Make Ahead

Thanksgiving Hand Pies

November  7, 2016
0 Ratings
Photo by Adriana Giannini
  • Makes 8-10 hand pies
Author Notes

Thanksgiving is a time for over-eating and a time for over-cooking. Do you notice how the leftovers turn out to be even more delicious than the first day feast? It's a quick and easy meal to eat your leftover turkey with all the fixings' as is, but it's fun to reconstitute dishes into post-Thanksgiving themed meals. Nothing is better than filling buttery pastry dough with some of your favorite holiday leftovers. For this recipe, I made the filling the-day-of, however, this recipe was created with leftovers in mind. —Adriana Giannini

What You'll Need
  • 3/4 pound Ground turkey
  • 1 Leek
  • 8 ounces Mushrooms (I used Baby Bella)
  • 1/4 cup Bread crumbs (I used old French bread)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 3 Eggs
  • 1/2 cup Chicken Stock
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs Thyme
  • 2 teaspoons Butter
  • Pastry dough (homemade or store bought)
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil
  • Flour for rolling out dough
  1. If making your own pastry dough allow it time to chill in the fridge, at least a couple hours, to produce a flakier crust. I like to leave mine in the fridge overnight to assure the best results. I used a pastry dough recipe from, but you can use your fave recipe. Store bought pastry dough works fine as well. Here is the recipe I used
  2. If using leftovers follow this recipe: grind your turkey into bite sized pieces using a food processor. Place in a large bowl and mix together with a cup of leftover stuffing. Add two eggs and chicken stock to bind together. Cover and let sit in fridge for 15 mins.
  3. If prepping Thanksgiving inspired filling follow this recipe: roughly cut bread into cubes - no need to be perfect, these will go in the food processor. Melt butter in pan and place bread crumbs in. Coat all pieces well with melted butter. Add salt, pepper and fresh thyme. Cook until brown and crispy. Remove from heat. Set aside.
  4. Heat olive oil in a large pan. Cook turkey with salt, pepper, and bay leaves for about 5 mins. Do not cook all the way through, you still want a little pink. Remove from pan and place in bowl.
  5. Add extra olive oil to same pan if necessary. Sauté onions and garlic until fragrant and translucent, about 2 mins. Add leeks and mushrooms, cook down until tender, for 3-4 mins. Salt and pepper to taste. Put the turkey back in the pan and let the flavors combine and allow the turkey to cook all the way through. Remove from heat and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  6. Put bread crumbs in food processor. Give it a coarse pulse (you don't want to turn the bread into dust). Add bread crumbs to ground turkey and veggie mixture. Crack two eggs into the bowl and add chicken broth. Mix thoroughly. Set aside.
  7. Flour a surface and rolling pin to roll out dough. You do not want it too thin as it needs to stand up to the hardy filling. Once rolled into 1/8 thickness, cut out large circular shapes to form a hand pie - I used an upside down bowl to create my shape. Follow this same method if using store bought dough.
  8. Put parchment paper on a baking sheet. Place cut out dough on sheet and fill with meat and veggie mixture placing the stuffing in the center. Fold in half to create a hand pie/empanada shape. With fingers, press into dough along edges to close. Crack an egg into a bowl and use as egg wash on top of hand pies. Put a slit with a knife or scissors into the top of the pie to release steam. Bake pies for 25-30 or until golden brown. Serve with cranberry dipping sauce or leftover gravy.

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