Boil up

Boil Up Recipe with Dumplings | Pork Bones Soup

Easy as traditional boil up recipe NZ style, with dumplings and lashings of both root and leafy vegetables.
Dumplings, also known as “doughboys”, usually accompany the boil up to soak up the soupy goodness of what some will call pork bones soup.

This classic NZ boil up is easy to make, delicious to eat, and is sure to please even the fussiest eaters. You can whip up on a Sunday and let the stockpot do all the hard work!

Boil Up Recipe with Dumplings | Pork Bones Soup
Yield: Yield: 6 Serves

Boil Up Recipe

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 40 minutes

NZ Boil Up is a traditional method of cooking used by the Maori in New Zealand.

Starchy vegetables such as sweet potatoes, potatoes, cabbage leaves, are boiled together with pork bones, spinach/watercress.

This creates a hearty and warming meal that is healthy as well.


Boil up

  • 1kg meaty pork bones
  • 1 bacon hock
  • 4 medium-sized potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 large kumara
  • ½ pumpkin
  • 4 cabbage leaves
  • 1 large bunch watercress
  • ½ tsp salt


  • 1 cup self raising flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ cup water


Boil up;

  1. Peel and Dice the potatoes, pumpkin and kumara into 2cm cubes.
  2. Roughly Chop the watercress and cabbage.
  3. Slice onion and place with pork bones and hock in a large stockpot.
  4. Pour in just enough water to cover bones and hock, season with salt and then gently simmer for 1½ hours.
  5. Skim off any fat from top and remove bones, scraping off any remaining meat off the bones back in to the pot.
  6. Peel the hock, chop the meat then add it in.
  7. Add all vegies to pot and simmer a further 20 minutes.


  1. Lightly season the flour with salt.
  2. Gradually add water to form a dough.
  3. Break off small bits of dough and form 2-3cm balls.

Finish it off;

  1. Place doughboys on top of boil-up, cover and cook for about 10-15 minutes.
  2. Don't lift lid while cooking. Larger doughboys will take a bit longer.


This boil up is one of those dishes that seem to taste even better on the second or third cook.

Boil Up serving Suggestions

  • Serve your boil up in soup bowls with buttered bread on the side.
  • Serve over mashed potatoes.
  • Goes great on a bed of steamed rice.
  • Serve Cheese scones on the side instead of doughboys.

Boil up ingredient Substitutions

  • Kumara;
    Kumara is simply the Maori word for ( Purple )sweet potato. You can replace with any root vegetable you like.
  • Pork bones and bacon hock;
    Pork chops, You can substitute with most kinds of meaty bones including beef, lamb or goat.
    • For a healthier Maori Boil Up

      • Lower Sodium
        Eliminate salt from boil up ingredients

    Nutrition Information



    Serving Size


    Amount Per Serving Calories 621Total Fat 24gSaturated Fat 8gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 13gCholesterol 149mgSodium 689mgCarbohydrates 48gFibre 5gSugar 5gProtein 51g

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