Dec 14, 2020

Chicken and Dumpling Soup

Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Chicken and dumpling soup is a hearty classic. In the classic version, a creamy chicken broth is filled with sautéed vegetables and shredded chicken and filled with drop dumplings, simmered in the broth until tender.

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My version is a bit deeper in color and richer in flavor than most versions, stemming from a roux cooked until it’s deep golden brown. This is the perfect soup to make if you’ve recently roasted a whole chicken. The goal is light and fluffy dumplings that still hold their shape in the broth and don’t get gummy or fall apart.

Chicken and Dumpling Soup

Key Ingredients in This Recipe

  • Schmaltz – If you have chicken fat (schmaltz) to use in the dumplings, I’d recommend it, as it adds great flavor but butter works just as well. I save the chicken fat that renders when I roast chicken to use.
  • Chicken stock – Chicken stock is typically made from chicken bones as well as aromatics and vegetables while chicken broth is made with the meat. How does that affect their flavor? Chicken stock has a much richer, more robust flavor which comes from the collagen released from the simmering bones. On the other hand, chicken broth is much more mellow in flavor. I typically use chicken stock when cooking. In a pinch the chicken stock can be substituted with water though it takes away some of the flavor.
  • Buttermilk – The typical American buttermilk is low-fat. It also has a rich, tangy flavor and a texture more similar to sour cream or yogurt than cream or milk. It makes the dumplings rich, flavorful and moist.
Chicken and Dumpling Soup 12.13.20-3.jpg

How to Make Chicken and Dumpling Soup

  • Cook the vegetables. Heat a large heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the olive oil and heat through then add the carrot, celery and onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper then add the garlic and thyme, stirring to combine.
  • Make the roux. Add the butter and allow to melt then stir in the flour, continuing to stir consistently, until the roux is a deep golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer until the broth has slightly thickened, about 30 minutes. Season with salt to taste. Stir in the shredded chicken.
  • Make the dumplings. In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate small bowl whisk together the buttermilk and schmaltz. Stir the buttermilk mixture into the flour with a wooden spoon, until just combined, being careful not to overmix.
  • Cook the dumplings in the soup. Using a spoon, drop generous spoonfuls of the dough into the broth, spacing them out as much as possible (it’s ok if they touch). Cover the pot and reduce heat to low. Cook, undisturbed until the dough puffs up and they are cooked through, about 12 minutes.
  • Serve. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with parsley. Serve hot.
Chicken and Dumpling Soup 12.13.20-27.jpg

Tips and Tricks for This Recipe

  • Homemade chicken stock is best for this recipe though store bought works as well. I prefer homemade since it has a deeper flavor and you can control the salt content better.
  • Using homemade stock will also result in a bit deeper color of soup than traditionally served.
Chicken and Dumpling Soup 12.13.20-9.jpg

Other Recipes to Try

If you enjoy this recipe, I recommend checking out some of these:

Chicken and Dumpling Soup

Print Pin
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Serves 6

Ingredients:

For the soup:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 pound shredded cooked chicken, I use a combination of breast and thigh meat

For the dumplings:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons chicken fat schmaltz or unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley leaves

Instructions:

For the soup:

  • Heat a large heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the olive oil and heat through then add the carrot, celery and onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper then add the garlic and thyme, stirring to combine.
  • Add the butter and allow to melt then stir in the flour, continuing to stir consistently, until the roux is a deep golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add the chicken stock and bring to a simmer until the broth has slightly thickened, about 30 minutes. Season with salt to taste. Stir in the shredded chicken.

For the dumplings:

  • In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate small bowl whisk together the buttermilk and schmaltz. Stir the buttermilk mixture into the flour with a wooden spoon, until just combined, being careful not to overmix.
  • Using a spoon, drop generous spoonfuls of the dough into the broth, spacing them out as much as possible (it’s ok if they touch). Cover the pot and reduce heat to low. Cook, undisturbed until the dough puffs up and they are cooked through, about 12 minutes.
  • Ladle the soup into bowls and top with parsley. Serve hot.

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