Live life with no excuses, travel with no regret.

Chicken Pot Pie

Well hooo-wee, y’all! Do I ever have a real stick-to-your-ribs type of comfort food dish to share with you today – we’re talking an old fashioned, soul-warming chicken pot pie recipe straight from my Grandmama Jevvy’s well-worn recipe box.
Now I know some of you might get a bit squeamish thinking about homemade pie crust from scratch. Images of tough, soggy bottom layers or dry, crumbling dough might start plaguing your thoughts! But let me tell you something, friends…Granny Jevvy was known far and wide as the Queen Pie Baker in our small town of Magnolia Creek. Her buttery smooth crusts were the stuff of legend!
When I was just a little blond-haired pigtail of a girl, I’d sit on a stool in Granny’s big farmhouse kitchen and watch her expert hands carefully fold that dough, sprinkle it with flour, and roll it out with her cherished marble rolling pin. She’d let me have the scraps to bake my little “practice pies” as she called them. Oh, but when the time came for her to pass on and join Grandad up in heaven, you better believe she made sure her protégé was ready to carry on her legacy before she left.
Now I may not have her magic touch exactly, but I sure can share everything Granny taught me over the years. So if y’all can bear with me and lend this rustic farm gal your patience, I promise you we’ll have a chicken pot pie emerging from the oven that looks and tastes like old Granny Jevvy herself made it – golden bubbly crust overflowing with tender chicken morsels and veggies in the most luxurious cream sauce you ever did taste. Just like the ones the made her so famous at every town potluck or funeral dinner!

Can I make this chicken pot pie with store-bought crust and still have it turn out good?
Bless your heart, but no. Making Granny’s crust from scratch is half the magic! Have some faith in your skills!

What if I’m not the best pie crust maker – any helpful tips?
The keys are cold butter and water, gentle hands when folding, quick work to avoid warming the fats, and thorough chilling! I believe in you!

Do I really need a full pound of chicken for the filling? Seems like a lot!
Remember you’re feeding a crowd! And the tender chicken against all those veggies and sauce is what makes it. Go big or go home, y’all!

Help! My chicken pot pie bubbled over and made a huge mess in my oven! What did I do wrong?
First, don’t fret and don’t beat yourself up! Carefully made vent slits prevent this. Next time cut 4 small Xs on top before baking.

Can I swap in turkey or ham instead of chicken in this recipe?
Well I suppose you can experiment to your heart’s content, but you just can’t beat classic chicken when it comes to pot pie in my book!

At what point should I add a dash or two of hot sauce for some extra zing?
Add a couple splashes right at the end when you add the milk to the hot filling. It’ll give a hint of heat without overpowering.

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1⁄2 cup celery, diced
  • 1⁄3 cup onion, diced
  • 1⁄3 cup butter
  • 1⁄3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 3⁄4 cups chicken broth, low sodium
  • 2⁄3 cup whole milk
  • 2 refrigerated pie crusts (or homemade if you dare!)

Instructions:

  1. Start by preheating your oven to 400°F. This will give it plenty of time to fully preheat before the pot pies are all assembled and ready for baking. I like to prep all my ingredients and fillings while my oven is heating up!
  2. Next up is cooking the chicken – this is the star ingredient after all! Melt 3 tablespoons of salted butter in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-high heat. When the foaming subsides and the butter just starts turning golden brown, add in the cubed chicken breasts. Arrange the cubes in a single layer, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. We want lovely caramelized nuggets, not boiled boneless bits!
  3. Cook the chicken undisturbed for 2-3 minutes until the bottoms become opaque and browned. Then stir gently and cook for another 2-3 minutes, continuing just until the cubes are barely cooked through. They should still look quite pink in the center – this ensures they won’t dry out later when baked into the pies. Use your judgment, nick a thicker piece with a knife to check. Once lightly browned but still tender and juicy, transfer the seared chicken with a slotted spoon to a clean bowl or plate to temporarily rest.
  4. Now we build up the flavorful base for our filling! First, melt the remaining butter (should be about 2 tablespoons) in that same skillet you cooked the chicken in, letting it foam and froth. Toss in the chopped onion, celery, and carrots. Generously season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until softened and fragrant but not fully cooked through.
  5. Quickly stir the flour briskly into the buttery veggies until fully absorbed. Continue cooking and stirring constantly for 2 minutes longer to cook out that raw flour taste without browning the roux.

Cooking Tips:

  • For a richer tasting crust, use part butter and part solid vegetable shortening. Chill it thoroughly before rolling out.
  • Cook vegetables until slightly underdone – they’ll continue cooking inside the pie. Overcooked veggies can get mushy.
  • When sealing the crust edges, wet your fingers or brush water to help them bind securely. Twist with a fork for that perfect crimped edge.
  • Freeze any leftovers up to 2-3 months. Reheat frozen portions in a 350°F oven until hot and bubbly, about 45 minutes.
  • Swap boneless thighs for some of the breasts if you prefer darker, juicier bits of chicken. Adjust any seasonings to taste at the end!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: