Pick-Up-and-Go Pies

A review of 'Handheld Pies,' plus 3 delicious recipes

Handheld pies

This is a charming book that’s crafted by two notable writers flanking both coasts — one, Rachel Wharton, deputy editor of Edible Brooklyn and Manhattan, and the other, Sarah Billingsley, cookbook editor and author from San Francisco. Together, they make a powerful duo that tackles both sweet and savory pies in Handheld Pies.

To create this book, Rachel found of the best small-pie makers around the country to source recipes and inspiration, while Sarah perfected them for the home cook and separated the recipes into three types of pies. There is a chapter on "Free-Form Pies" that covers pies with both a top and bottom crust, like the various homemade pop tart recipes offered. The following chapter, "Structured Pies," includes recipes that are given their shape by the type of pan they are baked in, like the Pecan Pie recipe below. Last is the "Jar Pies" chapter, and perhaps my personal favorite, which is filled with meringues and cream pies served in individual, handheld jars. (Two rich and decadent types to start with are the Chocolate Mousse Pie and the Coconut Cream Pie recipes below.)

But the book doesn’t end there. It also includes a "Nuts and Bolts" chapter that’s filled with, well, the fillings — plus other flavorful and imaginative crust recipes meant to be mixed and matched so home cooks can create their own twists on these pies. Sections on basic techniques and ingredients make the book approachable for both novice and advanced cooks.

With simple yet stunning food photography by Ellen Silverman, the book is cozy and inspirational all at once. Sample some of the recipes below and let us know what you think!


Coconut Cream Pies

This classic is a childhood favorite for most people, and this jar pie recipe adds a fun twist to the conventional way of preparing and eating it. 






Pecan Pie

These mini pecan pies are not just meant for the holidays — they can be enjoyed year-round.






Chocolate Mousse Pie

This recipe for an utterly satisifying dessert calls for a crunchy cookie crust made from crumbled cookies.