The coziest thing you can make in the pressure cooker. This Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings for two is made in the instant pot mini, but it can be doubled and made in the 6-quart machine, too.
You'll love this Chicken and Dumpling Instant Pot Recipe
You've never met a bigger fan of dumplings than me.
And the thing is, I didn't even grow up on them. I grew up on great chicken soup, but dumplings I was denied. This is probably why I love them so much now.
Being a noodle lover, I ventured into the dumpling world in college, probably after watching them being made on the Food Network. (My cooking ventures began in college when I routinely skipped class to watch cooking shows).
As you might expect, I'm opinionated about dumplings. I don't like them dry on the inside, I like them all the way wet. I like them fluffy and flecked with fresh finely chopped parsley. Oh, and I like them in less time than it normally takes to make them. Enter my quick version made in the Instant Pot.
Chicken and Dumplings (Instant Pot) ingredients
- Butter. We will be searing the chicken thighs in butter, which is exactly as delicious as it sounds. We need 1.5 tablespoons of butter, it doesn’t matter if it's salted or unsalted.
- Chicken Thighs. Two bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this recipe. If you’re doubling it and making it in a 6 or 8-quart instant pot, use 4 chicken thighs. There’s no need to trim the fat, because we’re rendering it by searing with the skin-on.
- Flour. A small amount of flour to the butter and chicken fat mixture forms a roux, which makes our instant pot chicken and dumplings nice and thick. A roux is a thickening agent in any soup or stew; without one, the soup will be watery and thin.
- Carrot. One small carrot, washed, peeled and sliced into half-moon shapes.
- Celery. One stalk of celery, washed and thinly sliced.
- Onion. One small white or yellow (non-sweet) onion, diced is about 1 cup.
- Parsley. I really love the addition of fresh parsley in this recipe, since we’re cooking in a pressure cooker. You can use one teaspoon of minced fresh parsley or ½ teaspoon of dried.
- Chicken Stock. The chicken stock is so important in a dumplings soup recipe, so I really recommend homemade. I have a recipe for homemade instant pot chicken stock here. However, one quart of a high-quality chicken bone broth is the best substitute if you can’t make it from scratch.
For the dumplings:
- Flour. All-purpose flour here.
- Cornmeal. A small amount of fine cornmeal keeps our dumplings firm without being overly soggy.
- Baking Powder. This gives lift and fluff to your dumplings.
- Parsley. Again, entirely optional, but I love the flecks of fresh herb in a dumpling.
- Butter. We need melted butter for the liquid portion to make the dumpling.
- Milk. Whole milk is best, but 2% is fine.
How to make Chicken and Dumplings in Instant Pot
These Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings for Two might be the thing I've made the most in my Instant Pot mini. I buy big packs of local chicken thighs, and freeze them two to a bag using my FoodSaver system. It's so easy for me to pull a small bag out in the morning to defrost by dinner time.
Also, I use my small batch Instant Pot Chicken Stock, but if you want to use store-bought, it's totally fine!
While most Instant Pot chicken recipes are dump, close and set, this one has an extra step. I'm going to ask you to sear the chicken using the sauté setting, is that ok? Pinky promise it's worth it. Because then, we're going to sauté the vegetables in the chicken fat, and anything sautéed in chicken fat is better than anything not sautéed in chicken fat.
We're using bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs for this Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings for two recipe because it makes a deep, rich broth. Please tell me if any of you guys make it with boneless skinless chicken, though!
Scaling down recipes for the instant pot mini:
I adapted this recipe from Melissa Clark's version, and I have to say that when you're converting a recipe for the big Instant Pot for the Instant Pot Mini, it's not just a matter of scaling down the ingredients. The cooking time usually needs to be reduced by a ton. The first time I made her recipe, I followed the cooking times and had mushy chicken and tough dumplings. It was not good.
But, I tweaked it a bit in subsequent testing and found the perfect ratios and times for the Instant Pot mini. This Instant Pot Chicken Dumplings for Two recipe is perfect now. I hope you try it!
How to serve this Chicken and Dumpling Instant Pot Recipe
This recipe is a standalone full meal, but you can serve it with a side salad.
How to store Instant Pot Chicken and Dumplings
Leftover chicken and dumplings should be stored in the fridge, tightly covered, for up to 3 days. To reheat, place in microwave-safe bowl or saucepan and heat until warm throughout. It also freezes very well in freezer-safe contains (with about an inch of headspace for expansion in the freezer) for up to 6 months. Defrost overnight in the fridge, heat through and serve.
Chicken and Dumplings (Instant Pot) FAQs
The best way to know when this recipe is done is to remove one dumpling, and cut it in half with a knife. The dumpling should be dry and fluffy inside, like a cake.
If you forgot to make the roux, you can whisk 2 tablespoons cornstarch with 1 cup of cool/cold chicken broth. Add it to the pot, bring it to a simmer, and it will thicken.
Gummy dumplings were either over-mixed in the wet stage, or they are over-cooked. Follow the instructions, and test a dumpling by cutting it in half before serving. It should be dry and cake-like inside. This recipe contains cornmeal to prevent gummy dumplings, also!
- 1 ½ tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 small carrot, diced
- 1 stalk celery, diced
- 1 small onion, diced
- ½ teaspoon salt (plus more as needed)
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
- 1 quart of chicken stock
For the dumplings:
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup fine cornmeal
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley (or dried)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- ½ cup milk
- Remove the lid from the Instant Pot mini 3 quart, and turn it to the SAUTE setting.
- Add the butter to the pot, and let it melt until it starts to sizzle. Add the chicken thighs (skin side down) to the pan, and sear until golden brown (about 4-5 minutes). Flip and sear the other side, too.
- Remove the chicken from the pot, and place on a plate.
- Add the flour to the pot, and stir to make a paste.
- Add the carrot, celery, onion, salt, pepper, and parsley. Cook while stirring occasionally for 2 minutes.
- Add the chicken stock and chicken back to the pot.
- Cancel the SAUTE setting, and press the PRESSURE COOK' button. Set the timer for 8 minutes.
- Close the lid on the instant pot, and turn the steam valve to SEAL. It will start timing once the pot reaches pressure (in about 10-15 minutes).
- When the time is up, do a natural pressure release. Do not open the pot until the valve drops.
- Remove the chicken from the pot and let cool on a plate.
- Meanwhile, make the dumplings by whisking together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, parsley, salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted butter and milk.
- Whisk the dry and wet ingredients together for the dumplings. Don't over-mix your dough or your dumplings will be tough.
- Plop large tablespoon-sized chunks of dumplings into the Instant Pot broth (remember the chicken is not in the pot right now). Place the lid back on the pot, hit PRESSURE and add 2 minutes. (They will cook longer than 2 minutes because of the time it takes for the pot to come up to pressure).
- After the 2 minutes is up, do a forced pressure release (again, use an oven mitt and be careful of the steam).
- Shred the chicken and divide it between two bowls.
- Ladle the dumplings and broth into each bowl and serve.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 501Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 94mgSodium: 1476mgCarbohydrates: 53gFiber: 3gSugar: 9gProtein: 25g