My favorite moment as a chef is when you make something so good, your family asks you to make it again the next night. Another great moment is where you make something new and it turns out to be delicious. Both of those moments came together when I decided I would make homemade chicken pot pies, completely from scratch.
Now, homemade pies definitely sound intimidating, but don’t bail on them. All it takes is a little know-how and the process is very straightforward. In addition, you can easily make them into show-stopping dishes with just a little effort.
So, without further ado, let’s get into it.
Quick thing: I have included affiliate links to Amazon below – it won’t affect your price to click them, but I do get a kickback. I promise that my links are only to be helpful and offer products that would be useful with the recipe.
Now, I have all of the ingredients together in the picture, but let’s split them up into two groups: crust and filling.
For the crust, the ingredients list is pretty short. You will need a cup and a quarter of flour, a tablespoon of sugar, half a teaspoon of salt, 8 tablespoons (one stick) of unsalted butter, and 3 or so tablespoons of ice water.
The filling ingredients list is definitely longer. It starts with one large chicken breast, two carrots, two stalks of celery, and half a medium onion. You will also need two garlic cloves (or about half a teaspoon of granulated garlic if that’s what you have), a cup and three quarters of chicken broth, a third of a cup of heavy cream, a quarter cup of frozen peas, 3 tablespoons of flour, and 2 tablespoons of butter. Finally, rounding out the list is a third of a teaspoon of thyme, a half-teaspoon of celery seed, a half-teaspoon of Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper.
Clicking on the image of the ramekins will send you to a page on Amazon to get your own.
Step by Step: Making the pie crust
We’ll start with the crust. A quick, very important thing: you need the crust to stay cold. So, keep your butter in the fridge until you are ready to put it in. Then, for the water, put some ice into a cup before adding the water, then measure out of that. What you want is a bunch of tiny globs of solid butter throughout the crust to make it nice and flaky.
If you don’t have a food processor, just click on the image to the left, here. It will take you to one on Amazon.
So, add in the cup and a quarter of flour, tablespoon of sugar, and half-teaspoon of salt.
Put the lid on and pulse a few times to mix the dry ingredients well.
Now, the butter.
Take it out of the fridge and cut it into half-inch cubes.
Sprinkle it evenly over the dry ingredients, then put the lid back on. Pulse until the mix starts to look like crumbs, somewhere between 20 and 30 pulses.
Now, the ice water. Spoon the water out of the ice cup (make sure not to get the ice) one tablespoon at a time (total of three). Hold down the pulse button for a few seconds to combine after each one. After you add the third tablespoon of ice water, let it go for 15-20 seconds to form the dough. Add more a teaspoon at a time if the dough doesn’t come together.
It should make a big ball, though don’t worry if some dough isn’t part of the ball.
Once the dough forms, sprinkle some flour on a countertop and turn the dough out onto it.
Divide the dough depending on how many pies you want to make. This recipe makes two individual pies (divide into four), or one six-inch pie (divide into two).
Form each dough piece into inch-thick discs, then wrap them in plastic wrap. Put them in the fridge for at least an hour.
Step by Step: Making the filling
Start with the veggies.
Peel, clean, and dice the carrots and celery.
Then, peel half an onion…
…and dice it up.
Now, melt the butter in the pan over medium heat.
Then add the veggies and a half-teaspoon of salt.
Cook the veggies until they are soft and browned. Then press both garlic cloves into the pan and add the third of a teaspoon of thyme, half-teaspoon of celery seeds, and half-teaspoon of Italian seasoning. Stir the seasonings in and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Stir in the three tablespoons of flour and cook for one minute.
Slowly stir in the chicken broth and heavy cream, pouring in a bit at a time then mixing well.
Make sure to break up the clumps of the veggies until it’s completely combined.
Now the chicken.
First, trim the chicken.
Then, nestle it into the pan.
Bring the sauce to a simmer, then put a lid on it and turn the heat to medium low.
Otherwise, your chicken is done when there is no more pink inside. However, I heartily recommend you just click the image of the thermometer here and get one for yourself to be safe.
Once the chicken is done, take it out of the sauce and set it aside on a plate.
Turn the heat back up to medium and let the sauce simmer for about five minutes to thicken up.
Meanwhile, cut/shred the chicken into bite-size pieces.
Once the sauce is done thickening, it should take a moment to fill back in when you drag a spoon through it. Take it off the heat. Add the chicken and any juices on the plate back to the sauce along with the quarter-cup of frozen peas (or more – it doesn’t really affect the taste to have some more veggies).
