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Spooky Potpie

Cook Time:
40 mins
Prep Time:
40 mins

Chef notes

This is a devilishly delicious riff on a classic Shaker chicken noodle soup. The local Shaker community in our area made these flavors a cold weather classic and I developed this pie to take advantage of all that deliciousness in a decadent potpie. Design the crust however you like, but in this version, I gave it a ghoulish look for Halloween.

Make sure your fats and water for the pastry are very cold to keep the crust from getting tough and for maximum flakiness. Use a flimsy, store-bought pie tin to insure your bottom crust really bakes through. The heat gets to the bottom crust really quickly with cheap, aluminum pans versus ceramic or Pyrex. You also won't mourn the loss of your cheap grocery store tin if you leave it at someone's house. You can serve the pie by placing it in your fancy ceramic pie plate while still in the tin.

Swap option: You can use chicken or turkey or even tofu and other vegetarian options as the meat option in the filling. You can use organic, frozen veggies of your choice instead of chopping the listed veggies in the recipe to make for a quicker prep.


  • cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, cold, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2-4 tablespoons ice water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, sliced into 1/8-inch-thick half-moons
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup French green beans, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 2 full cups shredded leftover roasted turkey or chicken or from 1/2 large rotisserie chicken
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup dry vermouth
  • 1/4 cup grated aged Vermont cheddar
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 lemon, zested
  • kosher salt
  • egg wash (1 egg whisked together with 1 tablespoon water)


For the crust:

Place the flour and salt in a food processer. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and cream cheese, and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse cornmeal. While pulsing, trickle in the ice water until the mixture looks shaggy and the dough just comes together when pinched.

Gather the dough into a ball, then divide in half and form two disks. Wrap each disk with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes.

For the filling:


Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and garlic, and sauté until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the potato and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the potato has softened, about 10 minutes. Add the green beans and bell pepper; cook for another 2 minutes.


Transfer to a large bowl and add the shredded chicken. Set aside.


Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk in the flour. Continue to whisk over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes (it's fine and flavorful if the mixture browns) and then add the cream, milk and vermouth. Continue to stir over medium heat until the mixture thickens, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheddar, thyme and lemon zest. Season with kosher salt to taste, then pour the roux over the chicken mixture. Stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to cool.

To assemble:


Roll out one of the dough disks into a rough 10-inch round. Place on a parchment-lined sheet pan and freeze for 10 minutes. Once the dough is very firm, use a sharp paring knife to cut out eyes and nostrils and carve a ghoulish mouth. Place the dough in the refrigerator, covered lightly with plastic wrap.


Preheat the oven to 375 F.


Roll out the second dough disk into a rough 12-inch round and line a 9-inch pie pan with the dough so that it just overhangs the edge of the tin. Dock the dough in the pie pan by pricking the bottom with a fork. Brush the edges of dough overhanging the tin with egg wash (you won't use all of it).


Add the filling and carefully transfer the top crust to cover the filling. Gently press along the edge of the pie to seal the bottom and top crusts together. Trim the dough at the edge of the pie plate. Brush the top of the pie with egg wash.


Bake until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling, about 40 minutes.