Czech Bread Dumplings (Knedlíky)


I'm very excited to be showing you my take on knedlíky. It's easy, fun to make, and incredibly comforting. If you're a fan of dumplings, especially ones that are extraordinarily good at soaking up gravy, you'll want to add these to the rotation. Serve hot with gravy.

Prep Time:
30 mins
Cook Time:
40 mins
Additional Time:
2 hrs 30 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 40 mins

As promised, here are the Czech-style bread dumplings pictured under our recently posted Bohemian Orange Chicken recipe. The hardest part of that video was not letting these dumplings steal the show, but now they finally get their turn to shine. Figuratively, but once covered in a nice, rich gravy, they'll literally shine as well.

This is one of those recipes where nothing looks or seems particularly impressive until you start eating them. Before it's sliced, the boiled log of wet dough looks like something you'd see in a jar of formaldehyde in a horror movie. After it's sliced, it looks like the worst baguette ever made, but looks can be deceiving, and in this case, very, very deceiving. Once they're smothered in copious amounts of saucy meat, or meaty sauce, you realize these soft, fluffy, airy, gravy sponges are nothing short of magical.

I love these hot and freshly sliced, but they're also amazing boiled ahead and reheated when you're ready to serve. You can do this by placing slices in a dry pan, sprinkling them with a few drops of water, and then heating them through over medium-low heat. Or, and don't tell the Czechs you heard this from me, you can also lightly brown them in some butter. Either way, I really do hope you give this Knedlíky recipe a try soon.

Czech Bread Dumplings
Czech Bread Dumplings. Chef John


  • 1 cup warm milk (105 degrees F (40 degrees C))

  • 1 tablespoon white sugar

  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 large egg, beaten

  • 2 ¾ cups quick-mixing flour (such as Wondra®), or more as needed


  1. Combine warm milk, sugar, and yeast in a bowl. Let sit and bloom for about 10 minutes.

  2. Add egg and kosher salt to the yeast mixture. Pour in 2 ¾ cups flour. Stir with a wooden spoon until it starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl and forms a dough.

  3. Knead on a lightly floured surface until dough is smooth and slightly elastic, about 3 minutes.

  4. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, flipping the dough to coat the top in oil. Cover and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 2 hours.

  5. Transfer back to your work surface; press out the excess air and form dough into a relatively uniform ball.

  6. Cut dough into two equal pieces. Form each piece into a uniform ball. Roll each ball into a tube, 2 to 2 ½ inches wide.

  7. Cover with plastic wrap or a clean kitchen towel and let proof for 20 to 25 minutes.

  8. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a steady simmer.

  9. Carefully pick up a risen piece of dough and transfer to the simmering water. Bring back to a simmer. Cover tightly and let simmer for 10 minutes. Uncover, flip, and continue to simmer for another 10 minutes.

  10. Transfer to a plate and poke all over with a toothpick or wooden skewer, which releases the steam from the center.

  11. Use a piece of string or thread to cut into 3/4- to 1-inch dumplings. Transfer to a serving plate.

  12. Repeat Steps 9 to 11 to cook remaining dough.

    Czech Bread Dumplings
    Czech Bread Dumplings. Chef John

Chef's Note:

You can substitute half all-purpose flour and half semolina flour for Wondra® if you can't find it.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

169 Calories
2g Fat
35g Carbs
6g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 169
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2g 2%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 26mg 9%
Sodium 262mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 35g 13%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Protein 6g
Potassium 108mg 2%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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