Caramel Apple Hand Pies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
These little fruit gems are a great alternative to regular-sized pies. They are easy to make, and easy to just pick up with your hands and eat.

You can make both the pastry and caramel sauce ahead of time and store in the refrigerator until ready to make the filling, assemble, and bake. You will probably end up with left-over caramel sauce which can be drizzled over the pies before serving, or refrigerate for another use.

Use a 9 Inch Double-Crust Pie recipe of your choice, or the flaky pie pastry recipe below. I love apple pies, but in making hand pies you can substitute almost any fruit filling including mincemeat.
Recipe type: Dessert | Apple Pies | Caramel
Serves: About 20 Hand Pies
Rich Caramel Sauce:
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for work surface
  • 4 teaspoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter, cut into ¼ to ½ inch pieces
  • ½ cup cold vegetable shortening cut into small pieces
  • 5 to 6 tablespoons ice water
Apple Filling:
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 medium to large size Granny Smith apples
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/16 teaspoon ground cloves
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • About ¼ cup coarse turbinado sugar
Rich Caramel Sauce:
  1. Prepare the Rich Caramel Sauce. Set aside. Tip: The Rich Caramel Sauce can be made up to one week in advance and stored in the refrigerator.
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt; sift or whisk together to mix. Add the butter and shortening and gently mix with a fork to coat the cut pieces of fats with flour. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut butter and shortening into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs, and some of the pieces of fat are the size of peas.
  2. Add the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time; drizzle the water around the sides of the bowl, and use a kitchen fork to mix the flour and water together with each addition of water. As more water is added clumps of dough will begin to form. As the remainder of the water is added the clumps of dough will become larger. When the dough is done, it should feel cool and just slightly moist.
  3. Test the dough to determine if enough water has been added; gather a little of the dough in your hand and press it together gently in your hand, the dough should hold together. If the dough is crumbly and does not hold together, add an additional 1 to 2 tablespoons ice water, adding one teaspoon of water at a time until the dough is done and holds together. Tip: it is important not to add any more water than necessary and not to over-handle the dough with your hands; otherwise the dough may become tough and not be as crisp and flaky when baked.
  4. Refrigerate: Divide the dough in half, and gently press the dough into two 6-inch discs. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours, or refrigerate up to 3 days before using.
Apple Filling:
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, add lemon juice. Peel, core, and dice apples into small ¼ inch cubes. Toss apple pieces into lemon juice, stir until well mixed. Set aside.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Add to apple mixture and stir to mix all ingredients. Set aside
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare 2 large baking sheets; line with parchment paper, or line with a non-stick baking mat.
  2. Remove one pastry disc from refrigerator. If the pastry is too cold and difficult to roll, let stand at room temperature for 5 to 15 minutes. On a lightly floured pastry mat or pastry board, and using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the pastry from the center out into a circle about 8 or 9 inches in diameter. Gently pick the pastry up, lightly re-flour the work surface if necessary to prevent sticking, replace the pastry giving it a quarter turn. Continue rolling and turning until pastry is wafer thin, about 1/16 inch thick. Tip: keep lifting and turning the pastry to prevent it from sticking to the surface.
  3. Cut pastry into circles with a floured 4 inch-round cookie cutter. Pastry scraps can be gathered up, re-rolled, and cut into additional circles.
  4. Mound about 1 tablespoon of the apple filling in the center of each circle, and spoon about ½ teaspoon of the Rich Caramel Sauce over the apples. Use a pastry brush to lightly brush around the outside edges of the pastry circles with beaten egg. Fold the circles in half and press the edges together lightly with your fingers. Crimp the edges with the tines of a fork.
  5. Lightly brush the tops of each pie with beaten egg and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Cut 2 or 3 small slits in the top of each pie to allow steam to escape.
  6. Bake: Place pies about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until tops are a light golden brown. Remove pies from baking sheets with a metal spatula and place on a wire cooling rack to cool.
  7. Remove remaining pastry disc from refrigerator, and repeat. Tip: If you have any leftover apple filling, place in a small ramekin and bake along with the last baking sheet of hand pies.
  8. To Serve: Pies can be served warm or cold. They are excellent to pick up and eat as is, or drizzled with some leftover caramel sauce.
Recipe Notes
Pan: Two Large Baking Sheets Pastry: Flaky Pie Pastry Prep: Unbaked Oven Temp: 375° Storage: Covered, Cool Place or Refrigerate

Help: Making Flaky Pastry | Rich Caramel Sauce
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