Turkey pot pie is my absolute favorite meal in the whole world. I requested this for my birthday meal pretty much every year growing up since the age of 10.
My husband (then boyfriend) even made this meal for me on our first Valentine’s Day together. Cue the heart eyes! And although it was delicious, it took about 3 hours for him to make, and I wasn’t allowed to help at all. So I basically sat on the couch doing homework by myself when I really just wanted to spend time with him.
It was a really nice gesture, but I’ve asked for steak ever since.
But don’t be scared! Turkey pot pie doesn’t have to take that long. My husband wasn’t quite sure how to make boxed macaroni and cheese, if that gives you an idea of his skill level at the time. He’s come a really long way.
Turkey Pot Pie
- 2 ½ cups flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup butter
- 6 tablespoons ice cold water
- 1 ½ cups cooked turkey
- 1 ½ cups cubed potatoes
- ¾ cup diced carrots
- 1 medium diced onion
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 2 cups milk
- ⅓ cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon bouillon paste
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- Set oven to 425 degrees and prepare turkey.
- Cut potatoes, carrots, and onion. Set onion aside. Put potatoes and carrots in a pot, cover with water. Cover with a lid and boil until not quite fork tender. Drain set aside.
- Combine milk, cornstarch, bouillon, onion, salt, and pepper in large pot and bring to a boil whisking constantly. Boil until gravy is thick.
- Combine cooked carrots, potatoes, turkey, and corn into gravy mixture and stir.
- Prepare crust by whisking together all the dry ingredients into a medium sized bowl. Cut butter in with a pastry blender until it resembles cornmeal. Add water one tablespoon at a time stirring minimally with a fork. Form dough into two disks and roll out.
- Place one rolled out crust in the pie pan. Fill with gravy and vegetables mixture. Cover with remaining pie crust. Pinch edges to seal and vent the top. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes.
Set the oven to 425 degrees.
If you haven’t cooked the turkey yet, you can quickly poach it in boiling water, but my favorite way to prepare turkey or chicken if I have the time is with a slow cooker.
I put it in for 3 hours on low if frozen and put about half a cup of water in with it. I put a layer of foil over the top of the slow cooker before putting the lid on, and this ensures that the meat won’t dry out.
This is absolutely the best way to do it. Poaching will work in a pinch, but it is so easy to over cook it and make the meat tough. However, if you own one of these amazing turkey fryers, feel free to make your turkey in this.
2. Prepare Vegetables
One of the challenges about a pot pie is making sure that everything is cooked to about the same softness level. So cut your potatoes into bite sized pieces, or how big a piece of potato you would like to bite into, and then make your carrots about a quarter to half that size. Carrots are a much denser vegetable and will cook a lot slower than a potato.
Lots of recipes will tell you to cut vegetables into the same size, but do not make that mistake! I made an embarrassing amount of pot pies that had perfect potatoes and hard carrots.
And who wants that? No one; that’s who.
Dice the onions and set aside.
Like I said, you don’t want your carrots to be hard when you bite into your pot pie. It is the most disappointing thing in the world. There are a lot of pot pie recipes that will tell you to put your veggies in raw, but that is just too risky.
And I’m not a risk taker. I’m an Aries.
You also don’t want your vegetables to be mushy, so keep your eye on it and pull it out before it’s fork tender. That way it won’t overcook in the oven.
3. Make Gravy
Combine milk, cornstarch, bouillon, onion, salt, and pepper in large pot and bring to a boil whisking constantly.
Now this is my favorite part of this recipe. Lots of people will do a gravy with flour and butter, or a roux.
Nothing against roux or anything, but I hate them.
Everyone has an Achilles heel, and this is mine. I have never done one that I am satisfied with. I have read the articles and tested them out countless times, but I just don’t love the gravy that they make because the texture isn’t as smooth as I want. And half the time it doesn’t thicken as much as I want to.
Cornstarch, on the other hand, has never let me down. It is dummy proof, which is important when you’re a busy mom juggling a million things at once.
So there are no tricks; you just add the cornstarch to a cold liquid (or else it will clump) and you boil it until you are happy with the consistency.
Voila! The texture is so smooth and lovely! And unlike the roux, it can be salvageable if you don’t like the thickness. Add liquid if it’s too thick. If it’s too thin add cornstarch to a cold liquid and then add it in and continue to boil. Perfection.
4. Combine Filling
Combine cooked carrots, potatoes, turkey, and corn into gravy mixture and stir.
5. Prepare Crust
Prepare crust by whisking together all the dry ingredients into a medium sized bowl.
Cut butter in with a pastry blender until it resembles cornmeal.
A lot of people swear by food processors, and this can be an easy option for you. However, whenever I have used a processor instead of a pastry blender, I have pulsed it too much and it doesn’t turn out as flaky.
I much prefer to do it by hand with a pastry blender so I can work out all my frustrations. Kids driving you crazy? Your coworker singing opera at his desk again? Just work it all out with good old fashioned blending!
Blend, blend, blend…namaste.
Once it is the right consistency, add water one tablespoon at a time stirring minimally with a fork. If you stir this too much your crust will be too dense.
Form dough into two disks. Make sure they are equal sizes for the top and bottom crust.
Flour the surface of a pastry cloth.
Roll out the dough into a large circle big enough to cover the entire bottom of a pie pan.
6. Assemble And Bake
Place one rolled out crust in the pie pan. Fill with gravy and vegetables mixture.
Cover with remaining pie crust. Pinch edges to seal and vent the top.
Bake in the oven for 45 minutes.
You might think, “This recipe seems to take a lot more effort than I’m willing to put in.” But guess what? The great thing about this recipe is that you don’t have to do it all at once! You can cook the vegetables and meat one day and assemble it all the next. Or you could buy store bought crust!
My biggest secret to making this pie as easy as…well…pie, is to use all the leftovers from Thanksgiving!
You heard me. ALL the leftovers.
The only thing you have to make is the crust. As long as you have leftover turkey, vegetables (of any kind, really), and gravy, you are set!
And there’s a reason why people buy pot pie in the freezer section–it freezes so well! No more throwing away pound of leftovers after Turkey Day, or frantically eating those pounds of food because you don’t want to waste them.
You can now enjoy Thanksgiving in a pie for months, with very little effort!
In fact, I used all the vegetables in this recipe because it’s typically what I have leftover from Thanksgiving, but you can use whatever vegetables you want. What are your favorite vegetables to use in pot pie?