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School is already back in session here, and parents everywhere have been busy adjusting to new schedules, figuring out how to fit in those extracurricular activities, and relearning how to balance the busyness of home and school life while keeping it all together simultaneously. I’ve always loved the back to school season, but it can certainly make you feel like you’re living in a whirlwind during that first month.
When a new schedule is thrown my way, I always find that it helps to have a few go-to recipes in my super-mom arsenal that are balanced, kid friendly, easy to throw together, and can be eaten on the go (in case we’re running behind for something…which we usually are!)
Since my family is ALL about tacos, I decided to put a fun twist on a family favorite dish and make something that would be totally easy, would fit into our busy lifestyle and would also be loaded with yummy flavor. These taco hand pies come together in no time and make for a perfect meal to share as a family together during those busy weeknights.
When it comes to preparing things that are quick and easy, I make it a point to not skimp on the quality of the food I serve my family. That’s why when these taco hand pies are on the menu, I always reach for the Butterball® Ground Turkey to fill each pie with wholesome and savory goodness!
One of my family’s favorite things about my taco hand pies is that they’re easy to customize to your own liking. You can stuff them with any and all of your favorite taco ingredients, and you don’t even need a fork to eat them! During my most recent shopping trip at my local Walmart, I made sure to stock up an all of my family’s favorite taco toppings, as well as a few packages of Butterball Ground Turkey so we could whip up a big batch of taco hand pies to kick our busy week off on the right foot.
I love to use Butterball ground turkey because it’s all natural, has no artificial ingredients, and it’s an all around better-for-you alternative to ground beef. I love that it’s lower in fat and calories than normal ground beef, plus it’s totally versatile and can be used pretty interchangeably in recipes that traditionally call for ground beef. It’s a winning choice for us, and it’s always a hit in my taco hand pies!
While I was at Walmart, I also picked up some pre-made refrigerated pie crusts and a few packets of taco seasoning to help keep this recipe quick and super simple. If you’re looking to really lighten up this recipe, you can easily substitute the pre-packaged taco seasoning mix for a homemade version of taco spices that contains less sodium!
To make your own batch of taco hand pies, you’ll first want to cook the Butterball Ground Turkey meat according to the package instructions. Then drain off any excess fat before pouring in a packet of taco seasoning mix and 3/4 cup water. You’ll want to let the meat cool completely before filling the hand pies. Spread the meat around really thin in the pan, or transfer the cooked meat into a bowl to help speed up that process!
While the meat is cooling, so ahead and lay out the refrigerated dough on a floured cutting board or counter.
Use a rolling pin to help stretch the dough out. Using a wide mouth jar lid, cut out dough rounds and transfer to a plate. You should be able to get roughly 10 rounds from each pie crust.
Next, go ahead and set out all of the ingredients you’ll be using to fill your hand pies. We like to keep is super simple, so we add ground turkey, fiesta blend corn and shredded cheese to ours.
Lay each dough round out onto your flat surface and run over it once more with a rolling pin to spread it out. Be careful not to make the dough too thin as it will then become difficult to fold. Add a small amount of toppings to the center of each round and fold the dough over to create a pocket. Use a fork to crimp the sides together so the filling remains intact.
Transfer the hand pies onto a greased baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes at 350 F. Serve immediately with your other favorite taco toppings and my easy southwest ranch dipping sauce! (You can find the full recipe for both the hand pies and the dipping sauce listed below.)
Taco Hand Pies with Southwest Ranch Dipping Sauce
- 1 lb Butterball Fresh All Natural Ground Turkey 85/15
- 1 package refrigerated pie crust package should contain two crusts
- 1 can fiesta style corn
- 1 package taco blend shredded cheese
- 1 packet taco seasoning
- For the Chipotle Ranch Dipping Sauce:
- 1/4 cup mayo
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1 tsp southwest seasoning
- 1 Tbs ranch seasoning mix
- 1/4 tsp lime juice
- Prepare the taco meat by browning the Butterball Fresh All Natural Ground Turkey in a skillet according to package instructions
- Add in packet of taco seasoning and water 3/4 cup water
- Simmer the meat according to instructions on taco seasoning packet and then remove from heat
- Allow taco meat to completely cool - you can transfer meat to refrigerator to speed up the cooling process if necessary
- Preheat oven to 350 F
- Roll out pie crust dough on a floured surface with a rolling pin
- Using a wide mouth jelly jar lid, cut out circles from the crust - between both pie crusts you should get about 20
- Roll out each circle individually as you begin to prepare each hand pie
- Once the taco meat has completely cooled, place a small amount in the center of the dough, followed by a small amount of corn and shredded cheese
- Fold the dough over to create a pocket and use a fork to crimp the sides together
- Place hand pies on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 20 minutes, or until hand pies are crisp and turning golden brown
- Serve immediately with your favorite taco toppings
After the hand pies come out of the oven, you’ll want to give them just a few minutes to cool before digging in. The outside crust is perfectly buttery and flaky, while the inside is loaded with gooey cheese and yummy seasoned ground turkey – you just really can’t beat it! We love to dip these pies into my easy southwest ranch sauce, which can be thrown together in minutes using sour cream, mayo, ranch seasoning, southwest seasoning and a smidge of lime juice! You can also sub out the sour cream and trade it for nonfat Greek yogurt if you’d like to lighten it up a little. It’s also a great dip to keep in the refrigerator for a number of other dippable things, too!
If you always seem to find yourself strapped for time and on the hunt for something easy to fix that your whole family will love, give these taco hand pies a try! They’re even a really great lunchbox meal if you have any leftovers, or you can make a really large batch at the beginning of the week and let the kids grab a few, pop them in the microwave to reheat, and then chow down in the car on the way to their after school activities!
Next time you’re at Walmart, make sure you swing by the refrigerated meat section and pick up a few packages of Butterball Ground Turkey to stock up for the back to school season.
While you’re at it, you can grab this $1.00 off any ONE (1) package of Butterball Ground Turkey to help you stretch your buck! Expires 10/31 or while supplies last.
What sort of recipes do you like to make during the hustle and bustle of back to school time? Do you love to lighten up your recipes by switching out common ingredients with better-for-you options? Click here to see more recipe ideas using Butterball Ground Turkey to help you make your back to school dinner game strong!