Chicken And Dumplings are an old-fashioned comfort food no one in your family will ever forget. Learn to make the most delicious chicken and dumplings.
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Southern Chicken and Dumplings
Chicken and Dumplings is a favorite dish in the South and in the Midwest. This dish may have its origins in the Great Depression. Chicken is often boiled in a seasoned broth, and then the chicken is removed from the broth and picked clean from the bones.
Dumplings are cooked in the broth and while the dumplings are cooking chicken is added back to the soup. The result is a wonderfully almost creamy soup with tender and fluffy perfectly cooked dumplings.
Homemade Chicken and Dumplings is an inexpensive and tasty dish to make. I personally think it is one of the best dishes to warm the soul in cold months.
This soup uses two different cuts of chicken; thighs and wings. Thigh meat has a wonderful rich flavor, and the wings provide collagen that will make a thick and hearty soup without having to add extra starch to the dish.
Cooking the thighs in their own fat will not dilute the chicken flavor. Vegetables are then cooked in the chicken fat, and the pan is deglazed with a bit of sherry. If you don’t drink alcohol, deglaze the pan with some chicken stock.
The dumplings are fluffy because of the baking soda and half and half in the dumplings. These two combined together give the dumplings a nice rise. The butter will give these dumplings a wonderful flavor that you are certain to love.
What Makes Homemade Chicken and Drop Dumplings Soup the Perfect Comfort Food?
Fluffy dumplings and perfectly cooked chicken in broth have made Chicken and Dumplings a regional favorite for generations. But the secret’s out. Today, the rest of the country is slowly catching on to what may be the world’s perfect comfort food.
Like a big hug, Chicken and Dumplings will warm you up and make you feel better no matter what. Whether you are feeling a little under the weather or just crave a simple yet delicious meal, Chicken and Dumplings is what you want!
Why You Should Try This Recipe
This is not your grandma’s Chicken and Dumplings recipe! Instead of a thick soup base nearing the consistency of sawmill gravy, this version opts for a much lighter and more delicately flavored broth.
Going with a thinner broth allows the flavors of the dumplings and chicken to be front and center in this recipe. The results are a modern take on a traditional classic dish that is just as delicious but perhaps a little kinder to your waistline.
Drop Dumplings vs. Noodle Dumplings
When it comes to Southern homemade Chicken and Dumplings, some folks like to use drop dumplings, while others prefer noodle dumplings. This recipe calls for using drop dumplings which are scoops of dough dropped into the broth to cook.
Noodle dumplings, which some people refer to as rolled dumplings, are rolled out into a flat sheet and then cut with a knife into short, fat noodles shapes. If you prefer rolled noodles to drop dumplings, go ahead and use them in this recipe.
For the broth, you’ll need:
- Chicken thighs and wings
- White onion
- Dry Sherry
- Chicken broth
If you don’t have any dry sherry, you can substitute an equal amount of dry white wine or vermouth. A quarter cup of apple vinegar mixed with a quarter cup of water is an excellent non-alcoholic replacement.
For the dumplings, you’ll need:
- All-purpose flour
- Baking soda
- Half & Half
How To Make Chicken and Dumplings Soup From Scratch
To make the broth for this easy recipe for Chicken and Dumplings:
- Peel onions and carrots.
- Slice the carrots and celery. Chop the white onions. Set the prepped vegetables to the side.
- Place a medium stock pot or Dutch oven over low heat.
- While the stock pot is heating, season both sides of the chicken thighs liberally with salt and pepper.
- Place the chicken thighs skin-side-down in the stock pot.
- Once the skin is crispy, and the fat is rendered, turn up the heat to medium and cook the chicken for 4 to 5 minutes. Flip the chicken thighs and cook for an additional 4 to 5 minutes. At this stage, the chicken thighs will not be fully cooked.
- Remove the chicken from the stock pot and set aside.
- Add the prepped onions, carrots, and celery. Lightly salt the vegetables and saute the vegetable mixture until the onions are translucent.
