Homemade Food · Southern Food · traditional meals

The Best Homemade Chicken & Dumplings

I have been SO excited about this one! First things first…Has anyone seen Dolly Partons movie “Dumplin”? If not, GO DO IT NOW! I love the meaning behind the story!

I named this blog “The Quaint Millennial” because I am OBSESSED with bringing back old things & old traditions! This post is a !shout out! to a southern staple tradition.

When I married my husband he LOVED Chicken & Dumplings. I loved them too, but the only time I ever had them was at a church function and that was few and far between. If anyone ever said “dumplings” you knew it was a special occasion and that person slaved over those things. It was always known as the “hard to perfect” & “hard to make” southern meal.

FYI: YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SLAVE OVER DUMPLINGS…THESE ARE EASY!!!

When my MIL made them it connected my soul to comfort food. So ever since my first bite, full of southern goodness, I knew it had to be a staple in our home! So when my kids or husband gets sick… our comfort meal is… (drum roll) Chicken & Dumplings! Even if they’re not eating much they will chow down some dumplings.

I loved the “from scratch” taste my MIL dumplings had. (Why am I using a lot of quotations?) I knew they weren’t CANNED or FROZEN biscuits! Sorry if I hurt anyone with that but canned or frozen dumplings is absolutely no comparison to real homemade dumplings! I had even asked my family friend (who is like a grandmother), Sharon, about dumplings. She told me about some frozen flour strips that are suppose to taste just like scratch dumplings. I tried them and it was definitely NOT the same. Not even close.

I began experimenting with dumplings and types of chicken to make. I’ve tried chicken thighs, chicken breasts, frozen biscuits, frozen dumplings & store bought chicken broth. Those all can be done but HERE is what I have found to be the BEST SOUTHERN CHICKEN & DUMPLINGS EVER!!

First things first…the chicken. I buy a whole chicken (not frozen). Clean the insides out and wash with water. I put the chicken in a crock pot with some salt, pepper & Mrs. Dash seasoning. I fill with water just to where the whole top/skin of the chicken is not covered. Lock lid & turn on high for about 4-5 hours or low for about 6 hours. You will want the chicken to fall apart when picking it out of the water. (very tender)

  • This is an important step: Take the chicken out into a large bowl. PICK APART THE CHICKEN FOR ANY BONES, FAT OR SKIN & throw those all away!!
  • Turn OFF the crock pot. Pour Broth into a large stock pot. Put onto stove LOW HEAT.
  • SHRED chicken really fine with forks or mixer & set aside. (YOU COULD ALSO DO THIS WHEN DUMPLINGS ARE BOILING AT THE END)

Second, you will need these ingredients:

  • Milk, 1/2 tsp Baking Powder, 2 cups All Purpose Flour, 2 tsp Unsalted Cold Butter & 1 tsp Salt.
YOU DO NOT NEED BAKING SODA! Just BAKING POWDER!! (but can add for fluff)

In Medium Bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Then add in cubed, cold butter.

You can combine it all using a fork or a pastry cutter. The butter should make little clumps but that is normal! Make sure all chunks of butter are mixed with the flour.

Now pour in the milk. I like to measure out a little less than a cup and see the texture. That amount normally works great.

Lactose Free Milk for my family

It should be a sticky consistency.

TURN BROTH TO MEDIUM/HIGH to boil!

Now dust your counter or cutting board with about 1/2 cup of All Purpose Flour. Spread out evenly.

Now scoop your dumpling dough on the flour spread. Then top the mixture with more all purpose flour.

I use my hands to spread. It also helps melt the butter into the dough. When using your hands, make sure you do not over mix/touch. Just flatten out! (If you use a roller then flour your roller heavily.)

Dust with flour if needed. NOTE how thin I made it.

I use a pizza cutter to cut out the strips! Start vertical and it glides through so easily. (unlike pizza LOL)

Then cut horizontally. You want them to be about 1″ to 2″ long.

Turn eye on Medium heat & begin adding dumplings one at a time so they don’t all stick together. Stir each time you drop about 5-6.

Your dumplings may sink to the bottom because they are soaking up the broth. DO NOT FRET! Keep adding & stirring until done.

Add about 1-2 cups of shredded chicken. YOU WILL NOT USE THE WHOLE CHICKEN YOU JUST COOKED! (I use white & dark meat) That is another thing I LOVE about this recipe. I always have yummy, tender chicken for another meal like our fav…4C Taco Soup! (I’ll have to blog about that…it’s another favorite!)

Add Salt & Pepper to taste. I wish I could give you an exact measurement but it really depends on your taste. I add about 1/2 tbsp of salt & maybe 1tsp of pepper. Make sure you taste test before serving!

I sprinkle about 1/2 tsp of garlic powder & 1/2 tsp of Mrs. Dash seasoning sometimes when I feel like it to add flavor.

Turn eye on Medium/Low. Allow dumplings to cook for about 15-20 minutes while stirring frequently. You should notice your broth starting to thicken (from the extra flour).

And…you have THE BEST CHICKEN & DUMPLINGS ever!!

WAAA-LAAA….in my singing voice.

Let me know if there are any questions. Also, If you make this! TAG The Quaint Millennial and send us a pic!!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1-2 cups chicken cooked and shredded from whole chicken
  • 2 quarts chicken broth OR leftover broth from chicken
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter cubed
  • shy of 1 cup of milk
  • 1 tbsp Salt, 1 tsp Pepper & 1/2 tsp Mrs. Dash seasoning (1/2 tsp garlic powder if desired for flavor)

DIRECTIONS

  • Wash whole chicken/hen with water & clean out the insides
  • Place chicken in crock pot. Add water to where the top part of skin is not covered.
  • Add 1/2 tbsp salt & pepper
  • 1 tsp Mrs. Dash seasoning
  • Turn crock pot on HIGH for 4 hours. LOW for about 6 hours
  • Take whole chicken out of broth when tender
  • Di-sect chicken for bones, fat & skin & dispose
  • Put homemade chicken broth in stock pot and set eye on low heat
  • At this time you could shred chicken with fork or mixer or wait until your dumplings are boiling
  • Mix All Purpose Flour, Baking Powder & Cold Cubed Butter
  • Smash with Fork or Pastry Cutter until small clumps form. No more chunks of butter should be seen
  • Add sprinkle of salt if using unsalted butter (I use pink himalayan salt)
  • Pour your milk but do not pour a whole cup unless it looks dry
  • Mix with fork well until it looks like a sticky, wet dough
  • At this time turn your broth on MEDIUM/HIGH to boil
  • Sprinkle 1/2 c of all purpose flour onto counter or cutting board
  • Scrape dough mixture onto flour then add some more flour on top.
  • Dip your fingertips in the flour before touching the dough.
  • Begin using your hands to smooth and flatten the dough. If needed add more flour so it does not get sticky
  • Flatten dough to about 1/4″ thick
  • Using a pizza cutter, cut into rectangles as pictured below
  • Dust dumplings with a bit more flour. The extra flour is all gonna help keep them from sticking but will also thicken your chicken broth when you add them to the pot
  • Begin adding dumplings one at a time so they don’t stick together. Stir about every 5-6 dumplings you drop. (do not add dumplings if broth is not boiling)
  • When dumplings are added. Add shredded chicken. I use dark & white meat
  • Allow chicken & dumplings to cook for about 15-20 minutes. You should notice your broth starting to thicken (from the extra flour).
  • Add Salt, Pepper. Mrs. Dash & Garlic Powder is optional but yummy!

Love & Blessings

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