Jamaican Meat Pies (low carb and gluten free)

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Hello Peeps!  This post is chock full of great stuff!  In addition to the recipe, I’ve got a delicious gluten free giveaway for you from Sarah’s Skinny Sweets, and you can find all the details on how to enter that at the bottom of the post.  Also, I’m excited and honored to report that Kim Bee over at Cravings of a Lunatic is featuring an interview with me for her “Burning Down the Kitchen” segment today.  We all know I love me some Lunatic, so when she asked me to do BDTK I was totally floored and stammered out a Y-Y-Y-Y-Yes, Please!!!!!  If you aren’t already following her, then head on over there STAT because she is amazing!  One of my favorite bloggers, Kim keeps it real, makes delicious food, and is so funny that she makes me laugh out loud pretty much on a daily basis.  Plus she has a horse and I’m totally jealous!  So click over and find out what makes me tick, and check out her decidedly NOT low carb version of my coconut frenzy cake.  While you’re there, do yourself a favor and subscribe to her blog and facebook page – unless you hate laughing, in which case DO NOT under any circumstances click here.
So I really love Jamaican meat pies –  the burn your mouth off, super hot kind!  I’ve never been to Jamaica (at least not yet!), but a friend of mine said the brand I used to buy was the closest to the real thing that she’d ever had in the states.  They are flaky on the outside, silky on the inside – and have that smoky, fruity flavor of the scotch bonnet peppers traditionally used to season them.  It’s been a long time since I’ve had one – I can’t find the brand I like here in SC, and even if I could, they don’t fit into my low carb, gluten free way of eating now.  So I finally attempted to create a version that I can eat.  The first attempt was ok, but the beef I used was too lean and so the pieces were chunky and the texture was off.  My next batch used a mix of ground pork and 85% lean beef and that was much better.  I had to use store bought habaneros, which was unfortunate because they lacked the fruitiness of the traditional scotch bonnets.  Also, even after adding two of them, the heat was less than I would have liked.  Next time, I’m holding out for the scotch bonnets, even if I have to grow my own! The crust came out really good though and overall, while it wasn’t an exact replica of my favorite, it definitely was close enough to make my taste buds really happy! 
Makes 12 small hand pies
For the filling:
1/2 lb ground pork
1/2 lb ground beef (85% lean)
1 small onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 cup water
1 scotch bonnet or 2 habaneros
1 tsp Jamaican curry powder
1 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp allspice
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp stevia powder
salt & pepper to taste
2 Tbl butter
For the crust:
6 oz cream cheese, softened
4 Tbl butter, softened
1 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp stevia
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup coconut flour
1 1/2 cup milled flax meal
2 Tbl cold water
To make the filling, add the meat to a saute pan over medium heat.  Puree the onion, garlic, scotch bonnet or habaneros, and water in a blender or magic bullet.  Pour the mix into the meat while still raw and stir it in to help keep the meat from clumping.  Add all of your spices to the meat while cooking.  When fully cooked and most of the water has evaporated, taste and adjust seasoning to your preference.  Add the butter and stir until melted and completely blended into your meat mixture.  Remove from the heat.  
To make the dough:
Blend the butter and cream cheese together until fluffy.  In a separate bowl, combine the flax, coconut flour, baking powder, salt, stevia, and turmeric until blended.  Add the dry ingredients to the cream cheese & butter mixture, followed by the water – stir until a stiff dough forms.  Divide the dough into 12 balls between one and two inches in diameter.  Place a ball onto a piece of parchment paper and cover with another piece of parchment.  Roll into a thin circle about 4-5 inches in diameter.  Place a few tablespoons of the meat mixture on one half of the circle and then fold over the other half and press or crimp to seal.  (You may need to use a spatula to release the dough from the parchment in order to fold it over.)  Place the pie on baking sheet covered in parchment and repeat with the rest of the dough balls.  Bake in a 350 degree (F) oven for 25 minutes or until crisp.   As a variation, which is totally unauthentic but tasted awesome, sprinkle some sharp cheddar cheese over the meat before folding over the crust.  So good! 
Approximate nutrition info per pie:  296 calories, 24g fat, 3g net carbs, 12g protein
Oh don’t think I forgot the giveaway, I just wanted to make you suffer to the end of the post to get to it!  ;)  So I got an email the other day from Sarah over at Sarah’s Skinny Sweets in which she asked if I’d be interested in trying out her low carb gluten free cookies.  I was like “YOU want to send ME free cookies?  Duh!  Yes please!”  I told her I’d love to try them out and that if she was interested in doing a giveaway, to send me an extra bag for my peeps.  Well a few days later I get home and there is a HUGE box on my porch and I’m wracking my brain trying to figure out what we might have ordered until I see the label and realize it’s the cookies!  I was like “How many cookies are IN here???”  Well it was a LOT!  She sent me one in every flavor to try out, and a nicely wrapped giveaway bag for one of you guys to win with three different bags of the cookies.  And these aren’t just any cookies!  They are SO DELICIOUS, gluten free, vegan and have only 3 or 4 net carbs each!  I think my favorite was the original chocolate chip, but it’s a close call because I also loved the dark chocolate and macadamia – and the orange cranberry almond goes great with a morning coffee!  The best part is that she uses all natural whole ingredients without all the junk and frankenstuffs that a lot of other cookies use.  Check out her website to read all about why she started her company and how you can get these cookies for yourself!  To win a bag of each flavor she offers (there are currently three) leave a comment on this post (with a way to contact you) – it can be about the cookies, the jamaican pies or whatever.  For extra entries show her some love on facebook, twitter, and pinterest and leave a comment for each.  The winner will be chosen by random number generator on Sunday, April 22 at 7pm EST and will be announced on Monday.  Trust me, you want these cookies! 





