Desi Style Pie Recipes to Make at Home

Pies are some of Britain’s favourite food, whatever the filling may be. We look at some desi style pie recipes and how you can make them at home.

desi style pie

It sounds like a strange combination but it brings an immense flavour.

A pie is a food favourite in Britain and has been for centuries.

They can be savoury or sweet, making them a dish which is adaptable.

Meat fillings such as chicken, beef or lamb are popular. Sweet variations containing different fruits are another well like option.

What defines the pie, however, is their crusts.

A well-made pie must have thin and flaky pastry, either for filled, top-crust or two-crust pies.

Typically shortcrust pastry is used for a pie as it becomes very light and crumbly if done correctly. Other types of pastry can be used like filo.

Pastry can be made from scratch, or to save time, bought from a shop.

British-Asian people are also big fans of pies having tried different ones.

A pie which combines classic British cooking with intense Desi flavours is one many British Asian people would enjoy.

We look at several Desi style pie recipes to make at home.

Indian-Style Chicken Pie

desi style pie

This recipe takes the classic chicken pie and elevates it with extraordinary Indian flavours.

The chicken filling is packed with the strong flavours of garlic and ginger as well as chilli powder.

It is a recipe which one would make for their family as this serves 10 people.

This Indian-Style chicken pie combines the warm flavourful chicken with a golden, flaky crust, making it the perfect evening meal.


  • 2 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 5 Dried red chillies
  • 4 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 2 Large onions, sliced
  • 5 Garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
  • 2.5cm root ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 800g skinless chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
  • 1 Can chopped tomatoes
  • Salt, to taste
  • ½ tsp mango powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala

For the Pastry

  • 450g plain flour
  • 100g strong white flour
  • 75g cold unsalted butter
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 100g solid vegetable fat, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 Egg yolk, beaten


  1. Grease a cake tin with the excess fat.
  2. To make the filling, toast the coriander seeds in a small frying pan over low heat until they start changing colour.
  3. Once done, put the coriander seeds into a pestle and mortar. Crush them into a powder.
  4. Heat oil in a large frying pan. Add the fenugreek seeds and whole chillies, stir until golden-brown.
  5. Add the onions until browned.
  6. Stir in the garlic, ginger, crushed coriander seeds, chilli powder and coriander powder.
  7. Increase the heat to high and add the chicken. Fry for five minutes.
  8. Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for five minutes. Add salt, mango powder and garam masala.
  9. Reduce the heat and cook for 15 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
  10. Remove the chillies and discard. Transfer to the fridge to cool.
  11. Preheat oven to 200°C.
  12. To make the pastry, combine both flours into a bowl.
  13. Add the butter and use your fingertips to rub it into the flour until it looks like breadcrumbs.
  14. In a pan, heat 200ml water, salt and fat until just boiling. Pour it onto the flour and mix.
  15. Tip dough onto a floured work surface, knead until smooth.
  16. Working quickly, roll two thirds into a circle. Line the prepared tin.
  17. Spoon the filling into the tin. Press down to level the surface.
  18. Using the remaining pastry, roll out a pie lid.
  19. Brush top edges of the pastry with the egg yolk, place pastry lid on top.
  20. Crimp the edges and trim off any excess pastry.
  21. Make a few slits on top of the pie to allow steam to escape.
  22. Cook for one hour, or until it is golden-brown. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes then remove and leave to cool completely.
  23. Serve with roasted potatoes and mixed vegetables.

This recipe was inspired by Chetna Makan.

Spiced Potato Pie

desi style pie

This vegetable pie is a dish which can be eaten hot or cold, making it a versatile pie.

Potato pie has many variations, it can also be a sweet pie, replacing regular potatoes with sweet ones and adding sweet ingredients for a tasty dessert.

This version blends the soft, fluffy potatoes with flavours giving it a similar flavour to Bombay potatoes, a vegetarian favourite.

It takes just over an hour to cook, making it one of the quickest pie recipes to make.


  • 700g potatoes, sliced
  • 400g sweet potatoes, sliced
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 Red chilli, finely chopped
  • 2.5cm root ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • A pinch of dried chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 200g frozen peas
  • The juice of 1 lemon
  • Small bunch of coriander, chopped
  • 25g butter, melted
  • 275g pack of filo pastry
  • ½ tsp poppy seeds


  1. Boil potatoes in a large saucepan. Turn down and simmer for five minutes.
  2. Add the sweet potatoes, cook for eight minutes until tender. Drain and leave to cook.
  3. Heat oil in a pan, fry onions until soft.
  4. Add cumin seeds and cook for a minute. Stir in all the spices and cook for a further three minutes.
  5. Turn off the heat and stir into the potatoes, with the peas, lemon juice and coriander.
  6. Heat oven to 190°C/fan 170°C.
  7. Halve filo sheets and line a cake tin.
  8. As you lay in each sheet, brush with melted butter.
  9. Spoon in filling and lightly press.
  10. Cover with remaining pastry. Fold up with overhanging sides.
  11. Make several slits on top of the pie. Brush with more butter and sprinkle with poppy seeds.
  12. Cook for 40-45 minutes until golden brown.

This recipe has been inspired by BBC Good Food.

Samosa Pie

desi style pie

This recipe takes the filling of a samosa and puts it into a pie.

