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Chicken Pot Pie

Why This Recipe Works  Everyone loves chicken pot pie, but from poaching the chicken to blanching the vegetables to rolling out the crust, it requires a lot of work. We wanted to simplify this savory pie without sacrificing its homey flavors by preparing it in a skillet. Poaching the chicken breasts directly in the sauce enabled us to use boneless breasts, and instead of fussing with homemade pie dough, we turned to a convenient (and even flakier) alternative: store-bought puff pastry. We rolled the dough out to a 12-inch square, draped it over the skillet, cut a few vent holes in the center, and brushed on an egg wash for deep browning. Our streamlined pie baked to a beautiful golden hue in just 30 minutes. To thaw frozen puff pastry, let it sit either in the refrigerator for 24 hours or on the counter for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Be sure to use chicken breasts that are roughly the same size to ensure even cooking. You will need a 12-inch oven safe skillet for this recipe.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time1 hr 15 mins
Total Time1 hr 35 mins
Course: Main
Servings: 4 to 6
Author: America's Test Kitchen

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 carrots peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 2 celery ribs cut into 1/4‑inch pieces
  • 1 onion chopped fine
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1  1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or thigh meat, trimmed
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 9  1/2 by 9‑inch sheet puff pastry, thawed
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten with 2 tablespoons water

Instructions

  • Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Melt butter in 12‑inch oven safe skillet over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, onion, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook until vegetables are softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in thyme and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in broth, scraping up any browned bits and smoothing out any lumps, and bring to simmer.
  • Nestle chicken into skillet. Reduce heat to low to maintain gentle simmer, cover, and cook until chicken registers 160 degrees and sauce has thickened, 15 to 20 minutes, flipping chicken halfway through cooking.
  • Transfer chicken to cutting board, let cool slightly, then shred into bite-size pieces. Stir shredded chicken, peas, cream, parsley, and sherry into skillet. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (Filling can be refrigerated for up to 1 day; return to simmer and add broth to loosen sauce if necessary.)
  • On clean, lightly floured counter, roll puff pastry into 12‑inch square. Loosely roll dough around ­rolling pin, then gently unroll it over filling in skillet, letting excess dough hang over edge. Cut four 2‑inch oval-shaped vents in center of dough, then brush dough with egg mixture. Bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes, rotating skillet halfway through baking.
  • Remove skillet from oven (skillet handle will be hot). Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.