Steamed pork buns

Jjinppang-mandu 찐빵만두

When I lived in Toronto, I learned how to make  Chinese steamed pork buns from my Korean-Chinese friend, Ms. Bong.

Ms. Bong’s story relating to this food fascinated me for a while. She said:

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“We used to make a large quantity at once, enough to eat for the whole winter. We kept hundreds of steamed pork buns in earthenware pots in the yard. The weather was so cold that the buns were frozen the whole winter, until we finished them. They were hard as stones the whole time. We ate them every other day, not as a snack, but as a meal. We used to bring some frozen buns to the kitchen, thaw them out, steam them, and eat them.”

I was overwhelmed by this story. I could picture them making the buns and keeping them in a huge earthenware pot. I could imagine them bringing some to their kitchen, thawing them out, and eating them with the whole family! Ms. Bong said they usually served them with rice porridge for a meal.

The small rolling pin that I use in this video was given to me by her. When she gave me the rolling pin, I was so excited that I ran to Chinatown to buy my steamer! The steamer has been one of my most precious kitchen items for 3 years. : )

I modified the filling to be more like a Korean style filling. Real Chinese steamed buns use ground pork, dried shrimp, chives, and blanched napa cabbage.

Yield:
16 steamed pork buns (6-8 servings)

Ingredients

For dough
All purpose flour, dry yeast, water, salt, sugar, and vegetable oil.

For filling
Ground pork, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, black ground pepper, garlic, onion, zucchini, carrot, green onions (or Asian chives), and white mushrooms.

Directions

Make the dough:

  1. In a large bowl add 1 cup of warm water (under 40° Celsius, or 100° F), 2 ts dry yeast, ½ ts salt, 2 tbs vegetable oil, and 1 ts sugar. Mix well until the dry yeast is fully dissolved.
  2. Add 3 cups of flour to the yeast water. Mix with a wooden spoon, then knead for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Set aside in warm place until the dough doubles in size.
    *tip: watch the video to see how you can make your dough rise faster! 
  4. After the dough has risen, knead it again for 1 minute to remove any extra gas. Set it aside in warm place with the lid closed for 30 minutes.

While we wait for this to rise, we can prepare the fillings:

  1. In a large bowl, place:
    • 1 cup chopped onion
    • ½ cup chopped carrot
    • 1½ cup chopped zucchini
    • 1½ cup chopped green onions
    • 2 cups chopped white mushrooms

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  2. Sprinkle 1 ts salt over top and mix it up by hand. Set aside for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Squeeze the excess water out.
    *tip: using cheesecloth will make this easier. Wrap the chopped vegetables in cheesecloth and gently squeeze the water out. 
  4. In a mixing bowl, place:
    • 400 grams (14 oz) of ground pork
    • 1 ts soy sauce
    • 2 cloves of minced garlic
    • 1 ts sesame oil
    • ½ ts ground black pepper
  5. Mix it by hand and set aside.

Let’s cook!

  1. In a heated pan, add 1 tbs vegetable oil and sauté the chopped vegetables for 2-3 minutes. Transfer them to a large bowl.
  2. Heat up the pan again, and cook the seasoned pork for 3 minutes until fully cooked.
  3. Put the pork into the bowl with the vegetables and mix it all up.

Now let’s make the buns:

  1. Split the dough into 16 smaller pieces.
  2. Take a few dough balls and put them on a floured cutting board. The rest of balls should be in the bowl with the lid closed, to prevent them from getting dried out.
  3. Roll out each ball into a disk 4 inches (10 cm) in diameter.
  4. Place a disk into your palm and add 2-3 tbs of filling mixture to the center of it.
  5. Lift the edges of the disk up around the filling, then press the edges together to seal the filling snugly inside the bun.
  6. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling, until you’ve made 16 buns.
  7. Put 6-7 cups of water in the bottom of a large steamer and place each bun on the rack.
    *tip: Place cheesecloth or cotton cloth on the steamer rack before adding each bun. Baking cups also work well. When you place the buns on the rack, leave a 1 inch gap between them because they will get bigger when steamed.
  8. Wait for 20 more minutes to let the dough rise even more.
  9. Bring to a boil over high heat, and steam for 20 minutes.

Dipping sauce:

  1. Combine ⅓ cup soy sauce, 2 tbs of vinegar, and 2 ts sugar in a small bowl.
  2. Add some chunks of onion (½ cup), chunks of green chili pepper, and roasted sesame seeds.

When the buns are cooked, turn off the heat and remove the lid to prevent water from the top of the lid from dripping over the buns.



Serve with the dipping sauce, and enjoy!

