Monday, May 20, 2013

Make Ahead Monday: Homemade Chicken Pot Pie

Summer is quickly approaching so I’m trying to empty out our freezer to get ready to freeze some veggies from our wonderful CSA. One of my {least?} favorite summer activities is chopping up vegetables from our CSA or the farmer’s market and freezing them in small packages for meals or cooking. When I opened our freezer, I saw that we had onions, peas, carrots and some leftover pearl onions from an earlier recipe and some frozen corn so I thought… hmm… sounds like a pretty good set of veggies for a chicken pot pie!

Writing my blog has inspired me to try a few things from scratch and BYOC (Be Your Own Chef) instead of always reaching for recipes so here goes! Something I made up from memory and turned out pretty awesome!

click above for an easy print copy


Chicken and veggie filling:
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
3 stalks of celery, chopped
1 medium onion, diced
½ TB olive oil
3 TB butter
3 TB flour
2 cups milk (I used skim but whatever you have is fine!)
4 cloves roasted garlic (TOTALLY optional but amazing)
2-3 cups chicken stock
½ cup frozen peas
½ cup frozen corn
1 cup frozen pearl onions
2 cups cooked chicken, chopped (a store-bought roaster chicken works great for this)

Biscuit top:
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt (or a little less regular table salt)
6 TB cold butter, plus additional melted to brush the tops
¾ cup milk


Heat the ½ tablespoon of olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add in the diced carrots, celery and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables soften, about five minutes. Add the butter and stir until melted. Add the flour and stir to combine until a paste forms over the vegetables. Slowly begin adding the milk stirring as you go to absorb the butter and flour mixture. What you’re doing here is creating a roux to thicken the sauce. Adding milk creates a basic white sauce. Once you’ve added all of the milk, let it come to a low boil to thicken until it can coat the back of a spoon (about five minutes). This is where I added a few cloves of roasted garlic, some salt and pepper to flavor the sauce. (Maybe this makes me a bit of a nut but I always have some roasted garlic on hand in the freezer for just this sort of thing. If you’ve got regular fresh garlic, you could add a few cloves in with the carrot, celery, onion at the beginning. You can also just leave it plain or add whatever seasonings you like.)

Once the white sauce has thickened a bit, begin adding chicken stock a little at a time. Start with two cups and add a little more if you want the pot pie soupier or you are using a few more veggies than my recipe. Toss in the frozen veggies—peas, corn and pearl onions (or whatever variety you prefer! Remember BYOC.) Stir in the chicken.

Pour the chicken and sauce in a 9x13 pan sprayed with some cooking spray.

To top the pot pie, I just made some basic biscuit dough. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. With a pastry blender or a fork, smash the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles a course meal. Stir in the milk a few tablespoons at a time until the dough comes together but isn’t too wet to handle. Turn the dough onto a floured surface, roll out and use a biscuit cutter or drinking glass to cut out a dozen biscuits. Place the biscuits on top of the pot pie. Brush with a bit of melted butter.

Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 40 minutes or until the pot pie is bubbling and the biscuits are browned.

There you go! A simple way to use up some frozen veggies and a homemade way to skip those nasty frozen pot pies. It makes for a perfect make ahead since the sauce will continue to thicken up once it cools and is reheated.

Now I happened to have family over on Sunday so we ate up every bite but if I hadn't had company, I would have split the recipe between two aluminum square pans, baked one and froze the other for a future meal. 


 chopped up veggies right out of the freezer

softened and butter added 

 flour added to form a paste around the veggies

milk added to a soft boil to thicken the sauce

 some yummy roasted garlic all squished up to flavor the sauce

 all poured into the pan waiting for the biscuit top

 the flour mixture combined with the butter to create a course meal texture

 ready to roll!

 biscuits cutted and topping the pot pie

an awesome serving of homemade chicken pot pie

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