The days really are warming. There are the prettiest strawberries in the market. It might almost be time to daydream about watermelon wedges. But… I still need soup. The unapologetically comforting kind of soup with soft carrots, big bites of chicken, almost too much thyme, and the fluffiest floating dumplings.
It’s Winter comforts in Spring. Let’s bridge the gap. You know… like wearing a light scarf or shoes with no socks… except this is food and way way delicious.
Boneless and skinless chicken thighs to start. I like chicken thighs because they’re more fatty and flavorful than chicken breast. Always go for flavor!
The meat is seasoned well and browned in hot hot olive oil. This is where the layers of flavor begin.
The holy trinity for soups! Necessary and proper: diced onions, sliced carrots, and sliced celery. Oh… a little garlic too, because YES!
Once the chicken is browned on each side it is removed from the pot and our vegetables are sautéed in the chicken oil. Dried thyme is added too. The saute heat helps bloom the flavor of dried seasoning.
Layers. More layers of flavor.
Once the veggies are softened a bit, time for the return of the chicken, this time with a bay leaf and chicken stock.
This is when the soup becomes soup! Veggies cooked down and chicken cooked through!
Green peas and fresh parsley to really brighten the whole pot.
Once the chicken is simmered to tender and cooked through, I remove it from the pan and chop-shred it. Technical term. I also burn the heck outta my fingers because the chicken is super steamy and I’m too impatient to wait for it to cool. Be like me!
Soup simmers and we make our dumplings.
Of course there’s butter.
I actually used King Arthur Gluten Free Flour Blend for these dumplings and they were delicious!
The butter is broken down into the seasoned flour mixture. A beaten egg and a bit of buttermilk to bring the dumpling dough together!
The batter will be homogenous, a little sticky but not too wet.
Ok! Game face! Time to dollop dumpling batter into simmering soup! (This is totally the best part!)
Grab a small spoon from the silverware drawer. Heap it up with about 2 tablespoons of dough and zing it right into the simmering soup.
Once all the dumplings are in and simmering, we cover the pot for 10 minutes to let the dumplings simmer and cook. It’s tremendous… like little biscuits in hot soup!
Warm and classic comfort in a bowl. And no… you’re not allowed to fish out all of the dumplings for your own consumption. I already thought of that and beat you to it.Print
Chicken and Dumplings
For the Soup
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- salt and pepper to season chicken thighs
- 1 large yellow onion, coarsely diced
- 4 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 4 ribs celery, trimmed and sliced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 2 quarts low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
- salt and pepper to taste
For the Dumplings
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup buttermilk, cold
- To make the soup, place oil in a heavy bottom soup pot over medium-high heat.
- Season chicken thighs with salt and pepper on both sides. Place in the soup pan to brown, 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan and place on a plate. Chicken won’t be fully cooked through but it will return to the pot to simmer a bit later.
- Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and thyme to the pot. Stir and saute until the onions are cooked through and translucent, about 5 minutes.
- Return the chicken to the pot. Add the bay leaf and chicken stock.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until the vegetables are cooked through and softened, about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Remove the chicken when it is cooked through and carefully chop and shred it. Return the chicken to the pan.
- While the soup simmers. Make the dumplings. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, thyme, and pepper. Add the butter and use your fingers to break it down into the flour mixture creating small flecks of butter throughout the mixture.
- Add the beaten egg and buttermilk and stir until just combined. Try not to over-stir the dumpling dough.
- When the vegetables in the soup are cooked through and the chicken is chopped and returned to the pot, bring the soup to a light simmer and season to taste. Stir in peas and parsley. Use a small spoon to gently dollop about 2 tablespoons of dough into the simmering soup.
- The dumpling may sink, but will rise to the surface of the soup as it cooks. Add all of the dumplings.
- Cover the pot. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes the dumplings should be cooked through. Remove from heat and serve warm!
I didn’t have parsley, and I forgot to put in the peas, and this was still delicious! It was so comforting after a cold, wet day, and our whole fam liked it. Thanks!
This recipe is every bit as good as it looks! I made it exactly as written and you would never know the dumplings are gluten free. My husband says this was one of the best dinners I have ever made.
I made this for the first time yesterday and I felt compelled to comment once I tasted it. It’s absolutely fabulous. So quick for all that flavour, love the peas and even the celery but the crowning glory that are the dumplings are magnificent… So light and fluffy. You make me a good cook!
Another great recipe! Made this tonight, and used regular King Arthur AP flour; it was amazing!
When doe the chicken go back in? Oh, just read the recipe again.
I love soup- still searching for a healthy tomato bisque and a whatever pumpkin soup
Thanks so much Joy! As soon as my kitchen floor is finished I will be making this. This reminds me of my Mom so much…..
Best chicken and dumplings I’ve ever made (and that is decades of scratch cooking)!!! Best flavor ever; fewer ingredients than other recipes I’ve used. I’ve always thickened the broth, but leaving it unthickened makes for such a beautiful colored broth . And I even used breasts instead of thighs. I admit I didn’t make the dumplings from scratch (I’ve failed miserably at that before), so used the quick and easy Bisquick dumplings. I made just half a batch of dumplings and will make another when we’re ready to eat leftovers. And I look forward to those leftovers which I can only assume will not be a congealed blob of veggies and chicken with dried out dumplings. Thanks so much, Joy.
Should I have cooked the dumplings a bit longer? They didn’t have that chew to them that I love from a dumpling. They were so soft they were almost mush. Flavor was spot on though.
Joy, I make extra dumplings because I end up eating 3 or 4 just to “make sure they’re good” lol. And end up making up another batch. Haha
The soup an dumplings where out of this world.i also made a loaf of homemade bread.thanks
I just made this two nights ago and my husband said it was one of the best things I have ever made. I’m a pretty good cook (if I say so myself) and we’ve been together for 12 years if that gives you an idea of how tasty it was. Thanks for the awesome recipe it has been added to our staples list!!!
I know this is from a while ago, but I just made this dinner for myself and a friend, and it is AMAZING! It just snowed here in North Carolina, and we were both feeling the strain of the post-Christmas winter doldrums, combined with the stress of applying to graduate school. But for one night, we made soup and dumplings, and felt like real adults who had our lives together, and it was lovely and comforting. Thank you for that, Joy. It was much-needed, and I am grateful.