Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Homemade Hot Pockets

I don't know a boy who doesn't like Hot Pockets.  These versions of those popular frozen convenience foods will be beloved by boys and girls alike.

This is not so much a Rachael Ray-endorsed recipe but rather a labor of love.  They take a bit of time to put together, but they're so very worth it.  Make it a rainy Sunday afternoon activity.  Make a couple batches and freeze them for convenient lunches.  In addition, I made a Spinach Feta version I'll post soon. 

Also, I think I found a new favorite pastry recipe.  Adding the cream cheese makes the dough extremely easy to work with.  I'll be using that in other future recipes, I'm sure.

Savory Chicken Pocket Pies:
1 heaping cup shredded, cooked chicken
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup onion, chopped
1/3 cup chopped carrot (about 1 carrot)
1/3 cup chopped celery (about 1 large stock)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 recipes (2 disks) Cream Cheese Pastry (see below)
1 large egg

In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat.  Saute onion, carrot and celery until vegetables begin to soften, about 3-4 minutes.  Stir in the salt and 2 tablespoons flour and cook 1 additional minute.  Add the chicken broth and stir until thickened, about 2 minutes.  Stir in shredded chicken and Parmesan cheese.  Cool in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Butter or line a baking sheet. 

To form the pocket pies, work with half of a disk of dough at a time, rolling it out on a floured surface.  Using an overturned bowl (about 5-inches across), cut out circles from each piece of dough.  After cutting out circles, gather up the scraps into a ball, re-roll and repeat until dough is used up. **Depending on the exact size of your bowl, you should end up with 10+ hand held pies.**

Place about 1/4 cup filling on one side of each dough circle.  Wet the edges of the dough with water.  Fold the dough over to form a half circle.  Pinch the edges of the dough together.  Crimp the edges with a fork (I forgot to do this part and they turned out just fine).  Repeat the process until all the filling is used.

The pocket pies can be frozen at this point (Place on a single layer on a cookie sheet. Freeze until solid and then transfer to a freezer bag for storage.  You can then bake them from frozen, just add 5-10 minutes to the baking time). 

Place the pocket pies on the prepared baking sheet.  Prick each pie on top twice with a fork.  When ready to bake, beat the egg with 1 tablespoons water.  Brush the egg wash over each pocket pie.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.  Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.  The pies can be cooled and frozen after baking to reheat in the microwave for a minute and a half or so.

My Busy Little Helpers

Cream Cheese Pastry
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
4 ounces cream cheese (I used reduced fat), at room temperature
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out the dough
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Process the butter, cream cheese and cream in a food processor, electric mixer or by hand to thoroughly combine.

Add the flour and salt.  Process just until combined and the dough holds together in a ball.  Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface.  Divide into 2 pieces.  Flatten into disks and wrap each in plastic wrap.  Refrigerate at least 30 minutes before rolling out.  If the dough is chilled overnight, take it out 15 minutes before rolling.

Working with one dough disk at a time, place the disk on a clean, well-floured surface.  Sprinkle a bit of flour on top of the dough disk as well.  Starting in the middle and gently roll out, changing directions and flipping occasionally so that the dough doesn't stick to the other side.  Roll out until the dough makes a circle of about 12 inches in diameter.
Recipe Source: Mad Hungry: Feeding Hungry Men and Boys by Lucinda Scala Quinn

This recipe is linked to Cast Party Wednesday (check it out for some great recipe ideas!)


  1. Question: your proportions make 4 pot pies?

  2. Good question. Sorry for the omission. The proportions are said to make 10 hand held personal-size pies. I actually came out at about 16 smaller ones (based on the size of the bowl I used to cut out the dough circles). I also found that two pies per person was plenty. Alternately, it would probably make one 9" deep-dish pie.