Winter will be shortly upon us and with the approach of the cold weather I like to find meals that bring comfort. Pot Pie is definitely one of those meals. Mike and I both love chicken pot pie but we have always resorted to the Marie Callenders frozen concoctions because it never even occurred to me that it might be possible for me to make it myself.
I decided to be brave and seek out a recipe to make one from scratch. It took me awhile to find the kind of recipe I was looking for because I didn’t want to make it with what Mike and I lovingly refer to as “cream of crap.”
Here is a recipe for an honest to goodness completely homemade Chicken Pot Pie. It is sooo yummy and so worth every ounce of effort you put into it. It really isn’t hard either, a little time consuming but definitely not hard. It is definitely worth it to make the crust yourself too. Trust me, you can make this! I’d never made anything like it before either and now my mouth is watering again just thinking of it.
This recipe is also incredibly flexible. You can use any meat or veggies you like and in fact you don’t even need to use meat at all. I made a veggie version of it for my vegetarian friend and it was delicious (I used potato, corn, carrot, green beans, broccoli, red pepper, onion and added shredded cheese to the sauce). I have made the pot pie with cubed and shredded chicken and personally I like shredded best. It would also be delicious with roast beef or turkey, etc. I also recommend using fresh vegetables. If you don’t have fresh use frozen. Don’t use canned veggies in this recipe. Also when I made mine I didn’t really measure the veggies and wound up with enough filling for two pies so don’t be surprised if you have more than enough filling. If you are going to make 2 pies you will want to double the sauce.
My tip is to make the crust first and then start making the pot pie while the dough is chilling.
Also, next time I am thinking us using heavy cream as opposed to milk for the sauce. I ignore fat content when it comes to dishes like this. Kind of like alfredo, some things are worth every calorie and every bit of fat.
The other reason I love this meal is because it can be very cheap and it is very hearty. If you are making the crust yourself then you probably have everything on hand for the meal. You can also get away with not using much meat in this recipe, especially if you cube up some potato for the pot pie.
Homemade Chicken Pot Pie
(recipe improved and adapted from HERE)
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast (We like to save money by using less meat and used one breast. Shredding the chicken also helped it to go further.)
1 cup sliced carrots
1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas
1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn
1 cup cubed raw potato
1 cube chicken, beef or veggie bouillon (I use the organic Better Than Bouillon paste or I skip this part entirely)
seasonings of choice
2/3 cup butter
1/3 cup onion
3 to 4 cloves freshly minced garlic
2/3 cup flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp poultry seasoning
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 1/3 cups milk
2 1/2 cups broth from filling
1. Cut and prepare the veggies for your filling.
2. Combine chopped veggies, raw meat and bouillon in a pot and add water enough to cover everything. You can also add any seasonings of choice if you’d like to help flavor the broth that will later be used for the sauce (ex: salt, pepper, basil, thyme, etc). Bring to a boil and boil for 15 minutes or until meat is cooked.
3. Drain veggies and meat and reserve liquid in a bowl. Set veggies aside. Shred or chop meat. Combine meat and veggies in a bowl, set aside.
4. For sauce begin by melting butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Saute onion in butter until soft and translucent. Add minced garlic and saute for a minute. Add flour to saucepan and whisk. Whisk the flour/butter paste for 30 seconds or so to allow the flour to cook a bit. Slowly pour milk and broth into saucepan while whisking. Whisk in salt, pepper and poultry seasoning. Simmer the sauce over medium low heat until thick. Make sure to taste your sauce and see if it needs any additional seasoning. Keep in mind that potatoes absorb a lot of salt so you may want to add more salt/seasonings. Remove from heat.
5. Begin to add your sauce to the bowl your meat and veggies are in and mix. You may not need all of the sauce. Add a bit more sauce than you think you will need because the potatoes and crust will absorb some of the sauce and you don’t want your pie to be dry.
6. Add filling to pie crust (directions below) and then put on top layer of crust and seal. Brush with egg white and cut slits in top crust to vent.
7. Bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until filling is bubbly and crust is golden.
Homemade Flaky Pie Crust
(recipe from HERE but recipe is doubled for a top and bottom crust)
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup cold butter (best frozen)
1/4 cup and 2 tbsp ice water
1 egg white
1. Before starting your crust it is best to put your butter in the freezer. Frozen butter makes better pastries and is easier to cut into flour for dough.
2. Whisk flour and salt in a large bowl.
3. With pastry blender cut in butter to flour mixture until mixture resembles course crumbs. (You will need to chop your refrigerated or frozen butter. The easiest way to deal with frozen butter is to use a cheese grater and grate your butter, the small flakes make it easy to blend. Your hands will get messy but that is part of the fun.
4. Drizzle 4-6 tablespoons of water over dough. Toss/Blend mixture with a fork to moisten adding more water a few drops at a time until dough comes together. (I wound up using all the water even from the melted ice. Dough will still be rather dry.)
5. Gently gather the crumbles into 2 balls and mold together. I wound up with some crumbles that were difficult to adhere to the ball but with patience I was able to form together. You can always add a few more drops if you need to but you don’t want the dough to be pasty.
6. Wrap balls of dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
7. Remove balls of dough from fridge and roll out on lightly floured surface. I found it easiest to roll dough out between two pieces of plastic wrap (wax paper works great too) that way extra flour wasn’t needed. It also makes transferring the dough to a pie plate easier.
8. Put bottom crust in pie plate. Whisk egg white in a bowl and then brush onto bottom crust. This prevents your crust from becoming mushy. Poke bottom crust with fork.
9. Add filling and top with second crust. Brush top crust with egg white.
*If you are making two chicken pot pies you need to double the crust recipe above so that you have 4 balls of dough.