Sunday, October 14, 2012

Comfort Food Classics: Creamy Chicken & Biscuit Dumplings {#SundaySupper}

My mom didn't cook much when I was growing up.  When she did, it was usually outside on the grill.  But every once and a while she'd surprise me with what to this day remains to be my all-time favorite dish ever...Chicken & Dumplings.  Whenever I saw my mom take out a can of Cream of Chicken soup and the box of Bisquick, I knew I was in for a treat.

When I grew up and got married, I continued to make Chicken & Dumplings the same way my mom did.  But then we moved to Mexico.  No canned cream of chicken soup to be found here.  And no Bisquick either.  So, I was forced to learn to make Chicken & Dumplings from scratch.  This was before there was internet access in our small town.  And without the help of a cookbook.  Remember, I gave away all of my cookbooks before we moved down here.

The most important part of any Chicken & Dumplings recipe is of course the actual dumplings.  There are two kinds of dumplings that can be used for Chicken & Dumplings: fluffy biscuit dumplings that puff up once they hit the broth, and the flatter noodle-like dumplings that are rolled out with a rolling pin before adding them to the hot broth.  Both are quite delicious, but I'm partial to the biscuit dumplings, because that's the kind my mom made.

Before I share the recipe, there are a few things I need to point out.  The first thing you might notice is the celery.  It's on the ingredient list and in the directions, but you won't see it in the bowl.  For some strange reason, my Hubby and kiddies do NOT like celery at all!  I love the stuff and use it anyway, because it's what gives the broth it's great flavor.  I cut the celery ribs in half, which makes it easier to fish them out of the broth before serving.  (I remove the onion too!)  But if you love celery, you can thinly slice it or chop it.

Another little thing I do differently from the more traditional Chicken & Dumpling recipes is that I don't use canned cream soup, nor do I use a roux to thicken my broth.  My secret to a silky smooth and creamy chicken broth is Mexican crema!  If you can't find Mexican crema at your local grocery store, you can substitute sour cream or heavy cream.

I've told you mine, now tell me yours.  What is your favorite Comfort Food?

Homemade Chicken & Dumplings (from scratch) -

Creamy Chicken & Biscuit Dumplings

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in bite-size pieces
  • 5 to 6 medium carrots, peeled and sliced in 1/4-in diagonal pieces
  • 2 ribs celery, cut in half or thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, cut in half
  • 6 to 8 cups water 
  • 3/4 cup Mexican crema (or sour cream) 
For the Dumplings: 
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup milk

  1. In a large (4 to 6-quart) stockpot, combine the chicken, carrots, celery, and onion with 6 to 8 cups of water, depending on how much broth you want/like.  Season with salt and pepper.  Cover stockpot and bring to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat to medium-low and let chicken soup simmer for 45 to 60 minutes, until the chicken is fully cooked and the carrots are tender.
  2. While the chicken is cooking, combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl; set aside.
  3. Once the chicken is fully cooked, stir the Mexican crema into the broth. (Important note: If you have picky eaters like I do, remove the celery and onion BEFORE adding the Mexican crema.)  
  4. Finish making the dumplings, by mixing the butter into the flour mixture using a potato masher or a fork, until no large pieces of butter are visible.  Add the milk to the flour mixture and stir to combine.  Drop rounded tablespoonfuls of the dumpling dough into the hot broth.  DO NOT STIR!  Let the dumplings cook uncovered for about 10 minutes, then cover and cook for an additional 10 minutes.  Ladle into bowls.  Enjoy!!!

Homemade Chicken & Biscuit Dumplings (from scratch) -

For more Comfort Food recipes, be sure to check out what my #SundaySupper friends are serving up in their kitchens!

#SundaySupper Comfort Food |Soups
#SundaySupper Comfort Food  | Main Dish
#SundaySupper Comfort Food | Desserts
Pairing Wine with Sunday Supper Comfort Food Favorites! by ENOFYLZ Wine Blog 
Don't forget to join us tonight at 7pm (Eastern) for our weekly #SundaySupper Twitter chat.  This week, we have a very special guest: Lee WoodruffCBS This Morning contributor and  founder of   If you join us, you could win one of five copies of Lee Woodruff's book, Those We Love Most.



