Homemade Chicken & Dumplings is a comfort food classic, featuring flavorful broth loaded with tender chunks of chicken, sweet carrots, fresh thyme, and fluffy dumplings.
I absolutely can’t wait to share today’s recipe with y’all. In fact, as I type this, my mouth is watering and I wish I had a big bowl of chicken and dumpling goodness in front of me right now…at 11:17 p.m. Consider it a late, late dessert, or an early midnight snack, or maybe just a can’t-stop-thinking-about-it indulgence, but this recipe is flat-out delicious.
My German-born mother never made chicken and dumplings for us growing up, I suppose because it’s a dish that wasn’t exactly in her cooking repertoire. In fact, I’m not sure if I even tried chicken and dumplings until college…and back then it was the condensed chicken soup/canned biscuit version. And while that version was tasty, it doesn’t even come close to the flavor and texture and amazingness of today’s recipe…not to mention the fact that real food ingredients trump cream of ‘X’ soup any day. 😉
So what makes this Perfect Chicken & Dumplings recipe so fabulous? Well, first off, browning the chicken contributes deep flavor to the final dish. You can use a whole cut-up chicken or all chicken thighs, but just be sure to buy skin-on, bone-in meat…that, my friends, is where the magic happens. The skin and bones will be removed later anyway.
Thyme is another prominent, all-important flavor in this recipe. When I’m lucky enough to have fresh thyme, I drop a whole bundle into the pot as opposed to stripping off the leaves beforehand. As the dish cooks, the leaves drop off and then it’s easy to remove the stems at the same time that you take out the bay leaves. Who doesn’t love a thyme-saving — er, time-saving — shortcut? (Heh.)
Finally — and arguably most importantly — are the dumplings. Now these aren’t the doughy refrigerated biscuits of yore…these are soft, fluffy, parsley-studded orbs of delight. And the secret to giving them excellent texture and preventing them from turning gummy is the addition of a bit of cornmeal. Try it! I think you’ll luuuurve it.
Speaking of loving it, my family sure did scarf down their chicken and dumplings when I made this recipe most recently. My boys RAVED. My toddler conceded to taking a few bites (which is clearly a victory!). My C&D-aficionado husband declared this to be one of his favorite dinners. And me? Shhhhh…I ate the leftovers for lunch the next day while home alone so that I wouldn’t have to share! And now I’m just sitting here typing, still drooling on my keyboard…
So please…please make a big, comforting pot of Perfect Chicken & Dumplings this fall. Make ’em this weekend. Make ’em tonight! Just promise me you’ll make ’em. 😉
Adapted from Real Simple
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