This copycat Cracker Barrel chicken and dumplings recipe is a southern style dinner that is practically the definition of comfort food!
You’ll love how easy it is to make this copycat Cracker Barrel chicken and dumplings recipe at home! Warm up with a steaming bowl of homemade goodness!
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Growing up, Cracker Barrel was one of those restaurants our family often visited while on vacation. We didn’t eat out much in our day-to-day life, but vacations were am exception.
When you think about it, Cracker Barrel is the perfect family-friendly restaurant. They have options for kids and adults alike, and the country store is the most wonderful thing for keeping kids busy and getting out the wiggles before eating dinner!
Chicken and dumplings is one of my favorite items on Cracker Barrel’s menu, because it is basically the epitome of comfort food! That’s why I decided to create my own version similar to what I’ve enjoyed at the restaurant.
I think the best chicken and dumpling recipes are those that are easy to make, delicious to eat, and that evoke a sense of warm memories of simpler times.
When it comes to chicken and dumplings, some people prefer biscuit-style dumplings (like this easy Chicken and Bisquick dumplings recipe), while others prefer flat, noodle-like dumplings.
That’s why I’m sharing one of my personal favorites, this copycat Cracker Barrel chicken and dumplings recipe! I’ve been making it for years and years, and it is such a simple yet satisfying meal. It’s a homemade recreation that reminds me a lot of the restaurant version!
While this is a stove top chicken and dumplings recipe, I do have an Instant Pot version of this recipe as well! The best pressure cooker chicken and dumplings recipe is no joke–it’s been pinned over 130,000 times, so you KNOW it’s good!
How to Make Copycat Cracker Barrel Chicken and Dumplings
You’ll start by adding some broth, celery, onion, and chicken to a stock pot or Dutch oven. Let that simmer for a bit–you’ll be surprised how much flavor comes from those few ingredients!
While that’s simmering, whip up the dumplings. Now, don’t be intimidated by the dumplings–they’re really easy to make (my kids even help me!! You mix up a soft dough, roll it out nice and thin, and cut it into strips or squares.
However, if you’re really not up for making your own dumplings, check out my recipe for Instant Pot chicken and frozen dumplings using dumplings from the freezer section of the grocery store.
Pull out the chicken to a cutting board, then pull out the onion and celery and discard it. Add the dumplings to the hot broth to simmer while you cut up or shred the chicken, then add the chicken pieces back into the broth.
Add some salt and pepper to taste, and voila! Dinner is served!
How Do You Know When Dumplings are Done?
This depends on the type of dumplings. Obviously, fluffy biscuit dumplings cook differently than flat noodle dumplings.
In this case, for these flat dumplings, they should be like a somewhat dense al dente noodle. If you bite one, it shouldn’t be hard; it should be like a soft but thick noodle.
Can You Freeze Chicken and Dumplings?
I have successfully frozen this type of chicken and dumplings. The flat, dense noodles lend themselves to freezing better than some types of chicken and dumplings.
Can I Use Pre-Cooked Chicken with These Dumplings?
If you prefer to use pre-cooked chicken in this recipe, you certainly can! Using a rotisserie chicken or other cooked chicken is a handy way to save time.
In that case, simmer the broth, celery, and onion together with the dumplings. About 5 minutes before the dumplings are done, remove the celery and onion pieces and add in the shredded or chopped chicken to warm through.
- Dutch oven or stock pot
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 2 ribs of celery, broken in half
- 1/2 medium onion (keep it as a chunk of onion)
- 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, each breast cut in half
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup + 2 Tbsp milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a stockpot or Dutch oven, add broth, celery, onion, and chicken breasts.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 15 minutes, until the chicken breast is cooked through. While the chicken is cooking, prepare the dumplings.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir in the milk just until combined into a shaggy dough.
- Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and roll to about 1/4 inch thickness.
- Use a pizza cutter to cut the dough into strips or squares about 1 to 2 inches in size.
- Once the chicken is cooked through, remove it to a cutting board. Remove the onion chunk and celery pieces and discard.
- Add the dough strips to the simmering broth and simmer for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, allowing the dumplings to cook and the broth to thicken to a gravy-like consistency.
- While the dumplings are simmering, shred or chop chicken and return to the pot.
- Add salt and pepper to taste, then serve warm.
- If you want to use pre-cooked chicken (such as pulled from a rotisserie chicken), you can! In that case, simmer the onion, celery, and dumplings in the broth at the same time. Remove the onion and celery and add the pulled/chopped chicken during the last 5 minutes of simmering to warm it through.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 418 Total Fat: 8g Saturated Fat: 2g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 4g Cholesterol: 82mg Sodium: 1778mg Carbohydrates: 51g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 2g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 34g