Knoephla Soup: A Swabian Classic and German Delight

knoephla soup
knoephla soup

I want to share one of my favorite childhood comfort foods with you. Knoephla Soup is simply the best. It is of German origin and a Swabian classic dish. This Knoephla Soup recipe comes from the heart of my Grandmother’s kitchen and I hope Doris can impart a bit of that love on your family.

Knoephla soup is one of those recipes that both tastes delicious and brings me back to childhood. If you don’t know what knoephla soup is, you are in for a treat. If you do, this recipe is really a great from-scratch take on the classic German recipe that you know, love, and is part of our knoephla soup series. Try out this rich, buttery, creamy traditional German soup today and make some Knoephla soup!

What Is Knoephla Soup?

It is a chicken-based dumpling soup that has cream, butter, and a few different vegetables. Typically, you will find potatoes, carrots, and celery in the soup. Then, there are the dumplings, which make it Knoephla Soup.

Vegetables used in Knoephla Soup

If I were to plainly describe it, I would say it is a fat-filled, creamy, dumpling soup. Knoephla soup is hearty, tasty, and hits many comfort food check boxes. This is not a light recipe, although some changes could be made to lighten it up a bit. None of those changes I would recommend. 😉

Memories of Knoephla Soup

On a personal note, I have very fond memories of this soup. I know that many people looking at food blogs don’t want to hear the story and usually, I do not include stories. This one is different, as this soup holds a place in my heart. Scroll to the bottom if you just want to get to the recipe.

I cooked this soup with my grandmother, Doris, and remember being a young kid trying to help her make this soup. Food can bring people to a time-place and this brings me to my grandma’s kitchen in the early 1980s. I can imagine the first time I cooked this with her and visualize everything about their kitchen in Enderlin, North Dakota.

Not only does this recipe bring me closer to my loved ones that are no longer here, but I think it provides a connection with my heritage and the world. I am celebrating a dish that my ancestors made. Other people in my region are doing the same thing. When I make knoephla, I feel like I am creating connections with my heritage and I hope I can share some of those feelings with you.

Me sharing this recipe with you may inspire you to make it, and we can have that connection. Just you, me, and Doris, sharing this bond through food. No matter our backgrounds and how different we think we are, food is something we all share. A great dish can bring unlikely people together. Who knows? Perhaps our bond will extend to your family when they taste this lovely soup.

Use Homemade Chicken Stock If You Can

We just got done sharing our Chicken Stock recipe and I would recommend using this, or a similar, recipe to make the best soup. I also understand that this could take some time and the boxed chicken stock is a reasonable substitute. If you do substitute your chicken stock, remember that your final product will be reflective of the ingredients you choose. If you pick a higher quality store-bought chicken stock, you are going to have a better soup.

Flour Roux For Thickening

This is not necessary, but I like to make my broth nice and thick. The flour dumplings and a rich stock are going to help with this, but one thing I like to do is to add some flour at the beginning, as well. If I make a little roux at the beginning, it can help create a knoephla soup that is thick and delicious.

The Dumplings

The dumpling recipe is relatively straightforward and requires only a few ingredients. These can be made while your potatoes and veggies are cooking. In my instructions, I roll them out, but I gotta tell you my occasional cheat. I will mix the ingredients in the bowl and instead of rolling them out, I will take a small spoon and when the time is appropriate, just spoon them up and dump them in the soup.

This only saves a few minutes and there are a few drawbacks. Since I am adding the dumplings over a longer interval, I do get some inconsistent cook times. Additionally, the size of the dumplings isn’t uniform, which can have an impact on both cooking time and how big they are.

To be safe, just roll out your dumplings, but in the future, just keep these small timesavers in your pocket for thought.

Rolled out Knoephla dough before we cut them into dumplings

Knoephla Soup Leftovers Are The Best

Sometimes I think about making this soup and then just putting it in the fridge overnight because the leftovers are THAT good. I think what happens is that the flour from the dumplings sort of invades the rest of the soup, and you get this super nice, thick dumpling soup. I absolutely adore knoephla soup leftovers and wouldn’t even consider making this soup without an expectation that I am making enough for leftovers.

Tips For Making This Recipe

  • Using homemade chicken stock will give the best results, but boxed works well, as well.
  • If you are running short on time, you can shorten the cooking process by not rolling out the dough and using a spoon to quickly make the dumplings. I recommend rolling, but I do this shortcut occasionally.
  • Frozen dumplings would be fine for saving time, but homemade is better!


Q: What are some common variations of Knoephla Soup?

A: While the classic Knoephla Soup recipe includes potatoes, carrots, and celery, you can customize it to your liking. Some variations incorporate additional vegetables like peas, corn, or green beans, adding a burst of freshness and color to the soup.

Q: Can I make Knoephla Soup vegetarian or vegan?

A: Absolutely! You can easily adapt the recipe to suit vegetarian or vegan diets. Simply substitute vegetable broth for the chicken stock and use plant-based alternatives for butter and cream. The dumplings can be made with plant-based milk and butter substitutes, ensuring a delicious and satisfying vegan version of this traditional German soup.


Knoephla Soup is more than just a comforting meal; it’s a delicious blend of heritage, tradition, and love. By recreating this Swabian classic, we can connect with our ancestors and share a bond through the universal language of food. Whether you choose to follow the recipe to the letter or add your own unique twists, the joy of Knoephla Soup lies in its ability to bring people together and create cherished memories.

So, get cooking and savor every spoonful of this delightful German delight! For more culinary inspiration and recipes like this, visit Takeout Food, your go-to resource for culinary exploration.

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