Chicken pie recipe
Think of a comfort food dinner and chicken pie comes to mind easily – it’s sure to hit the spot every time. The tradition of encasing meat in pastry goes back to ancient Greek and Roman times. Pies were popular in medieval Europe and later brought to America and Australia, and chicken pie is an all-time favourite. There are so many combinations you can use when putting together a homemade chicken pie, but one of the best chicken pie fillings is the classic mix of creamy chicken, leek and mushroom used in this recipe. This kind of pie is also known as a pot pie because all the pastry is on the top rather than fully encasing the pie filling. This makes it quicker and easier to make because there’s no need to blind bake the crust to stop the base from going soggy. The filling in this recipe is like a traditional rustic French casserole, so it’s great to make with leftovers if you have them on hand.
Equipment you will need for chicken pie
For baking the pie, you’ll need a pie dish large enough to hold 12 cups or 3 litres. If you don’t have this, use any baking dish with the same capacity. Alternatively, if you have four 3-cup (750ml) ovenproof dishes you can make individual chicken pot pies.
The chicken pie filling is made in one pan, so have a large deep frying pan handy for this, along with a heatproof bowl to hold the chicken and leek. To avoid overcrowding the pan, it’s important to cook the chicken in batches and remove the leek before frying the mushroom. If there’s too much in the pan at once, the ingredients will stew rather than brown evenly.
As well as using a knife to chop the chicken and slice the veggies, you’ll need a small sharp knife to cut the pastry into strips for the top of the pie. You could also seal the pastry sheets together and place over the pie in one piece. In this case, use the knife to cut holes in the top of the pie for steam to escape – this stops the pastry from going soggy. For a golden finish, brush the pastry with egg using a pastry brush.
Ingredients you will need for chicken pie
For the best flavour and texture, use chicken thigh fillets for this pie, but you can also make it with chicken breast fillets. You’ll also need the pale section of 2 leeks – save the green parts for making stock – and 300g mushrooms. We’ve used a mix of brown mushrooms and button or cup mushrooms, but it’s fine to use one type and cut any larger mushrooms into smaller pieces. After pan-frying these ingredients in a little olive oil, stir in flour – this combines with the fat in the pan to make a roux which will help thicken the sauce as it cooks. Then create a deep savoury flavour with chicken stock, Dijon mustard and the secret ingredient – a tablespoon of miso paste. If you don’t have this, it’s fine to leave it out and just add more seasoning later.
Cream is essential if you want a creamy chicken pie filling, and tarragon is a classic flavour match for chicken in French cuisine. Add these when the mixture has thickened and cooled slightly, because cream can curdle easily if you boil it.
The pastry in this pie is puff pastry, which creates a golden flaky top for the pie. Making your own is a challenge and takes a long time, so buy frozen ready-rolled puff pastry sheets and let them thaw at room temperature just before using. If they soften too much, it’s harder to cut them into neat strips and place them on the pie. Be careful not to overhandle puff pastry – if it loses its shape, it won’t puff evenly. Brushing with egg and sprinkling with sesame seeds gives the pie an irresistible golden finish.
What to serve with chicken pie
This simple chicken pie is delicious served with steamed green veggies, such as baby broccoli or green beans, or mixed salad leaves dressed with French-style vinaigrette. For a heartier meal, add a side of buttery mashed potato.
Now get cooking
Make this easy chicken pie recipe, then enjoy the comforting combination of golden pastry and creamy chicken and vegetable filling. Once you’ve tried the basic chicken pie, there are lots of different variations you can make with our recipes and tips. For mini chicken, mushroom and bacon pot pies, check out our country-style chicken pies. Love curried pie fillings? Try our korma chicken and vegetable pie. Swap puff for filo and whip up a fruity filling with our apricot chicken pie recipe. For a 5-ingredient chicken and mushroom pie recipe made with roast chicken, try our easy chicken and mushroom pie. Find more quick dinner ideas in our What’s for Dinner recipe collection and head to our Chicken Recipes collection for more easy chicken recipes.