Taiwanese steam-fried pork buns

October 11, 2011 in Uncategorized

In Taiwan, you can find a wide range of delightful snacks at night markets, which is, also known as street food. One of my favourites is the steam-fried bun. The direct translation for the bun from Mandarin Chinese, is “water fried bun”. The bun is semi-fried and semi-steamed, but very little oil is used in the process. These delightful buns are delicious and pretty much one of the easiest things to make in Taiwanese cuisine.

The dough of steam-fried pork buns is light and fluffy, housing a succulent filling of mainly cabbage and pork mince. Unlike western dishes, Majority of Asian cuisine uses pork mince instead of beef. The reason is that in Taiwanese and Chinese history, cattle farming didn’t exist because, even though they were a food source, they were needed for agricultural purposes. Pigs, on the other hand were bred for consumption purposes alone. This meant that pork was more affordable than beef.

It’s usually quite difficult to raise the buns off the pan without breakage, so my mama found a way to lift the buns off the pan easily by adding corn starch to the water used to steam the buns. Another bonus from her method is that the corn starch makes the buns even crispier.


Dough: You can also use your own dough recipe.

  • 250g bread/cake flour, sifted
  • 10g sugar
  • 3g instant yeast
  • 135g water
  • 10g sugar
  • 10g canola oil
  • extra flour for dusting

Filling :

  • 500g minced pork
  • 200g chopped cabbage
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 2 tbsp of soya sauce
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp 5 spices seasoning

Mix till the filling becomes sticky.


  • Make the dough
  • Divide the filling into 12 portions. (see step 1)
  • Create a floured surface and divide the dough into 12 pieces.
  • Roll out a piece with a rolling pin so that it becomes a flat disc. What often helps is rolling out the edges thinner than the centre to prevent the bun from breaking when being cooked. (see step 2)
  • Scoop one of your 12 portions of filling into the centre of the dough, creating a round ball of filling. (see step 4)
  • Gather the edges to the middle, making sure that you pinch them together hard enough so that there are no gaping holes. (see step 5)
  • Flatten the pinched section and dust it with flour. – Set aside to rest for 10 minutes, allowing the buns to rise. (see step 6)
  • Repeat

Pictures of the method can be seen on the original post on my blog – Butterfingers

5 responses to Taiwanese steam-fried pork buns

  1. Heavens above – I love this xxx jan

  2. Thanks hun :) Much appreciated!

  3. Its looks similar to the chinese steamed buns which my daughter loves. Lovely recipe – thanks for sharing.

  4. Thanks for uploading recipe & dough tip. Can’t wait to try these steam-fried pork buns, have a good week :)

  5. Thanks for the comment :) If you do make it, please let me know!

Add Comment Register

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>