Christmas pie

Christmas pie

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(94 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 1 hr, 15 mins Plus cooling

More effort

Cuts into 10-12 slices
Combine a few key Christmas flavours here to make a pie that both children and adults will adore

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal488
  • fat28g
  • saturates12g
  • carbs39g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre2g
  • protein23g
  • salt1.4g
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  • 2 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • knob butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 1 onion, finely chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 500g sausagemeat or skinned sausages
  • grated zest of 1 lemon



    Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…

  • 100g fresh white breadcrumbs
  • 85g ready-to-eat dried apricots, chopped



    A relative of the peach, nectarine, plum and cherry, apricots are fragrant, with a soft, velvety…

  • 50g chestnut, canned or vacuum-packed, chopped



    'Chestnuts roasting on an open fire...' that kitsch old Nat King Cole song perfectly…

  • 2 tsp chopped fresh or 1tsp dried thyme


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 100g cranberries, fresh or frozen


    A tart, ruby-red coloured berry which grows wild on shrubs throughout northern Europe and North…

  • 500g boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 500g pack ready-made shortcrust pastry
  • beaten egg, to glaze



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…


  1. Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5. Heat 1 tbsp oil and the butter in a frying pan, then add the onion and fry for 5 mins until softened. Cool slightly. Tip the sausagemeat, lemon zest, breadcrumbs, apricots, chestnuts and thyme into a bowl. Add the onion and cranberries, and mix everything together with your hands, adding plenty of pepper and a little salt.

  2. Cut each chicken breast into three fillets lengthwise and season all over with salt and pepper. Heat the remaining oil in the frying pan, and fry the chicken fillets quickly until browned, about 6-8 mins.

  3. Roll out two-thirds of the pastry to line a 20-23cm springform or deep loose-based tart tin. Press in half the sausage mix and spread to level. Then add the chicken pieces in one layer and cover with the rest of the sausage. Press down lightly.

  4. Roll out the remaining pastry. Brush the edges of the pastry with beaten egg and cover with the pastry lid. Pinch the edges to seal, then trim. Brush the top of the pie with egg, then roll out the trimmings to make holly leaf shapes and berries. Decorate the pie and brush again with egg.

  5. Set the tin on a baking sheet and bake for 50-60 mins, then cool in the tin for 15 mins. Remove and leave to cool completely. Serve with a winter salad and pickles.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Mama Bookworm's picture
Mama Bookworm
26th Dec, 2013
Delicious pie. I never use fresh chicken but add leftover turkey and (sometimes) ham too. Don't bother with the breadcrumbs or chestnuts but add more apricots and have also add hard boiled eggs too. It disappears every time.
28th Sep, 2013
This is divine and looks impressive...will definitely make again!!
23rd Jun, 2013
Lost count of the number of times I have made this, we call it Boxing day pie. Just made two for my son's 18th party as he loves it so much. I used the chicken fillets which were on offer, so I poached them before adding to the pie. The family all commented that these were the best ever pies, the poaching kept the chicken lovely and moist.
6th Jan, 2013
Made this for my family's Christmas Eve buffet. Expected there to be leftovers when I saw the size of the pie, but in the end it was polished off in double quick time with everyone giving rave reviews. It was also very easy to make. Definitely recommended!
1st Jan, 2013
30th Dec, 2012
Just delicious. Made it for the first time for Christmas 2012. It was a great cut and come again dish to fill the hollow legs of the younger generation. The last crumbs disappeared at 1am along with some homemade chutney. Will definitely become a regular Christmas time buffet menu feature and I will try freezing it next time having read the positive comments.
26th Dec, 2012
Made this for my boxing day buffet table today and my uncle said 'this tastes like Christmas in a pie' - so true, it was full of flavour and everybody loved it- will become a festive regular in my house!
22nd Dec, 2012
This is my second year of making this pie and the only thing I changed from last year was to add more chicken, I use 4 chicken breasts instead of 3 to make sure that there is a full layer of chicken. This pie is a real winner and a great recipe even though there is a lot to get through for 2 people ! I tend to give some to friends if they pop round for a coffee.
17th Dec, 2012
Diet 73, you can do it either way. Pastry, generally , is better frozen uncooked, but it would be absolutely fine to freeze it cooked if that was most convenient
17th Dec, 2012
Diet 73, you can do it either way. Pastry, generally , is better frozen uncooked, but it would be absolutely fine to freeze it cooked if that was most convenient


goodfoodteam's picture
11th Dec, 2014
Hi Heather Clarke, if you skip the step for frying the chicken you will lose some of the flavour and it may not cook properly. Should be fine to assemble the pie completely to the point of baking and freezing it then. Just defrost overnight in the fridge before baking - however we haven't tested this method in our kitchen so cannot guarantee perfect results. Let us know how you get on. 
6th Dec, 2014
Does this pie have to be served cold or can it be served warm too?
goodfoodteam's picture
8th Dec, 2014
Hi KittyP29 this pie would be much better cold because as it cools the filling will firm up and be much easier and neater to cut and serve. 
10th Oct, 2014
I have just made this and frozen it uncooked - would you defrost before cooking or cook from frozen?
goodfoodteam's picture
28th Oct, 2014
Hi there, thanks for your question. As this is quite a large pie we would defrost it for a few hours before cooking.


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