It sounds like a strange combination but it brings an immense flavour.

You can make whatever samosa filling you like, but this recipe combines lamb mince, potatoes and peas.

This dish will leave your family and friends wanting more once they try this Desi style pie.


  • Olive oil
  • 3 Small onions, diced
  • 1½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp garlic granules
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 500g lamb mince
  • 500g potatoes, diced
  • 200g frozen peas
  • 2 tbsp cornflour
  • Large bunch of coriander, chopped

For the Pastry

  • 265g plain flour
  • 55g strong bread flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 135ml hot water
  • 65g vegetable fat
  • 1 egg, beaten


  1. To make the filling, heat oil in a large saucepan, then add onions and salt. Cook for five minutes until soft.
  2. Add ginger, garlic, cumin seeds and chilli flakes. Cook for a few minutes.
  3. Add the mince. Cook until browned.
  4. Put in potatoes. Reduce heat, cover and cook for 20 minutes until soft. Add the peas and cook through.
  5. Stir in cornflour. Take off the heat and add coriander. Leave to cool completely.
  6. Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease a round cake tin.
  7. To make the pastry, put both flours into a bowl with salt and turmeric. Mix, then make a well in the centre.
  8. Put water and fat into a pan and heat until fat is melted. Pour into the well, then mix.
  9. When cool enough, use your hands to bring it all together.
  10. Roll most of the pastry so that it fits the base and sides of the tin. Line the tin, leaving the excess hanging.
  11. Spoon in the samosa filling.
  12. Make a pastry top. Brush the pastry with the egg and push the pastry lid down to seal.
  13. Cut off excess pastry, brush with the egg and pierce a hole in the centre.
  14. Bake for one hour.

This recipe was inspired by Nadiya Hussain.

Spicy Vegetable Pot Pie

desi style pie

This vegetarian pie is an ideal top-crust pie to have any day of the week.

Unlike most pies, this particular one does not have a sauce. It is a less common pie to make but one with a lot of flavours.

The Indian style filling consists of different vegetables and is spicy, so it guarantees flavour.


  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Tomato, chopped
  • 2 Potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 1½ cups of mixed vegetables of your choice
  • ½ cup paneer, crumbled
  • ½ cup chickpeas
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 2 tsp coriander powder
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp oil

For the Pastry

  • 256g flour
  • 128g whole wheat flour
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • ½ cup ice cold water
  • 2 cups olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder


  1. To make the pastry, place oil in the freezer until it becomes thick.
  2. Place all ingredients into a food processor, pulse until it comes together.
  3. Remove, wrap and put into the fridge for one hour.
  4. Roll out the dough for the top crust.
  5. To make the filling, heat oil in a pan. Add ginger-garlic paste and onions, cook until soft.
  6. Add the tomatoes and cook until soft.
  7. Stir in the spices and cook for a minute.
  8. Mix in the vegetables, chickpeas and salt. Stir until everything is well coated.
  9. Add a cup of water, then the potatoes and garam masala. Simmer for five minutes.
  10. Add the paneer, stir and turn off the heat.
  11. Place the filling into a large ovenproof dish, cover with the rolled out dough.
  12. Make some slits in the pie lid. Bake at 190°C for 20 minutes until brown.

This recipe was inspired by My Diverse kitchen.

Butter Chicken Pie with Naan Crust

desi style pie

This pie recipe takes the classic Indian dish butter chicken and puts it into a pie.

It is one of the most unique pies to be made. The dish combines the rich flavour of butter chicken with a crispy crust.

What is so creative is that the crust follows the same method as making a naan.

It sounds complicated but just takes time.


  • 1½ cups yoghurt
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp garam masala
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 900g boneless skinless chicken thighs, diced
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 Large onion, diced
  • 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 Can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • ½ cup chicken stock
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2 cups mixed vegetables
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree

For the Pastry

  • 1 tsp active dry yeast
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • A pinch of baking powder
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • ¼ cup yoghurt


  1. To make the Naan dough, combine yeast, sugar and ¾ warm water. Let it sit until foamy.
  2. Sift flour, sugar and baking powder into a bowl.
  3. Mix the yoghurt and oil into the yeast mixture. Pour into dry ingredients and mix.
  4. Use your hands to knead until soft. Cover and leave in a warm area for two hours.
  5. Meanwhile, combine yoghurt, lemon juice, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, paprika, salt and cinnamon in a container.
  6. Add the chicken and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for an hour.
  7. Once the chicken is marinated, melt butter with oil in a large pan.
  8. Add the onion and fry until soft, then add garlic-ginger paste.
  9. Add the tomatoes, jalapeno and chicken. Cook for 10 minutes.
  10. Pour in chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  11. Mix in the vegetables, cream and puree. Cook for five minutes.
  12. Preheat oven to 200°C.
  13. Fill casserole dish with the butter chicken. Set aside.
  14. Roll out the dough and gently stretch over the dish. Gently press it down.
  15. Brush with melted butter.
  16. Bake for 15 minutes until golden.

This recipe was inspired by Host the Toast.

These delicious pie recipes will ensure flavour and a filling meal for you and your family.

They all have fillings made in different ways to give it that Desi feel.

Some are more creative than others but they all bring their own unique flavours as Desi style pies.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

Images courtesy of BBC, Pinterest and Flickr

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