  1. Mafia Princess
    Mafia Princess04-18-2012

    OMG I miss jamacian patties. You are wonderful.

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Thanks MP, I was really missing them too and these are definitely a passable LC/GF substitute for the real thing! Hope you like them!

  2. Amanda
    Amanda04-18-2012

    Okay, totally and completely have to try the Jamaican pies and REAAAAALLLY want a go at those lovely Skinny Sweets!!

    amanda.seymour08@gmail.com is where you can get in touch with me. :)

    Keep up all the amazing recipes, everything I have made so far have been absolutely wonderful!

  3. Iris Lee
    Iris Lee04-18-2012

    Those Jamaican meat pies look amazing! I’ve never had them before – maybe I’ll try to make your version. :)

    iristlee@gmail.com

  4. gwen
    gwen04-18-2012

    Those meat pies look awesome! can’t wait to try them!

    Gwen.howell@lusfiber.net

  5. gwen
    gwen04-18-2012

    I follow Sarah’s skinny sweets on FB and pinterest!

    gwen.howell@lusfiber.net

  6. Kirstie
    Kirstie04-18-2012

    Send me those cookies!
    Kirstie :)
    kirstievt at gmail dot com

  7. Jan J.
    Jan J.04-18-2012

    Oh I definitely want to try those cookies! And I want to make one of those pies too but without the peppers! The crust sounds really intriguing. janschop at aol.com

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Hey Jan, the crust works for all sorts of things! The pies will be different without the peppers but still delicious and definitely more kid friendly!

  8. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-18-2012

    We just tried cauliflower puree, everyone really liked it. I was pleasantly surprised. Can’t wait to try the Jamaican Meat pies. We LOVE cookies, but don’t have them very often due to fat and sugar content. We would love to try Sarah’s cookies. mhyde@satx.rr.com

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Glad you guys liked the cauli puree and I hope you like the meat pies as much! I loved them and so did my husband!

  9. Marisa
    Marisa04-18-2012

    I would love to try the chocolate chip ones..I’ve been craving a good low carb cookie!

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Marisa these cookies really were to die for – SO GOOD! You don’t even feel like you are compromising anything – totally decadent and delicious! Worth buying if you don’t win – but fingers crossed for you! :)

  10. Marisa
    Marisa04-18-2012

    I also liked her page on FB.

  11. Marisa
    Marisa04-18-2012

    And I follow her on Pinterest!

  12. spinachinmyteeth
    spinachinmyteeth04-18-2012

    Love all of your low-carb recipes! I don’t eat wheat and am always looking for a good cookie so these sound right up my alley :]

    email: j.maranga614@gmail.com

  13. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-18-2012

    Would love to win some cookies!!! also love all the recipes.
    Email is nannycarols@yahoo.com

  14. Carolynn Lowry
    Carolynn Lowry04-18-2012

    I have been enjoying your site very much…and I want some cookies :)

  15. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-18-2012

    Your jAMICAN meat pies sound so yummy. I love all your recipes. I’ve been pinning a lot of them AND I would love some cookies!!
    Carla Meiers
    ckmaz02@yahoo.com

  16. janelleduah
    janelleduah04-18-2012

    I am West Indian and beef patties/meat pies are like our cheeseburger; we eat them any time and anywhere. Since embarking on my new low carb lifestyle, I haven’t been able to eat them and was hoping you’d make a low carb version when I saw your Brazilian chicken pies. This is a godsend! I would love to win these low carb/gluten free cookies as low carb baking is my new hobby and I need some inspiration. And who wouldn’t love a healthy treat! Email is janelle.duah@yale.edu

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Well you’ll definitely have to let me know how they stand up to the ones from home! And after you make them I’d love to hear any suggestions on how they can be improved to be more authentic tasting!

