Upper Peninsula Pasties and #SundaySupper

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Upper Peninsula Pasties are full of ground beef, potatoes, rutabagas, carrots, onions and parsley.

UP Beef Pasties

Upper Peninsula Pasties

The challenge this week for #SundaySupper was to do a favorite recipe from my hometown. I gave it quite a bit of thought and really couldn’t think of one thing my hometown was known for. I can think of a lot of great cooks and a favorite recipe they might make but nothing stuck out in my mind as a hometown favorite. I did however have a hankering for some Pasties which the upper peninsula of Michigan is famous for so I decided to share my recipe for them.

UP Beef Pasties

As you can see above the meat goes in the pasties raw. I try to use stew beef or even a round steak, It will cook while it bakes plus the juices stay in the pastie. I grind the meat myself with my Kitcheaid. If you don’t have a way to grind the meat I would ask at the store if they would for you or look for chili beef which is a larger cut of meat than regular hamburger. You could also use a mixture of pork and beef or even chicken.

UP Beef Pasties

The pastry recipe I used is made with hot water and melted lard/shortening, I love it because it is so easy to work with. It is also really flaky. If you’ve never tried this kind of pastry before, try it once. I know you will love the results. When the pastry is in the refrigerator it will firm right up and feel more like a pie crust when you take it out to work with it. I made my pasties with 6 inch circles, not the 10 inch I put in the recipe. I got 10 pasties from one recipe.

These also freeze beautifully and can be reheated in 30 minutes from a frozen state if baked before freezing. I like to serve mine with gravy but ketchup is the preferred condiment of many. I had some of the meat mixture left over so I added it to a pan with 2 cups of beef broth and simmered it for an hour. I strained it and then made my gravy out of it.

UP Pasties

Upper Peninsula Beef Pasties
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 - 10 pasties
Beef pasties made with ground beef, potatoes, rutabagas, carrots and onion filling.
  • ½ cup shortening
  • ½ cup lard
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2¾ to 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1 lb.. potatoes - I like russets for this
  • 1 large rutabaga - peeled
  • 1 medium onion - chopped
  • 2 carrots
  • 1½ lbs. ground beef
  • 1½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons parsley
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  1. Make the pastry
  2. Bring the water to a boil, add the lard and shortening. Add the salt. Stir in enough flour to make a soft dough. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  3. To make the filling
  4. Chop the potatoes, onions, rutabagas and carrots into bite size pieces.
  5. Add the ground beef. mix in. Add the seasonings. Stir in.
  6. Divide the dough into 6 pieces. Roll out on a floured surface, like you would a pie crust. Cut out a 10 inch circle of dough.
  7. Place a portion of the meat mixture on the dough as shown in the picture above.
  8. Fold top over and press edges together to seal. Place on a greased baking sheet. Cut several slits in the top of the dough for the steam to escape. Brush lightly on the tops with the heavy cream.
  9. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 - 45 minutes or until they turn light brown.

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UP Beef Pasties

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  1. says

    These pasties look gorgeous – the ultimate winter comfort food! They’re also considered a home-grown recipe in Cornwall, UK. I wonder if there’s a link?!

    • says

      There is a link I believe. The miners brought the recipes with them and when they mined in the UP they brought these for lunch. They actually have a pretty fascinating history.

    • says

      Hope you do try them, you can also make them with chicken, pork and some people do pork and beef. They adapt any way you want to make them.

  2. says

    I think the first time I learned about Pasties was on a Cooking Channel episode with Mo Rocca on My Grandmother’s Ravioli… if memory serves. I remember thinking how comforting these little wrapped packages looked! I love that the filling is all-inclusive — a perfect bite! These look fabulous!

  3. says

    Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is my most favorite place on earth. The shores of Lake Superior are unmatched. And nothing says UP like pasties. Love your recipe. Thank you for sharing!

  4. says

    I did guess Michigan!! You hear peninsula, you think Florida, but the upper part of Florida is not the peninsula part, but then I figured no it has to be Michigan! Yea!

    Pasties are so delicious and perfect for cold weather – yours look amazing!

  5. says

    Michigan pasties are a classic. I just made some not to long ago using Michigan venison. I live in Fair Haven. A tiny town on the east side of the state separated from Canada by shipping channels so our hometown fare is mostly perch and pickeral. I am trying to figure out in which part of the state you reside.

    • says

      Hi Wendy, I don’t reside there now, I was raised in a small town outside of Detroit and to the best of my knowledge I don’t think we were known for anything. If I had venison I would of used it. Lucky you! I’ve been to Fair Haven and the perch fishing up there is great!

  6. says

    There’s a pasties store sort of near us; nearer than Upper Penisula. I shared a curry chicken one with mom and had a sausage roll. Oh my word were they delicious. It’s all in the dough! Flaky, crispy, tender, YUM! These looks excellent.

    • says

      I can’t believe you’ve never had one! It’s worth the drive up north to get them. They are available before you get to the bridge too if you know where to look.

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