Fluffy Little Clouds - Old Fashioned Dumplings for Stew

Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 30 mins

This is my Mum's traditional dumpling recipe - and they ARE very light & fluffy, hence the recipe name! I never use beef suet, there is very good vegetable suet available now; if you cannot get hold of suet, put a block of butter in the freezer & grate it into the dumpling mixture - it's the little pieces of fat that give the dumplings their "rise"! These are great with added flavours, such as garlic, herbs, seasoning salt, even chilli if you are making them to go with a spicy stew or soup. Drop them into any stews or soups you are making - they are also wonderful baked in the oven, they are still light but have a crusty top. This recipe can be increased with ease - the quantities listed make 8 individual dumplings.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Put the flour, seasonings, & suet in a large mixing bowl, mix thoroughly.
  2. (If you are adding herbs or extra seasonings, add them now & mix well.).
  3. Add sufficient cold water - bit by bit - to make a pliable dough; it should not be too sticky, but just bound together.
  4. Divide the dumpling mixture into 8 portions, and roll into small balls with floured hands.
  5. Drop them into your soup, casserole or stew 20 minutes before the end of the cooking time, making sure that the soup, stew or casserole is very hot.
  6. Put the lid on IMMEDIATELY and do NOT take the lid off until just before the end of the cooking time, about 15-18 minutes to check that they are nearly ready.
  7. They should have doubled in size at least, and be very light & fluffy looking!
  8. Ladle the soup, stew or casserole into warmed soup bowls & serve 2 dumplings per person.
  9. Oven baked: place the dumplings on top of your stew or casserole and cook for about 30 minutes at 200C or 400F, or until well risen, golden brown & crusty.


Most Helpful

I made these with my Plain Lentil Soup, posted on Recipezaar by SaraFish. They were delicious! I used butter instead of suet. Also, I baked them in the oven (like biscuits), instead of on top of the soup. By baking them this way, they don't take very long to cook (only about 15 min). Next time I make soup, I'll be making these again.

Dixie Vader December 16, 2007

I used this recipe as a guide for making some of the best dumplings I have ever made! I used butter, and in place of water, I mixed about 1/8 c milk with 1 beaten egg, and then added milk to the batter as needed until a sticky consistency was reached. The only seasonings I used were salt, pepper, and about 1 tsp of poultry seasoning. Super light, moist and 2 per person are just perfect. For my chicken and dumplings, made with onion, garlic and leeks? Amazing!

Angela M. November 20, 2015

I added these to Beef Casserole #256605 and they were amazing! I doubled the recipe (and made about 15) and added 1/2 ts of mixed herbs. The 4 kids thought they were fantastic, thanks for posting French Tart, these are a winner!

cookingpompom August 18, 2013

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