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Keto Chicken and Dumplings

Who wants a creamy, comforting bowl of Keto Chicken and Dumplings? You won’t believe this easy recipe is actually low carb! Includes instructions for making on the stovetop, crockpot, and the Instant Pot.

an overhead shot of keto chicken and dumplings with a small dish each of coarse salt and black pepper

Chicken and dumplings have been in my life pretty much since the day I was born. It’s such a comforting, hearty dish. There’s nothing better on a cold winter day!

When I wrote my first book (Weeknight Cooking with your Instant Pot), I adapted my mom’s recipe for traditional chicken and dumplings for the Instant Pot. It’s her recipe that I’ve made for years and the same recipe she used when I was a kid. Her dumplings were light and fluffy and pure heaven in a bowl! It’s safe to say that I know my chicken and dumplings.

Making a keto chicken and dumplings recipe was slightly more challenging. Luckily, I had the benefit of a few year’s experience writing recipes for the keto diet, especially after writing my fourth book (Weeknight Keto). It took a few tries to get the dumplings perfect, but it was a delicious process getting there.

Personal note: For what it’s worth, the two books I’ve referenced above are my favorites of the five I’ve written. I enjoyed writing them both the most and I also think they’re the best of the five.

a closeup shot of a spoon with a dumpling raised from a bowl of keto chicken and dumplings

What is Chicken and Dumplings?

Traditional chicken and dumplings are made by cooking chicken in water, then using the resulting chicken broth as both the base of the soup and to cook the dumplings. Because this recipe doesn’t call for cooking an entire chicken, the water has been replaced with chicken broth, and the chicken meat is cooked directly in the pot as usual.

And, because it’s a recipe for the ketogenic diet, the traditional all-purpose flour used to make dumplings has been replaced with a combination of almond and coconut flours. The feedback from readers for this recipe has been overwhelmingly positive! A small few have mentioned they can taste the coconut in the dumplings, which I’ve personally never noticed, but it’s something to keep in mind if you’re sensitive to that particular flavor. The last thing I’d want is for you to spend time making a recipe and not have it be something you’d enjoy and make again and again!

Can you eat dumplings on Keto?

Traditional dumplings are much higher in carbs than the ones in this recipe. The good news is that these keto dumplings taste virtually the same and you get to keep your macros in check – all while eating a hot bowl of creamy comfort food!

Ingredients Needed for Keto Chicken and Dumplings

Ingredients for the soup portion:

  • extra-virgin olive or avocado oil
  • onion
  • garlic
  • boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • chicken broth
  • heavy cream
  • salt and pepper

Ingredients for the dumplings:

  • almond flour
  • coconut flour
  • xanthan gum
  • baking powder
  • salt and pepper
  • melted butter
  • unsweetened coconut milk
  • an egg
side view of a bowl of keto chicken and dumplings

Instructions for Making on the Stovetop, Crockpot, and Instant Pot

Stovetop:

  • Heat a stockpot over medium heat. Add the oil and, when it’s shimmering, add the onions. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until they’re soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more, stirring frequently.
  • Place the chicken in the pot and pour the chicken broth over the top. Bring to a gentle boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and either cut into bite-sized pieces or gently shred it. Return the chicken to the stockpot. Allow the soup to gently simmer while you make the dumplings.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don’t overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they’re packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  • Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Reduce the heat to low.
  • When the soup is at a very low simmer, drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Alternatively, you can turn off the heat just before adding the dumplings to ensure they don’t get overcooked and fall apart.

Crockpot:

  1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and, when it’s shimmering, add the onions. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until they’re soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more, stirring frequently.
  2. Place the onion mixture into the crockpot. Add the chicken and broth, then stir gently. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don’t overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they’re packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  4. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and either cut into bite-sized pieces or shred it. Return the chicken to the crockpot. Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Reduce the heat to low.
  5. Drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Turn the temperature setting to “keep warm” or off completely.

Instant Pot:

  1. Press “Saute” to preheat your Instant Pot. When the word “hot” appears on the display, add the oil. When it’s shimmering, add the onions to the pot. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until the onions are soft. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute, stirring frequently. Turn off the Instant Pot.
  2. Add the chicken to the pot and pour the broth over, taking care that all the chicken is submerged. Close and lock the lid of the Instant Pot. Press “Manual” and immediately adjust the timer to 10 minutes.
    Check that the cooking pressure is on “high” and that the release valve is set to “Sealing”.
  3. Meanwhile, In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don’t overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they’re packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  4. When the time is up, allow the pressure to release naturally.
    Open the IP and gently stir. Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Press “Saute” and make sure it’s set to low.
  5. Drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Turn off the Instant Pot or set it to “keep warm”. Serve immediately.
an overhead shot of keto chicken and dumplings

Can I make a traditional chicken and dumplings instead of Keto Chicken and Dumplings?

