Lindy's Homemade Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie is such comfort food. Filled with vegetables and leftover chunks of tender turkey or chicken meat, simmered in a rich sauce then topped with a tender crust. Freeze extra for a quick meal.
The making of Lindy's Homemade Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
Leftovers. That's what I love the most about Thanksgiving. Leftovers.
Especially turkey leftovers.
Turkey Leftovers? You have CHOICES!
So much can be done with leftover turkey. While the old joke is "what leftovers again?" there are many ways to prepare meals that are so different from each other.
Making new taste sensations.
Turkey Enchiladas with Homemade Chili Gravy tastes much different than Leftover Turkey Soup.
Turkey Tacos are another family favorite. Or try an easy peasy Turkey Bird Sandwich.
All of these are easy and delicious ways to use up turkey leftovers.
But what about making a Turkey Pot Pie?
Remember Swanson Turkey Pot Pies?
They were filled with juice and not a whole lot else. This recipe for Homemade Turkey Pot Pie is so much better
- The making of Lindy's Homemade Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
- Turkey Leftovers? You have CHOICES!
- What Makes a Great Pot Pie?
- The Inside Ingredients
- How to Best Top Your Pie?
- Video of how to make Homemade Turkey Pot Pie
- Step by Step - How to Make a Perfect Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
- Putting it all Together
- How to Store Leftover Turkey Pot Pie
- Lindy's Homemade Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
What Makes a Great Pot Pie?
What makes my pies better?
This pot pie is filled with vegetables, and chunks of turkey, and it's all surrounded by a delicious sauce and then topped with the oh, so desired crust.
LindySez: "If you don’t have any left-over turkey, a store-bought rotisserie chicken will work fine to make this recipe. Or go buy some leg/thigh combo pieces* and make this anyway, it's that good"
The Inside Ingredients
- The mirepoix - onion, carrot, celery. All diced.
- Leeks - while not mandatory, they offer a wonderful additional layer of flavor.
- A waxy potato, such as Red Bliss, Yukon Gold, or White Rose are good choices.
- Green Beans and frozen peas are what I used.
- Mushrooms - Optional - If you love them, use them, if you don't, don't.
For the Sauce (A Roux)
- Butter and flour to make the roux. Always a 50/50 ratio.
- Homemade or low-salt chicken stock.
- Heavy Cream - yes, heavy cream.
- Dry sherry - optional - but good
And of course, Turkey (or chicken) meat
It's best to tear the meat rather than cut it into cubes. It holds the sauce better.
How to Best Top Your Pie?
I only put the crust on the top of my pot pies. I never did find the crust on the bottom of the pie tin to be of much use, just soggy and added calories in my opinion.
But you can if you want to have a top and bottom crust.
For these pot pies, I use my recipe for my favorite pie crust, which uses a little vodka that makes the dough a cinch to work with.
When making the crust for my turkey (or chicken) pot pie, I use a little less sugar and add some dried thyme to the mix.
It keeps it all on the savory side. Just a large pinch of thyme makes a difference.
You can use a store-bought frozen pie crust if you would like to or even puff pastry.
Although I personally prefer pie crust, more authentic to the original Swanson's pot pies.
Video of how to make Homemade Turkey Pot Pie
Update - Remade
I made these a few times since this video was made, using a proper individual pie dish, and with my own favorite pie crust and they were again, so delicious, but, in the end, looked even better.
One recipe of Lindy's Favorite Pie Crust is the perfect amount to make 4 crusts over a 6-inch crock or pie dish. After making the crust, simply divide the dough into 4 equal pieces, roll it into balls, and then roll it out, just slightly larger than the top of your crock. If you purchase a premade pie crust or frozen crust, you may need to buy two as they don't roll out as well as a freshly made crust.
Step by Step - How to Make a Perfect Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
Prepare the vegetables
Step 1: Set a large saute pan, with a lid, over medium-low heat. Add some oil, and a pat of butter, add the onion, carrots, celery, and leeks, if using.
Step 2: Once the aromatics have released their juices, add the carrot, celery, green beans, and potatoes. Saute for about 5 minutes then add the peas.
Step 3: Add ½ cup of the chicken stock, cover, and simmer over low heat for about 10 minutes or until the vegetables are soft, but still firm. Turn off the heat and add the herbs along with salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste.
Prepare the sauce
Step 1: Make a roux. A roux is a mixture of fat and flour, generally in a 50/50 ratio.
When making a roux, low and slow is the way to go. You want to whisk it until it is golden in color.
Slowly add the stock, while whisking to avoid lumps.
Cook the roux over low heat until it thickens, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the cream, and optional sherry, then pour over the vegetables. Mix well, add the torn meat, mix again. Set aside.
Putting it all Together
You can use a fancy crockery dish or these easy disposable pie tins.
