There's not much in life as warming and comforting as a classic chicken pot pie. The delicious dish contains juicy chicken breast, a rich creamy sauce — or hearty gravy, depending on your preferences — and flaky, buttery golden puff pastry on top. Delicious! Whether you're a pot pie connoisseur or have never made your own before, there are plenty of things you can add to your pie to ensure that it's amazing. By mixing up your ingredients, you can create something truly special.
But where do you start and what can you add to your tried and trusted chicken pot pie recipe that will elevate it into a dish nobody can resist? We've chosen 16 ingredients that will take your chicken pot pie to the next level. From homemade pastry and caramelized mushrooms to corn chowder, you can try out a new idea every time you whip up a pot pie. Your pie will be so good that friends and family will be begging you for the recipe!
Read more: 15 Tips For Making The Best Meatloaf
Homemade Puff Pastry
One of the best things about puff pastry is how easy it is to find in the freezer or refrigerator of your local grocery store. The readymade stuff tastes great and makes it easy to whip up a chicken pot pie — or any other type of pie you like — even on busy weeknights. While you could just grab prepared puff pastry, there's nothing quite as tasty as making your own.
Preparing your own pastry dough takes your pot pie to the next level. Don't be daunted by making puff pastry, either. It's not difficult to do, provided you have a reliable puff pastry recipe, the right ingredients, and some time.
A Mix Of Vegetables
While carrots and peas are the classic choice for pot pies, feel free to mix them up if you make pies often and want to take them to the next level. Root vegetables such as potatoes and parsnips work really well as they soak up all that delicious sauce — and parsnips add sweetness. On that note, corn is also a great choice.
Why not try roasting your veggies in the oven before adding them to the pie filling? Make your pie Mediterranean with some veggies, like zucchini and peppers. These work great if you're also adding parmesan to the sauce. Or, you can try adding some caramelized onions (more on that later) and mushrooms.
Making the creamy sauce for your chicken pot pie from scratch always guarantees tasty results, but if you're adding corn to your chicken pot pie, why not try using corn chowder as the sauce for your pie filling? It's quick and easy to make a pie this way, so you can dish up a pot pie on weeknights with minimal effort.
Canned corn chowder is already packed with flavor, so all you need is juicy roast chicken, a pie crust, and some peas — or the veggies of your choice -- to complete your chicken pot pie. Top the whole lot with some buttery puff pastry and we guarantee everyone will be asking for seconds.
Puff pastry, shortcrust pastry, or even phyllo pastry all make a delicious topping for a pot pie. However, if you're tired of using the same old ingredients, you could always try something different and top your pie with homemade biscuits. Biscuits aren't just for enjoying with gravy — it turns out that these light, fluffy delights are amazing in a pot pie, too!
While heartier than a pastry topping, they're also quicker to make than your own pastry dough. Just make your creamy chicken sauce, top with the fluffy biscuits, then sprinkle some grated cheddar cheese on top.
Roast chicken and stuffing is a classic holiday combination, but it doesn't need to be relegated to the holiday season — you can enjoy it at any time of year! Why not add the herb flavors of stuffing to your pie, instead of serving it alongside the pie?
Adding stuffing to your chicken pot pie not only makes it incredibly hearty and tasty, but the herbs from the stuffing are also the perfect complement to the chicken and creamy sauce. If you're a huge fan of stuffing, you could even take this one step further and replace the pie pastry with a stuffing topping.
Adding some alcohol to your pie sauce is a wise move, and white wine is an excellent choice. Saute your veggies, add some flour, then pour in your white wine. It's always best to add the wine at this point, so you can deglaze the pan to remove any items that are stuck to the pan.
Then, simply add your stock and simmer until it's reduced. Pop in your chicken and some heavy cream and let the sauce reduce further as the chicken cooks. As a bonus, you can pour yourself a well-deserved glass of wine while you're waiting for everything to be ready!
Most chicken pot pie recipes use puff pastry, but why not swap it out for shortcrust? It's a bit heartier and has less air in it, making for a more filling dish. While you can buy shortcrust pastry in the freezer or refrigerated section in your local grocery store, you could always make your own.
The good news is that shortcrust pastry is even easier to make than puff pastry, so even complete pastry beginners can do it. Shortcrust pastry has a crumbly texture compared to the flakiness of puff pastry, and you'll usually need to blind bake it in the pie tin before adding your filling to ensure your pie doesn't have a soggy bottom.
Making caramelized onions requires some time, as it can take 45 minutes to cook them slowly over low heat, turning them sweet and sticky. While you've probably added them to a variety of different dishes or used them to make onion chutney, have you ever tried adding this sticky goodness to your chicken pot pie?
