Making pies can feel like quite the commitment sometimes (but so worth it, right?), so when we saw that this gadget claimed to make a pie in minutes, we figured it was too good to be true—but we wanted to be proven wrong!
Our staffer Alla gave the Dash mini pie maker a try, making blueberry pies, apple pies and breakfast quiches. She started with two mini blueberry pies, using a recipe included in the booklet that came with the pie maker and defrosted puff pastry squares she had in her freezer.
MAKING BLUEBERRY PIE WITH THE DASH MINI PIE MAKER
"The pies were quick to assemble," Alla says. "I had to roll out the pre-cut squares a little to make them large enough for the pie crust cutter that's included."
"I baked the first one for five minutes. It cooked unevenly and pretty golden all around—except it started to burn on the top, towards the front of the machine. I was pleasantly surprised that the filling had cooked in that time. The blueberries were perfect, but parts of the dough were underbaked or still raw."
"For the second one, I cooked it for five minutes, then opened the cover and let it cook uncovered for another five minutes. It still had the dark spot on top and the blueberries didn't hold their shape as well, but no more raw dough on the bottom."
(FYI—as you'll see with the apple pie, Alla says the dark spots never tasted burnt!)
Then, she tried a pair of apple pies and breakfast quiches.
MAKING APPLE PIE WITH THE DASH MINI PIE MAKER
"For the apple pies, I tried to follow the recipe in the booklet, but found it was missing some instructions. It started with peeling and cutting up an apple into wedges and slicing those, then sautéing with a little butter and pumpkin spice seasoning and finishing with a bit of lemon juice. After that, the filling instructions went awry. The ingredients list cinnamon, sugar, corn starch and water, but the instructions didn't mention these things. I decided to let the apples cool, then added the cinnamon, sugar, and corn starch slurry. I made one covered pie and one with a lattice top (mostly because I had some scraps of dough left and didn't want to open a new pack of puff pastry). I cooked for two minutes, rotated, cooked for another two minutes, uncovered for five minutes, but had to add another five minutes covered at the end because the top crust hadn't cooked yet. I couldn't get the dark spots to go away, but the good news is the pastry never tasted burnt, even in the spots that looked a bit too dark."
MAKING QUICHE WITH THE DASH MINI PIE MAKER
"For each quiche, I cut up a slice of deli ham and a little cheddar cheese, and mixed an egg with a splash of heavy cream, salt and pepper. After shaping the puff pastry crust, I layered in the ham and cheese and poured the egg over, making sure the cheese wasn't poking out too much so I wouldn't have a gooey mess on the lid. I tried cooking for two minutes, rotating the pie, cooking for two more minutes, then opening the lid and cooking five minutes more. The crust browned more evenly, but it still had some darker patches."
"My second quiche came out a little paler than the first—maybe because it had a touch less cream or cooking spray—but both domed nicely and had fluffy omelet fillings."
"I don't think I'd do this for a regular breakfast, since frying up an egg sandwich or an omelet would be quicker, but I might do it again as a make ahead or if I were having people over for brunch."
Tips for using the Dash Mini Pie Maker:
- Be careful to roll your dough thin enough and not let it overlap too much on the side when shaping the bottom pie crust in the pie maker.
- Use cooking spray or brush on oil or butter before adding your dough to ensure your pie comes out easily.
- Rotate the pie halfway through so that the top cooks more evenly.
So, is the Dash Mini Pie Maker too good to be true or worth it?
"It takes a little mastering but definitely the cutest little pie you could hope for," Alla says. (Not to mention it's way quicker than a traditional pie.) "It's also super easy to remove the pies from the machine [if you grease it first] and clean up. Nothing stuck to the surface."