Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Chicken Dumplin' Soup

A creamy chicken soup that uses strips of flour tortillas as a dumpling.

Chicken Dumplin' Soup

How can you not love a soup that is called Chicken Dumplin' Soup? I mean really!

When we were chatting one day over on the Facebook page about Chicken and Dumplings, or more specifically, drop dumplings versus rolled dumplings, one of the readers there mentioned using tortillas as her dumplings. When I ran across this recipe for soup and saw that it used tortillas for dumplings, I knew I had to try it. Boy am I glad that I did. It is downright yummy y'all!

The recipe was adapted from a cookbook called Bless Your Heart: Saving the World One Covered Dish at a Time, by Patsy Caldwell. I mean, how can you not love a cookbook with a name like that either?!

This is a southern cookbook that focuses on the one thing we southerners know for sure. That food is for much more than just eating. As the author notes, it is also for showing concern, expressing sympathy and sharing excitement.  Food gives us the chance to show that we care, and that is shared in any number of familiar potluck recipes that we prepare, over and over again.

If you've ever been on the receiving or the giving end of the funeral food circuit, and if you're a southerner you certainly have, then you'll recognize many of the recipes in this cookbook for that one reason alone. Caldwell covers a wide range of other occasions that we also cook for too though, whether its church potlucks, tending to the sick, family reunions, party time, book clubs, festivals, tailgating and good ole comfort foods - you'll find recipes suitable for each occasion here in this wonderful cookbook.  I absolutely adore it! This recipe for Chicken Dumplin' Soup falls under the category of "Tending the Sick - Food for What Ails You," because, everybody knows, that's a perfect occasion for a pot of chicken soup.

Super, super easy to throw together too. Let's make it!

Melt two tablespoons of butter in the bottom of a soup pot or Dutch oven. Saute a mirepoix of onion, celery and carrots until tender, about 5 minutes.  Add the chicken broth.

When I make a chicken soup or stew, I often add in a chicken base, like this Better Than Bouillon brand.  It's not in the original recipe, but for me it just adds another level of intensiveness to the flavor, much more so than a regular granular bouillon, and is a fridge staple in this house. Add a heaping teaspoon, or more if you like.

Add the salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning and bring to a boil. Cut the flour tortillas into thin strips and stir them into the soup.  Bring back up to a boil, reduce heat, and low simmer for 20 minutes. Alternatively, if texture is an issue for you, you can proceed with the recipe but wait to add the tortilla strips at the end instead, so that they will be more firm. Let them soak in the hot broth to soften.

Stir in two to three cups of cooked chicken and some parsley.

Add the cream and heat just long enough to warm everything through and serve.


If you think this sounds yummy, I'd sure it if you'd click to pin it, tweet it, stumble it, or share it on Facebook to help spread the word - thanks!


Recipe: Chicken Dumplin' Soup

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish©
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 30 min | Yield: About 6 to 8 servings

  • 2 tablespoons of butter or canola oil
  • 1 cup of chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup of chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup of chopped carrots
  • 2 (32 ounce) cartons of chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon of chicken base (like Better Than Bouillon), optional
  • 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of freshly cracked black pepper, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon of poultry seasoning
  • 5 (6-inch) flour tortillas
  • 2 to 3 cups of cooked chicken
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
  • 1 cup of heavy cream

Melt the butter in the bottom of a soup pot or Dutch oven. Saute the onion, celery and carrots until tender, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth, chicken base, salt, pepper, and poultry seasoning and bring to a boil. Cut the flour tortillas in half and then into thin strips and stir them into the soup. If you prefer a firmer texture to the tortilla dumpling, wait to add the strips in at the end - see notes below. Bring back up to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer on low for 20 minutes. Stir in the chicken, parsley and cream; heat just long enough to warm through.

Cook's Notes: If you've never tried tortillas as dumplings before and the texture is an issue, wait to add the tortilla strips more toward the end instead so that they will be more firm. Cook the soup until nearly done before adding in the tortilla strips. Remove from the heat and let them soak in the broth for about 15 minutes and only stir only once or twice so they don't break apart. You may also want to make a batch of regular dumpling dough, or substitute canned biscuits, cut into quarters instead. For those, add to soup, cover and let simmer for that last 20 minutes. Stir in chicken, parsley and cream and heat through.

I used leftover chicken from the freezer to make this soup. Next time you roast a chicken (or pick up a deli rotisserie chicken), go ahead and roast two of them in your larger roasting pan. Let the second chicken cool down and pull the meat off, placing it into 2 to 3 cup portions in freezer bags and freeze. May also substitute 8 cups of homemade chicken stock.

Tip: If you want the soup a little thicker and more like chicken and dumplings, reserve a bit of the chicken broth or heavy cream and add a tablespoon of cornstarch to it to make a slurry. Stir into the soup toward the end and cook until thickened.