- Deglaze the stock pot with the dry sherry. Scrape up any stuck-on bits from the bottom of the stock pot with a wooden spoon or spatula.
- Add the par-cooked chicken thighs and the uncooked chicken wings to the stock pot. Pour in the chicken stock.
- Bring the broth to a boil and reduce it to a simmer. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.
To make the dumplings and finish the dish:
While the broth is cooking, you have time to prepare the drop dumplings.
- Stir the flour, sugar, and baking soda in a medium mixing bowl with a fork.
- Melt the butter in the microwave and pour it into the mixing bowl along with the half & half slowly while stirring.
- Mix the dumpling dough just enough for everything to come together. Avoid over-mixing because it can cause prevent the dumplings from getting fluffy.
- Use a cookie scoop to portion the dumpling dough.
- Drop each dumpling directly into the simmering stock. Do not use your hands to form the dumpling balls, or they will be too dense.
- While the dumplings are cooking, remove the meat from the chicken thighs and wings. Add the meat to the stock pot.
- Cover the stock pot and cook until the dumplings are fully cooked, about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on their size. Remove the stock pot from the heat.
- Taste and add salt if desired.
- Serve Southern homemade Chicken and Dumplings in a bowl with a garnish of chopped parsley or freshly ground black pepper.
For creamy chicken and dumplings, add a 1/2 cup of heavy cream in the last 5 minutes of cooking.
What To Serve With Chicken and Dumplings?
What Is the Best Way To Store Homemade Chicken & Dumplings for Leftovers?
You can store leftover Chicken and Dumplings in the fridge for up to three days. Straining the dish and keeping the broth in a separate airtight container from the other dumplings and chicken helps to prevent the dumplings from soaking up all the liquid and becoming too dense.
Can You Freeze Easy Chicken and Dumplings?
Yes, you can freeze leftovers for up to three months. Strain the dish as above and let the broth and solids cool to room temperature. Place the broth in one freezer-safe container and put the rest of the dish in another container.
Let everything thaw overnight in the fridge before combining and reheating over medium-low heat on the stove. If necessary, add a little more chicken stock while reheating.
Favorite Chicken Dinner Recipes
- Baked Chicken Parmesan
- Chicken Croquettes
- Chicken Dijon
- Chicken Fried Chicken
- Chicken Noodle Casserole
- Chili’s Chicken Crispers
- Grilled Chicken Tenders
- KFC Chicken Pot Pie
- Poppy Seed Chicken
- Rosemary Chicken
Delicious Comfort Food Recipes
Homemade Chicken and Dumplings
- 2 pounds bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
- salt divided use
- ground black pepper
- 2 cups chopped white onions
- 3 ribs celery sliced
- 3 medium carrots sliced
- 1/2 cup dry Sherry
- 1 pound chicken wings
- 32 ounces chicken broth
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 cup half and half
- 8 tablespoons butter melted
- chopped fresh parsley optional
- Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper and place them in a skillet over low heat. When the fat from the chicken begins to render out, raise the heat to medium. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, flip, and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the chicken thighs from the skillet and set aside. The thighs will be only partially cooked.
- Add the onions, celery, and carrots to the skillet. Sprinkle a small amount of salt over the vegetables and sauté until the onions are translucent.
- Add the dry Sherry to deglaze the skillet, scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Transfer the vegetables and liquid from the skillet into a stockpot. Add the chicken wings, chicken broth, and the partially cooked chicken thighs and cook for about 30 minutes over medium heat.
- Remove the chicken wings and thighs from the stockpot and allow them to cool. Leave the stockpot on the stove over medium heat.
- While the chicken is cooling, prepare the dumplings: In a medium-sized bowl add the flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda and stir to combine. Add the half and half and melted butter and stir until the dough forms a ball. Shape the dough into golf ball–sized pieces and drop them into the stockpot.
- Debone the chicken and return the meat to the stockpot. Cook for another 10 to 15 minutes until the dumplings are fully cooked and have increased in size.
- If desired, sprinkle with fresh parsley before serving.