Pies & Tarts

Cherry Hand Pies From Scratch

5 from 8 votes
The only thing better than a classic cherry pie is a portable cherry pie! Make my Cherry Hand Pie recipe and get all the goodness to go.
Cherry Hand Pies recipe, completed, on a baking sheet.

Hi Bold Bakers!

There’s an unfair bias when it comes to pies, and I think people are seriously missing out! 

Pies are a popular dessert around the holidays — some Americans can’t imagine a Thanksgiving without a pumpkin or pecan pie. But they’re missing an entire season’s worth of delicious fruit and veggies to pack into some pie crust and enjoy.

Just like pumpkin pie tastes like a bite of fall, a good cherry pie tastes like a mouthful of summer and cherry hand pies are perfect for the busy hustle and bustle, or lazy heat-filled days, of summer. 

Everything you love about a classic cherry pie is in this homemade Cherry Hand Pie recipe — sweet, juicy cherries all wrapped up in a little pie crust for a lovely, portable treat. You can bring them to picnics, make them for brunch, or serve them as a dessert at a backyard BBQ!

What Are Cherry Hand Pies?

Cherry hand pies are just a classic cherry pie in a handheld form! It’s great for when you’re hosting a socially distant BBQ or if you have young ones who might bicker over which slice is the biggest. I find that they’re easier to serve, and a bonus is you get even more of that delicious, crispy pie crust to balance out the sweetness of the cherry pie filling. 

Close up of Cherry Hand Pies, to show texture and consistency.

What You Need To Make Cherry Hand Pies

How To Make Cherry Hand Pies

If you aren’t ready to try your hand at a traditional cherry pie (You should be! It’s easier than you think!), then cherry hand pies won’t only give you some baking confidence, they’ll give you a delicious treat you’ll turn to again and again. And don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, on the page down below:

  1. First, make the filling. In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine your sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and water. Let this simmer for 2-3 minutes until it has thickened.
  2. Remove this from the heat and stir in your pitted and halved cherries. Set aside to cool.
  3. As the filling cools, roll out your pie crusts and cut them into 5-inch (12.5 cm) circles.
  4. Spoon a small amount of the cherry filling into the center of your cut out crust. Moisten the edge with egg wash and fold over to create a half-moon shape. Press down with your fingers or use a fork to seal.
  5. Place your assembled pies onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper and place it into the refrigerator for 30 minutes. 
  6. When you are ready to bake, cut a few slits into the top of the crusts of the pies and brush with the egg wash. 
  7. Bake the pies for about 20-25 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown, in a preheated 375°F (190°C) oven.
  8. As the pies are baking, make the glaze. In a bowl, mix powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla until blended. It should be pourable, but thick — if it is too thick, add more milk.
  9. Remove the pies from the oven, let them cool, and pour the glaze over them, which will create a beautiful “shell.”

A cross section of cherry hand pies recipe to show the cherry filling.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips for Making Cherry Hand Pies

  • Don’t fret if your pie crust cracks when you are trying to fold it into a half-moon shape. Instead, try cutting the circles in half, spooning the filling on the bottom, and then sealing the top all around.
  • Let your filling cool completely before trying to assemble the pies; otherwise, the crust may become too soft to handle. 
  • Allow your pies to cool before pouring the glaze on so it sticks properly to the crust. 
  • Defrosted frozen cherries work just as well as fresh in this recipe, but be sure to drain the juice released after defrosting!
  • Make my pie crust for these or use store-bought.
  • Your pie filling can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can use it in these hand pies, a full cherry pie, or in a crumble!

How To Store Cherry Hand Pies

These cherry hand pies can be stored, loosely covered, at room temperature for up to 2 days. Help them taste fresh from the oven by popping them into a 300°F (150°C) oven for 10 minutes!

Gemma Stafford holding her Cherry Hand Pie.

Make More Pie!

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

Cherry Hand Pies Recipe

5 from 8 votes
The only thing better than a classic cherry pie is a portable cherry pie! Make my Cherry Hand Pie recipe and get all the goodness to go.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 12 pies
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
The only thing better than a classic cherry pie is a portable cherry pie! Make my Cherry Hand Pie recipe and get all the goodness to go.
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 12 pies

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (4oz/115g) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ½ cup (4floz/115ml) water
  • 2 cups (10oz/284g) cherries, pitted and halved
  • 2 x recipe pie crusts
  • egg wash
  • Vanilla Glaze
  • 2 cups (8oz/230g) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2-4 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C) and line two baking sheets with parchment.
  • Make the filling: in a saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and water and let simmer for 2-3 minutes, until thickened.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the cherries. Set aside to cool.
  • While the filling is cooling, roll out the pie crusts and cut into 5-inch (12.5 cm) circles.
  • Spoon a small amount of cherry filling into the center of the cut pie crust, moisten the edge with some egg wash and fold over into a half-moon shape. Press down with your fingers or a fork to seal.
  • Place assembled pies on the baking sheets and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • When ready to bake, cut a few slits in the top crust of the pies and brush with the egg wash.
  • Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.
  • While the pies are in the oven make the glaze: in a bowl, mix powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons milk and the vanilla until blended. Add more milk, if necessary, to create a nice pourable but thick consistency.
  • Once the pies are out of the oven and still hot, generously drizzle the glaze over them and allow to set before storing. If you do this while they are still hot the glaze sets on the pastry and creates a nice 'shell'.
  • Store pies, loosely covered, at room temperature for up to 2 days. Refresh in a 300°F (150°C) oven for 10 minutes.

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Pam
Pam
1 month ago

Whenever I need a break and to escape the news, I just come here and check out your recipes. I read the comments and I love how you always jump in with help if someone asks. You are such an amazing Chef and beautiful person inside and out! 🌷🌺🌹🌸🌼💐

Jennifer
Jennifer
1 month ago

Any change if I use canned pie filling for saving time? Will it set?

Sharish
Sharish
14 days ago

Hey Gemma please make apple hand pies.
Btw wonderful recipe

Marjaneh
1 month ago

Thank you for the recipe Gemma, here cherries are not in season, I used rhubarb, with blackberries instead, I love the dough, I want to make them with crushed walnuts/ almonds and cardamom with the next lot that I bake.

Chanel
Chanel
1 month ago

Hi Gemma!

What can I use as a substitute for cornstarch? Can’t wait to make these!

Thank you 😊

Anna
Anna
1 month ago

Is this recipe written/intended for sweet or tart cherries?

Cheryl
Cheryl
1 month ago

Could you make these with frozen peaches with the same “syrup” as the cherry pie filling?

Mila
Mila
1 month ago

If using frozen fruit do we need to defrost first or use as is?

Mqpay1
1 month ago

Hi, Can you use dried apricots?

Rose Forte
Rose Forte
1 month ago

Hi Gemma, Can you use frozen cherries in this recipe? Thank you

About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for my FREE weekly emails and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!

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