classic chicken pot pie

classic chicken pot pie

There’s nothing better than a classic chicken pot pie, straight from the oven to warm you up as the temperatures drop. With the aromas of lemon and thyme wafting through the kitchen, pot pie is one of my go-to holiday dishes.

This recipe is a healthier version of the classic because you use 100% whole wheat flour to make a flaky, buttery crust. Whole wheat can be more fickle than all-purpose flour so it took several tests to get the consistency just right. After countless crust modifications, I found the perfect ratio of butter to flour!

classic chicken pot pie

Once the crust was perfected, I moved on to creating an amazing filling. I added cremini mushrooms to boost the savory flavor and I roasted organic drumsticks to add depth to this dish. Be sure to keep the bones and skin on the chicken to get as much flavor as possible. Tip: if you’re short on time or don’t feel like roasting chicken, feel free to use the meat from a store-bought rotisserie chicken! If you prefer to roast your own chicken, as I do, save the bones to make a killer bone broth!

This is a long recipe {and well worth the effort} so it’s perfect for stay-cation days when the kids are out of school and the office is closed. To save time, you can also prepare the crust and roast the chicken a day in advance.

This is one of my favorite holiday recipes and I hope your family enjoys it as much as we do!

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classic chicken pot pie

  • Author: Sep Campos

Ingredients

Crust:

  • ⅓ Cup ice water
  • 2 Cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 14 Tbsp unsalted butter (chilled and cut into 1 inch pieces)

Chicken: (Omit this and use store-bought rotisserie chicken if you’re short on time)

  • 3 lbs chicken drumsticks (bone and skin on)
  • 1  Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Ground black pepper (about 3 turns of the pepper grinder per chicken drumstick)

Vegetables and gravy:

  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 onion (finely diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 4 carrots (peeled and sliced into ½ inch rounds)
  • 4 celery stalks (sliced into hearty pieces about ½  inch thick)
  • 8 oz cremini mushrooms (wiped clean with a damp paper towel and sliced into 1/4 inch pieces)
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper
  • ¼ Cup water to deglaze
  • ¾ Cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 Cups low sodium chicken broth
  • ½ Cup half and half
  • 2 dry bay leaves
  • 1 Cup frozen peas (don’t defrost)
  • 1 Cup fresh parsley (chopped)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Instructions

To make the crust:

  1. Pulse the flour and salt together in a food processor
  2. Add 1 cube of butter to the flour at a time and pulse in between additions until the butter is well incorporated and forms clumps throughout the flour
  3. Add 1 Tbsp of the ice water to the flour and pulse
  4. Continue adding 1 Tbsp of water at a time (pulsing the flour in between additions) until the dough stick together when you pinch it
  5. The amount of water you will use depends on how dry or moist the air is on the day you are baking – I’ve used anywhere from 2 Tbsp to ⅓ Cup of the water
  6. You don’t want the dough to be too moist – it should just hold together when squeezed between two fingers
  7. Form dough into a 1 inch thick disc, wrap tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. If making the crust in advance, keep in the fridge for up to 2 days until you’re ready to make the pot pie.
  8. Let the dough sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before rolling it out

Roast the chicken while the crust chills in the refrigerator:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Line a rimmed baking dish with aluminum foil and lay the chicken skin side up on the pan in a single layer.
  3. Use a paper towel to pat the chicken skin dry.
  4. Brush the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  5. Place the chicken in the oven and bake for 40 minutes – rotating the pan halfway through cooking.
  6. Remove the cooked chicken from the oven and allow the pan to sit at room temperature until the chicken is cool enough to handle.
  7. Remove the skin from the chicken drumsticks and, using clean hands, pull the meat off the bones and set aside.  
  8. Reduce the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Make the gravy while the chicken roasts:

  1. Place a large dutch oven on the stove over medium high heat.
  2. Melt the butter and sautee the onions in the butter until lightly browned (5-8 minutes) – stir often so the onions don’t burn.
  3. Add the garlic and the thyme and cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until the garlic is very fragrant.
  4. Add the carrots and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 minutes, until beginning to soften.
  5. Add the mushrooms to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until most of the water has evaporated and the mushrooms are starting to brown.
  6. Add 1 tsp salt to the mushrooms.
  7. Deglaze the pan with ¼ Cup water, using a wooden spoon to scrape up brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan, and cook until the water has evaporated, about 2 minutes.
  8. Heat the broth in the microwave for 1-2 minutes and set aside.
  9. Add ¾ Cup flour to the mushrooms and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are coated with the flour, about 2 minutes.
  10. Slowly add ½ Cup portions of the warm broth to the dutch oven, stirring well between each addition of broth (adding the broth too quickly will form lumpy gravy).
  11. Slowly add the half and half to the gravy and stir to combine.
  12. Increase the heat to high and, stirring often, let the gravy come to a boil
  13. Let the gravy boil for 2 minutes, until it starts to thicken, and lower the heat down to medium low.
  14. At this point, remove the chilled pie dough from the refrigerator and allow it to sit at room temperature while the gravy simmers.
  15. Add the chicken pieces and bay leaves to the gravy and let the mixture simmer over medium low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  16. Add the parsley, frozen peas, lemon zest and lemon juice to the gravy and mix.
  17. Taste the gravy and add salt and pepper to taste – be sure to adjust the seasoning before you cover the filling with the pie dough.
  18. Transfer the chicken and gravy into an oven safe casserole dish (I used a 9X9 dish) and set aside while you roll out the dough.

Rolling the dough:

  1. Place the dough (now at room temperature) in between 2 pieces of parchment paper.
  2. Roll the dough, in between the parchment paper, into a large circle until it is ⅛ of an inch thin and large enough in diameter to cover the dish that you will serve the chicken pot pie in.
  3. Place the dough over the top of the casserole dish. 
  4. Use a fork to press the dough onto the sides of the dish.
  5. Brush the top of the dough with melted butter or olive oil.
  6. Cut a few slits over the top of the dough to allow steam to escape.
  7. Place the casserole dish inside a baking sheet (in case the gravy bubbles over) and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, until the dough is browned and fully baked
  8. Remove the pot pie from the oven and allow it to rest for 20 minutes.
  9. Serve warm. 

Notes

To cook this dish on a busy night, prepare the dough the night before and use the meat from a store bought rotisserie chicken.

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