Dive into a bowl of pure comfort with our Chicken Stew with Dumplings!
Imagine pulling together a no-fuss recipe with the ease of chicken and vegetables. It’s all simmered in a light, herb-laced broth and topped with fluffy, homemade drop dumplings that promise to warm you from the inside out.
Ready to whip up some homestyle goodness? Let’s create a meal that’s as easy as it is comforting—no experience necessary.
What is chicken stew?
Chicken stew is a classic dish with a rustic and hearty appeal. It is a comforting, delicious meal in a bowl, perfect for those cold winter nights or whenever you’re craving something cozy.
To make this dish, you can use chicken thighs or chicken breasts in crockpot or even a combination of both. The chicken is first browned in a Dutch oven or a large pot over medium-high heat to develop a deep flavor and then simmered with aromatic onions and garlic cloves.
Southern Chicken stew is often served with crusty bread or fluffy dumplings, adding the perfect accompaniment to soak up the flavorful broth. The dumplings can be made from a simple dough mixture of all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and butter.
- For the Stew: Unsalted butter, onion, celery, flour, broth, carrots, peas, potatoes, chicken, salt, thyme, basil, and black pepper
- For the Drop Dumplings Recipe: Flour, dill, baking powder, salt, butter, and milk
Step 1: Sautéing the Vegetables
Prepare your vegetables: Finely chop your onions and celery.
Cooking Process: Melt the butter over medium heat in a large stockpot. Add the chopped onion and celery.
Monitoring: Cook for approximately 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions and celery become tender and slightly translucent.
Step 2: Forming and Cooking the Roux
Creating the Roux: Add flour, whisk, and cook for 2 minutes until the roux forms.
Step 3: Integrating Additional Ingredients
Pouring the Broth: Gradually add the broth and whisk until the mixture becomes smooth and well-integrated.
Incorporating Remaining Ingredients: Add the carrots, peas, potatoes, tender chunks of chicken (already cooked), thyme, basil, salt, and pepper. Stir well.
Simmering the Stew: Cover the stock pot and allow it to simmer over medium heat for 20–25 minutes. Periodically stir to ensure even cooking and prevent sticking, continuing until the vegetables become tender.
Step 4: Preparing the Dumpling Dough
Dry Ingredients: In a separate mixing bowl, combine the flour, dried dill, baking powder, and salt.
Integrating Butter: Utilize a pastry blender to cut the butter into the dry mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Adding Milk: Pour in the milk and gently mix until just combined, being mindful not to overmix.
Step 5: Introducing Dumplings to the Stew
Adjusting the Heat: Ensure the stew is at a gentle simmer.
Forming Dumplings: Utilize a tablespoon to scoop the dumpling mixture, gently placing each dollop into the simmering stew.
Cooking the dumplings: Allow them to cook, uncovered, for around 10 minutes or until tender and fully cooked through, offering a gentle stir occasionally to keep from sticking.
Step 6: Serving the Dish
Ensure the dumplings are thoroughly cooked and the vegetables in the stew are fork-tender. Ladle the stew and dumplings into serving bowls and serve immediately.
How to Tell When the Dumplings Are Done
Ensuring Your Dumplings Are Perfectly Cooked
To confirm your dumplings are done cooking in a chicken stew, check for two key signs: they should have puffed and risen and exhibit no liquid batter inside.
- Checking Method 1: Pierce with a fork or toothpick. If it comes out clean, the dumplings are ready!
- Checking Method 2: Observe their appearance; they should be light, fluffy, and not dense or have raw dough in the center.
How To Thicken Chicken Stew
To thicken chicken stew (or any soup or chili recipe), the only method I personally use is to create a cornstarch slurry. This simple technique helps to achieve a thicker and more velvety texture in the stew.
Add 1/2 cup of cold water to a glass or a small bowl. Add two tablespoons of cornstarch and whisk. Make sure there are no lumps. Pour into the stew and continue heating. The stew will thicken as it warms. Add more slurry if necessary (wait about 15 minutes before deciding).
- It is recommended to use fresh herbs instead of relying on Italian seasoning for flavoring. Fresh herbs like thyme, sprigs fresh rosemary, and parsley add a wonderful aromatic element to the stew.
- For extra flavor, white wine in a hearty stew is pretty standard.
- To achieve a tender and flavorful chicken, it is recommended to use boneless, skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts. These cuts of meat have enough fat to keep the stew moist and flavorful.
- If you have any leftovers, make sure to store them properly. Cool the stew, transfer it to an airtight container, and refrigerate it. It should last up to 3 days. Reheat on the stovetop, adding chicken broth if it has become thick from being in the fridge.
Tips and Tricks for Old-Fashioned Stew
First, consider making a larger batch of hearty chicken stew for those who love leftovers. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.
For seasoning the stew, using kosher salt can bring out the flavors of the ingredients without overpowering them.
If you prefer a creamy chicken stew, consider substituting heavy cream for some of the broth. The cream adds a rich and velvety consistency to recipes like crockpot tortellini.
Try sifting the flour mixture before adding the wet ingredients for a lighter and fluffier texture to your dumplings. This will help create a finer consistency and produce airy, tender dumplings.
What is the difference between chicken and dumplings and chicken stew with dumplings?
Honestly, both are comforting meals with tons of depth of flavor.
- Chicken and Dumplings focuses more on shredded chicken, creamy sauce, and soft, comforting dumplings as a duo.
- Chicken Stew with Dumplings often provides more complexity in terms of ingredients and flavors. The cozy stew is the star, with the soft dough dumplings being just an addition to make it more hearty (like adding bread as a side).
—-> Short on time? To make this quick, try using leftover chicken or rotisserie chicken instead.
What side dishes go with chicken and vegetable stew?
But in this case, other than some optional dipping bread or salty crackers, you don’t need a side. It’s a filling dish with homemade dumplings that typically keep everyone full—or after another bowl.
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