and also to try with other fruits as the season progresses. Thanks Jennifer, for solving my hand pie dilemma. - MrsWheelbarrow —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • For the dough
  • 8 ounces all purpose flour
  • 8 teaspoons (40 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) kosher salt
  • 4 ounces cold butter, cut into 16 pieces
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons ice cold water
  • For the filling
  • 14 ounces sweet bing cherries, pitted (should yield about 2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) all purpose flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 egg, beaten with a bit of water
  • coarse sugar for sprinkling, optional
  1. To prepare the dough, add the flour, sugar and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until it forms a sandy crumb. Starting with 4 tablespoons, sprinkle the water over the flour-butter mixture and pulse until it forms a ball, about 45 seconds to 1 minute. Add another tablespoon or two of water if necessary. Dump onto an unfloured counter and form into a flat disc. Wrap in plastic or waxed paper and let chill until firm, but still pliable, about 1 hour (you can quick chill it in the freezer for 20 minutes too, which is what I tend to do while pitting the cherries).
  2. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
  3. For the filling, combine the cherries, sugar and all purpose flour, or tapioca flour if using, and salt. Stir to mix well and set aside.
  4. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out to 1/8 to 1/16-inch thick. Cut out 5-inch circles. It's okay to re-roll the scraps until all the dough is used up. Place cut circles on the prepared baking sheets (do not forget to place on parchment before forming pockets or they will be to delicate to transfer). Spoon 1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons of filling into the center of each circle, fold over, making sure the filling is not spilling out the edges, and crimp the edges with a fork. Pierce tops with the tines of a fork to create steam vents.
  5. Brush tops with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar, if using. Bake for 15 minutes, until golden. Let sit on sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire cooling rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Horto
  • Crispy
  • christina
  • mariaraynal
  • Jennifer Perillo
    Jennifer Perillo
Jennifer Perillo is the Consulting Food Editor at Working Mother magazine, and a regular a contributor to Relish Magazine and She shares stories about food, family and life at her blog In Jennie's Kitchen and in her debut cookbook, Homemade with Love: Simple Scratch Cooking from In Jennie's Kitchen (Running Press 2013).

11 Reviews

almajo July 1, 2019
Sadly, this recipe is poorly written (and I wasted an hour and a half, a stick of butter, and a pint of cherries finding this out yesterday). Do I use 8 ounces by weight or by volume of flour in the dough? There's a big difference! The dough rounds are "five inches" — diameter or circumference? My guess would be the latter, although I've never, ever seen round shapes referred to that way in a recipe, because I'm only supposed to add max 1.5 TEASPOONS of filling? So that's what, one whole cherry? I managed to rescue the mess I made into an ugly but ok-tasting galette (because the dough was so short, it cracked constantly as I tried to roll it out and shape it, although all the liquid spilled out onto my parchment and carbonized in the oven). PLEASE test and update this recipe!
Tasha June 25, 2018
The recipe instructions mention tapioca flour as an option-would that be 1:1 in place of the all purpose flour?
Horto June 11, 2015
Ounces and grams???
Sandi July 28, 2013
Had peach hand pies in Chicago at Corner Bakery. I came home obsessed with making the. Tried a Martha Stewart recipe, but didn't love the crust. I intend to try this!!!!
JManno July 18, 2012
So the filling is not cooked beforehand for these pies?

JManno July 16, 2012
The method and the ingredients for the pie filling are on top of each other and I cannot read them.
Can you list the filling ingredients by any chance?

Thank you
Crispy July 8, 2012
YUM! I made these for dessert for the 4th of July and boy were they good (big hit)! I'm even happier that there are 4 more sitting in the freezer waiting to be eaten! I used a white wheat flour (all I had) that concerned me as the dough was a little on the stiff side but they came out great. Such a perfect size dessert - looking forward to making them again with other fruits too!
epicker August 11, 2011
wow! i just stumbled upon this site from Pinterest. I made basically the same thing a couple months ago, they were delicious! and i still have 10 ready to bake hand pies in the freezer.
christina July 8, 2010
if i wanted to freeze them before baking, how would i go about doing so?

Jennifer P. September 19, 2010
Christina, sorry I'm just seeing your comment. Line a baking sheet with parchment and arrange the formed pies in a single layer so they're not touching. Place tray in freezer until they are set (frozen), then transfer them to a tightly sealed zip-top bag and store in the freezer.
mariaraynal July 8, 2010
These are positively adorable. And perfectly portion-controlled. Love 'em!