How To Make Dumplings From Scratch For Soup and Stew

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Picture the scene: It’s a cold winter’s night, so frigid that there’s no way you’re going out to eat. At the same time, your craving for a comforting, hearty meal is red-hot. A potential solution would be to cook up one of your favorites, like dumpling soup, at home, but you have some doubts. Won’t that take a lot of time, effort, and ingredients? Good news. The answer is “no.” 

Before we delve into how easy dumplings are to make, you first need to consider another. What kind of dumplings do you want to make? Different cultures have different dumpling soup recipes, and defining your craving may be the most challenging part of this journey. Once you’ve decided, throw on an apron and get ready to stew up something delicious. 

As we mentioned, making dumplings is relatively easy. The simplest dumplings only have a few ingredients and don’t require lots of equipment or time. Let’s narrow it down to two subcategories: You have your all-dough dumplings like matzo and your filled dumplings like potstickers. This article will focus on the first variety: uncomplicated but delicious doughy dumplings for soup. 

How to make dumplings for soup and stew 

Preparation time: 10 minutes for the dumpling dough and 10 minutes for the soup

Cooking Time: 10–35 minutes (depending on whether you use store-bought broth or make your own using the recipe below)

Total Time: 20–45 (depending on whether you make your own broth)

Servings: 6-8

Ingredients

Dumplings:

2 cups all-purpose flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup milk

Soup (Chicken & Dumplings Recipe): 

6 tablespoons butter

1 cup chopped yellow onion

1 cup finely sliced carrots (matchstick)

1 cup diced celery

4 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons all purpose flour

1 can evaporated milk

1 quart chicken stock

4 cups shredded cooked chicken

1 tablespoon fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)

2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper (or to taste)

Salt, to taste

Prepare the dumplings 

If we could assign adjectives to each step of this recipe, they would be “easy” and “easiest.” Welcome to the “easiest” part. You’ll pull this dumpling dough recipe in just a few minutes. Older recipes – like the one your grandmother may have made – were more complex and contained ingredients that are now uncommon, like suet. The following is an easy dumplings recipe without suet or other hard-to-find products. If you’re vegan, you can make this, too. The recipe for the dough does not include eggs, and you can use plant-based milk. 

  1. Prep your workstation with all the ingredients, plus a large bowl, a sifter, and a spoon or spatula. Don’t have a sifter? Don’t worry. You can use a fine-mesh strainer instead. 
  2. Sift the dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, and salt – together into the bowl. 
  3. Add in the milk and mix. You are going for a thick batter, so don’t worry if the consistency seems heavy. Let the dough rest for a few minutes, and in the meantime, you can either start with some of the first steps for making your own broth given below or heat a store-bought one to a boil. 
  4. If you’re making the chicken soup dumplings recipe, skip down to the next section of the tutorial. If you’re using a pre-made broth, simply drop heaping spoonfuls of dumpling dough into the now boiling broth. Cover and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes and resist the temptation to take off the lid. When you think the dumplings are thoroughly cooked, insert a toothpick in one. It should come out clean. 

Recipe adapted from The Spruce Eats

Prepare the soup

Many people think broth is difficult to make, possibly because some types can be time-consuming. However, even the most complex broth recipes are really just a question of the right ingredients and a little bit of patience. In the case of the broth for chicken and dumplings, you do need the right ingredients. But as for patience, you’ll only need a few minutes of that. 

  1. Melt the butter over medium-high heat in a large, heavy pot.
  2. Add in the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook for five minutes, just until the vegetables start to get a bit soft. Be sure to stir occasionally to prevent sticking or burning. Then, add in the garlic and cook for just one more minute. 
  3. Add in the flour and stir to combine. Confused as to why you’re adding in flour when there is also flour in the dumpling dough? Starches work nicely as thickening agents, which means that this broth will have great texture.
  4. Add in the evaporated milk and chicken stock and stir to combine. 
  5. Bring to a boil and add in the shredded chicken, thyme, black pepper, and salt. Turn down the heat a touch and let the soup simmer.
  6. Now, drop heaping spoonfuls of dumpling dough into the broth. 
  7. Cover the pot and take the heat down. This helps prevent burning but should still maintain your broth at a gentle simmer. Cook for 15 minutes. When you think the dumplings are thoroughly cooked, insert a toothpick in one. It should come out clean. 

Recipe adapted from The Novice Chef Blog

eurobanks – stock.adobe.com

Nutritional values per serving

Calories: 731

Total fat: 39 grams

Saturated fat: 20 grams

Trans fat: 1 gram

Unsaturated fat: 17 gram

Cholesterol: 162 milligrams

Sodium: 1,096 milligrams

Carbohydrates: 57 grams

Fiber: 3 grams

Sugar: 14 grams

Protein: 37 grams

Nutritional information is an estimate and will vary if you use a different kind of broth than the one in our tutorial. 

If you’re reading this, you’re probably about to head to your couch with a steaming bowl of rich dumpling soup in hand, ready to pull out a good book or queue up your favorite series. You’re also now a dumpling expert and ready to take on new challenges like different dumpling recipes. Perhaps next weekend, you’ll experiment with a tutorial from another region of the world, such as a pork dumplings recipe. 

fahrwasser – stock.adobe.com

Some tips when making dumplings

  1. Use a cookie or ice cream scoop to drop the dough into the broth and achieve perfectly spherical dumplings. 
  2. Overcooked dumplings may start to come undone, so be sure to keep an eye on your cooking times. 
  3. Ensure there is enough liquid in your pot so as not to run out due to evaporation as the dumplings cook. You can always add in a bit of stock or water.
  4. Trust your instincts. If you don’t think your dumplings are done, continue cooking them in the broth for two to three additional minutes. 

How to store and reheat

You can store your soup in the refrigerator for roughly two days. As with any hot food, wait until it cools to room temperature before sticking in the refrigerator. Another good rule of thumb is, “When in doubt, throw it out.” A little bit of breakdown of the dumpling texture is normal, but if anything smells or looks off, trust your gut. 

Reheat on the stove or in the microwave. If you reheat on the stove, you can always add in a splash of water to make up for any evaporation.

Dumplings FAQs

How do you make dumplings for chicken and dumplings from scratch?

See our quick and easy tutorial above, and if you are looking for more inspiration and tips, check out the linked recipe that guided our research. 

How do you make fluffy dumplings?

We’re all better off when we get some rest, and dumplings are no different. Make sure to let the batter rest as described above, as this helps keep the consistency delectably fluffy. Alternatively, you can seek out a potato dumpling recipe, which is slightly different but results in dumplings with a spongy texture.

If you’re down to do dumplings but discover you’re missing an ingredient or two, don’t worry. You can have it at your door in a matter of minutes with Gopuff. And remember, cooking should be an enjoyable experience, not a stressful hassle. For more recipe inspiration, check out Gopuff’s Food & Drink blog. You may just learn to make something new or find an old favorite.

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