  1. This looks pretty easy to make. The hubbie will love this!

  2. I prefer the fluffy dumplings myself. My grandmother made chicken and dumplings often when I was a kid. Loved it.

  3. I like the fluffy biscuit dumplings too. I make my stock with the celery and carrots but strain them out because my husband does not like them in it either. I add heavy cream to mine at the end to get the creaminess. I'll have to try crema next time and see how it compares.

  4. Fluffy biscuit fan here!! My mom never made chicken and dumplings but did make beef stew with fluffy dumplings - still a favorite for me and now my kids.

  5. Victoria of Flavors of the SunOctober 14, 2012 at 8:32 AM

    Now that my own parents are no longer with me, comfort food takes on even more importance. Fried chicken and mashed potatoes rank high, but so do Chicken and Dumplings ;) Thanks!

  6. What a fantastic idea to use crema for the thickening! This is definitely one of those comfort food dishes for me, as well. Gorgeous!

  7. I have never had chicken and dumplings before, but your recipe looks absolutely fantastic! I am craving a bowl for myself...

  8. Nothing more comforting than a dumpling!! Yummy!!

  9. Now we're talking! Chicken & dumplings is the ultimate comfort food. My family loves it so much we once drove a couple of hours out of our way to go to a restaurant in Charlotte, NC famous for its chicken & dumplings. We were sitting there ready to order, so excited. Then the waitress said "we just ran out of chicken & dumplings." Sad face.

  10. I love chicken and dumplings. It was one of the first things I self taught myself to cook. Your dumplings look perfect!!!

  11. I'm craving a bowl of this right now.

  12. Jennie @themessybakerblogOctober 14, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    Leslie, this dish looks amazing! And, those creamy dumplings have me drooling.

  13. Oh my, I love this recipe. It just makes me want to grab a spoon and start smacking it into the screen in hopes of a weird poltergeist moment when the worlds collide. Can I just say the pink bowl made me squee. Seriously adorable!

  14. I adore chicken and dumplings, especially the biscuit type! My family isn't thrilled about cooked celery in their food, either. We like the flavor the vegetables impart but not the texture; so I run my onions, celery, and clove of garlic through the blender with a cup or so of broth and add it back into the pot. It really kicks the flavor up a notch, helps thicken the broth and I don't feel like am wasting those veggies.

  15. There is not much better than chicken and Mama makes them from scratch, but doesn't put in veggies. i make a riff on her recipe...but add carrots, celery, and onion. These look creamy and delish!

  16. Your chicken and biscuit dumplings look amazing! and I totally agree. . it's all about the dumplings. . yum!!!

  17. My family recipe (and therefore mine) is a rolled out dumplings one so I have been looking for a good drop dumplings recipe. We are also celery haters so the advice there was much appreciated. I will be trying this very soon.

    Erin -

  18. This looks amazing! I love dumplings - so good! By the way, my husband also does not like celery so I always dice it into very small pieces to hide it. Good thing my girls like celery just as much as me ;) Thank you for sharing.

  19. Wow! Your chicken and biscuit dumplings look absolutely terrific!! :)

  20. This looks great! Thanks for sharing. I will have to make this soon.

  21. My husband eats everything that I put in front of him no matter how strange. Everything that is except "That stringy, dirty water" as he calls celery. :)

  22. Those are the kind of dumplings my mom used to make, too.. using Bisquick.

  23. I love Chicken & Dumplings! So yummy and I cannot wait to try your version. I'll keep the celery in though ;)

  24. Sounds so good!

    But honestly, all I could think about as I was reading your entry was, "i can't believe you gave away ALL your cookbooks!" I understand why, but it must've been heartbreaking. I don't know, I'm really attached to my cookbooks...

  25. If I had to give up all my cookbooks, I think I'd reconsider moving! I don't know how you did it! I love chicken & dumplings, but for some reason I don't make it very often. I think I need to correct that.

  26. ooh I want to grab that plate :) Love the recipe too. Your'e like me ... love warm colors don't ya ? Must swap bowls sometime !



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