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homemade chicken and dumplings sprinkled with black pepper and thyme in a blue bowl
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4.92 from 12 votes

Mamaw's Southern Chicken and Dumplings

Get cozy on a cold fall or winter's night with this easy Southern chicken and dumplings recipe straight from the kitchen of a Southern grandma.
Course Entrees, Main Course
Cuisine American, Southern
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 10 minutes
Resting Time 15 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 25 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 339kcal
Author Lisa B.


For the dumplings:

  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 4 tablespoons shortening softened
  • 1/3 - 2/3 cups ice water

For the broth:

  • 4 large chicken thighs skin removed
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and ground black pepper to taste


For the Dumplings:

  • Mix the flour and shortening together,  breaking the shortening into smaller pieces, until you have small pea sized pieces of shortening mixed evenly throughout the flour.
  • Stir in 1/3 cup of the water. Start mixing until the dough comes together and pulls away from the side of the bowl. You may need to add additional water, but do so 1-2 tablespoons at a time.
  • Turn the dumpling dough out onto a floured surface. Knead the dough with your hands 2-3 times.
  • Flatten the dough out into a disk and start rolling it out until it’s about 1/8-inchthick.
  • Cut the dumplings into strips that measure 1-inch wide and about 2-inches long. Set them aside and let them dry at room temperature for two hours or up to four hours.

For the broth:

  • Place the chicken in a large stock pot. Cover with the water. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover the pot and cook for 20-30 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken from the pot and allow it to cool until you can handle it. Remove the chicken meat from the bone and shred the meat.
  • Reserve the broth.

To make the chicken and dumplings:

  • Bring the broth to a simmer over medium heat.
  • Add the dumplings one at a time. Cook for five minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the cooked shredded chicken and garlic powder. Cook for an additional five minutes until heated through.
  • Remove the chicken and dumplings from the heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Allow the chicken and dumplings to rest for 15 minutes before serving.


To Freeze Uncooked Dumplings:
Arrange your cut dumpling in a single layer on a foil lined baking sheet. Place the entire sheet on a flat surface in the freezer and leave them overnight or until the dumplings are frozen solid. Carefully place the frozen dumplings in a large freezer bag, squeeze out the air, seal the bag and place them back in the freezer. The dumplings can be frozen for up to three months. 
Cook the dumplings from their frozen state according to recipe directions. However, you will need to cook the dumplings 5-10 minutes longer.
To Reheat Leftovers:
Leftover chicken and dumplings should be cooled completely before transferring them to an airtight container with a lid. Consume leftovers within four days. Because the dumplings will continue to soak up all the broth, you will need to add some additional chicken broth to reheat. Simply place the chicken and dumplings in a saucepan, add about one cup of chicken broth, and reheat over medium heat. Feel free to add more chicken broth if needed to reach your desired consistency.
I don’t recommend freezing chicken and dumplings once they’ve been cooked. The texture of the dumplings changes and they become grainy and mushy.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 339kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 7.7g | Trans Fat: 18g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 817mg | Potassium: 424mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3.2g | Vitamin A: 3850IU | Vitamin C: 5.8mg | Calcium: 120mg | Iron: 2.3mg