Use your leftover smoked chicken and few remaining grapes and make it into hand pies for lunch or your next tailgating party!
I’m in the mood for some smoked chicken, who else is with me? Brooks just bought himself a new smoker and has been trying it out on lots of different meats. Burgers, wings, and even a couple of chickens. He got a little overzealous and smoked 4 whole chickens recently. What am I going to do with all that chicken?
I’m tired of quesadillas, notice I didn’t say tacos because I never get tired of those, so I am making some smoked chicken hand pies!
Why smoke so many birds at one time?
Our local grocer has some great sales on meats. When chicken goes on sale we stock up and store it in the freezer for later meals. Whole chickens were on sale last week so we decided to buy a bunch since we were running low. We bought 4 of them and had our oldest son put them in the outside fridge until we could smoke them over the weekend.
Little did we know the put them in the freezer and not the fridge. We didn’t figure that out until the coals were hot and the smoker was up and running so I had to go back to the store again. Luckily they were still on sale, so I returned with four fresh ones ready to go. Now I have 8 whole chicken! Bok Bok!
What do I season my chicken with?
Just a few rubs of salt and pepper on the skin of the chicken and onto the smoker rack they go. That’s it! Brooks uses pecan wood and some Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Chips in the smoker box when he smokes. The chickens take a nice smoke nap for the next few hours and once they are done, we dine like kings! After all that eating, we still have 2 whole chickens left.
One went to the in-laws and one we shredded up for the freezer and a future meal. This recipe is one of those future meals!
How glorious can leftovers become with puff pastry?
Looking for a quick appetizer to bring to a party, I pulled out my bag of shredded smoked chicken, the handful of grapes I had left in the fruit drawer of the fridge, and the package of puff pastry that I always in my freezer.
How do I combine them?
I toss the grapes in some olive oil, lightly sprinkle some kosher salt on them, and roast them in the oven for about 10 minutes. The sweetness of the grapes intensifies when roasting so that hint of salt balances out the flavor. A great compliment to the smoky chicken in the pies too!
If you don’t want to smoke your own chicken, use your leftovers from your last trip to your favorite BBQ joint!
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How do the smoked chicken hand pies come together?
I roll out the puff pastry, both sheets, and cut nine 3-inch circles from each sheet. I love these circle cutters because they are fluted (or wiggly as Connor would say) and come in a nice selection of sizes to fit my dough.
On the bottom circle, I place a small amount of the chicken roughly 1/3 cup, a few of the roasted grapes, and a sprinkle of Monterey Jack cheese to melt it all together. I place another puff pastry circle on top pressing down to remove the air, crimp the edges with a fork, and brush with egg wash to get that golden brown, flaky top.
Into the oven, they go for 25 minutes and come out perfectly golden smoked chicken hand pies for snacking! Biting into them reveals smoky chicken, melty cheese, and juicy, sweet and salty grapes! Oh, and all those puff pastry flakes that stick to your fingers and face while eating it!
If you don’t have any smoked chicken around, try this Spatchcocked Chicken, this beer can chicken you can make on the grill or my Lemongrass Chicken from the crockpot. Some pork carnitas will work great too!
Do you have some leftover, already cooked/smoked chicken taking up space in your fridge? Pull out some puff pastry and makes these smoked chicken hand pies!
Use your leftover smoked chicken and few remaining grapes and turn it into smoked chicken hand pies for lunch or your next tailgating party!
1 package Puff Pastry (thawed)
2 cups smoked or rotisserie chicken (shredded)
1 cup green grapes (sliced in half)
1 cup Monterey Jack cheese (shredded)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Roast the green grapes first
Preheat oven to 350F.
Toss the grapes in the olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
Roast in the oven for 10 minutes or until the grapes start to melt/pop and release their juices.
Remove from the oven and turn the temperature up to 400F.
Assemble the smoked chicken hand pies
Remove the puff pastry from the package and unfold.
Roll out slightly to spread it.
Use cookie cutters to cut each sheet into 9 circles so you have 18 total.
Put 9 of them on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Top each one with some chicken, grapes, and cheese to use it all up.
Cover each circle with another pastry circle.
Crimp the edges with a fork.
Beat 1 egg with a fork and a little bit of water.
Brush the top of each hand pie with the egg wash and cut a small slit in the top to release the steam.
Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown.
Remove and serve warm!
These Caponata and Cheese Hand Pies from my friend Dini over at the Flavor Bender are to die for! I also love these sweet hand pies: these heart-shaped spiced peach ones and you know I die for cherry ones too!