  17. Kirsty Maurits
    Kirsty Maurits04-18-2012

    Man, I’d love to try some of those cookies! And I’m definitely going to have a go at your hand pies, too!

    purringcat @ gmail dot com

  18. janelleduah
    janelleduah04-18-2012

    I also ‘liked’ Sarah’s Skinny Sweets’ facebook page!

  19. janelleduah
    janelleduah04-18-2012

    And I now also follow Sarah on Twitter :)

  20. Kirsty Maurits
    Kirsty Maurits04-18-2012

    I’d love to try those cookies, and will definitely be trying those pies!

    purringcat @ gmail dot com

  21. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-18-2012

    Do you have a recipe for the chicken patties as I don’t eat beef or pork? I guess I could use ground turkey instead. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Never tried them with chicken but I imagine you could substitute in ground chicken or turkey. Or maybe shred the chicken really finely after cooking it, that might be yummy!

  22. amy beth marantino
    amy beth marantino04-18-2012

    these cookies look good. i hope to win them

  23. amy beth marantino
    amy beth marantino04-18-2012

    i follow you on twitter

  24. Jo Anna
    Jo Anna04-18-2012

    I would love some free cookies!

    jannakins@hotmail.com

  25. Kim Bee
    Kim Bee04-18-2012

    Wow girl, you are chock full of deliciousness today. I am so thrilled you allowed me to poke around in your brain a little bit. Hope it wasn’t too painful for you. The cake was delicious. I may even try the low carb version next time. I am now pondering making the unhealthy version of the pies. It’s like a sickness. Help me.

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Kim, I had a blast and I liked your questions. You’re like the next Oprah! :) Glad you liked the cake, though it was very different from mine and I’m sure was awesome with all that delicious sugar in it! ha ha! And if you’ve never made jamaican meat pies before, you definitely need to try it! You can google it and find a million recipes chock full of carbs if you want to! ;) XO

  26. Shahin
    Shahin04-18-2012

    Love your blog!

  27. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-18-2012

    I made the filling for dinner. It was glorious. also, do want cookies! whurmuhbuket@yahoo.com

  28. eternaljanuary
    eternaljanuary04-18-2012

    first, i’m passing along the jamaican pie recipe to a friend who loves island food and is always looking for healthy alternatives. second, COOOOOOOKIES!! third, love your blog!

    contact/follow/friend/repin @eternaljanuary or Eternal January on all the regulars

  29. the actor's diet
    the actor's diet04-18-2012

    ooooh cooookies! would love to try.

  30. yousef
    yousef04-18-2012

    mmmmmmm its Looks Yummy
    I wanna try it

  31. Doris
    Doris04-19-2012

    I haven’t had a cookie in 3 months . . . sure would be nice. That’s a lot of ingredients in those pies . . . but they sound so delicious that I might just try them. Your’s look awfully pretty. I wonder can I be that skilled????

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      Doris I have complete faith in your abilities to churn out some beautiful and delicious meat pies! Might want to ease up on the pepper if your kids don’t love spicy stuff though! And these cookies are amazing – worth a splurge for sure if you don’t win them!

  32. Doris
    Doris04-19-2012

    Oh, forgot . . . passionatelife68f at gmail dot com

  33. ArielDVM14
    ArielDVM1404-19-2012

    As soon as finals are over and I have more time to cook, I am definitely trying these meat pies! I don’t eat pork though, so I’m gonna try substituting ground turkey.

    Oh, and I follow Sarah’s Skinny Sweets on Facebook, Twitter, AND Pinterest. Those cookies sound amazing…

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-19-2012

      let me know how they come out! I’m sure turkey will be just as delicious – you might want to add a little more butter or some olive oil though so they aren’t too dry! Hope you like them!

  34. ArielDVM14
    ArielDVM1404-19-2012

    Oops, forgot contact info!

    wickedprincess10@gmail.com :)

  35. Maija M
    Maija M04-19-2012

    Her chocolate chip cookies look great. Thanks for the giveaway! Also following her on FB & Pintrest. Maija pinkmaija (at) yahoo dot com

  36. Bingwald
    Bingwald04-19-2012

    Interested in the cookies, as we’re just starting this gluten free/low carb lifestyle and have had a major sweet tooth!

