Warm up winter

Winter is almost here, and although it is my least favorite season, my kids love it! There is not much they love more than a good romp in the snow. I am thinking that little Joel might be big enough this winter to go sledding a little bit, and fortunately this year we got smart and bought some sleds in October.

When the kids come in from playing out in the snow all wet and cold, of course I serve them hot chocolate. Sydney and Georgia prefer hot vanilla (hot milk with sugar and a couple drops of vanilla extract) and Audrey likes her hot chocolate with a bit of peppermint extract mixed in.

And I love making warm, hearty meals for dinner in winter. The slow cooker is my best friend. Stews, chunky toppers for pasta or rice, all hot and ready at dinner time.

Another option is the pot pie. I haven’t made many pot pies for my family because Rich doesn’t really like them, but I love pot pie. The chicken, yummy gravy, veggies, and the flaky crust on top, mmmm.

When I was a kid, every once in a while my from-scratch-cooking mom would pop Marie Callender’s pot pies in the oven for dinner. I always loved eating my own little pie, although it took forEVer for it to cool off enough to eat!

It was with these fond memories that I agreed to review Marie Callender’s pot pies this month. I picked a night when Rich was away for work, and baked the chicken pot pies in the oven. They do have microwave directions, but I remembered my mom always baking them and I was home all afternoon, so I had the 65 minutes available for them to cook.

The pies smelled just like I remembered, and they tasted just as good, too! They received mixed reviews from my kids, but so does everything I put in front of them. Joel loved the chicken and ate all of his and mine, too. The big girls liked the filling but didn’t love the pastry (but they never like pie crust) and Sydney ate apple slices for dinner (typical for her).

The pie crust dipped in the yummy gravy was my favorite part. It tasted just like it did when I was little! The chicken (well, the couple of bites I had while Joel wasn’t looking) was tender, and the veggies were somehow crisp-tender, not soggy.

My concern over serving these pot pies regularly was that they were by no means low-fat or low-calorie. Each pie I baked was two servings. But they were so tasty that I would definitely be in favor of eating them every now and then!

Marie Callender’s pot pies come in seven varieties, and have no preservatives.

This post is sponsored by Marie Callender’s and The Motherhood. I received products and a stipend to facilitate my review. All opinions are my own.

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