Caribbean Chicken Soup and Parsley Dumplings

And my two weeks of no meat has finally come to an end and I survived to tell the tale.  Surprisingly I didn’t miss it at all!   Even though I didn’t eat meat, I cooked it a few times for the Mr. because he just couldn’t survive without it.  I was totally surprised at my willpower and lack of interest; I didn’t even sneak a bite.   At the end of the two weeks I celebrated by making a Cinco De Mayo feast, and oh what a feast it was.

The fish tacos with mango salsa, carnitas tamales and cucumber margaritas that I prepared as a reward were a hit.

While it was fun pushing myself beyond my comfort zone, I don’t see it as a permanent lifestyle.  It’s good to know that I could survive without meat without going batsh*t crazy.

Now back to regular routine, I prepared a Caribbean version of Chicken and Dumplings.   Chicken, pumpkin, white sweet potatoes, fresh corn and parsley dumplings are cooked in a light, fragrant coconut broth.

With each bite of this one pot meal you’re instantly transported to the Caribbean.    Pumpkin and coconut milk give this soup a light sweetness while the corn and sweet potato makes it hearty.

Chicken Soup with sweet potatoes, pumpkin and corn

2 cups Caribbean Pumpkin, peeled, seeded and cut in 1 inch cubes

2 ears fresh corn

3 cups white sweet potato (boniato), peeled and cut in 2 inch cubes

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

6 sprigs thyme

1 bay leaf

1 wiri pepper

¼ tsp salt

½ tsp black pepper

2 tbsp margarine

4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

4 cups chicken stock

¼ cup coconut milk

Chopped parsley

Hold the 1 corn upright holding the pointed tip, using a knife, cut the corn downwards, 2-3 rows at a time.    Repeat until all of the corn is cut off the cob.   Next, using the back of the knife scrape corn cob to remove the milk bits.   Set aside.   Now cut the second ear of corn crosswise into 2 inch pieces.  Set aside.

In a large stock pot over medium fire, melt margarine.   Add onions and cook for 3 minutes until soft.   Add garlic, thyme, bay leaf and wiri pepper then stir.  Cook for 2 minutes.   Sprinkle salt and pepper on chicken thighs then add to pot.   Cook for 5 minutes.   Next add sweet potato, cut corn with the milky bits and chicken stock, bring to a boil then lower heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 5 minutes.   Add pumpkin, corn on the cob and coconut milk.   Cook for an additional 10 minutes.  Remove chicken, shred when cool enough to hand.   While chicken cools, add dumplings.  Cover pot and cook for 5 minutes.  Do not peep! Remove from heat, add shredded chicken.  Sprinkle chopped parsley before serving.

Parsley Dumplings

¾ cup Flour

½ tsp sugar

¼ tsp salt

½ tsp baking powder

1 tbsp margarine

1 tsp parsley

3 tbsp + 1 tsp milk

Place flour in a bowl with salt, sugar and baking powder then mix to combine.   Using a fork, cut margarine into flour until it resembles coarse cornmeal.   Add 1 tsp chopped parsley and milk; using your hands mix to form dough.   Roll dough into a log, and then cut into 1 inch pieces.  Roll between palms to form the dumplings.   Add to soup last 5 minutes of cooking.


  • Caribbean pumpkin is commonly known as Calabaza squash.  Butternut squash is an excellent substitute.
  • If Caribbean sweet potatoes are unavailable, use Yukon gold potatoes instead however it won’t be as sweet.
  • During the cooking process check the sweet potatoes and pumpkin for tenderness.   If you find that one is too soft, remove from the soup with a slotted spoon then add once the soup is done.  While a bit tedious, it is better than eating mushy soup!


  1. May 8, 2012 / 8:13 am

    Nice recipe, sounds delicious.

    You are welcome to join in my monthly food blogger event THE SOUP KITCHEN, here offering a new theme each month. All bloggers are welcome, hope to see you participate soon.

  2. Meagan
    May 8, 2012 / 6:30 pm

    Looks quite lovely. I didn’t know it was that easy to make dumplings from scratch. I definitely have to give it a go.

  3. May 8, 2012 / 6:36 pm

    Looks yummy. I made a similar soup just yesterday with pumpkin and corn. I’m going to make it again with the addition of dumplings (gluten free of course)

  4. May 9, 2012 / 7:01 am

    oh my word! this is just too good looking. Loving the dumplings! Great Caribbean flavors!

  5. May 9, 2012 / 11:24 am

    Boy does that look good! I saved this in my recipes to make folder! Thanks Jehan.

  6. May 9, 2012 / 1:37 pm

    Hi Jehan,

    I’m following you from MBC. Your blog is AMAZING!!!! Everything about it, WOW! I’ve been reading through your recipes and I want to try them all. And I’m really hungry now…Your pics are great too! Thanks for sharing your food and photos with all of us.
    I’ll be back soon, and I’ll let you know when I try one of your recipes.

  7. JehanP
    May 9, 2012 / 2:10 pm

    Thanks Krista for all the kind words and for stopping by.

  8. May 9, 2012 / 9:21 pm

    Cute little dumplings. That starchy essence that they add to soups is stews is so nice for the texture.

  9. May 10, 2012 / 7:05 am

    This looks yummy! I’m following you on twitter-couldnt find Google friends? If you would like to exchange links too please let me know.

