This Old Fashioned Chicken & Dumplings recipe is just like the classic comfort food you grew up with, but it is even more flavorful than you remember thanks to the addition of a few extra ingredients...
We have had several chilly & rainy days here lately, and chilly, rainy days call for spending the afternoon curled up on the couch with a warm blanket, Netflix, & a bowl of the most perfect comfort food. For me, that most perfect bowl of comfort food is homemade chicken & dumplings. It is one of my go-to recipes when I am feeling under the weather or just down in the dumps. Or when I need to bring a little comfort food to a friend or family member who is going through a tough time. It is simple, flavorful, and gives you a warm hug from the inside out.
I will be the first to admit that traditional chicken & dumplings is usually pretty bland. Most recipes I have seen are a simple mixture of chicken broth, chicken, and flour based dumplings. And while my easy to make recipe certainly includes all of those classic ingredients, I decided kick up the flavor level just a bit with the addition of sauteed onion & garlic and a couple of bay leaves...
You can bake your chicken breasts, use a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, or do what I do and toss a few frozen chicken breasts into my slow cooker. Seriously, folks. It is the easiest way to make perfectly poached chicken without having to thaw out chicken. Place 2-3 chicken breasts in your slow cooker, add in enough water to cover the bottom of the insert, then cook on high for about 4 hours. You can then transfer the cooked chicken breasts to a cutting board, allow them to cool slightly, and then cut or shred them. This is how I always make my cooked chicken for all of my family's favorite chicken dinner recipes. :)
The dumplings in this recipe have a little bit of chew to them, which I personally love. These are not fluffy, biscuit like dumplings. The broth is so simple, yet super flavorful. If you ask me, this Old Fashioned Chicken & Dumplings recipe is the perfect combination of textures, flavors, and just pure comfort. ;)
Old Fashioned Chicken & Dumplings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Ingredients (Serves 6)
- 2-3 chicken breasts, cooked & chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion, diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 32 oz (4 cups) carton of chicken broth
- 2 cups water
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cubed
- 2/3 cup milk
- Salt & pepper, to taste
In large pot or dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Once heated, add in the onion & garlic and saute just until soft, about 2-3 minutes. Pour in the chicken broth and water. Then add in the bay leaves and chopped chicken. Bring to a gentle boil.
While the broth mixture is coming to a boil, prepare the dumplings. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, & baking powder. Add in the cubed butter and work it into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or 2 forks until a crumbly mixture forms. Pour in the milk and mix until a dough forms. Roll the dough into a large ball and place on a well floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/3 inch thickness & then cut into squares using a pizza cutter.
Once the broth mixture has come to a boil, drop in the dough squares one at a time. Cover the pot, turn the heat down to medium and bring to a simmer. Cook for another 20 minutes or so, or until the dumplings are cooked through.
Fish out the bay leaves, and then ladle into bowls. Season with salt & pepper to taste and then serve immediately. These chicken & dumplings are also great served over mashed potatoes.
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