Chicken Puff Pastry (Chicken Patties)
The best Chicken Puff Pastry! Easy puff pastry appetizers filled with a homemade creamy chicken filling. The perfect finger food! So easy to prepare and you can totally prep and freeze these for later!
These are seriously some of my favorite childhood snacks.
Chicken in puff pastry is basically savory chicken turnovers or little golden brown triangles of crunchy, buttery, delicious puff pastry wrapped around a creamy chicken filling. You can bake immediately or freeze and bake at the drop of a hat when you need a snack for the kiddos after school or an appetizer for your next book club meeting, potluck, or party. These are customizable, so feel free to add other ingredients, fresh herbs, and seasonings. Each bite is a little bit of flakey puff pastry, creamy peppered chicken and it’s seriously a little pocket of heaven!
They’re a classic appetizer in Pakistan and other South Asian countries. You’ll find them served at afternoon tea, but they’re also extra popular in Ramadan, and as an appetizer at parties like baby showers, birthday parties, New Year’s Eve, and pretty much every other gathering you can think of!
Ingredients to make chicken puff pastry:
- Puff pastry sheets: You’ll need puff pastry sheets for this recipe, which can easily be found in almost any grocery store. It’s usually in the same aisle as phyllo dough – the frozen dessert section. Phyllo dough cannot be used interchangeably with puff pastry dough, so make sure you grab the right kind. Puff pastry is layers of dough that are laminated with thin layers of butter in between. It puffs and flakes up when it bakes.
- Chicken breasts: I almost always cook chicken breasts at home for this recipe. You can poach chicken on the stove or cook a larger batch in the instant pot. Then, shred and freeze it for later. I usually season 1½ pounds of chicken with a big dash of garlic powder, onion powder, and a few cracks of black pepper. Then, sear this in an instant pot with a drizzle of oil for 30 seconds. Add ½ cup of chicken stock and pressure cook for 10-12 minutes (depending on the size.) Do a natural pressure release for 5 minutes. You won’t need all of the chicken for this recipe. Leftovers are easy to store in the freezer for next time. All you really need is shredded chicken, so feel free to use a store-bought rotisserie chicken to save some time! I also have a homemade rotisserie chicken recipe that you can prep and shred (don’t toss the bones, they make a mean chicken stock!)
- Butter: We’ll use a couple of tablespoons of butter to melt in a skillet to create the roux or white sauce that the chicken will simmer in.
- All-purpose Flour: Helps thicken the roux. It’s important to make a thick sauce so that it doesn’t ooze out of the puff pastry.
- Yellow Mustard: Adds the most delicious flavor to the chicken. I know it’s a shocking ingredient – especially if you’ve made chicken puff pastry or chicken patties before and haven’t seen it used. But trust me, it adds the best flavor to the chicken.
- Seasonings: I keep things pretty simple with a little garlic powder, salt, and lots of black pepper. Feel free to add fresh parsley, or even minced jalapeños or serrano peppers to kick things up!
- Milk: Is added to butter and flour roux to make a white sauce.
- An egg: The egg wash is just a beaten egg that we’ll brush on top right before the chicken puff pastry goes in the oven.
How to make the creamy chicken filling:
- Shred the chicken. Since we’re using cooked chicken, this is super quick to do. You can throw the chicken into the food processor and pulse it a few times, you can shred it by hand, or you can run it in your stand mixer. Keep in mind, that you want the chicken to be finely shredded for this recipe. It’ll be easier to eat and much easier to fold the pastry puffs this way.
- Make the roux. Add the butter to a sautepan over medium heat. When the butter melts, add the flour, black pepper, and garlic powder and allow the raw flavor of the flour to cook out. The black pepper will also bloom in the butter creating a delicious flavor. Once the flour is cooked, add mustard. If this is your first time making this recipe, I suggest adding 1 teaspoon and then tasting and adjusting. We like it with 2 teaspoons and the tang of the mustard really cuts through the richness of the pastry! Once the mustard is incorporated, whisk the mixture while you slowly stream in the 3/4 cup of milk with the other hand. When it’s all combined and the white sauce starts to thicken, add the remaining 1/4 cup of milk if the sauce is too thick. Remember, you want the sauce to be thick, but not so thick that the chicken won’t stir into it and coat it nicely. Add the chicken and stir to mix everything together. Taste the filling and adjust with additional mustard, garlic powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper as desired. Then allow the chicken mixture to cool completely. It’s going to thicken significantly as it cools and you want that so you can easily scoop and fill the pastry!
Instructions for chicken puff pastry:
- Prepare the shells. Start by defrosting the puff pastry according to package directions. If you use the larger puff pastry sheets, you’ll want to cut each into 4 pieces. You’ll have a 5×5-inch square like I do. Cut each square diagonally to form 2 triangles. Then fill one side of the triangle with the creamy chicken filling. Fold the other side over the filling and crimp using a pastry crimper or with a fork. If you make a ton of turnovers, the pastry crimper makes this super quick – and it’s only a few dollars!
- Flash freeze or let cool. I like to line the puff pastry on a baking sheet and allow it to cool in the refrigerator before baking. If you are preparing these the same day as serving, this will allow the puff pastry to maintain those flakey layers. If time permits, I usually prefer to make these 1-2 months in advance and flash freeze them on a sheet pan. Then I transfer them to a ziptop bag and they’re ready to brush with an egg wash and bake any time I need them!