  10. JehanP
    May 10, 2012 / 11:48 am

    Tess I don’t have google friends but I do have FB. I’m following u also 🙂

  11. May 10, 2012 / 2:42 pm

    Oh man, I want some of that soup!

  12. Jessica D
    June 19, 2012 / 9:38 am

    I meant what is a wiri pepper?!

  13. JehanP
    June 19, 2012 / 12:51 pm

    Hi Jessica, wiri or wiri wiri pepper is a small, hot round pepper and not it’s not commonly found most grocery stores. It is typically found at Guyanese grocery stores. A great substitute would be thai chili pepper or scotch bonnet pepper.

  14. January 28, 2013 / 6:47 am

    I really have to say I really enjoy your space, the way you write is fantastic!

  15. Beverly Drury
    February 21, 2013 / 11:00 am

    Hey, Jehan. I made this last night with a few alterations. Now, when a make a new recipe I like to follow the recipe exactly but sometimes life doesn’t allow that. First, I had to increase the recipe by 50% because I have 4 kids and I am a big believer in cook once, eat twice. Then, some of my boniato was bad so I had to sub in some yuca. Then, when I was ready to make the dumplings, I realized I literally only had 2 tbsp of flour. So no dumplings. The only other thing I did was when the pumpkin was all nice and soft I took it out of the pot, put it in a bowl and mashed it up and then put it back in the pot. I did this because I know my kids and I know they would turn their nose up at the sight of bright orange cubes in their bowl. In doing this, though, my soup broth into more of a thick stew consistency. But it was sooo delicious. Everybody loved it. Especially on a cold winter day.

  16. JehanP
    February 21, 2013 / 12:19 pm

    Hi Beverly, so glad to hear you and your boys enjoyed it. My husband like his pumpkin crushed up in the soup also.

  17. stephanie_p
    June 11, 2013 / 3:46 pm

    oh my goodness!! this looks and sounds AMAZING!! thankfully here in San Diego there are many ethnic grocery stores so hopefully I won’t have difficulty finding the ingredients because I DEFINITELY MUST MAKE THIS!!!!

  18. JehanP
    June 11, 2013 / 6:58 pm

    Stephanie, please do, you won’t be disappointed.

  19. nandane
    June 23, 2013 / 5:16 am

    How many servings does this make?

  20. JehanP
    June 23, 2013 / 3:53 pm

    This makes 6 servings.

  21. Barbara Bihm
    August 20, 2013 / 3:52 pm

    Hi Jehan, I just stumbled upon your website and must say you are doing an amazing job! Thanks to you i now have a reference point when I want to refresh my Guyanese culinary skills :). Thank you so much and keep up the good work.

  22. christine
    October 13, 2013 / 9:11 am

    Hey jehani I tried it and came out so well I add in all the different provo. The dumplings came out well the only thing is I like it alittle sweeter
    Thank you and continue to give us more of your wonderful recipes

  23. January 2, 2014 / 11:56 am

    I love this recipe and your blog.

  24. JehanP
    February 2, 2014 / 7:34 am

    It can, but a wide pot is recommended.

  25. May 5, 2014 / 3:07 pm

    This is realy delicious and warms the cockles of ya tummy….highly recommend

  26. Ami
    October 2, 2014 / 11:14 pm

    Hi, I am half white/Guyanese born in Georgetown Guyana and my fiancee is a Jamaican from Negril. I’m a decent cook, but he blows anything I pretty much prepare out of the water. He is an AMAZING cook. But lacking in imagination. His favourite dish is….chicken. I’m the opposite. I love everything and I am slowly getting him to warm up to, well everything.
    But he made this soup (his version) for me the other day and it was SOOOOO delicious.
    I have already surprised him with your version of the beef patties and Jerk Chicken.
    When it was breakfast I even made him Salt fish and fried dumplings.Let me tell you he was pretty impressed.
    I am yet to make him Bake Guyanese style (Johnnycakes) which I personally find better than the Jamaicans dumpling.
    But thanks to your website I am making my future hubby a very happy man and myself a happy woman. I don’t live near my mother and I never bothered much to stand and watch her cook. I was the taster haha not so much the learner.
    She doesn’t measure and just cooks however she remembers it and that doesn’t help me out very well, and I end up making something that is supposed to be delicious, taste awful.
    Thanks to your page I have been able to teach myself Caribbean recipes plus many more.
    So when the visit by my mom ends and I need some more ideas this is where I will turn too.
    Keep up the great work. Pictures are beautiful and the food is amazing. You sound like a wonderful mother, loving wife and an amazing chef.

  27. Nikki
    January 25, 2015 / 5:14 pm

    This is an amazing recipe. One ingredient that I tried, was adding a whole Mango. Because I used Yukon potatoes, I wanted to still get that natural sweetness that a sweet potato would have added. Let me tell you, it is so flipping good. I also increased the coconut milk to the whole can. Mostly because I love the flavor of coconut… lol. Thanks again for this recipe, thoroughly enjoyable.


  28. Alina
    September 8, 2015 / 6:57 am

    Hello, thanks for sharing the recipe with us, can’t wait to try it this week! In the picture it looks like there’s cassava in the soup, is that optional?

  29. JehanP
    September 8, 2015 / 7:02 pm

    Alina, there’s no cassava in the soup, it is actually sweet potato(boniato). You can add any starchy root that you prefer or just leave it out.