Individual chicken pot pies

individual-chicken-pot-pie

I count anything pie-related as a favorite food group of mine. I mean, let's stick something delicious inside of a flaky crust and call it a day. 

When it comes to chicken pot pie in particular, I favor the vegetable and chicken stuff over the gravy – you'll find a very packed individual pot pie if you take the plunge with this recipe. 

If you're willing to skip the puff pastry topping (or know of a gluten-free alternative), it's good to know that the filling is completely gluten- and dairy-free.

A few notes:

I call for cooked chicken – I believe this is one of the greatest repurposes of a rotisserie chicken. 

You can swap out chicken for turkey or other kinds of meat; just use as much meat as is called for below. This is an excellent way to utilize leftovers from the holidays. 

You can use pre-cooked vegetables. For instance, for one batch of the chicken pot pies, I used leftover green beans from this recipe. You'll incorporate cooked vegetables when you're instructed to add the chicken – this way they'll heat up all the way through without getting too mushy.

The vegetables you use don't matter; it's more about the proportions. You  can swap out English peas for green beans, or cut back on the amount of celery and carrots and add in potatoes. Point is: use what you have and use what you like.

If you don't own ramekins, oven-safe ceramic bowls and even coffee mugs make for a great replacement.

This recipe yields 6 individual chicken pot pies, and takes about 45 minutes front to start.

What you need

2 tbsp olive oil

1 small onion, finely diced

1 cup carrots, finely sliced (about 2 small carrots)

1 cup celery, diced (about 2 celery sticks)

1 cup green beans, ends removed and diced

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper

Leaves of 1 fresh sprig thyme (optional)

3 cups cooked chicken, sliced into 1/4-inch to 1/2 inch chunks (about the equivalent of 3-4 pound rotisserie chicken)

3 tbsp corn starch

4 cups chicken stock

Cooking spray

1 sheet puff pastry (can typically be purchased at most grocery stores in 18 oz packages in the frozen food section)

How to do it

Preheat oven to 425-degrees F.

If using a rotisserie chicken, pick meat from bones, then slice into 1/4-inch to 1/2-inch chunks. Chop vegetables according to recipe specifications; rough chops are okay – size-consistency is what's important so the veggies cook evenly. Next, evenly slice the sheet of puff pastry into six squares to fit over the ramekins.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add olive oil and onions.

Cook for 2 minutes, then add carrots, celery and green beans. Cook for 7 more minutes, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are soft.

Sprinkle corn starch over the vegetables and stir to coat.

Pour chicken stock over the vegetables and raise to high heat. Bring the stock to a boil and add chicken, salt, pepper and thyme (and any cooked vegetables you're adding to the mix). Allow the filling to boil for another 3 minutes, then remove from heat.

Spoon the filling evenly among 6 greased 8-ounce ramekins, then fit a piece of puff pastry over the top, pressing the corners to the side of the ramekin. Place pot pies into the oven, and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the puff pastry is golden brown.

With leftovers, cover individual pot pies with plastic wrap and store in the fridge for up to a week. Reheat in the microwave, cooking for 1 minute bursts until heated through.