Our Paleo Family

Chicken and Dumplings

When I was growing up, my mom would make this dish that we called Potpie- sometimes with an s at the end and sometimes without. It wasn’t a chicken pot pie with a pastry crust, it was broth with these flat dumplings simmered until tender. It was one of my absolute favorite comfort foods. Depending on where you’re from, you might call this Chicken and Dumplings or Chicken and Pastry.

Since we started following a Paleo-type diet about five years ago, I have not had this potpie dish. Then one day this winter – one particularly cold and dreary day, I decided to try my hand at Paleo-fied Potpie. Low and behold, it worked!

In Paleo cooking and especially baking, subbing flours is tricky. This particular dish is kind of like baking because you are making these pastry like dumplings. They really need gluten, or something a whole lot like it, to work properly. So I started my recipe with a lot of cassava flour because it’s very stretchy – sort of like gluten. The potpies came out great in terms of texture, but the taste was not what I wanted. Cassava flour has a taste that I do not enjoy.

Thus began the real experimenting. I slowly increased the amount of almond flour and decreased the amount of cassava. Then I switched to tapioca because they work very similarly, but tapioca doesn’t have as strong of a flavor. Once I got to two cups of almond to one cup of tapioca, I was happy with the flavor and the texture. And we can now enjoy Potpie/Chicken and Dumplings/Chicken and Pastry whenever we want!

One great thing about this recipe is that it freezes beautifully. You can make the soup part and freeze that separately. Then make the dumplings, lay them flat on a baking sheet to freeze, then toss them in a freezer safe bag or container. Whenever you’re ready for a big bowl of hearty comfort, thaw that soup, bring it to a simmer and toss in the dumplings. Wait about two minutes and an amazing, warm, delicious dinner is ready!

Because this recipe might seem a tiny bit complicated from the instructions, I’ve made a video so you can see that it’s really not hard at all. And the final result is totally worth it!

Chicken and Dumplings
Print Recipe
This is comfort in a bowl!
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Chicken and Dumplings
Print Recipe
This is comfort in a bowl!
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Servings Prep Time
4-6 servings 20 minutes
Cook Time
40 minutes
Ingredients
Soup
Dumplings
Servings: servings
Instructions
  1. I am giving you Instructions for using your Instant Pot, but you can also make this dish in a dutch oven on your stove top. It will just take longer to make the soup part.
  2. Begin by turning on the Instant Pot to Sauté More. Add oil.
  3. In a small bowl, mix salt, pepper and poultry seasoning. Remove the skin from your chicken thighs and season both sides of each piece of chicken.
  4. Place chicken in pot and brown for a few minutes on each side. You will probably be able to fit 3-4 pieces of chicken in the pot at a time, depending on which size Instant Pot you have. Just work in batches if needed.
  5. When chicken is lightly browned on each side, remove to a plate or dish deep enough to catch any juices.
  6. While the chicken is browning, chop the onions, celery and carrots into approximately quarter inch pieces. Add them to the oil in your Pot, still set to Sauté More. Sprinkle in a little bit of salt and pepper and stir.
  7. Allow the vegetables to cook 6-10 minutes - just until the onions begin to become translucent.
  8. Now stir in the bone broth, coconut milk and water and stir to release all the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. This is actually an important step because if there is too much fond (that's the brown stuff) on the bottom of your pot, it will not pressurize.
  9. At this point you can taste your broth for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Then add in the chicken.
  10. Turn pot off, then turn on to Manual High Pressure and set for 20 minutes.
  11. It will take your pot about 10 minutes to come up to pressure. Once the cooking time is complete, allow it to depressurize naturally for about five minutes (you can let the pressure come down completely if you have time).
  12. Using a slotted spoon, remove the chicken from the simmering broth and set aside to remove the meat from the bones. Save those bones because you can make broth from them.
  13. Turn pot off and then turn back on to Sauté and adjust to normal or low setting. Shred chicken and add back to the simmering broth.
To Make Dumplings
  1. While the chicken is cooking away, make your dumplings.
  2. You will need a fairly large mixing bowl. Add the almond flour, tapioca starch, baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix these dry ingredients well.
  3. Make a well in the dry ingredients. This just means to scoot everything to the edge of the bowl so there's a little empty spot in the middle.
  4. Crack the eggs into that well. Using a fork, beat the eggs and then slowly begin bringing the dry ingredients into the egg. Keep grabbing a little more flour at a time until all the flour is incorporated.
  5. Depending on the size of your eggs, you may need to add a little more liquid to bring your dough together. You want a nice, cohesive dough that will not crumble apart. I find this usually takes 1-2 Tablespoons. Use water or broth.
  6. Sprinkle a little arrowroot on your work surface and roll out your pastry to about 1/4 inch thickness - or a little thinner. This is really up to your taste, but don't get too thin or they will fall apart. There's no gluten, remember.
  7. Add more arrowroot as needed to keep the pastry from sticking to your work surface.
  8. Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut your dumplings into approximately one inch squares. You can make these whatever size you want, but my family likes bit size.
  9. Make sure your broth is still simmering and then begin dropping in the dumplings, a few at a time, until you have added as many as you want. For my family of four, I use about 3/4 of the dumplings. I freeze the rest for a quick chicken soup. If you have a larger family, you will probably want to use all of the dumplings. This again, is a personal taste issue.
  10. The dumplings only need to simmer for 2-3 minutes until they're done. Of course, this depends on how thick you rolled them and how large you cut them. The thinner and smaller, the quicker cooking.
  11. You're ready to eat! Enjoy! My husband ate this leftover and reported happily that the dumplings maintained their integrity. I was afraid they would completely fall apart. So yay!!
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