These adorable Blueberry Pecan Hand Pies are a sweet and fun summer dessert! Toasted pecans are blended into the crust for a delicious nutty flavor.
I went through a big hand pie phase a few years back. If you can dream it, I probably hand pie’d it in 2016. The novelty never really wears off. It feels like a Pop Tart, but like, the refined grown-up version. Their portability and cuteness factors are truly unparalleled.
No lie, these do take a fair amount of effort. This is a weekend baking project for sure. To break up the work, though, I typically like to spread this recipe across two days. On day one, I make the dough and filling, and leave them in the fridge overnight. Then, on day two, all I have to do is roll out the dough, cut out my pies, and assemble.
There are a few things that set these hand pies apart from the rest.
First, there are toasted pecans blended into the crust. You won’t get any big pecan hunks, but they add an incredible nutty flavor. Second, the filling is cooked ahead of time. This ensures a crisp bottom pastry, so no soggy bottoms here.
I highly recommend serving these with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. But they’re equally delicious all on their own, still warm from the oven.
If you make these Blueberry Pecan Hand Pies, don’t forget to leave a rating and a comment below, and tag me on Instagram @feelinwhisky!Print
Blueberry Pecan Hand Pies
These adorable Blueberry Pecan Hand Pies are a sweet and fun summer dessert! Toasted pecans are blended into the crust for a delicious nutty flavor. Adapted from Bon Appétit’s Blueberry-Pecan Galette.
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour + 1 hour chilling time
- Yield: 16 servings 1x
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: American
For the crust:
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour*
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
- 1/4 cup ice water, or more as needed*
- 1 large egg, beaten with a splash of water or milk
For the filling:
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- Toast the pecans: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Place the pecans on a large rimmed baking sheet, then place in the oven to toast for 10 minutes or until fragrant and slightly darkened, tossing once at the 5-minute mark. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- Make the dough: In a food processor*, pulse together the toasted pecans, flour, sugar, and salt to combine. Add the cubed butter and pulse until a coarse meal forms with a few pea-sized pieces of butter remaining. With the food processor running on low, slowly stream in the ice water, just until the dough comes together. Divide the dough in half, then shape it into two flat disks about 6″ in diameter. Wrap the disks in plastic and transfer to the fridge to chill for one hour.
- Make the filling: While the dough chills, combine the blueberries, cornstarch, lemon juice, sugar, and cinnamon in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until the juice in the bottom of the pan comes to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium and continue cooking, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, or until the mixture starts to thicken. Allow to cool to room temperature before assembling the pies.
- Roll out the dough: Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly flour a clean work surface, then roll out the disks of dough to 12″ rounds about 1/8″ thick. Using a 4″ biscuit cutter or the rim of a glass, cut out as many dough rounds as possible, re-rolling the dough scraps as needed.
- Assemble the hand pies: Place half of the dough rounds on the lined baking sheet about 2″ apart. Spoon about a tablespoon and a half of filling into the center of each dough round (I use a cookie scoop for this), then use a pastry brush to brush some of the beaten egg around the edges. Use a sharp knife to cut an X into the center of each of the remaining dough rounds. Top each filled round with a vented round, then press around the edges with a fork to seal the pies. Brush the top of each pie with the remaining beaten egg, and sprinkle with a bit more sugar.
- Bake the pies: Bake for 18–22 minutes, or until the pies are lightly golden brown and the bottom crusts are crisp. Remove from the oven and let cool for 20 minutes before serving. Pies will keep in an airtight container for about 3 days, and will freeze well for about a month.
- I recommend splitting this recipe into two installments: on day 1, make the dough and the filling and stick them in the fridge overnight. On day 2, pull the dough out of the fridge about an hour before rolling it out, then roll it out, assemble, and bake.
- No whole-wheat pastry flour? Swap it out for an equal amount of all-purpose flour.
- You may not need all of the water, or you may need a bit more, depending on the humidity where you live. Use your judgement; the dough should come together easily when you squeeze it, but it should not be sticky or wet.
- If you don’t have a food processor, you can make this dough in a large bowl. Finely chop the pecans with a sharp knife, then add to a bowl with the flour, sugar, and salt. Whisk to combine, then cut in the butter with two forks or a pastry blender. Use a wooden spoon or your hands to mix in the ice water until just combined.
Keywords: blueberry pie, summer dessert, hand pie, pecan, dessert recipe
I’ve been making various iterations of this recipe for years. The original recipe, a rustic galette from the pages of Bon Appétit magazine, was one of the first desserts I made from scratch. It was delicious, yes, but the real reason I remember it so vividly has nothing to do with the recipe itself.
I was living at my parents’ house for the summer, and on this particular day, we had a dinner guest. My dad’s best friend, Bill, joined us to eat on our back porch, the summer breeze gently rustling the big, shady tree over our heads.
Bill lived a storied life, and it showed in his face. A crinkly-eyed smile. Beard filled with gray. Hands rough and calloused, the sign of an honest living. The picture of a rugged man who worked with his hands and lived his life on the road. He’d disappear for years, and then suddenly, he’d be back on our porch, smoking a cigarette, sitting in parallel rocking chairs with my dad. They always picked up right where they left off.
Bill had a way of making you feel at home.
My favorite part about Bill, though, was the ever-present twinkle in his bright, blue eyes. Always one to crack a joke, he greeted everyone he met with a wry smile and that twinkle. His eyes showed every breath of his life.
Bill never really took care of himself the way he cared for other people. He got by on pennies, ate a steady diet of instant mashed potatoes and hamburgers, and smoked unfiltered cigarettes one after another. When he finally came home after years of traveling, he parked his tow-behind trailer in our backyard and stayed there, a permanent and comforting fixture. He often ate on his own, never one to impose. But some nights, my favorite nights, he’d join us for dinner.
I don’t remember what our meal looked like that day, but I remember dessert. Bill wasn’t all that accustomed to home-cooked food. And when I served him this galette, he talked about it all evening. He couldn’t get enough of it. It was one of the first times I felt proud of something I’d made.
We lost Bill a little while after that. His hard years caught up with him, and by the time they found cancer in his lungs, the damage was irreparable. He spent the last year of his life doing everything he’d ever wanted to do, and by the time the year was over, he felt free and fulfilled. I’m not afraid, he told my dad. And so he went. I wish I’d made him dessert one more time. Just a little something to let him know what he meant.
It’s been almost 5 years since Bill left us. Sometimes it feels like more, sometimes less. The void doesn’t seem any fuller. But when I stand in my parents’ backyard and hear the wind rustling through that big tree, I hear his laugh. And when I make this recipe, I can see that twinkle clear as day. Even now, he still has a way of making me feel at home.