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Chicken and Dumplings like Cracker Barrel

recipe at a glance
Rating: 4/5
6 reviews

ready in: 1-2 hrs
serves/makes:   6

recipe id: 17999
cook method: stovetop

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4 pounds whole frying chicken
2 quarts water
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons shortening
3/4 cup buttermilk


Place chicken in a Dutch oven. Add water and 2 tsp. salt. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 1 hour or until tender (should almost fall off bone).

Remove the chicken from the broth and cool. Bone the chicken and cut meat into bite-sized pieces. Bring the broth to a boil and add pepper.

For Dumplings: Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Cut in the shortening. Add the buttermilk, stirring with a fork until moistened. Knead the dough 4 to 5 times (never done), and pat to 1/2-inch pieces and drop into boiling broth (I do not pat it out, just pinch off pieces). Reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook for about 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the chicken and serve.

cook's notes

I make it in the pressure cooker, much quicker and easier. I pressure it for only 30 minutes.

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563 calories, 34 grams fat, 33 grams carbohydrates, 29 grams protein per serving.
Show full nutritional data (including Weight Watcher's Points ®, cholesterol, sodium, vitamins, and diabetic exchanges)

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Guest at

REVIEW: 2 star recipe rating
I followed the recipe exactly. As mentioned by another poster, the dumplings did not cook through. The broth was plenty thick enough, but this is nothing like CB. There also was very little flavor, and I had to add more seasoning.

Guest at


Cracker barrel uses chicken tenders and chicken bouillon and they cook it in a pot... they use white lily self rising flour and the dumplings are rolled out to the thinness of a sugar packet and about the same size and they use no pepper. unless they have changed their recipe since I worked there.

Registered Member at
Member since:
Jan 12, 2005

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
Homestyle chicken and dumplings!

Guest at


The recipe mentions cooking this in a pressure cooker as an aside. Do you do the dumpling part in there too? Would like to try it if someone can tell me how!

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
This is a great old fashioned chicken and dumplings recipe. Follow it and you'll have a perfect meal. The dumplings are done just like I remember my mom making them. It's a truely good homecooked meal.

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
This is very close to the way my grandmother and mom made chicken and dumplings. Except,(1) instead of shortening in the dumpling dough...skim the fat from the broth, if more is needed add some butter...(2) roll out the dough to about 1/8" thick and cut into 1"x1" pieces.(reason being you're adding more pieces and the more you add the thicker the broth) This will also make the dumplings have a better texture (less soggy)Be sure the broth is at a rolling boil.

Guest at


well, i didn't think this recipe was anything like Cracker Barrel's. for one, every Cracker Barrel I have been to used only breast meat. after cooking, according to instructions, the broth was way too runny, so i decided to make a few changes. i added about 1/8 cup finely diced carrots, 1/2 cup finely diced onion, and 1 cup finely diced celery. boil till soft. then to thicken the broth i added about a tablespoon flour. i layered the dumplings, chicken breast slices and juice in a baking dish and topped with 4 or 5 pats of butter. covered and baked for about 30 minutes. it thickend up nicely and was perfect, or so we all thought (was the best chicken n dumplings i have ever made). still was not exactly like Cracker Barrel, but i have not found a recipe to mimick it exactly yet.

Guest at


I have been looking for a Chicken n Dumpling recie for awhile now and have not been successful. I tried this one and while my husband ate it up, it didn't turn out how I liked. The dumplings did not cook through even though I cooked longer than required. And I also was expecting a thicker sauce, something more like Cracker Barrel. I'm open to suggestions to make this better, as I'm sure it is something I did.

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
this is my favorite. Always eat it when I eat at Cracker Barrell and this is just as good.

Guest at

REVIEW: 5 star recipe rating
my family loves this one!!!

Please note:
This is a copy cat recipe submitted to CDKitchen by a third-party. This recipe is not an original recipe unless specifically stated and is considered only to be an acceptable "clone" to the original for the home cook to attempt to duplicate. Please also note that many nationwide restaurant chains vary their menus and ingredients by region so the version provided may not be similar to what you may have tried before. All trademarks referenced are property of their respective owners.

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