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149 Comments:

  1. fitXmom Florida joined 5/12 & has 21 comments

    I am looking for a recipe to make the steamed buns with whole wheat flour. I started buying these two weeks ago and love them but I try to keep my white flour intake down. If they come out good, I will share with everyone.

  2. Woman loves korea KSA joined 8/12 & has 1 comment

    Hi maangch! Ur website is v.useful for me.. Thanks alot …
    About steamed bun … If i replace the pork with beef… Is that making a big different in the taste?
    And sorry for my bad english language>_<

  3. kkat9011 Alabama joined 10/11 & has 2 comments

    I just made these today, and they’re so good! My brother doesn’t usually like vegetables, and he really hates onions, but he’s raving about these. A huge success! I added 2 ounces more of pork than you used (so 16 instead of 14) but it wasn’t that big a difference, and all the flavor is still there

  4. Sali joined 6/12 & has 12 comments

    I made these yesterday, they were a huge success! I couldn’t leave the house to go to the store, so I used a different filling… I used chicken, ginger, chinese cabbage, mushrooms, a little onion and sweet spring cabbage. Maybe not very authentic but tasted great~~ I didn’t have a big steamer so I could only do 4 buns at a time. I kept the rest in the fridge (I had 4 steaming racks) and took them out in time so that they rose while the previous batch was cooking. My buns turned out fluffy and delicious. :) Thank you for the recipe! I want to make these again soon.

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,702 comments

      Thank you very much for sharing your cooking experience with us! “I could only do 4 buns at a time..” wow, lots of work! I’m very impressed with your passion for cooking!
      Cheers!

  5. sandy76 Singapore joined 5/12 & has 1 comment

    Maangchi! I did the steamed buns this morning, it was very good result:) thank you for your useful recipe.

  6. pigrabbit86 USA joined 5/12 & has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi!
    I’m allergic to wheat, would it work if I used rice flour?
    Thank you :)

    • DarkVixen Saint Cloud joined 6/13 & has 2 comments

      I would like to know to, Im allergic to wheat too. Thought maybe a sweet rice bun would do the trick. Let me know if you experiment with this!! Thanks!!

  7. sopheasophea New Zealand joined 4/12 & has 1 comment

    Today my mother made this (she had some chicken filling left over) and the dough was perfect! She thinks you’re so funny – we’ll be keeping an eye out for your videos ;)

  8. interestsarefree New York City joined 11/11 & has 5 comments

    Hey, Maangchi! It’s interestsarefree from Flickr. I’m not on there anymore. I decided to be here exclusively.

    I made hobakjuk for last year’s Thanksgiving. This year, I made these! I got thirteen of them out of this recipe. I’ll upload a picture soon. My family loved them, especially my mom.

    We both love steamed buns, but she prefers chapssalddeok as she loves sweet bean paste, known in Peru as frijol colado, except cloves and evaporated milk are added to it.

    I would apply for a visit to Peru for Gapshida!, but I live in New York. Love your recipes anyway!

    Go Maangchi!

  9. valerieee Texas joined 11/11 & has 3 comments

    Ms. Maangchi, can you substitute white flour for whole wheat flour?

  10. chef Benedict Manila, Philippines joined 11/11 & has 45 comments

    similar to a filipino dish called siopao… i want to do this… i love this dish perfect for snack and perfect for picnic get outs… or potluck and it can be eaten all the way to the road… i hope i can make this through using ground chicken or beef… for vegetarian i guess its tofu…

  11. audi_ann08 Morris joined 10/11 & has 1 comment

    I made this for my family today, and my husband couldn’t stop eating it. It takes time to prepare but time flew by quick. thank you maangchi :).

  12. bob_m Incheon joined 10/11 & has 1 comment

    I’m going to learn how to make these so I can carry on eating them when I leave Korea. All the local stalls here have glass noodles in their mandu. One of the stalls includes vegetables in the dough which makes them look really pretty. Most stalls also sell a sweet version using red bean paste which I like.

  13. Pc Malaysia joined 9/11 & has 2 comments

    Maangchi! I love your cooking! I want to freeze the bun, sould I freeze it before I steam or after? Thanks maangchi!

  14. alluring_gyrl Oklahoma City, Ok joined 8/11 & has 1 comment

    I just discovered your videos on YouTube tonight while looking for recipes for pork buns. You are wonderful and your vids are very straight forward and thorough.
    Could you use doejibulgogi for filling in the steamed buns? Or do you have another bbq pork recipe that would work as a filling?

  15. louie nz joined 8/11 & has 1 comment

    your recipe is all good and yummmmmmmy…….my family loves it…
    thank you maangchi

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