When I was growing up, my mother used to serve us these awful pot pies she’d buy from the frozen food section. I absolutely hated them… so it was decades before I even considered making homemade ones. What a wonderful surprise when I finally decided to give it a try. Now it’s a rare day when the freezer doesn’t contain some….they are so convenient and yes, tasty.
This one of those recipes that takes a little time to prepare but is well worth it as I get several meals for the time I invest. I make the pies ahead of time and freeze. On those wonderful days set aside for quilting, I thaw these babies, pop into the oven for 30 minutes and voilà, dinner ready! Homemade goodness with frozen dinner convenience.
To start, let the pie crusts sit in their boxes on the counter to soften while preparing the remaining ingredients. I have never been good at homemade pie crust so the refrigerated Pillsbury pie crusts are perfect for me. But if you have a favorite pie crust recipe, go for it. You’ll need enough crust for eight pot pies (about the same amount as two regular pies with top covers). Dice potatoes, carrots, celery, and onion and set aside. (forgot to take a pic of this but you know how).
Set aside chopped chicken in another bowl. Measure out broth and cream and set aside. And finally, mix together the flour, salt, and Poultry Magic and set aside.
Over medium heat, sauté the veggies in butter for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
While the veggies are cooking, unroll the pie crusts and cut to fit the pot pie pans. You’ll need 8 bottoms and 8 tops. You should get four rounds from each pie crust roll. I use an old stainless steel canister top that happens to the perfect size for my pans. It’s shaped just like a cookie cutter.
Now it’s time to add the chicken (leftover chicken from my Roast Chicken recipe is perfect for this). No cooking now. Just mix it in and we’re ready to ladle into the pie crusts.
The pans have been generously filled. I actually had enough for a ninth pot pie but alas not enough crust. So I’ll be having that yummy leftover tomorrow for lunch. Add a little milk while heating and I’ll have a delicious bowl of cream of chicken soup with loads of extra goodies.
Gently stretch the top to cover the edges of the pan. Crimp using your favorite method. I use my thumbs, quick and easy. This is the point where I freeze the extra pot pies. If you have a cookie sheet and space in your freezer, perfect. Set them on the cookie sheet as is and freeze for one hour. My freezer is never that organized so I just individually place them wherever I can so that nothing touches the dough for that first hour. After an hour, and yes, I set a timer so I don’t forget about them, I remove them from the freezer, place them in a quart size Ziploc freezer bag (with the pan), seal, and return to the freezer. At this point they are frozen enough that they can be stacked without mutilating the dough. When I want to bake them, I remove them from freezer and thaw on the counter for a couple of hours.
Then pop place them in the oven for 30-35 minutes until crust is golden. My convection toaster oven is perfect for this (I reduce temperature for 25 degrees for the convection oven). Yummy.
- 1 cup diced potato
- 1 cup diced onion
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 1/2 cup melted margarine
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 tsp Poultry Magic
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 3 cups chicken cooked and chopped
- 2 boxes Pillsbury pie crust
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sauté onion, celery, carrots, and potatoes in margarine for 10 minutes.
Combine flour, salt, Poultry Magic, and pepper. Sprinkle over vegetable mixture, stirring well, cook one minute stirring constantly.
Gradually stir broth into vegetable mixture.
Gradually stir cream into vegetable mixture.
Cook over medium heat stirring constantly until thickened and bubbly. Remove from heat.
Add chicken and stir well.
Evenly divide into pie crusts and top with remaining crust.
Bake 30-40 minutes or until pastry is golden brown and filling is bubbly and cooked through.