Once the pies have been covered with the pie crust, use a sharp knife to make some slits in the top to allow the steam to escape when baking.
Use an egg wash if you want a beautifully browned crust. For my egg wash, I use only the yolk, and some cream mixed in. Use a pastry brush to spread it on top.
Put the pies on a cookie sheet (to catch spills and overflow) and pop into a 400ºF (204.4ºC) for about 30 to 35 minutes or until hot (and they will be hot) and bubbly.
How to Store Leftover Turkey Pot Pie
Lindy's Homemade Turkey Pot Pie freezes really well.
To freeze, cover the uncooked pies with foil, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap - stick in the freezer.
When you are ready to reheat, set the oven to 375ºF, remove the plastic wrap, and place the pies, still covered in foil, on a cookie sheet in the middle of the oven.
No need to defrost. Cook for 30 minutes, then remove the foil, increase the oven to 400ºF and continue to cook for another 30 - 35 minutes, or until the insides are hot and bubbly and the crust is nicely browned.
Since you already did the work, this makes for a super easy dinner!
Not recommended. Russet potatoes are more starchy than are the other waxy potatoes. They will absorb a lot of the sauce leaving you with a rather dry pot pie. Better to stick to a waxy potato.
For many, mushrooms would be a fine addition. If making mushrooms for all you can add sliced or diced mushrooms when you add the carrots, celery, and green beans. If just cooking for some (the normal here) saute them until tender in some oil in a separate skillet, then stir them into the pies that want them.
Another good variation is corn. Fresh or frozen corn kernels work well here.
Diced fennel is also a good choice. Saute along with the other vegetables.
I would not recommend adding any strongly flavored vegetables such as broccoli or Brussels.
You can, but as it has so much sauciness it's better to make them in individual containers so the juice doesn't just run all over the plate.
Lindy's Homemade Turkey (or Chicken) Pot Pie
- 1 recipe Lindy's Favorite Pie Crust or store-bought
- For the filling:
- 2 cups cooked turkey or roasted chicken torn into bite-sized pieces (I find that tearing the meat, rather than dicing it helps the sauce “cling” better) use all dark, all white, or combo, as you wish
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil or as needed
- 1 ½ cups diced onion I use yellow onions
- 1 cup sliced leek optional, but really adds good flavor, if you omit this, you might want to go with 2 cups of onion
- 1 cup diced carrot peeled or not (but peeled is prettier)
- 1 cup sliced celery sliced about ¼ inch thick, use some leaves in this too, great flavor
- 1 cup green beans sliced into bite-sized pieces
- 1 ½ cups diced red potatoes with skin
- ¾ cup frozen peas not thawed
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon or dried optional
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley there is no proper dried substitute
- 12 mushrooms cut into quarters (optional for me, required for the husband)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (to fry the mushrooms, but you don’t need this if you are not using the mushrooms)
- 2 tablespoons dry white wine again, for the mushrooms, so if not using, then I got no use for this
- For the Sauce:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups homemade or low-sodium chicken stock
- ½ to ¾ cup heavy cream I used it ALL
- 1 – 2 tablespoons dry sherry again, optional, but it really mellows out the flavors, so I recommend if you have some, use some if you don’t…well then…never mind
- Special Equipment: Ovenproof crocks or another vehicle to put the filling into top with crust and bake…
- Heat oven to 400º F.If using frozen pie crust, thaw. Cut into rounds just slightly larger than your crock, or pie tins. Set-aside.
- Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat, add the onions and leek, saute until tender (do not brown, keep the heat low enough to just allow them to sizzle slightly); about 5 minutes, add the carrot, celery, green beans, and potatoes, saute for about 5 minutes; add the peas and ½ cup of the chicken stock, cook for 10 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender, but still firm. Stir in salt and pepper, to taste, along with the herbs. Turn off the heat and set aside.
- (If making the mushrooms) While the veggies are cooking, in a separate saute pan, heat the butter over medium heat, add the mushrooms and saute for about 10 minutes, adding some oil if needed. When the mushrooms are tender, add the wine and allow to cook off until the pan is dry. Turn off the heat and set aside.
- Make the Roux: In a saucepan, heat the butter, when melted, whisk in the flour; add a pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper; cook and whisk until the roux is lightly browned; then add the chicken stock; cook until thickened, then add the cream and sherry. Cook for 5 minutes or until fairly thick. Taste and adjust seasonings. Pour the roux into the veggies; add the turkey meat and cook until heated through.
- Assemble: Spoon the veggie/turkey mixture into your cooking vehicles. Add mushrooms to those who love them. Mix slightly. Top with the crusts. Cut vent holes; place on a cookie sheet and put in oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until bubbly with browned luscious crusts. Remove from oven and serve so they burn your mouth (just kidding – allow to settle for about 5 minutes, they will still be very hot!) Break the crust into the filling and enjoy!