Air fryer hand pies are such a fun portable dessert or snack and they couldn’t be easier to make! Choose your favorite fruit filling.

Pile of cherry hand pies on a decorative white plate.

Imagine crisp, flaky pastry surrounding a warm fruit filling in an easy hand-held dessert. Or maybe we should call it a snack since it’s really very casual. Yet you could serve these pies on a dessert plate with a scoop of ice cream for a pretty fabulous dessert.

You have to love air fryer desserts. There’s no need to turn the oven on. Your air fryer turns out beautifully golden baked goods in just minutes without heating up your kitchen. Anyone can make beautiful and delicious hand pies!

About these pies

These hand pies remind me of camping. Have you ever made fry pies in a hot fire, using buttered bread slices and pie filling? Squishing them together between the two halves of the cast iron fry pie maker, grabbing the long handles, and sticking them into the coals — it is a total guessing game when they’ll be done. And so hot! I always burn my mouth. But it’s fun and crazy.

You’ll be glad to know that these pies are nearly as easy to make, taste way better, and you don’t have to get a campfire going.

The complete printable recipe is at the end of the post but here’s a quick run through of what you need and how to make them.

3 hand pies stacked on a plate, one with a bite out of it showing cherry filling.

What you need

  • Pie Crust: Any brand will work. Refrigerated pie crusts are the easiest but if you prefer to make your own, homemade pie crusts are just wonderful, too.
  • Fruit Pie Filling: Choose your favorite fruit filling: cherry, apple, raspberry, peach, apricot, whatever you like. Again, homemade pie filling is great, too, as long as it’s thickened and sweetened. If you use something with larger pieces of fruit (apple or peach, for example), you might want to roughly chop it before filling the hand pies.
  • Egg Wash: The pies are brushed with a simple egg and water mixture and topped with coarse sugar.
Overhead view of ingredients needed to make recipe, including pie crust and cherry pie filling.

How to make it

Hand pies are so simple and fun to make especially if you use refrigerated pie crust and a can or jar of pie filling. Kids can have lots of fun putting these together and the end result is so satisfying.

Begin by rolling out the crust to make a large circle. Use round cookie cutters, biscuit cutters, or a drinking glass to cut circles of dough, three and a half to four inches in diameter.

Biscuit cutter cutting a pie crust into circles.

Put a dollop of filling in the center of half of the rounds.

Cherry pie filling on rounds of pie crust.

Lightly moisten the edges of the pastry round and lay another round on top. Crimp the edges together with a fork.

Hand pies that have not yet been baked.

Brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Unbaked hand pies with egg wash applied.

Air fry the pies until they are crisp and lightly browned.

Uncooked hand pies in the basket of an air fryer.

Let them cool slightly before taking a bite — the filling gets very hot!

FAQ

What is a hand pie?

A hand pie is a filled pastry, a mini pie, that can be held in your fingers. You may know them as turnovers, pasties (with a savory filling), Hostess fruit pies, or the deep fried fruit pies that fast food restaurants offer.

Should you refrigerate hand pies?

Hand pies can be stored at room temperature in a covered container for a day or two but if you want to keep them longer, refrigerate or freeze them.

Half eaten cherry hand pie in a hand.

How to make these fry pies your own

  • There are so many varieties of pie filling available or you can make your own filling. The possibilities are nearly endless. Jam or preserves can be used, too, but will make a sweeter pie.
  • Cut the pastry into different shapes. Keep it simple though or they’ll be difficult to seal. An easy variation is to cut 5-inch circles, put the filling on one side, and fold the pastry over to make half circles or crescents.
  • Add spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, or ginger to the filling. Apple pie spice mix is really good added to almost any fruit filling.
  • Add orange, lemon, or lime zest to the filling. Lime goes great with cherry filling, lemon with apricot, or orange with raisin or fig.
  • Make a glaze for the pies. A simple glaze of confectioner’s sugar and water is fine, or add flavoring to the glaze by adding fruit juice, vanilla, rum, or bourbon.
  • Bake the pies. Preheat the oven to 350°F, put pies on baking sheet, and bake for 13-15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.
Cherry hand pies in front of an air fryer.

Make Ahead Ideas

Cut the pastry rounds, form the hand pies, and refrigerate them until ready to bake. Just before baking, brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Bake as directed.

Storage & Reheating Suggestions

Once the pies have completely cooled, cover them in plastic wrap or foil. They’ll keep on the counter for a couple of days or in the fridge for up to four days.

Freeze cooked hand pies for up to a month. Individually wrapped, they make great lunchbox treats. Grab one out of the freezer, put it in your lunchbox, and enjoy it for lunch.

For best results, heat leftover hand pies in your air fryer for a couple of minutes to re-warm and crisp them up again. Alternatively, reheat them in your toaster oven for five minutes at 350°F.

Leftover Love

This is a great idea for leftover pies. Make hand pie sundaes! Crumble a pie into a two bowls and add a couple scoops of vanilla ice cream. If you like, drizzle your sundae with hot fudge, caramel sauce, or fresh berries. Yum!

Two hand pies, one with a bite out of it to show cherry pie filling.

More air fryer recipes

Whether it’s desserts, snacks, veggies or meat, your air fryer is a friend in the kitchen. Try:

Pile of cherry hand pies on a white doily style plate.

Air Fryer Hand Pies

Yield: 6 to 7 pies
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 16 minutes

Air fryer hand pies are such a fun portable dessert or snack and they couldn't be easier to make! Choose your favorite fruit filling.

Ingredients

  • 1 (14 oz.) package refrigerated pie crust (see note)
  • 1 (21 oz.) can pie filling, any kind (see note)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • Coarse sugar (granulated sugar is fine, too)

Instructions

  1. Preheat air fryer to 350°F for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, roll out pie crusts to 13-14 inch circles. Use a 3½ to 4-inch round biscuit cutter to cut 6 to 7 rounds out of each one (see note). Re-roll scraps to to make 1-2 more rounds.
  3. Top half of the rounds with a tablespoon of pie filling, if using a pie filling with big pieces such as apple or peach, you’ll want to chop it up a bit first.
  4. Lightly moisten the edges of the filled pie crusts with water (use your fingertip dipped in water). Place the remaining pie rounds on top of the filled ones and use a fork to press the edges together to seal.
  5. In a small bowl, beat together the egg and water to make an egg wash. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the tops of the pies with egg wash; sprinkle with coarse sugar.
  6. Cook pies for 6 to 7 minutes until the tops are a golden brown.

Notes

  • A 3½ -inch cutter will yield 7 pies, a 4-inch cutter will yield 6. For half-moon pies (crescents), use a 5-inch round cutter, add the filling to one side and fold it over and seal.
  • Use your own homemade pie crust recipe, enough for 2 crusts. Or make homemade pie filling. You'll need about 2 cups.
  • Make a glaze for the pies. A simple glaze of confectioner's sugar and water is fine, or add flavoring to the glaze by adding fruit juice, vanilla, rum, or bourbon.
  • If you using a pie filling with larger fruit, roughly chop it into smaller pieces.
  • Bake the pies. Preheat the oven to 350°F, put pies on baking sheet, and bake for 13-15 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 7 Serving Size: 1 pie
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 278Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 27mgSodium: 243mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 2gSugar: 12gProtein: 4g

RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietitian. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.

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