- To Bake. Line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper. Place the desired number of filled shells you’d like to bake – making sure to place them 1-inch apart. Brush with a beaten egg that you’ve whisked in a small bowl and sprinkle with flaked sea salt, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, or nigella seeds, if desired – this is totally optional! Bake them from the refrigerator or from frozen; no need to defrost. If you bake from frozen, keep in mind that these will require a few additional minutes to cookt through. Regardless of how you bake them (fresh or frozen) don’t open the oven for the first 15 minutes, the puff pastry simply won’t rise as beautifully if you do!
FAQs about chicken puff pastry:
- Can I add mushrooms? You can! Swap about 2 ounces of the chicken for 3 ounces of mushrooms that you’ve minced and sauteed in a little butter.
- What other variations do you suggest? You can play with this recipe a ton! Add parmesan cheese to the filling once it’s cooked, minced jalapenos when you add the chicken to the filling mixture, or season with cajun seasoning or something else if you’d like! Personally, the original recipe is my favorite!
- I can’t find 5×5 sheet of puff pastry, what do I do? I suggest grabbing the larger sheets (such as Pepperidge Farm.) Those sheets are approximately 10×10. You can roll them a little if needed, then cut them down into 4 pieces (which would make them 5×5) and then cut those the same way I cut mine. Each sheet will make 8 trangles, so you’ll need to grab 2 boxes.
- Where do you suggest storing baked chicken puff pastry: Since chicken is involved, I suggest storing leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
- How do I reheat leftover puff pastries? I prefer to reheat mine in a preheated air fryer at 325ºF for 8-10 minutes. You can also do the same thing in an oven or toaster oven.
- Can I make and freeze these for later? Yes, absolutely! I like to flash freeze them spread apart on a sheet pan for a few hours. Then pop them into a freezer safe bag and keep them in the freezer for up to 3 months! These are great to prepare months ahead of a party!
- Can these be a full meal? They can! I like to make about 2-3 per person as a meal and serve along side some roasted veggies or a large salad.
If you like this recipe, you might also like:
- Gruyere, Mushroom, & Caramelized Onion Bites
- Greek Spinach Puffs
- Cranberry Brie Bites
- Puff Pastry Wrapped Mummy Brie
- How to Make Baklava
Original recipe shared Feb. 2014, updated with minor recipe edits, new images, and post April 2022.
- 12-15 pieces of 5x5 puff pastry squares, thawed (see notes)
- 12 ounces cooked chicken breast, shredded
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1-2 teaspoon yellow mustard
- ½ teaspoon EACH: kosher salt AND cracked black pepper (plus more to taste)
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¾-1 cup whole milk (or 2%)
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ROUX: Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Add butter and allow it to melt. Sprinkle flour, black pepper, and garlic powder; whisk constantly for 75 seconds to cook out the raw flavor of the flour. Then add the 1 tsp mustard* and whisk to combine.
- FILLING: Whisking with one hand, stream in ¾ cup of milk with the other hand. Allow the milk to start simmering, then add the chicken, and salt; stir to combine and let it heat through. If it looks significantly thick, add the remaining ¼ cup of milk while you stir. Allow the mixture to cook for 1-2 minutes. Once the chicken mixture thickens, taste and adjust with more mustard, garlic powder, salt and pepper as needed. Then remove from stove. Filling will thicken further as it cools. Filling can be stored covered in the refrigerator for 24 hours before filling.
- PREPARE THE SHELLS: Defrost pastry shells according to package directions. Cut the 5x5 squares diagonally to make two triangles. Fill one side of the triangle with 1 tablespoon of the chicken filling. Fold the other side over and crimp with a pastry crimper or press down with a fork (see image in post.) Repeat with remaining ingredients.
- BAKE: Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 375ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the puff pastry sheet pan and lightly brush with beaten egg. If the pastry is too soft, you’ll want to refrigerate it for at least 45-60 minutes before baking so they puff up. I usually bake from frozen. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Do not open the oven for the first 15 mins.
- FREEZE AND BAKE FROM FROZEN: Line the pastries on a baking sheet at least 1-inch apart and flash freeze for 2-3 hours. Then place in a ziptop bag and freeze. Bake from frozen, brushed with a beaten egg. Pastries will take longer when baking from frozen; about 27-35 minutes. DO NOT open the oven for the first 15 mins of baking.
- Puff Pastry: You can also use larger sheets of puff pastry (such as Pepperidge Farms.) I suggest rolling those into a 10x10 inch square, cutting them into 4, then proceeding as written. You’ll need 2 boxes so that you have enough for the filling.
- Mustard: Once you’ve made these a few times, you’ll know whether you prefer this with 1 or 2 teaspoons of mustard. We prefer it with 2, so I add 2 teaspoons in step 1.
- Variations: you can play with this recipe a ton, swap the seasonings, can add minced pickled or fresh jalapeños or even minced sautéed onions or mushrooms in place of 1-2 ounces of chicken.
- Leftover chicken puff pastries: should be stored in the refrigerator. Reheat in a 300ºF oven or air fryer for 5-8 minutes or until heated through.