Source: http://deepsouthdish.com/

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©Deep South Dish
Adapted from Bless Your Heart: Saving the World One Covered Dish at a Time
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Posted by on February 15, 2011

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  1. "How can you not love a soup that is called Chicken Dumplin' Soup? I mean really!" - exactly what I thought when I ordered it in a Gatlinburg restaurant this past weekend. I have a very wide range of acceptability when it comes to food and I was hungry, but I still only ate a couple of bites. It's hard to believe such a simple dish could be so flavorless. I look forward to trying your version to see how good theirs could have been and I think using tortilla's is a great dumplin idea.

  2. If this isn't the best comfort food on the planet, I don't know what is? Thanks for posting it, Mary! Hope you're doing well these days!

  3. Reminds me of one of my wife's favorite cookbooks...

    Being Dead Is No Excuse: The Official Southern Ladies Guide To Hosting the Perfect Funeral

    this looks and sounds wonderful, as always, great post

  4. I must say I LOVE your blog! As a Southern gal and fellow foodie your recipes are delcious and I can't wait to try them all.

  5. Oh that's funny Larry that I would post this the same time that you have a bad experience with some. It's easy to get a watery, not very flavorful chicken soup of any kind with a commercial broth. Some are better than others, which is why if I'm not making homemade stock, I love adding in the Better Than Bouillon. It really helps to bump up the flavor.

    Hey Roz! Doing great, thanks!

    That is a good one Dave and of course I have that one too!

    Welcome Nicole, I look forward to getting to know you!!

    Enjoy Pam!

  6. Hey girl.....been gone for awhile from blogging. I missed coming here. This looks so yummy!! I am cooking for a big huge potluck we're going to tomorrow night! There are usually around 150 people and most bring food! It's a big food fest! I thought of this blog when trying to figure out what to bring. I'll be back sweetie.

  7. When I saw the title of that cookbook, I knew I had to have a copy. Only a Southern woman could think up a title like that!! LOVE IT!!

    Marsha SOCAL

  8. This looks delicious, Mary. I'd love to have a bowl of it for lunch. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  9. Sounds like a wonderful soup...now I'm hungry again :)

  10. I gave this a try three weeks ago and will be making it tomorrow night. I was very surprised at how well the tortillas worked out. This recipe was so close to our classic chicken and dumplings recipe in taste and texture it became a family favorite instantly. And it's so much simpler not having to make the dumplings.

  11. I was shocked too about the tortillas! So glad y'all are enjoying it and thanks so much for taking the time to come back and say so!

  12. I tried this soup ... the base flavor of the soup is absolutely delicious ... and I agree 100% about the flavor of the Better Than Bouillon ... BUT, we hated the consistency of the tortillas in this soup ... like water-soaked paper after a few minutes ... will make again, but will use little, homemade dumplings or maybe tortellinis (cheese would be good)

  13. Hi Judy & thanks for your input. I don't know why you would experience that though! As you can see in my picture, the dumplings are very much intact & similar to the flat rolled dumplings. I had no problems with them disintegrating. I'm sure this would be great with store bought dumplings too - I made this specifically to try the tortillas & found it worked great!

    Just for anybody else that might try this with the tortillas, I would say they would fall apart if they were overcooked - so be sure that once you bring it up to that final boil, you turn it right down immediately and then keep it at a low simmer. From that point you should go no longer than 20 minutes. Once you stir in the chicken all you need to do is warm the chicken through & it's ready to serve.

  14. Even my vegie hating kids ploughed through this like it was their last meal on this earth! Will definitely become a staple soup in our house with winter on it's way down here!:)

  15. You're so welcome! Glad they enjoyed it.

  16. I have not tried this particular recipe but have used tortillas in the past for dumplings. My suggestion is cook the soup til done and then add the tortillas and remove from the heat. Let them just soak in the broth for about 15 minutes and only stir only once or twice so they don't break apart. Cooking the tortillas in the broth breaks them down and makes for a soggy dumpling in my experience.

  17. Thanks for the tip! That should solve the texture issue for some folks.

  18. I made this for dinner tonight (I told you I was going to be making it soon lol) and really enjoyed it. Unfortunately, my husband didn't like the tortillas, but he doesn't like soggy bread anyway, so nothing except 'real' dumplings or noodles would've worked for him. However, I enjoyed it a lot and agree that in a pinch, they work really well for the old-fashioned strip dumplings like my Granny used to make! With that being said, I will continue to use the soup base. If I'm cooking for the family, I'll use regular dumplings, but if it's for me, tortillas all the way! Thanks for another great recipe!

    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I've discovered that people either enjoy the tortilla shortcut or they totally hate it. I found them to be okay, but of course, I love "real" dumplings the most!! Thanks for stopping by!


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