Grandmother's Chicken 'n' Dumplings Recipe

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When I was growing up, my grandmother could feed our whole big family with a single chicken—and lots of dumplings.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Cook: 30 min.
MAKES:10 servings
Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 45 min. Cook: 30 min.
MAKES: 10 servings


  • 1 large chicken (6 pounds)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 quarts water
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, sliced
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup reserved chicken broth

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 cup) equals 310 calories, 9 g fat (2 g saturated fat), 114 mg cholesterol, 981 mg sodium, 22 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 34 g protein.


  1. Place the chicken, salt, water, vinegar, onion, carrots and celery in a large stockpot, adding more water, if necessary, to cover chicken. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until meat nearly falls from the bones. Remove chicken from broth; allow to cool. Strain broth, discarding vegetables and seasonings.
  2. Remove meat from bones; discard skin and bones. Cut meat into bite-size pieces; set aside and keep warm. Set aside 1 cup broth; cool to lukewarm.
  3. To make dumplings, combine flour and salt. Make a well in flour; add egg. Gradually stir 1/4 cup of reserved broth into egg, picking up flour as you go. Continue until flour is used up, adding additional broth as needed, and dough is consistency of pie dough. Pour any remaining reserved broth back into stockpot.
  4. Turn dough onto floured surface; knead in additional flour to make stiff dough. Let dough rest for 15 minutes. On a floured surface, roll out dough into a 17-in. square. Cut into 1-in. square pieces. Dust with additional flour; let dry for 30-60 minutes.
  5. Bring broth to boil (you should have about 4 quarts). Drop squares into boiling broth. Reduce heat to a slow simmer; cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Uncover; cook until a until a toothpick inserted in a dumpling comes out clean (do not lift the cover while simmering). Dust with pepper and add reserved chicken meat. Yield: 8-10 servings.
Originally published as Grandmother's Chicken 'n' Dumplings in Country April/May 1989, p49

Full-Bodied White Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a full-bodied white wine such as Chardonnay or Viognier.

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Reviewed Sep. 11, 2014

"This makes a delicious dish. I agree, though, that you end up with soup if you use the amount of broth listed. I cooked the whole chicken and used the amount of veggies called for with enough water to completely cover. But when the chicken was done (approx. 1 1/2 hrs), I used half the meat for the dumplings (reserved the rest for another use) & made half a batch of dumplings. I transferred approx. 1 quart of broth to a smaller pot & finished the process. I think the broth amount could be reduced by 1/3 & it would be about right. I mixed some cornstarch into milk & stirred that into the broth, which helped some, but it was still soup rather than the thick dish I'm used to."

Reviewed Feb. 10, 2014

"Great recipe! Hungry for some chicken n dumplings, tried this recipe and it is great! Thank you for sharing a good'n"

Reviewed Jan. 26, 2014

"Absolutely delicious! I will definitely add this to my recipe collection as a keeper!"

Reviewed Nov. 3, 2013

"This was very good, and my family loved it, but I think it is really more like chicken noodle soup."

Reviewed Jul. 20, 2013


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