Famous Louisiana Natchitoches Meat Pies are a Christmas tradition that is enjoyed all year long! Filled with spicy beef and pork, these authentic golden, tender- crusted empanada-style pies are made hor d’oeuvre size in this recipe to create the perfect appetizer for parties or as a side dish for holiday meals and brunches.
Natchitoches (nak’-i-dush) meat pies have been a favorite at my Louisiana family gatherings for as long as I can remember. As a kid, I even thought Natchitoches meat pies were exclusive to my family. I thought that these golden, spicy treasures that marked every holiday and special event of my existence were top secret.
But being top secret and special aren’t quite the same things. Special is better. And special is exactly what these crescent-shaped fried pies are.
Natchitoches meat pies are kind of a big deal in my home state. They have been around forever, and there is even a meat pie festival… In Natchitoches, Louisiana (the oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana purchase) where they are a Christmas tradition.
These North Louisiana pies are spicy, addictive and the perfect balance of tender crust and salty, spicy beef & sausage. More importantly, every family has their own passed-down recipe.
I was absolutely delighted this summer when House Concurrent Resolution No. 88, enrolled and signed by the Speaker of the Louisiana House of Representatives and the President of the Louisiana State Senate, named an official North Louisiana menu. And guess what the only appetizer named in this 33 dish meal was? You got it– the one and only, super special Natchitoches meat pies.
So as New Year celebrations are right around the corner, I am sharing this recipe hoping these little fried gems find their way onto your party menu because they will surely be on mine. You can even tell your friends they are a secret family recipe if you want, or you can tell them the truth- this signature dish from Louisiana is just about as good as it gets.
Ingredients for Mini Natchitoches Meat Pies
- ground beef
- ground sausage (hot)
- green onions
- coarse black pepper
- red pepper
- cayenne pepper
- all purpose flour
- Crust (see below)
How to Make Authentic Mini Natchitoches Meat Pies
Make the Crust/Pastry. Sift flour into a large mixing bowl. Cut shortening into flour until it looks like wet sand. Add egg and milk. Combine to form dough. Knead and form dough into a ball. Dough is best when somewhat firm. Place dough ball in bowl, cover & refrigerate until needed.
Make the Filling. Combine beef and sausage, onions, and seasoning in skillet and brown. Don’t over cook because your pies still have to fry! Sprinkle flour over meat. Stir in and continue to brown. The flour will bind the meat together.
Assemble the Meat Pies. Roll ⅓ of dough at a time onto floured surfaced. Cut into 4in. circles. I use a small bowl or large cup like a cookie or biscuit cutter. Spoon filling on one side of the dough circles. With a little water on your forefinger, lightly wet edges of the circles, fold over and crimp edges with a damp fork.
Want a handy crimping shortcut? When I am short on time, this mini pie crimper is a life saver! –> Nordic Ware Mini Pie Crimper
Fry The Natchitoches Meat Pies. Deep fry at 375 degrees until golden brown. Place a cooling rack in a baking sheet. Cover the cooling rack with a paper towel. Drain meat pies on paper towel until ready to transfer onto tray or serving platter.
Let’s take a moment to give thanks for Louisiana food… Golden, tender, flaky, spicy, the perfect party finger food!
Other Favorite Lousiana Recipes You’ll Love
- Classic Louisiana Pralines
- Louisiana Dirty Rice
- Easy Louisiana Biscuit Beignets
- Million Dollar Shrimp & Crab Dip
- Easy Louisiana Sausage Jambalaya
- 1 ½ lbs ground beef
- 1 ½ lbs ground sausage hot
- 1 C chopped green onions all of the onion
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 tsp. coarse black pepper
- 1 tsp. red pepper
- ½ tsp. cayenne pepper
- ⅓ C all purpose flour
Crust (double the recipe to match the filling)
- 2 ½ C self-rising flour
- ⅓ C heaping shortening
- 1 egg beaten
- ¾ C milk
- Combine beef and sausage, onions, and seasoning in skillet and brown. Do not over cook.
- Sift flour over meat. Stir in and continue to brown. The flour will bind the meat together.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
- Roll ⅓ of dough at a time onto floured surfaced. Cut into 4in. circles.
- Spoon filling on one side of the dough circles. With a little water on your forefinger, lightly wet edges of the circles, fold over and crimp edges with a damp fork.
- Deep fry at 375 degrees until golden brown.
- Sift flour into a large mixing bowl. Cut shortening into flour until it looks mealy.
- Add egg and milk. Combine to form dough.
- Knead and form dough into a ball. Dough is best when somewhat firm. If needed, chill the dough.
- Place dough ball in bowl and cover until needed.