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Midwestern Meat Pies

When I moved to the Midwest in 1966, I discovered many ethnic foods that I had never heard of before. One of my friends introduced me to this runza recipe, and it quickly became a popular dish with my family. —Dolly Croghan, Mead, Nebraska
  • Total Time
    Prep: 35 min. + rising Bake: 20 min.
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 4-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 2 small onions, chopped
  • 4 cups chopped cabbage
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


  • Place 1-3/4 cups flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a large bowl. Heat the milk, water and shortening to 120°-130°. Pour over flour mixture; add the eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low until blended. Beat 3 additional minutes on high. Stir in the remaining flour; knead until smooth and elastic, 6-8 minutes.
  • Place dough in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook beef and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Add the cabbage, salt and pepper; cook until cabbage is wilted.
  • Punch dough down; roll into twelve 6-in. squares. Top each square with 1/3 cup meat mixture. Fold into triangles. Pinch edges tightly to seal, and place on greased baking sheets. Bake at 350° until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Serve hot.
Nutrition Facts
1 serving: 368 calories, 13g fat (4g saturated fat), 56mg cholesterol, 443mg sodium, 48g carbohydrate (11g sugars, 2g fiber), 14g protein.
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  • ScottsGrace
    Jan 22, 2019

    I was excited to try this recipe! It didn't disappoint! I had to make one change because I didn't have the cabbage called for in the recipe but I did have a large bag of slaw mix which has other veggies (carrots, celery, etc) shredded into it and it was fantastic! I liked having the extra veggie nutrients in it too! I think if I made this again (and I'm sure I will) I will try different things like riced veggie blends to increase the nutritional value. We like things a bit spicy too so we had a jar of hot sauce (not tobasco) on hand but I would consider putting the hot sauce in the meat mixture! Great recipe!

  • Psalm127-3
    Jul 7, 2017

    I did a review earlier (already commented on this recipe but I don't find my comments here). hmmm.made the dough today in my bread machine the dough is absolutely luscious it's exemplary I would make the dough many more times for any number of things...luscious.Reading the ingredients for the filling I did feel the result would be bland. it was. not that I didn't enjoy the sandwich I did, love the mouth feel. I did brush egg wash over the top and did put a little bit of sugar in the egg wash because I wanted to have that snappy shiny brown glaze on top and it did...came out beautiful.I asked my husband what he thought about the sandwich and he said it was good. I asked was it bland he said yes it was and needed more flavor. so for the batch still in the pan I added Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder more pepper&salt, chopped about 2T rainbow raisins added them then beat up an egg with 1t sugar and added that to the cooked meat mixture. its all in a zipper bag frozen until next time when I'll either call it a Sioux burger or an empanada.the 3 stars are for the dough and the idea

  • Anitta
    Feb 27, 2017

    The meat and cabbage is well balanced. The dough density turned out perfect. It is a bit sweet for us. I will decrease the sweetness next time. This is a lot like my mother used to make. We added more pepper to ours. A great overall recipe. Easy to adjust for your preference.

  • sharonraburn
    May 18, 2013

    I did cut the sugar down to 1/4 cup, but loved these, I cant wait to make again. the dough is so easy to work with, and just so so so good.

  • ChefsDelight
    Apr 20, 2013

    I first found this Taste of Home recipe on another site with 5 stars and many reviews. That was several years ago, and my family has thoroughly enjoyed it ever since. In fact, I find it even better than the runzas I can purchase in the restaurant. The bread by itself is amazingly good, and the base recipe for the filling is also good enough for 5 stars.However, I do make some changes to suit my family that we think make it even better. We like the Swiss Mushroom Runzas sold in the restaurant, so I add fresh mushroom to the skillet while browning the meat and onion. I often use a little extra hamburger too, since we like them meaty. I usually double the salt and pepper and add a little garlic powder to give it more kick. And, I add a half can of cream of mushroom soup to help it hold together. I make my dough in the bread machine. When it comes out, I divide it in half and keep dividing until I have 16 balls. Yes, it will make that many! I wanted smaller portions for my kids, and these are still good sized. I roll out each one into a circle in a bit of flour, add a slice of Swiss cheese, and a full 1/3 cup of filling. (I've found that the slice of cheese works better than shredded. It not only helps keep the top smooth, but it also adds some insulation to keep the hot filling from "melting" and tearing the dough. I'd let the filling cool first if you don't use cheese.) Then, I just pull up the sides around the filling, turn it over, lay it on my pan and bake. Delicious! I've also froze these and had good results.

  • SWest19
    Jan 5, 2013

    No comment left

  • Zhena
    Dec 2, 2012

    The Runza allergen information states there are no eggs in the Original Runza. I haven't used this recipe for that reason.

  • Zhena
    Dec 2, 2012

    The Runza allergen information states there are no eggs in the Original Runza.

  • jayeltee
    Jun 14, 2012

    This is delicious! Try adding 1-2 cups of grated cheddar cheese. Rolled the dough into circles and folded in half.

  • adkinad
    Dec 20, 2011

    This recipe was excellent! I will definately make these again. The bread was perfect! The taste was great and the dough was really easy to work with. I did add a little more flour when needed while kneading to keep the dough from sticking to my counter and hands and I used half a medium onion instead of two small ones. I would recommend, instead of folding the dough into triangles, fold them into a rectangle form instead, like a hot pocket. (I did try both) The meat mixture fills the pocket better and they fit better on the baking sheet. Awesome recipe!!