The past few days in Portland have been beautifully and uncharacteristically warm. We had nearly three days of 85 degree weather, which set record breaking temperatures for us for the month of April. And several days of NO RAIN! Unheard of!

So, how did we celebrate? By going to a BBQ and bringing hand pies, duh. (Don’t worry, there was beer involved, too.)

I scored some fresh, gorgeous rhubarb from Whole Foods so making rhubarb pie was the obvious choice. However, I also had some fresh berries that I thought would be lovely to throw in there. And citrus. And just a little bit of sugar, with honey and vanilla bean providing the majority of the sweetness.

vanilla bean, red berry and rhubarb hand pies
And with my all-butter pie crust forming the base, these were gobbled right up. I myself had way more than I’m proud of. I blame all the beer.

Hand pies are so great for several reasons. You don’t need any fancy pans. They’re perfectly portable, and there’s no cutting involved. And they’re just so adorable.

Although hand pies can be fairly time consuming, I make things simpler and stress-free by making both the pie dough and the filling the night before. This ensures everything is perfectly chilled and ready for the makin’. If you don’t have a round 5″ cutter, don’t even sweat it. You can use a pot lid or even a bowl. You could also cut them into rectangles instead.

I’m confident you guys are going to love these sweet, tart, tasty little red berry and rhubarb hand pies. Enjoy!

vanilla bean, red berry and rhubarb hand pies


vanilla bean, red berry and rhubarb hand pies


vanilla bean, red berry and rhubarb hand pies


5.0 from 1 reviews
vanilla bean, red berry + rhubarb hand pies
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Tart rhubarb, bright citrus, vanilla bean, and fresh strawberries and raspberries compose this delectable all-butter crust hand pie.
Recipe type: dessert, pie
Serves: 12
For the pie crust:
  • 2½ cups all purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 sticks cubed butter, very cold
  • 6-8 tablespoons of ice water
For the pie filling:
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 pound rhubarb (about 5 stalks)
  • 6 ounces raspberries
  • 1 pound strawberries
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Egg wash
  • Raw sugar, for sprinkling
For the pie crust:
  1. Combine flour, salt and sugar in a food processor. Add cubed, very cold butter and pulse until butter is the size of large peas. Add 6 tablespoons of ice water and pulse until the mixture is combined and moist but not wet. Add additional tablespoons if needed.
  2. Remove from food processor and gently knead on a floured surface until combined. Split dough in half and plastic wrap each half, forming into a square. Chill overnight.
For the pie filling:
  1. Make the pie filling the night before. Slice rhubarb, roughly chop strawberries and combine with the sugar and orange zest.
  2. Heat butter until melted and hot. Add the rhubarb and strawberry mixture to the pan and cook about 5 minutes, until the fruit releases its juices and is bubbling. Add in raspberries.
  3. Split a vanilla bean down the center, scrape the beans and add the beans and entire pod into the pot. Add in the honey.
  4. Whisk the cornstarch with the juice from one orange. Add to the filling and stir well.
  5. Simmer about 3-5 minutes until thickened.
  6. Remove from heat, let cool, plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. Remove vanilla bean pod the next day before filling pies.
To assemble the pies:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Remove pie dough from the fridge and let sit at room temperature about 10 minutes.
  3. Working with one half at a time, roll pie dough out on a well-floured surface until about ⅛ inch thick.
  4. Using a 5" round cutter (a cookie cutter, bowl, or pot lid will work), cut dough into 12 circles, re-rolling the scraps of dough not more than once.
  5. Egg wash (one egg + a splash of water mixed well) the entire edge of each circle.
  6. Add 2 tablespoons of filling to the center of each circle, folding one half over to create a half-moon.
  7. Seal the edges very well with a fork. Place pies in the freezer until cold, about 10 minutes.
  8. Remove pies from freezer and egg wash the tops. Cut three slits in the center of the pie and sprinkle generously with raw sugar.
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.

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