recipe, snack, sweet

Ground Cherry and Pistachio Hand Pies

Ground cherries are completely under-appreciated. You would probably recognize them for their natural paper-encasing, beautifully tuliped to protect the fruit inside. Peel back that papery shell and you will find a golden round bulb that tastes a bit like a pineapple but with the texture of a tomato.

Are you curious yet?


I love snacking on ground cherries, or making a quick jam. But I had never really made them a star on my blog. When I tried my hand at homemade hand pies, flavoured with ground cherries, chopped pistachios and a touch of cardamom, I was thoroughly impressed! Not only do the ground cherries melt beautifully into pie filling, the pistachios add a bit of crunch and a nice flavour pairing.


Best enjoyed on a weekend, either as an afternoon snack or a late morning breakfast, these hand pies ensure you make the most of the late-summer early-fall harvest.



Yields 3 hand pies

Ground Cherry and Pistachio Hand Pies

20 minPrep Time

20 minCook Time

40 min

Save RecipeSave Recipe


  • 1 scant cup ground cherries, shells removed
  • 2 tbsp amber maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp + 1 tbsp chopped pistachios
  • 1 pre-made puff pastry (225 g)
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp milk


  1. In a small saucepan bring the ground cherries and maple syrup to a boil, crushing the cherries with the back of a spoon as you cook them. Cook uncovered over medium-high heat for about 10 minutes or until it becomes syrupy and thickens. Remove from heat and stir in 3 tbsp chopped pistachios.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 F. Roll out the puff pastry, and slice into 6 rectangular pieces. Divide the ground cherry mixture into three, piling the filling into the middle of three puff pastry pieces. Brush a bit of egg white around the filling, and top with another puff pastry pieces (making 3 hand pies). Gently press down the edges of the pies with a fork to seal them.
  3. Place the hand pies onto a baking sheet, and bake for about 10 minutes or until puffed and golden. Allow to cool slightly (3-5 minutes) then transfer to a cooling rack.
  4. Once the pies are fully cooled, mix together the glaze (which includes the icing sugar, cardamom, lemon juice and milk) and brush or drizzle over each hand pie. Enjoy!

  • Sean Bromilow
    YES! Ground cherries are COMPLETELY under-appreciated, especially since they're most often relegated to the status of fancy dessert garnish designed to justify over-pricing. They're a great little fruit, and so interesting, and I LOVE that you've made them the start here! Pistachio is an awesome touch too, and I can imagine the flavour is very complimentary. Spectacular work, and hooray for the forgotten and under-appreciated fruits!
    • I groan whenever I see a pathetic (and 90% of the time out-of-season) ground cherry as a garnish on a dessert. Yes, they're effortlessly beautiful, but can be so much more! Thanks Sean!
  • Alexandra Daum
    These are so beautiful! I love ground cherries (I've always called them physalis, though, I wasn't sure of the name in english until now), they have such a unique flavour. What a great speedy seasonal recipe!
  • Earth, Food,and Fire
    I've never heard these called ground cherries! (In Nova Scotia) I've always heard them be referred to as goose berries! I don't see them as often as i used to but they are delicious for sure! something not a lot of people are familiar with, but o so tasty and tart!
    • That's what they're called out east! I knew they had a different name, but I couldn't remember what it was :) Thank you!
  • Dish’n’theKitchen(B)
    well..I've only ever seen these used as garnishes and I've never heard them called ground cherries! But your pies are making me drool. Great post Hilary.
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  • Michele Lombardi
    This recipe sounds delicious! Is it missing the last step? I'm guessing that the sugar, ground cardamom, lemon juice, and milk are combined and used to top the hand pies?
    • Great catch Michele! I've updated the recipe to include the glaze topping. Happy baking! :)
      • Michele Lombardi
        I made them this morning and they were delicious!