The Ultimate Chicken Pie

Prep: 40 mins 
Cook: 1 hr 15 mins (plus 3hrs cooling) 
Serves: 6  


  • 50g butter 
  • 1 leek, finely sliced 
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into chunks 
  • 1 thyme sprig, leaves picked 
  • 2 bay leaves 
  • 2 tbsp plain flour 
  • 100ml white wine or dry sherry 
  • 300ml chicken stock 
  • 100ml crème fraîche or double cream 
  • 1 tbsp mustard (we used wholegrain, but use whatever variety you have) 

For the pastry 

  • 150g cold butter, cut into cubes, plus extra for the dish 
  • 400g self-raising flour, plus extra for dusting 
  • 1 egg, beaten 


Step 1: Start by melting the butter in a casserole dish over a low heat. Then add the leek, chicken, herbs and seasoning, and cook for 10-12 minutes or until the chicken is browned, the leeks have softened, and the mixture is simmering.

Step 2: Stir in the flour and cook for 3 minutes until the mix resembles a sandy paste. Now pour in the wine or sherry, and allow to bubble for 1 minute, before stirring in the stock, crème fraîche or cream and the mustard. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Season to taste and then remove from the heat and leave to cool completely. Pour the mixture into a container and chill in the fridge for 2 hours. 

Step 3: Now to make the pastry - start by rubbing the butter into the flour with a large pinch of salt until completely combined. Add half the beaten egg and 4 tbsp ice-cold water, before bringing together into a dough using your hands - add a little more water if needed. Knead for a minute until it completely comes together, then chill for 1 hour. 

Step 4: Butter a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin and then roll out two-thirds of the pastry large enough to line the tin with some overhanging. Line the tin and then spoon in the filling.

Step 5: Roll out the remaining pastry so that it's large enough to cover the pie. Brush the edge of the pastry with the beaten egg, and then drape over the pie to close it. Trim the edge, then press with a fork to seal.

Step 6: Heat your oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7 with a baking sheet inside. Brush the pie with some of the remaining beaten egg, then lightly score a criss-cross pattern on top using a sharp knife.

Step 7: Bake on the hot sheet for 20 minutes, and then brush with the rest of the egg, season with sea salt flakes and bake for a further 15-20 minutes until deep golden brown.

Step 8: Remove the pie from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes, then carefully remove from the tin, put on a board and cut into wedges before serving. 


Recipe inspired by BBC Good Food.

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