Apricot Mini Hand Pies (also known as fruit empañadas) are little hand-held miniature fruit pies, with a sweet apricot filling inside. Delicious!
One of the most vivid memories I have of my maternal grandmother is seeing her standing by the stove, cooking fried fruit pies for our family (apple, apricot, peach, etc.) Yum! I especially enjoy these little Apricot Mini Hand Pies when I want just a little taste of something yummy.
My grandma was from east Texas, so I just assumed little fried pies were a very “Southern” thing that all Southern grandmas cooked. Well, it’s not just a Southern thing, but this recipe for Apricot Mini Hand Pies takes me right back to those happy, carefree childhood days long ago. My Grandma passed away many years ago at age 99, but sweet memories of her live on!
I decided to make some little apricot hand pies one day, for no good reason, except they sounded good, I had all the ingredients, and I was thinking of my Grandma.
Another Name For Mini Hand Pies
I love little fried pies. They are sometimes called “Empanadas”, which are typically a Spanish or Latin pastry turnover, filled with a variety of ingredients and baked or fried. They are usually filled with savory ingredients like meats and onions, but there are also many varieties of fruit-filled empanadas.
THIS is one of THOSE fruit-filled empanada (or fried pie) recipes, utilizing dried apricots that are available at most grocery stores. If you enjoy little fruit-filled pastries like this, you will also love my recipe for apple pie stuffed won tons!
Making Apricot Mini Hand Pies Is Very Easy!
The apricot filling only has 5 ingredients. For the pastry, you can either make your own favorite pie crust recipe (this is what I do), or start with pre-made pie crust dough purchased at your local grocery store. Whatever works best for you.
The pie crust is rolled out thin, then cut into small circles (about 3 inches wide – you can use a biscuit cutter or a drinking glass to cut the dough out).
A very small amount of the prepared filling is placed in the middle of the dough circle, then the edges are sealed, crimped, and the little filled fruit pies are fried in hot oil until golden brown. That’s it!
How Many Apricot Mini Hand Pies Will This Recipe Make?
I can usually get about 10-12 of these mini-fried pies made out of two pie crusts. You can use your favorite pie crust recipe (seems like everyone has their favorite) or you can use the one I use for all my pies (see link below).
Hope you will give these apricot mini hand pies a try. They’re yummy little treats…bite-sized, and perfect for munching! Don’t have a clue where the recipe came from for the apricot filling (maybe my Grandma?). I’ve had it for years and years, written on a 3×5 index card. The pie crust recipe is from my Mom (DIY-Mom’s Pie Crust).
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- 4 ounces dried apricots
- 1/8 cup cornstarch
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon butter
- 2 Pie Crust Dough (for 2 crusts)
- Vegetable oil for frying (enough to cover the bottom of skillet 1" deep)
In a small saucepan, cook dried apricots in 1/4 cup water, until tender and soft.
Add cornstarch, sugar, salt, and butter to pan. Mix well with the apricots. Continue cooking for 3-4 minutes or until mixture has thickened. Add additional water, if needed, to thin mixture out a bit.
Once mixture thickens, remove it from heat. Pour into a small bowl, cover and chill completely. Once chilled completely, make the pastry dough and roll out on a lightly floured work surface. Using a biscuit cutter or a glass, cut 3 inch circles out of dough.
Spoon about a Tablespoonful of the filling into the center of one half of the dough. Do not overfill or fill to the edges or the filling will run out while you are crimping the edges!
Once pastry circles have been filled, pull over half of the dough to cover the filling. You should now have a half circle of dough. Use a fork to "crimp" around the edges of the half circle to seal the two pieces of dough together. This is very important, or the apricot filling will leak out while cooking!
Preheat oil to 375 degrees. When oil is very hot, carefully place fruit pies in skillet. Cook a couple of minutes on each side. The dough should be golden brown before you turn them or remove them from the pan. Drain fruit pies on paper towels (to absorb extra oil). Making sure the oil in skillet is still very hot, repeat the process until all hand-pies are done cooking. Let hand-pies cool slightly (they will be hot inside!), then serve and enjoy!
Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!