If you’re okay with the extra carbs and would like to make this Keto Chicken and Dumplings recipe into one that’s more traditional, you can use these ingredients for traditional dumplings: 1 cup all-purpose flour, 2 tsp baking powder, ½ tsp salt, ½ cup whole milk, and 2 tbsp vegetable oil. Follow the same directions in the recipe, with the exception of doubling the time it takes to cook the dumplings.

Tips for making Keto Chicken and Dumplings

  • The recipe calls for boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts. You can save time by using cooked and shredded rotisserie chicken.
  • Be sure to press the dumplings into your hands several times when forming them. This will help ensure they stay together when cooking.
  • Don’t overcook the dumplings! Add them just before you’re ready to serve as they cook in just minutes.
  • Chopped carrots and celery are traditional ingredients in chicken and dumplings. They’ve been omitted here to keep the carb count as low as possible, but you can add some at the same time as the onions in the first step if you’d prefer.
  • Use full-fat unsweetened coconut milk in place of the heavy cream, if you prefer.
a spoon with a dumpling raised from a bowl of keto chicken and dumplings

Here are a few of my other favorite keto recipes at the moment:

an overhead shot of keto chicken and dumplings

Keto Chicken and Dumplings

Yield: 8 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

You won't believe this creamy comfort food is actually low carb! Includes instructions for making on the stovetop, crockpot, and the Instant Pot.

Ingredients

For the "soup":

  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive or avocado oil (or ghee)
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts (or a combination)
  • 8 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

For the dumplings:

  • 1 1/2 cups almond flour
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 large egg, room temperature

Garnish

  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley (optional)

Instructions

Stovetop Instructions:

  1. Heat a stockpot over medium heat. Add the oil and, when it's shimmering, add the onions. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until they're soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more, stirring frequently.
  2. Place the chicken in the pot and pour the chicken broth over the top. Bring to a gentle boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and either cut into bite-sized pieces or gently shred it. Return the chicken to the stockpot. Allow the soup to gently simmer while you make the dumplings.
  3. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don't overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they're packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  4. Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Reduce the heat to low.
  5. When the soup is at a very low simmer, drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Alternatively, you can turn off the heat just before adding the dumplings to ensure they don't get overcooked and fall apart. Serve immediately.

Crockpot Instructions

  1. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and, when it's shimmering, add the onions. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until they're soft and translucent. Add the garlic and cook for one minute more, stirring frequently.
  2. Place the onion mixture into the crockpot. Add the chicken and broth, then stir gently. Cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
  3. Meanwhile, In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don't overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they're packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  4. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon and either cut into bite-sized pieces or shred it. Return the chicken to the crockpot. Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Reduce the heat to low.
  5. Drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Turn the temperature setting to "keep warm" or off completely.

Instant Pot Instructions

  1. Press “Saute” to preheat your Instant Pot. When the word “hot” appears on the display, add the oil. When it's shimmering, add the onions to the pot. Cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally until the onions are soft. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute, stirring frequently. Turn off the Instant Pot.
  2. Add the chicken to the pot and pour the broth over, taking care that all the chicken is submerged. Close and lock the lid of the Instant Pot. Press “Manual” and immediately adjust the timer to 10 minutes.
    Check that the cooking pressure is on “high” and that the release valve is set to “Sealing”.
  3. Meanwhile, In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the almond flour, coconut flour, xantham gum, baking powder, salt, and pepper until thoroughly combined. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, and the egg. Add the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it forms a soft dough (don't overmix). Using your hands, form the dough into 1-inch dumplings, pressing them well several times each to make sure they're packed well (this will help prevent them from falling apart when cooked).
  4. When the time is up, allow the pressure to release naturally.
    Open the IP and gently stir. Add the salt, pepper, and heavy cream to the soup. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Press "Saute" and make sure it's set to low.
  5. Drop the dumplings (one or two at a time) directly into the soup. Cook the dumplings for about 5 minutes, just until cooked through. Turn off the Instant Pot or set it to "keep warm". Serve immediately.

Notes

If you prefer a thicker soup, sprinkle 1/2 tsp xantham gum over the surface of the soup after cooking, then stir it in (before adding the dumplings).

To keep the carbs low, the recipe doesn't call for carrots and celery. If you would prefer to have these in the dish, add 4 each of carrots and celery stalks (or less), chopped, to the onions when sauteeing.

Take care to cook the dumplings just before serving, and don't cook them too long or they could dissolve into the soup. If this happens, all is not lost as it still tastes delicious!

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 636Total Fat: 42gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 25gCholesterol: 268mgSodium: 904mgCarbohydrates: 12gNet Carbohydrates: 8gFiber: 4gSugar: 5gProtein: 54g

This data was provided and calculated by Nutritionix.

Kristy Bernardo
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