Season with salt and pepper, then mix it all up.
That’s the filling! Now it’s about time to start shaping the crusts.
Step by Step: Shaping the crusts
If you want one of your own, you can just click on the image of one to the left, here!
Get out one piece of dough, then dust the top with some flour.
Use a rolling pin to flatten it out until it’s about an eighth of an inch thick. Rotate the dough every few passes to keep it from sticking to the counter. If it sticks to the rolling pin, sprinkle a little more flour on the top.
Once it’s flattened, pick it up by rolling it loosely over the rolling pin.
Unroll them over the top of the baking dish.
Then press it down and to the sides with your fingers. Repeat this for however many pies you want to make, creating the bottom crust.
Now for the tops. Once you roll out the dough piece, cut it so that it reaches about a half-inch around the edges of the baking dish. Put all of the dough back in the fridge when you are done working with it until you are ready to fill the pie.
You can use the cutoff pieces to make decorations. Here, I just used a butter knife to cut it into shape.
Once the oven has preheated, it’s time to fill the pies. Just spoon the mixture into the pies until it is full.
Put the tops over the mixture.
Then press the edges to seal. Trim any excess, and don’t forget to cut little holes to vent the pies!
Put the baking dishes on a baking sheet, then bake for 15-17 minutes, or until golden brown.
Let them cool for 10 minutes, then enjoy!
Scratch-Made Chicken Pot Pie
Prep Time: 2 hours; Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
- 1 and a quarter cups flour
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons (one stick) unsalted butter
- 3 or so tablespoons ice water
- 1 large chicken breast
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- Half a medium onion, peeled and diced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 and three quarters cups chicken broth
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup frozen peas
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/3 teaspoon thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper
- Start with the pie crusts. Keep all ingredients cold as possible by keeping butter in fridge until needed and adding ice to a cup for the water.
- In a food processor, add flour (1 and a quarter cups), sugar (1 tablespoon), and salt (1/2 teaspoon), then put lid on and pulse for a second to combine.
- Dice butter (8 tablespoons/one stick) into half-inch cubes, then sprinkle evenly over dry ingredients. Put on lid and pulse until combination resembles coarse crumbs, between 20-30 pulses).
- Add water (3 tablespoons) one tablespoon at a time, processing a few seconds in between to combine. After the third tablespoon, process for up to 15-20 seconds, until a dough ball forms. If it doesn’t form, add another teaspoon of water and try again, until it forms.
- Flour a countertop, then turn out dough. Divide based on how many pies you are making – four if you are making two individual pies, and two if you are making one 6-inch pie.
- Shape each dough piece into discs, wrap in plastic wrap, then put in the fridge for at least an hour.
- Now, the filling. Peel/clean/dice the 2 carrots, 2 stalks of celery, and half an onion.
- Melt butter (2 tablespoons) in a medium saucepan over medium heat.
- Add veggies and salt (1/2 teaspoon), then stir and cook until veggies are soft and browned, 8-10 minutes.
- Press garlic (2 cloves) into the mix, then add thyme (1/3 teaspoons), celery seed (1/2 teaspoon), and Italian seasoning (1/2 teaspoon). Stir and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Stir in flour (3 tablespoons) and cook 1 minute.
- Slowly add chicken broth (1 and three-quarters cups chicken broth) and heavy cream (1/3 cup), stirring well and breaking up clumps.
- Trim chicken breast, then nestle pieces into the sauce. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium low, cover, and cook until chicken is done, about 15-20 minutes. A meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken breast will read 160 F when it is done.
- Remove chicken from sauce.
- Turn heat back up to medium and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, dice/shred chicken into bite-sized pieces.
- When sauce is thickened, remove from heat, then add chicken pieces and frozen peas (1/4 cup). Season with salt and pepper to taste, then mix.
- Preheat oven to 450 F.
- Now to form the crusts. One piece at a time, roll out crusts on a floured counter until about an eighth-inch thick. While rolling, make sure to rotate dough and sprinkle lightly with flour to prevent it from sticking.
- Pick up crusts by rolling over rolling pin, then unrolling onto the baking dish. Press dough down and to the sides.
- Cut top crusts to be about a half-inch larger than the top of the baking dishes, cutting off the excess. Use excess to make any desired decorations.
- Put crusts and dishes into fridge until ready to fill and bake.
- When oven is heated, fill bottom crusts with filling mix, then put top crust over, pressing sides to seal the edges. Cut small slices into the top to vent and trim any excess dough.
- Place baking dishes on a baking sheet and bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
- Let pies cool 10 minutes before serving.