    The meat pies look great, too! We used to love making empenadas. This is a must try!

    bingwald at gmail dot com

  37. Jan
    Jan04-19-2012

    Gluten-free and low carb? Wow! I’d love to try these. And those Jamaican meat pies sound great – I’m going to have to try them (but with a tad less heat :)

    way2kul (at) yahoo dot com

  38. Rebecca Broski
    Rebecca Broski04-19-2012

    I would love to try the cookies.

  39. Space Monkey 1138
    Space Monkey 113804-19-2012

    Awesome giveaway! Thanks so much! I live in a small town with not much love for people on special diets :/

  40. Jessica Baker
    Jessica Baker04-19-2012

    Those Jamaican Pies look delicious! I just started the no gluten diet again for the second time and it is sooo much harder not living near a healthy food store so come cookies would be appreciated. Love the blog btw I am eating cauli-mash right now!

    jessicaraebaker@gmail.com

  41. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-19-2012

    I love your blog! You have the best and extemely creative recipes. I’ve never heard of either Craving of a Lunatic or Sarah’s Skinny Sweets so I’m definitely checking out both!

    Angelus2009@gmail.coom

  42. Janie~momof12
    Janie~momof1204-19-2012

    I have never seen Jamaican Meat Pies ~ but can’t wait to try them!! And cookies ~ OH, Yes, Please~~
    grace412kids@gmail.com

  43. Sarah M
    Sarah M04-19-2012

    Those meat pies are seriously a thing of beauty.

    sarahjmcwhirter at gmail dot com

  44. Toni
    Toni04-19-2012

    I have coconut flour in my pantry, just waiting for me to make these meat pies! Cookies for dessert…what could be better?

  45. Katie
    Katie04-19-2012

    Just the name of these pies is making me drool! I love Jamaican anything (especially beahes….hehe) and meat everything! Oh, and I have been known to eat a cookie or eight.

    I just found your blog and wanted to let you know I love it and just spent the last 30 minutes clicking around. I’ve got a ton of recipes bookmarked!

  46. laura west kong
    laura west kong04-20-2012

    Oooh I definitely want to make the patties! Something I can actually eat :)

  47. laura west kong
    laura west kong04-20-2012

    I follow Sarah on twitter. (@time4pudding)

  48. Misti O'Connor
    Misti O'Connor04-20-2012

    I am always looking for healthy alternatives to cookies (or for that matter, anything sweet.) These sound amazing. Would love to be able to try some. Thanks!

    mistio78@gmail.com

  49. Quill
    Quill04-20-2012

    I’m loving your blog! I’ve made several of your recipes in the last few weeks to raging applause. I’m thinking this one could be the next success!

    Count me in for the cookies giveaway please!
    hollymayquinn@gmail.com

  50. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-20-2012

    Just started eating low carb and wheat free and love your blog – would love, love, love me some chocolate chip cookies! Hope I win Sarah’s Skinny Sweets! Thanks!
    oehme@comcast.net

  51. Julie
    Julie04-20-2012

    I just found your blog and I’m making the flax pizza crust while I peruse the recipes. Lots of great stuff here that I can’t wait to try! Thank you = )

    vexingeyes@gmail.com

  52. Screamer
    Screamer04-21-2012

    OMG. I haven’t had a Jamaican beef patty for almost 6 years now! I’m going to try this recipe this Sunday. I’m soooo excited! Thank you so much!

  53. Karla Wilcox
    Karla Wilcox04-21-2012

    I would love to try these cookies as I am always looking for a low net carb sweet that helps me with my cravings! By the way, I stumbled across your site and love the fact that you post low carb recipes! I can’t do all of your recipes, but there are a lot that I can make with the special diet I am on. Keep up the good work!

  54. Erica Gott, aka Erratica
    Erica Gott, aka Erratica04-21-2012

    Oh, my, those Jamaican meat pies look soooo good! I love the British pasties, Mexican empanadas, and these are the Jamaican version. I’m about to try dairy again, so am really happy these have no nut flours (off that, too).

