Chicken Pot Pie

Not many dishes elicit the kind of reaction that a bubbling hot chicken pot pie does, especially from my sister-in-law Mary Ellen. It’s food that’s good for the soul and while I make this throughout the year, it seems to taste even better on a cold, winter night.  There would be no complaints in my house if I made this every week. 

Truth be told, this really is a super easy thing to make especially with some shortcuts.  What shortcut you ask? A rotisserie chicken is a great go-to for this.  Yes, leftovers from a great roasted chicken dinner would do fine but if you are looking for a quick weeknight dinner, a rotisserie chicken is the perfect solution.  I usually put half the chicken in and then save the second breast for chicken salad or for a regular salad the next day.  My second shortcut is premade pie dough.  Not the frozen ones but the box of two rolled sheets in the refrigerator biscuit section.  I always have some in my fridge – they are great for pot pies, hand pies when there’s fruit about to be too ripe, and gallates when I have more apples than I can use.  Yes, you can make your own pie dough but honestly, it’s not my favorite thing to make.  Maybe that will be a 2021 New Year’s resolution. Speaking of shortcuts, there are some great products out there and I love trying new ones to add to my go-to list.  We’re all busy and there is no shame in getting a little help along the way. #noguilt

Anyway, the only thing you really need to “make” is the sauce and it’s not difficult at all.  After that it’s just pulling everything together in a large bowl (could it be any easier?) and waiting for it to cook.  If there is any left, it’s great reheated and I always save a little gravy/sauce to have on the side and for the next day. For the veggies I go traditional with peas, carrots, green beans and corn for mine, but you can certainly customize the mix based on what your family likes (or doesn’t!).  I fine the frozen veggies work best since they don’t get mushy while the pot pie cooks.  And the small bags are the perfect sizes for a large pot pie.  You can customize the rest of this too – more/less chicken, more/less sauce.  Enjoy!

Ingredients

Filling

4 tbs                 Salted butter

4 tbs                 All-purpose flour

3 ½ cups          Low sodium chicken stock or homemade chicken stock

Knorr’s Chicken Stock pod (see my favorite products) or ½ tbs Chicken bullion powder

Salt and pepper to taste

½         Boneless chicken meat (rotisserie or homemade), cooked and shredded into bite-size pieces (discard the bones).

1 12 oz. bag      Frozen corn

1 12 oz. bag      Frozen cut green beans  

1 12 oz. bag      Frozen peas and carrots  

1 box    Pre-made refrigerator pie dough/2 rolled sheets (Pillsbury or the store brand is good, I think Trader Joes and Wegmans are the best)

Large pie tin or glass pie plate.  I use an oval casserole dish sometimes too. Pie plate are usually 8 ½ – 10 inches and I like ones on the larger side for more filling!

1                      Egg, whisked with a tbs of water for an egg wash before the pot pie goes in the oven

Preparation

Preheat the oven on to 350.

The base of the filling is essentially a chicken sauce or gravy.  Start by making a roux by melting butter in a saucepan and then adding the flour.  Briskly whisk for two minutes to cook the flour.  The roux will start to get darker which deepens the flavor.  Add the stock while whisking and bring to a soft boil.  Cook and whisk for another three minutes, scraping the bottom to make sure the roux is completely mixed it.  Set aside one (1) cup of the sauce/gravy and then combine the frozen vegetables in a large bowl with the remaining sauce. 

Roll out one of the crusts between two sheets of parchment paper lightly to ensure it is larger than the pie pan if necessary.  Place the dough sheet into the pie pan and leave the excess hanging over the edge.  Add 2/3 of the filling – it should reach the edges but not overflow.  Depending on the size of your pie pan, you could add more but be careful not to overfill. 

Roll out the remaining pie dough lightly.  Brush the edges of the filled pie with the egg mixture and then place the other pie dough on top, pressing lightly to seal.  To finish you can either cut the excess off and press the edges with a fork to seal or fold the excess under the bottom later and crimp with your fingers.  Cut a few vents in the top of the pie and brush with the egg wash.  Place on a foil lined cookie sheet and bake for approximately 40 minutes but you will know it’s done when it’s until golden brown and bubbling. If the edges brown before the rest of the pie, you can cover it with tin foil, so it doesn’t burn.

Let the pie sit for at least 10 – 15 minutes before you serve.

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