This post was last updated on December 11, 2014 to include new images.
So, it’s been rainy and a bit cold out here in Austin this week.
Not that I’m complaining, since I love staying inside and making tasty, hot goodies in the kitchen when it’s cold.
Chicken and Dumplings is a meal I can’t make without thinking about my mom. I first fell in love with the meal in my childhood.
My mom would make the chicken stew and add Bisquick dumplings that were so delicious.
Like many meals my mom made, she never wrote down a recipe. Everything always just came together. Usually at 9 or 10 at night once everyone was home and hungry.
Man, that seems so late now, since I get hungry for dinner starting around 4:15 pm. Okay, I kid. It’s more like 3:30 pm.
Well, despite not having her recipe, I have put together what I think is a pretty darn good and easy chicken and dumplings recipe over the years. I don’t use condensed Cream of Chicken soup or Bisquick like my mom did. Instead, I learned how to make fluffy dumplings from scratch.
The stew, which is a great chicken stew all on its own, comes out thick and hearty, and the dumplings come out light, fluffy and absolutely stick-to-your-bones delicious. So good.
If I have time, I like to use a whole chicken that has been left-over from making my Homemade Chicken Stock. But, if you don’t have a whole, cooked chicken for this purpose (though you should totally try out that stock recipe), you can purchase a Best of the Fryer pack or even just use a couple boneless, skinless chicken breasts and thighs for your recipe. It should all work out fine.
This easy chicken and dumplings recipe will leave you warm, full and satisfied. Just like mom’s.
I think one of the best things about Chicken And Dumplings is how hearty and filling it is. There’s something so comforting to me about sitting at the table with my family and enjoying this meal.
That is, of course, once it finally cools off enough to eat without burning yourself. Beware: those dumplings can get hot!
I also love maintaining a meal from my childhood and sharing it with my children. There’s something about reliving those old memories and making new ones that is so fulfilling.
Plus, you know, it’s darn yummy, too. So there’s that.
Here’s to staying warm (and full) on these cold winter days! And to sharing a meal with family.
Easy Chicken and Dumplings
- For The Chicken Stew:
- 1 whole chicken, (can substitute 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts and 2 chicken thighs, roasted chicken, or whatever other chicken you may have)
- 10 cups chicken stock
- 5 carrots, unpeeled, halved and chopped into quarters
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 5 red or yukon potatoes, unpeeled, diced
- 6 tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
- 5-8 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only
- 1½ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. ground black pepper
- For The Dumplings:
- 2 cups cake flour (can substitute All-Purpose Flour, but will not be quite as fluffy)
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ¾ tsp. kosher salt
- ¾ cup milk
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried tarragon
- 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only
- Heat chicken stock over medium-high heat in a large stock pot. Add chicken and cook until able to easily shred chicken meat, about 20-25 minutes. Remove chicken and let cool. Shred and set aside when cooled.
- Add carrots, onion, celery, and potatoes to the chicken stock.
- In a small bowl, combine the all-purpose flour and 1 cup milk and stir until no longer lumpy. Add milk mixture to the pot. This will thicken the mixture.
- Add shredded chicken, parsley, 5-8 sprigs of fresh thyme, kosher salt and pepper and stir to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and sauce is thick and creamy, about 15 minutes.
- To make the dumplings, in a medium bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder, and kosher salt. In a separate medium bowl, combine the remaining ¾ cup milk, melted butter, oregano, tarragon and 3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme (leaves only).
- Slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Gently mix until just incorporated. Do not over-mix, as this will cause the dumplings to become less light and fluffy.
- Drop dumpling mixture into the stew in heaping spoonfuls. Cover pot and simmer 15 minutes until cooked through. Do not open the cover of the pot during these 15 minutes. It is important to keep the steam in the pot to cook the dumplings. If, after 15 minutes, the dumplings are not cooked through, cover again and cook for an additional 5-8 minutes.
- For leftovers, add 2-3 cups more chicken stock (as needed) and cook over medium-high heat. Season with additional kosher salt and/or ground black pepper, to taste.