Have you ever wondered if you can make old-fashioned, comforting chicken and dumplings in the Instant Pot or pressure cooker? The answer is a resounding yes!
Whisk up an easy dumpling batter, add your vegetables, chicken, and broth to the pot, and you’re most of the way to a rib-sticking dinner.
- New to Instant Pot cooking? Start here!
The Trick to Chicken and Dumplings in the Instant Pot
Pressure cooking chicken and dumplings presents a bit of a challenge because thickened liquids either don’t come up to pressure at all, or they do, and you end up with scorching on the bottom of the pot.
To address that issue, I didn’t add flour directly to the broth in this recipe. The dumplings release starch as they cook, which creates a thickened, creamy broth in the end.
You can leave your finished chicken and dumplings in the pot for a few extra minutes after cooking, as the broth will continue to thicken as it sits. The next-day leftovers will thicken up even more.
THE BEST FLOUR FOR DUMPLINGS
I’ve tried making these dumplings with both all-purpose and cake flour.
The cake flour definitely wins as far as the texture is concerned. The dumplings turn out lighter and fluffier, whereas all-purpose flour can yield heavier, chewier dumplings. You can make this recipe with all-purpose flour, but for the best dumplings, use cake flour if you have it.
These pressure-cooked dumplings will have a slightly denser texture than if they were simmered in a pot on the stove. I don’t mind a little extra chew, though, especially because they’re so convenient to make this way!
Make it a Meal!
Chicken and dumplings are a meal all to themselves—you don’t have to make any other side dishes if you’re serving them.
FREEZING CHICKEN AND DUMPLINGS
You can freeze chicken and dumplings in individual servings for easy reheating in the microwave.
I like to transfer mine into freezer and microwave-safe containers. They will keep in the freezer for up to three months.
When I’m hungry for chicken and dumplings, I pop a container in the fridge a day before I want to eat them. A piping hot meal is ready after only a few minutes in the microwave.
TRY THESE OTHER INSTANT POT FAVORITES
Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings Recipe
Do not double this recipe—too many dumplings will prevent enough steam to build up, so the pressure cooking/steaming will not work properly.
All-purpose flour can be substituted for cake flour, but your dumplings will be heavier and chewier.
For the dumpling batter:
- 1 1/2 cups (240 g) cake flour (See Recipe Note)
- 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup whole milk
For the stew:
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 3 celery stalks, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs or tenders, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup frozen peas, thawed
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
- 1/4 cup heavy cream (optional)
1 Make the dumpling batter: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
Add melted butter to the dry ingredients, using your fingers to distribute it throughout the flour until it has a crumbly texture.
Add the milk. If you are using all-purpose flour, another tablespoon or two of milk may be required to make the dough sticky, rather than dry and shaggy. Gently mix with a wooden spoon, until the mixture just comes together. It should form a lumpy, thick batter. Do not over-mix, or your dumplings will turn out too dense. Set aside.
2 Sauté the vegetables and chicken in the pressure cooker: Heat the oil in the pressure cooker on its sauté setting for 1 minute. Add the onion, celery, carrots, salt, and pepper and sauté for 3 minutes, until the onions are beginning to soften around the edges.
Add the chicken and thyme and sauté for 2 more minutes, until the pieces of chicken are mostly opaque on the outside (they don’t have to be cooked through). Stir in the chicken broth, using a spoon to thoroughly nudge any browned bits off of the bottom of the pot.
3 Add the dumplings and pressure cook: Using a small cookie scoop or two spoons, drop heaping tablespoon-sized dollops of the dumpling batter into the pot in a single layer. (The batter will have thickened while it sat, becoming more of a scoop-able dough.)
4 Pressure cook: Secure the lid in its sealed position. Cancel the sauté program, then select the pressure cooker’s manual program for 8 minutes at high pressure.
(The pot will take about 10 minutes to come up to pressure before the cooking program begins.)
When the cooking program ends, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then move the pressure release valve to its venting position to release any remaining steam.
5 Finish the dish: Open the pot and gently stir in the peas, parsley, and cream (if using), taking care not to break up the dumplings. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt and/or pepper if needed. Ladle into bowls and serve right away.
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