Summer Recipes

Recipe: Spicy Apple Hand Pies

Not your mother's apple pie.

By Russell van Kraayenburg September 12, 2014

While we didn't invent the apple pie here in America, we sure did make it famous. Even today you can find the classic pie topped, mixed, and wrapped with all manner of different things. It's as varied as we are and all the more delicious because of it.

Apples pair wonderfully with countless ingredients and they're especially great with spices. I'm not just talking about the classic cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg stuff, though. I'm talking chili and cayenne. Wrap that in a flaky pie crust, make it small enough to fit in your hand, and you've got the perfect dessert.

Spicy Apple Hand Pies


  • Pie crust (recipe here)
  • 2 pink lady apples, peeled and sliced
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon sanding sugar


  1. Preheat an oven to 375°F. 
  2. Prepare the pie crust according to the instructions. Roll out and set aside in the fridge.
  3. Mix the apples, brown sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, chili powder, nutmeg, cloves, and cayenne pepper together in a bowl. Toss until everything is coated and evenly mixed.
  4. Cut out 12 5-inch circles from the dough. Leaving a 1/2-inch boarder around the edge, spread filling over half of the circle. Pull the unfilled side of the dough over the filling. Crimp the edges to seal everything in. Cut small holes in the top to allow the steam to escape. Repeat with the reamining dough and filling.
  5. Place the hand pies on a  lined baking sheet. Sprinkle each with cayenne pepper and sanding sugar. 
  6. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until the crust is golden.
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