Apple Hand Pies

December 09, 2020

This copycat version of McDonald’s hand pies takes a healthier approach by using local, seasonal apples from our friends at Wilklow Orchard and baking instead of deep frying. An all-butter pastry crust makes a flaky, flavorful package for melt-in-your-mouth apples.  


For pastry dough:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1 tsp salt

1 Tbsp sugar

2 sticks (16oz) butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup ice water, or more as needed

For pie filling: 

6 apples, peeled and cut into ½” cubes

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 pinch salt

2 Tbsp butter

1 tsp cornstarch

1 pasture raised egg, for egg wash


For pastry dough: 

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and salt to combine.
  2. Add the butter, tossing the cubes in the flour to coat. Rub the butter into the flour until it is the size of walnut halves (for a flaky crust) or peas (for a mealy crust).
  3. Make a well in the center, and add the water a few tablespoons at a time and mix just until the dough comes together.
  4. Split the dough into two halves. Wrap in plastic and chill for 20 minutes before rolling out for baking. Can be stored in the freezer for months or fridge for up to a week. 

For filling:

  1. Add apples, lemon juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and butter to a pan. Cook over medium heat until the apples become soft and the liquid is reduced, 20 minutes. If there’s too much liquid, drain some. Sprinkle in cornstarch and cook on low until the liquid thickens. Set aside to cool. 

For pies:

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. 
  2. Lightly dust a work surface with flour, and lightly dust a rolling pin. Roll out the dough in the shape of a rectangle to about ¼ inch thick, rotating it as you work to help prevent it from sticking. Store in the freezer or fridge while you roll out the second dough. 
  3. Stack both pastry sheets and cut into 8 rectangles.
  4. Spoon apples into center of 4 rectangles, leaving a ¼” border around puff pastry. Top with remaining rectangles and crimp edges together with a fork. Using a sharp knife, cut 4 slits into tops of each pie. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.
  5. Bake in oven until the edges begin to lightly brown, 20-25 minutes.

Recipe by Local Roots team member Phoebe Tran

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