Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Chicken Pot Pie with Whole Wheat Pastry Crust

I don't think I am alone in my love for a good chicken pot pie, complete with a pastry crust top. I am probably also not alone in not being too fond of the high fat content of traditional pot pies made with cream and a crust made with butter. Here is a great-tasting, healthy (and completely dairy free) chicken pot pie recipe made with an awesome whole wheat pastry crust that is made with canola oil instead of butter.  I had never made a dairy free pastry crust before and thought that it may be hard to handle or turn out too crumbly, but this crust held together great and had a nice consistency. The recipe here makes enough dough for one 9-inch pie crust.

When I make pot pies, I like to pre-cook the chicken breasts in a crock pot and shred them. I find that it actually makes cooking a pot pie a little bit easier because you just have to toss it in the crock pot and don't have to do much else  to it besides shredding it. The chicken can be cooked ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator until you are ready to make the pot pie as well.

Chicken Pot Pie with Whole Wheat Pastry Crust


3 cups organic chicken stock
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Tbsp dried thyme
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp dried tarragon
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups frozen pearl onions
1 cup organic carrots, peeled and chopped into 1/4-inch rounds
1 cup organic celery, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
2 cups crimini mushrooms, sliced
4 Tbsp flour
1 pound organic free range chicken breasts
1 cup frozen sweet peas

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup canola oil
2-3 Tbsp almond milk


1. Place chicken breasts in crock pot and add enough chicken stock to just cover  them, about 2 cups. Cook on low for 5 hours.

2. In large pan, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic, herbs and seasonings and saute for one minute. Add onions, carrots, celery, and mushrooms and cook until tender. Stir in flour, coating vegetables evenly. Stir in chicken stock (using 2 cups from the slow cooker, used to cook the chicken) and bring mixture to a simmer.

3. Shred chicken breasts and add to mixture in pan. Simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in peas. Remove from heat and pour into a 3-quart casserole dish.

4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Cut in oil with pastry blender or fork until mixture begins to look like course crumbs. Sprinkle milk over mixture and gently toss with fork. Form dough into a ball with hands. Place between 2 sheets of wax paper, and roll out with a rolling pin, to about 1 inch larger than your baking dish. Remove wax paper and gently place over top of filling in casserole dish. Cut 3 vent holes in the top with a sharp knife.

5. Bake for 45 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.  Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

(Pot pie filling recipe adapted from; crust recipe adapted from

What are the nutritional benefits of this meal? Chicken is an excellent source of protein and is rich in B vitamins. Carrots are very high in vitamin A (with one cup providing over 400% of the daily value), and they are also an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber. Garlic contains flavonoids (a type of antioxidant), and is a great source of vitamins C and B6, and the mineral manganese. Onions are rich in quercetin (a type of antioxidant) and vitamin C. Celery provides fiber as well as vitamin K and folate. Mushrooms  are an excellent source of minerals selenium and potassium as well vitamins riboflavin, and niacin, and are the only item you will find in the produce section that supplies some vitamin D! Peas are high in vitamins A, C and K, as well as B vitamins, and are also high in fiber. Whole wheat flour is less refined than all purpose flour so provides more fiber and nutrients, particularly B vitamins, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, phosphorous, zinc, copper, and iron. Canola oil is the lowest in saturated fat of any oil, and is rich in healthy unsaturated fats.

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