Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

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Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

I don’t know about you but despite the fact that weather is finally heading in the right direction with lots of sunshine and warm temperatures I still cannot say no to some comfort food cooking. Having said that, this particular Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings (I know it’s a mouthful lol) has in fact really summery feel to it and is full to the brim with veg too.

This recipe is relatively quick as casseroles go due to the use of chicken thighs and also uses one pot only which is a bonus. You will need to make your food processor or a bowl dirty in order to make dumplings but that’s it.

Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

If you follow the blog you know that I have been a little bit besoted with wild garlic this season and have been enjoying it in many different recipes from Wild Garlic Hummus, through Wild Garlic & Walnut Pesto to Roast Chicken with Wild Garlic Pesto & Shallots. This Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings is my second recipe that uses wild garlic pesto but feel free to use any pesto that you’ve got available as I am aware that wild garlic might be a bit difficult to come by. However, I would definitely stick to green type of pesto as opposed to red (roasted pepper) one as it’s got more of a Spring/Summer feel to me.

Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings

Being one pot dish this lovely casserole doesn’t really need anything to go with it but I thought that serving it with a side of this season’s first roasted asparagus would not go amiss. And oh boy was I right! We had clean plates all round with kids going berserk about dumplings and generally the entire dish! It’s our new favourite for sure and although next time I might have to substitute gorgeous wild garlic pesto with the regular one, I’m sure it will be a huge hit yet again.

5 from 2 votes
Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings
Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
55 mins
Total Time
1 hr 5 mins

Summery comfort food at its best. Full of new season flavours your entire family will love. And those cheesy dumplings...

Course: Chicken Dish, Main Course
Cuisine: British
Keyword: chicken casserole, Pesto, wild garlic
Servings: 4 people
Author: Jo Allison
Chicken Casserole
  • 6 skinless & boneless chicken thighs cut into small chunks
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 leeks cleaned, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 celery stalks cut into small chunks
  • 3 carrots cut into small chunks
  • 6 small(ish) potatoes (roughly 400g) cut into small chunks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 30 g unsalted butter
  • 1 heaped Tbsp plain flour
  • 100 g frozen peas
  • 600 ml chicken stock from cube is fine
  • 1 small jar (125ml) wild garlic pesto or regular pesto
  • fresh parsley for garnish
  • salt, pepper, oil
Cheesy Dumplings
  • 250 g self-raising flour
  • 125 g unsalted butter cold and cubed
  • 100 g mature cheddar grated
  • 100 ml ice cold water
  1. Prepare all the vegetables as per instructions above.

  2. Heat a glug of oil in a heavy duty casserole dish with the lid and sautée chicken thighs seasoned with some salt and pepper for approx. 5 min until they start to brown. Take them out of the dish with slotted spoon and set aside.

  3. Melt butter in the same dish and sautée prepared onions and leeks until they start to soften approx. 5 min. Add remaining vegetables and bay leaf and sautée for another 5 min.

  4. Sprinkle over the flour, pour in stock and give it all a good stir. Add chicken pieces making sure they are immersed in the liquid, bring everything to boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15 min. whilst you prepare your dumplings.

  5. For dumplings mix flour and butter in the food processor or by hand until they resemble breadcrumbs. Mix in grated cheese and season with some salt and pepper. Slowly pour in icy cold water and keep mixing your dough only until it comes together (you don't want to overmix it). Divide the dough into 12 equal size balls and set aside until needed.

  6. After 15 minutes of simmering, add pesto and frozen peas to your casserole and mix well. Place dumplings on top, cover tightly with a lid and simmer for approx. 20-25 min until cooked. 

  7. Serve sprinkled with fresh parsley and roasted asparagus or any other seasonal veg. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes
  • If you don't have wild garlic pesto you can use any green pesto you've got on hand, store bought one is fine too. 

Have you tried my Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings? Leave a comment at the bottom of this post, I love reading them!

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Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings


I’m linking my Wild Garlic Pesto Chicken Casserole with Cheesy Dumplings with the following pages:

Cook Blog Share hosted by Monika at Everyday Healthy Recipes and Kirsty at Hijacked By Twins

Cook Once Eat Twice hosted by Corina at Searching for Spice

Brilliant Blog Posts hosted by Vicki at Honest Mum Blog

Recipe of the Week hosted by Emily at A Mummy Too

Fiesta Friday hosted by Angie and Antonia at Zoale.com

Hijacked By TwinsLink up your recipe of the weekBrilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

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  • Reply Corina Blum

    I am just loving all your wild garlic recipes this year Jo, even though I still haven’t come across any yet! This sounds absolutely delicious and it’s always a bonus when to create a meal that the kids all love too. Thanks so much for sharing with #CookOnceEatTwice x

    May 23, 2018 at 1:00 pm
    • Reply joskitchenlarder

      Aw, thanks Corina! 🙂 I think this one might be the last one unless I manage to get fresh supply of wild garlic which I am so hoping for! 🙂 x

      May 23, 2018 at 1:16 pm
  • Reply Jenny Walters

    Oh Jo this is fabulous!Dumplings are lush enough never mind the damn cheese!!!Im definitely coming to live next door 😆😆😆

    May 25, 2018 at 4:59 pm
    • Reply joskitchenlarder

      Ha ha ha no problem 🙂 Cheesy dumplings are my guilty pleasure but worth dietary sin every time! lol 🙂 x

      May 27, 2018 at 7:24 pm
  • Reply Michelle Frank | Flipped-Out Food

    Chicken and dumplings is one of my all-time favorite comfort food dishes! The fact that you’ve recreated it here using seasonal ingredients has practically rocked me to my core. I can practically TASTE this!

    May 26, 2018 at 12:46 am
    • Reply joskitchenlarder

      Thanks Michelle 🙂 I cannot simply switch to salads only come Spring/Summer, there’s got to be some room for comfort food in our house even if slightly adapted to suit the season. 🙂

      May 27, 2018 at 7:28 pm
  • Reply Antonia @ Zoale

    Wow, this looks amazing! And, cheesy dumplings..yum! Thank you for sharing at Fiesta Friday!

    May 26, 2018 at 2:24 am
    • Reply joskitchenlarder

      Thank you! 🙂 Cheesy dumplings are always the most desirable part of the stew 🙂 Pleasure to link up! 🙂

      May 27, 2018 at 7:31 pm

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