To really amp up the French flavor, add a splash of sherry and some grated Gruyère cheese to your pot pie sauce. Some fresh or dried rosemary and thyme work wonders too, infusing the sauce with delicate herb flavor. Use beef stock instead of chicken stock for the sauce, too.
As any cheese lover knows, cheese makes everything in the world taste better. So why not take your chicken pot pie to the next level with the addition of cheese? Shred some parmesan into the creamy sauce — and add Mediterranean roasted vegetables. Or try some shredded cheddar cheese mixed into the uncooked pastry dough, if you're starting from scratch.
Topping your pie with biscuits? Sprinkle some shredded sharp cheddar or a mix of cheddar and mozzarella over the top for some oozy, gooey deliciousness. As we mentioned above, you can choose the type of cheese based on the other fillings you're adding to your pie, so for a French-style pie with caramelized onions, a cheese like Gruyère works great.
If you've ever had phyllo pastry — also known as filo pastry — you'll know just how amazing sinking your teeth into those fine layers of buttery, wafer-thin pastry feels. So why not add phyllo to the top of your next chicken pot pie? With its amazing crunch, cracking through it into the creamy, juicy filling below is one of the most satisfying moments you'll ever have.
You can find frozen or refrigerated phyllo pastry at most grocery stores. Or you could try making your own. Topping your pie with phyllo elevates it from a humble weeknight dinner to something special that's great for entertaining.
Truffle is the perfect complement to roast meats. One way to elevate your pie to the next level for a truly gourmet experience is to add some sliced black truffles on top of your filling before popping the pastry on top.
Or why not chop some truffle and add it to the sauce? Don't have any fresh truffle to hand? Adding some white truffle oil to the pie sauce adds a delicious hint of umami. You could even serve your chicken pot pie alongside some black truffle mashed potatoes if you want to be really indulgent.
We already know that white wine is a superior addition to your chicken pot pie, but what other types of alcohol could you add to take your sauce to the next level? Why not add some complexity with a dash of cognac? Deglazing the pan with some cognac, or sherry, while your veggies are cooking is a great way to elevate your pot pie.
Once the pan is deglazed, just add your flour, milk (if you wish), and chicken stock. You can add any alcohol you like while your veggies are cooking, but cognac is a great choice, as it adds a hint of sweetness and some subtle spice. Depending on the cognac you choose, it may have vanilla, nutty, caramel, or fruity flavors.
Smoked paprika has all the sweetness and vegetable flavor that you get with regular paprika but with rich, smoky, umami, flavors, as well. It's this deep smoky flavor that adds complexity and earthiness to your chicken pot pie, as well as a vibrant color to your filling.
Try seasoning your raw chicken with smoked paprika before adding it to your creamy sauce. If you want to take this idea one step further, give your pot pie a Hungarian twist. Chicken paprikash is a popular dish in Hungary, and you can make a pie version by incorporating smoked paprika, sour cream, fennel, and fresh herbs like dill, parsley, and tarragon into your pot pie filling.
Yes, we know this article is about how to upgrade your chicken pot pie, but nobody says you can't add some other meat in there! Adding duck to your chicken pot pie is a great way to impress family and friends at dinner time. The duck packs in a gamey flavor and gives richness to the filling that you don't get from chicken alone.
We recommend roasting your duck at home before shredding it and adding it to the filling. Or you could confit it (cooking it slowly in oil) to impart an even richer flavor. Chicken and duck pot pie, anyone?
Never underestimate the power of fresh herbs to add flavor to your favorite dishes. For chicken pot pie, your imagination is the limit when it comes to which herbs to add to your sauce — you can experiment with flavors and add whatever herbs you like.
If you're adding white wine to your pot pie sauce, try some tarragon for a French twist. Other herbs that complement chicken include dill, parsley, thyme, and rosemary. You don't need to be limited to fresh herbs, either. If you don't have any fresh ones to hand, use dried ones!
We're finishing off with what's quite possibly the most unusual suggestion on our list, and one of the most exciting ways to give your pot pies a gourmet twist. Grab some Indian spices and make chicken tikka masala pot pies! You'll need spices such as garam masala, coriander, cumin, cardamom, and turmeric. Alongside, ingredients such as garlic, ginger, yogurt, tomatoes, and cream create a deliciously creamy, mildly spicy sauce for your juicy roast chicken filling.
Chicken tikka masala is a classic curry that's a favorite for a reason — it's creamy, not too spicy, and mouth-wateringly good. Now, you can enjoy it in pie form!
Read the original article on Daily Meal.