I was never a HUGE fan of the great American comfort foods – mac & cheese, meatloaf, green bean casserole… But I had a new found love for chicken pot pie when a college friend ordered it at a local D.C. restauarant called Daily Grill a few years back. This monstrosity came out of the kitchen – my friends and I were blown away by its size (and questioned whether the little girl sitting in front of it could eat the whole thing).

I came full circle earlier this week when I decided to make a Cooking Light recipe for Chicken and Root Vegetable Pot Pie for some friends. I have to say, this recipe doesn’t taste LIGHT at all, is really tasty and it’s pretty easy to make.


Serves 8


3 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth

1 1/2 cups frozen green peas, thawed

1 cup (1/2-inch) cubed peeled baking potato

1 cup (1/2-inch) cubed peeled sweet potato

1 cup (1/2-inch) cubed peeled celeriac (celery root)

1 cup (1/2-inch-thick) slices parsnip

1 (10-ounce) package frozen pearl onions

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

2/3 cup all-purpose flour (about 3 ounces), divided

1 1/2 cups fat-free milk

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme

1 1/2 teaspoons salt (you are going to need more, but keep adding to taste until you are satisfied)

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cooking spray

1 sheet frozen puff pastry dough, thawed


Preheat oven to 400°.

Bring broth to a boil in a large Dutch oven. Add peas and next 5 ingredients (through onions) to pan; cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 6 minutes. Add chicken; cook for 5 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken and vegetables from broth with a slotted spoon; place in a large bowl.

Increase heat to medium. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Place all but 1 tablespoon flour in a medium bowl; gradually add milk to bowl, stirring with a whisk until well blended. Add milk mixture to broth; cook for 5 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently. Stir in chicken mixture, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper. Spoon mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

Sprinkle remaining 1 tablespoon flour on a work surface; roll dough into a 13 x 9-inch rectangle. Place dough over chicken mixture, pressing to seal at edges of dish. Cut small slits into dough to allow steam to escape; coat dough lightly with cooking spray. Place dish on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 16 minutes or until pastry is browned and filling is bubbly.

There will be no Hillman’s Helpings next week due to the Thanksgiving holiday. I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!


Lauren Hillman
Hillman’s Helpings