    I’d love to try these cookies (and get my new-to-low-carb friends to try them, too).

    ewgott@yahoo.com

  55. Mserita
    Mserita04-21-2012

    I just stumbled across your blog from a pin on Pinterest and I LOVE it! There are so many recipes I am dying to try. I think I’ll start off tonight with the chorizo stuffed chicken. The cookies sound amazing too. I’m in for anything that makes a decadent treat into a healthy treat. Especially the dark chocolate and macadamia, yummmmm. I hope to get to try them! Thanks!
    s.schwoerer@gmail.com

  56. Kel-Bell
    Kel-Bell04-21-2012

    I’m glad to see that the cookies are awesome because they are low-carb, vegan, and all-natural… NOT because they’re gluten-free. I have a personal vendetta against gluten-free marketing, because it doesn’t do anything for regular people and it can actually be quite dangerous to completely eliminate gluten from your diet! (Unless you have an intolerance or allergy, of course.) Only been reading your blog a short while, very nice. =)

    rock.kowgurl@gmail.com

  57. Melisa
    Melisa04-21-2012

    Oh, those meat pies look so good, but they also look like more kitchen work than I like, LOL. I’d love to try the cookies. Haven’t had a cookie in so long.

  58. Jackie Davis
    Jackie Davis04-21-2012

    Thank you so much for this post! I love recipes and especially with photos! Great work! I would like a chance to win too! Mmmmm
    Thanks!
    jackie(at)jackiesue.com

  59. moonsword
    moonsword04-22-2012

    I’ve never had cookies made from coconut flour…these look so good and totally dunkable in my almond milk! :)

  60. Anonymous
    Anonymous04-23-2012

    Would brown rice flour work in place of coconut flour?

  61. Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
    Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)04-24-2012

    In theory, I don’t see why not! I’d love to hear back if you try it on how they come out!

  62. Anonymous
    Anonymous05-23-2012

    Jamaicans Call Them Meat Patties Not “PIES”, Which Are A Totally Different Concept….Yes I….Raspect !

    • Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)
      Mellissa Sevigny (sevimel)05-26-2012

      I stand corrected! We refer to them as patties at home too, but for the sake of the blog and people who aren’t familiar with them, calling them pies avoided any confusion. If you taste them I’d love to hear if you found them authentic so please do report back!

  63. Paul Halliday
    Paul Halliday05-24-2012

    I should kiss you for this! Being a Brit, I love my pasties, but between paleo eating and our Chancellor taxing the heck out of cooked food, I’m left over here with no pasties and feeling pretty glum about not having one. Drawing my pockets inside out and standing with a forlorn “no pasties” look on my face, let alone “no Jamaican pasties” (which are always awesome!) … I’m very pleased to read this recipe.

    Funnily enough, I bought some coconut flour for some reason or other … the reason, I can no longer remember.

    I’ll have a crack at this hopefully at the weekend.

  64. Anonymous
    Anonymous07-24-2012

    As I am low carb but not gluten free I added some vital wheat gluten to the recipe. They came out exactly like jamaican patties. Great recipe! Being half jamaican i grew up eating these and they were just as good as the real thing :)

  65. Michele
    Michele08-29-2012

    Thanks so much for posting this!!! It am free of gluten, dairy, eggs, and almonds, amongst other things and it’s made it very hard to find a meat pattie recipe! I long for them! Just wondering if the stevia is necessary. I mean, obviously, or you wouldn’t put it in, but does it give it some sweetness? We’ve never had any sweetness to our Jamaican Patties. Thanks!

    • Mellissa Sevigny
      Mellissa Sevigny09-01-2012

      Hi Michele! I added the stevia to add a TINY hint of sweet that I taste in the real thing from the pastry. But you can certainly omit it if you want to – purely a matter of personal preference! Let me know what you think of them!

    • Michele
      Michele09-02-2012

      Thank you, Mellissa! The taste was yummy, but we had trouble with the crust staying together. I nearly cried! We had to make it dairy-free by using Tofutti cream cheese and Earth Balance for the butter. We’ve used these subs successfully for other things, but do you think this explains why we had such trouble forming the patties? If you have any suggestions, I’d love to know! Thank you!!

    • Mellissa Sevigny
      Mellissa Sevigny09-07-2012

      I’m not sure because I don’t know the texture of the tofutti cream cheese. The regular cream cheese is sticky which helps hold it together so it might have been part of the problem. Maybe more of another kind of fat and a little more egg would help it stick better and still get a nice crumb when it bakes. Not sure, wish I could be of more help!

  66. susan
    susan01-21-2014

    The filling is wonderful I had problems with the crust. I followed the directions exactly and my crust was very dry and crumbly. I could not get it to really stick together.

    • Mellissa Sevigny
      Mellissa Sevigny01-22-2014

      Sorry about that Susan, the crust is definitely tempermental, sometimes it helps to add a bit more water – of course that won’t help you now. Sorry!

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