Classic Chicken and Dumplings

The classic Southern approach to chicken.

3 hr Prep: 40 min Cook: 2 hr 20 min
Serves: 8 Save

Ingredients (25)

  • For the Chicken and Broth:
  • 5 pound chicken parts
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 2 large ribs celery, coarsely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
  • 3 quarter-sized slices fresh ginger
  • 1 large sprig each parsley, sage and thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 quart water or chicken broth
  • For Finishing the Broth:
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 3 tablespoon chopped parsley, divided
  • 1 tablespoon each fresh, chopped fresh sage and thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Coarsely ground black pepper
  • For the Dumplings:
  • 2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoon lard or vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup whole milk or buttermilk


  1. To prepare the chicken and broth, place all ingredients in a large Dutch oven or stock pot. Bring almost to a boil, lower heat, cover partially and simmer until chicken is tender, about 2 hours.
  2. Let chicken cool in broth; remove and strain broth, discarding solids. Return broth to pot and bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, until it is reduced by one-quarter. Meanwhile, skin and bone chicken and cut into bite-sized pieces. Skim excess fat from broth and cool. Cover and refrigerate chicken and broth until ready to use. You can prepare chicken and broth up to 2 days ahead. Skim solidified fat from top of broth before using.
  3. To finish broth, melt butter in Dutch oven. Add onion and saute over medium-high heat until the onion is beginning to color, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute 30 seconds. Add 1 tablespoon parsley along with sage, thyme and broth. Season with salt and pepper. Bring it to a simmer; reduce heat to medium.
  4. To make dumplings, sift flour, soda, baking powder and salt into a mixing bowl. Cut in lard or butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal. Make a well in center, pour in buttermilk and quickly stir until dry ingredients are all incorporated.
  5. Lightly flour a smooth work surface and turn dough out onto it. With lightly floured hands, gently push dough away from you to flatten it. Fold it in half, gently pat it out ½-inch thick, and give it a quarter turn. Repeat until dough is smooth and cohesive, about 20 folds-a little more than you would work biscuit dough. Divide it into 3 equal lumps. Lightly flour and roll one lump out to the thickness of piecrust, about 1/8-inch. Quickly cut into 1-inch wide strips, 2-inches long. Drop dumplings into broth; repeat with remaining dough.
  6. Simmer 5 minutes. Add chicken and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes more, until dumplings are cooked through and firm but tender. Taste and adjust seasonings. Ladle into a large bowl or individual soup plates and sprinkle with the remaining parsley.

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