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Mama's Chicken and Dumpling Soup

There's something about a home-cooked meal that brings back a special memory. This soup reminds me of winter time when I was a kid, and brings me the comfort of home (without having to physically endure an Indiana winter). This recipe is super easy to make for the family, or even for yourself if you want a meal prep option for the week.

Chicken and dumplings is sometimes viewed as a basic dish, but in my opinion, there is nothing sexier than a juicy dumpling swimming in a bath of chicken broth.

How to Cook a Whole Chicken

The trick to making this recipe the best it can be is to use a whole chicken. This way you are getting all the different flavors from the light and dark meat of the bird. If you don't want to bother with the whole bird, you can easily purchase chicken breasts, thighs, or any other shredded chicken option that you want to add to the soup.

If you are going to cook the whole chicken, then leave yourself enough time for this to properly cook. These typically run anywhere from $9-$15 a bird, but can range depending on quality of meat and the size of the bird.


Spices and Seasoning

This soup can't reach the full potential unless you use a nice mix of spice and herbs to really amplify the flavor of this soup.

Essential seasonings that I add to this soup include Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Parsley, Lemon Pepper, Basil, and Smoked Paprika. I also add a mix of fresh Parsley and Dill to the soup at the end.



Get Started!

Prep Time: 20 Mins

Cook Time: 2 hours

Servings: 8 Servings


  • 1 whole chicken

  • 3-5 whole carrots chopped ~1 cup

  • 3-5 celery stalks ~1 cup

  • 1 large yellow onion

  • 1 head of garlic (will be split between soup and boiling chicken)

  • ¾ cup fresh parsley

  • 4 bay leaves

  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika

  • 1 tbsp garlic powder

  • 1 tbsp onion powder

  • 1 tbsp dried parsley

  • 4 tbsp Butter

  • 32 oz Chicken Broth

  • ½ cup flour

  • Bisquick

  • 1 1/2 cups of milk


  1. Start by cooking your chicken. Put your chicken into a pan and add water until it’s completely covered. Add in bay leaves, 6-8 cloves of garlic, 2 halved lemons, and a generous amount of salt (~3tbsp). Bring to a boil, then turn to medium low for an additional 1.5 hours. You’ll know your chicken is ready because it will literally be falling off of the bone. Save 2 cups of the broth, and let chicken cool while you prep the rest of the soup. I use a whole chicken, but if you don’t want to deal with that then you can totally use boneless chicken, but just know that boneless cooks faster.

  2. In another large pot, add butter and mirepoix (onion-celery-carrots) and let cook for 8-10 minutes on medium heat.

  3. Add in chopped garlic and let cook for an additional 5 minutes.

  4. Start to add in your garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, dried parsley, and salt & pepper.

  5. Now we are going to build your roux to make the consistency of the soup perfect. Start by slowly adding in the flour to the vegetables, once that is coating your mixture go ahead and start to add the remaining broth from your chicken + store bought broth, mix it simultaneously so the flour gets moving. There’s no hard or fast rule for the amount of broth you add. This is totally dependent on your size of pot, and how much soup you are trying to make. Add more or less broth depending on how you feel.

  6. Once you have added the broth bring to a boil then turn back down to medium low heat.

  7. Add in ½ cup fresh parsley.

  8. After your chicken has cooled, begin to detach the meat from the bones and shred the chicken. If this is cooked correctly it should be falling off the bone and easily shreddable. Make sure you are removing all bones before adding the shredded chicken back to the pot.

  9. Once you have your chicken in the pot with your vegetables and broth, let it cook for an additional 15-20 mins to really let that chicken soak up the flavor.

  10. While that is cooking, begin making the dumplings. I use Bisquick but you can use any comparable option, follow cooking instructions and make serving based on how much soup you are trying to make. When your mix is ready bring your soup back to a boil. Take 2 spoons and build dumpling balls, then you are going to dump the balls into the soup once it’s boiling. These do not need to be perfect so don’t worry about the shape.

  11. Once your dumplings are all in, turn to medium heat and let them cook for about 10 minutes.

  12. Remove from the heat and garnish with fresh parsley.

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Hi I'm Gabrielle! 

Welcome to my community where I create and curate recipes and lifestyle tips! I am based in Los Angeles where I spend most of my time cooking for my friends, exploring the city, and cuddling with my dog Louie. 

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